What Makes a Terrorist?
The rising of terrorism due to the September 11, 2001 tragedy issued a simple key question by the people across the world of different backgrounds; what would make the people masterminding and participating in the attacks willing to perish their precious life in creating a massive destruction in a foreign land? What makes a terrorist? In short, terrorism is viewed as the threat designed in influencing the characters and behaviour of a group or to attain objectives that are quite impervious (Rapoport and Alexander, eds. 1982). By the diverse fact that terrorism is perceived as a phenomenon, ever-changing, and highly convoluted, this argumentative controversy is also lacking in a definition which is generally agreeable. Thus, with plenty of factors and degrees subsidizing to terrorism, it can be acclaimed that psychological considerations, political and the pressuring sense of oneness among the groups are the several ...view middle of the document...
Therefore, it is crucial in acknowledging the role of social and religious context in order to understanding the nature of this mental disorder.
This act of terrorism can also be via political motivation as it is required to attain several goals which make one particular party has advantages over its rivals. In the third world countries where the judicial system and law are not efficient enough to apprehend those who are responsible in committing crimes, the terrorist attacks normally occurs. Hoffman (1999) indicates the fact that terrorism is used as a mean of communicating messages via violent acts, as a way to the solidification of the triumph of the terrorists’ cause.
In sense of the pressured “oneness”, according to Post (1986), terrorists usually submerge their self-identities into the group, developing in a kind of "group mind-set" and a moral code which is necessary for the group to devote an unquestioned obedience. The cohesion of the group increases or decreases, depending on the degree of outside hazard they are facing. The need of belonging to a group inspires most terrorists to involve in terrorism act by joining the terrorist group. A group member who attempts on questioning the group’s ideology or decision or worse, trying to quit and go against the group would likely face a very severe sanction. Terrorist groups are knowingly to react brutally against their members who are dropping out. When 15 out of 30 members of Red Armygroup, also known as the JRA, brought up objections to the group's approach in 1972, the dissenters includinga mother to-be who was perceived as being "too conservative," were tied one by one to the stakes in the mountains of north Japan, were left to die of exposure besides being whipped with wires. By most reports, one’s decision to involve oneself in a group of terrorist is often irreversible.
Given the varied and distinct scope of terrorism, it is undertaking to distinguish the leading causes of this uncivilized phenomenon. The possible factors have been under much debate and there are proof for and against every factor of the above reasons, however, more usual than not, it is a mixture of these several that makes a terrorist.