Each of the required two responses to your classmates (or instructor) must be a minimum of “200 words” in length.
The Global War on Terror is, the name suggests, focused on international terrorism. The question at hand is whether or not the United States is doing enough to address domestic terrorism. After reading through the domestic terrorist events that occurred since the deadly Oklahoma City Bombing, it’s hard to say that the U.S is really doing enough to combat these terrorist acts. According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, there are 1018 hate groups in the U.S (SPLC 2011). With that in mind there have been nearly 100 “plots” committed in the U.S. These plots involve everything from rape and kidnapping, to racially or religiously charged attacks. I would say that most if not all the events listed in the SPLC’s project had some type of law enforcement on the case prior to the events being committed. That being said I would say that there is definitely an effort being made to fight against these domestic terrorists. The hardest part about these events is that the culprits are full-fledged citizens. In recent years there have been a number of domestic terrorist attacks and one that is still on our minds is the Boston Marathon Bombing on April 15th, 2013. The two bombers were Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev who were 26 and 19 respectively and had been living in the U.S for a decade (Gunaratna and Haynal 2013). Their family seaked sanctuary in the U.S in 2002 in fear of deadly prosecution because of their ties to Chechnya. Like any other immigrant family life wasn’t the easiest. The brothers endured growing up in a tough neighborhood, their parents getting divorced, and overall not being able to do what they wanted to do in life. Tamerlan, the older brother, took to religion to aid in his struggles, and even took a trip back to his homeland, while the younger brother attended college but ultimately was more focused on smoking pot than anything else, but he looked up to his older brother and they relied on each other. Flags were raised and even the Russian Intelligent Service (FSB) warned the U.S about Tamerlan, and in turn the U.S added him to the TIDE (Terrorist Identities Datamart Environment) database but ultimately found nothing proving he was a threat (Gunaratna and Haynal 2013). That being said, the U.S ultimately was aware of the risk the Tsarnaev brother posed but failed to see the real factors of a threat. Overall, I think the U.S is making the effort to keep the terrorist at bay on a domestic level, but needs to step it up when the flags do appear, especially like the case of the Tsarnaev brothers and the Boston Marathon Bombing.
Domestic and international terrorism are both similar and different. According to the FBI, international terrorism is perpetrated by individuals and/or groups inspired by or associated with designated foreign terrorist organizations or nations (state-sponsored); while domestic terrorism is said to be Perpetrated by individuals and/or groups inspired by or associated with primarily U.S.-based movements that espouse extremist ideologies of a political, religious, social, racial, or environmental nature (FBI 2016). The key difference here is the groups or individuals designation, be it foreign or a homegrown group. The clear international groups are the likes ISIS and Al-Qaeda, while the domestic groups are, as the definition states, radical groups like white supremacists, Neo-Nazis, and other hate groups. Overall, the motives might be different, but in my opinion the evil acts are all under the same tree of terrorism.
Gunaratna, R., & Haynal, C. (2013). Current and Emerging Threats of Homegrown Terrorism: The Case of the Boston Bombings. Perspectives On Terrorism, 7(3). Retrieved from http://www.terrorismanalysts.com/pt/index.php/pot/article/view/267
Terror from the Right. (n.d.). Retrieved November 20, 2017, from https://www.splcenter.org/20151101/terror-right
Terrorism. (2016, May 03). Retrieved November 20, 2017, from https://www.fbi.gov/investigate/terrorism
As we see frequently on the news the world is at odds with Islamic fundamentalists. Many of the attacks since 9-11 lead United States law enforcement agencies to devote many assets in support of counter-terrorism intelligence, prevention, and legal fights. I think that Rapoport, pointed out a cliché that is very poignant to the question, “Is America doing enough to address “domestic” terrorism?” That cliché is, ‘‘One man’s terrorist is another’s freedom fighter.’’ Two examples of this are the Sons of Liberty being ‘‘freedom fighters’’ and the KKK terrorists. (Rapoport, 2008) I bring this up because it is very difficult to pinpoint which groups are domestic terror cells, international terror cells with operatives living in the United States, Hate Groups, Single shooters, or disgruntled workers with the thought that they want to go out with people remembering their name. After reviewing Terror From The Right, it is obvious that this was specific to white Hate Groups; however, an important factor to realize is that much of the domestic terrorist groups are because of concrete grievances among a specific subgroup of a larger population, particularly like an ethnic minority discriminated against by the majority. (Ghatak, 2015) Additionally, Ghatak and Gold point out that discrimination against minority groups who may not share similarities with those of the dominant group and who may have historically suffered from social, ethnic, political and/or religious discrimination is widespread. Confusingly, with the multiple waves of terror groups rise and falling, producing some extraordinary and destructive events, yet without many great political successes and a much larger number of failures, terrorist activities still persist, and it would be difficult to find any serious observer who imagines that we will soon see an end to terror. (Rapoport, 2008) Therefore, I feel our law enforcement agencies are doing a good job, but with the media being what it is today I would say that there is more terrorist hype rather than actual comparative facts.
When looking at domestic terrorism, it occurs far more frequently than international terrorism, although the latter generates more media and scholarly attention, according to Ghatak. Domestic terrorism represents by far the greatest part of all terrorist violence. “Domestic terrorism is home grown and has consequences for only the host country, its institutions, people, property, and policies”. (Ghatak, 2015) An interesting analysis found that civil development increases domestic terrorism in the presence of minority discrimination by creating grievances as well as mobilization opportunities. Similarly, economic growth produces more domestic terrorism in the presence of minority discrimination than it does in the absence of discrimination. We also find support for the hypothesized curvilinear relationship between domestic terrorism and economic development. Even though highly developed countries are less likely to experience domestic terrorism than less-developed ones and the least-developed countries suffer little terrorism, both rich and poor countries, similar to middle-income countries, are vulnerable to domestic terrorism in the presence of minority discrimination. (Ghatak, 2015) However, because terrorist groups don’t recognize national boundaries, domestic terrorism falls into the previous stated civil driven reasons for terror and international terrorism tends to follow the radicalism construct. (Taspinar, 2009) Many countries look to other partner nations to support or participate in regional counterterrorism initiatives, contribute to military coalitions like the one formed to oppose the Islamic State, and help with stabilization and reconstruction in post-conflict zones, which differs from individual countries dealing with their own domestic issues. (Tankel, 2017) While radicalism more accurately reflects the political and ideological dimension of the threat the ideologies behind international terrorism shares the traits of violent radicalism. Additionally, international terrorism is a deadly security challenge and radicalism is primarily a political threat against which non-coercive measures should be given a chance. Another difference is that domestic terrorists are labeled as hate groups and international terrorists, by definition, are radicals. Yet all radicals do not end up as terrorists. In fact, only a few radicals venture into terrorism. (Taspinar, 2009) Ultimately, counter-terrorism intelligence is one of the best ways to prevent either type of terrorist attack. Counter terrorism intelligence is best looked upon in three categories: warning intelligence, operational intelligence, and criminal-punitive intelligence. (Kaplan, 2017) The three categories, if used properly by civil law enforcement agencies or the military, can be effective in minimizing terrorist acts.
Ghatak, S., & Gold, A. (2017). Development, discrimination, and domestic terrorism: Looking
beyond a linear relationship. Conflict Management and Peace Science, 34(6), 618-639.
Kaplan, & Abraham. (2017). The counter-terrorism puzzle: A guide for decision makers
Rapoport, D. C. (2008). Before the bombs there were the mobs: American experiences with
terror. Terrorism and Political Violence, 20(2), 167. doi:10.1080/09546550701856045
Tankel, S. (2017). Sixteen years after 9/11, are we any better at fighting terrorism?. Washington:
WP Company LLC d/b/a The Washington Post.
Taspinar, Ö. (2009). Fighting radicalism, not “terrorism”: Root causes of an international actor
redefined. The SAIS Review of International Affairs, 29(2), 75.