Investigating Terrorism

1.Trash covers represent an excellent technique in the investigation of terrorist organizations. Begin by listing those items that might typically be found in your discarded trash that would provide details regarding you personally your interests, lifestyle, associates, family, business, income, debts etc. Be honest and be thorough in your response. Follow your response by listing items that investigators might be interested in locating in the trash of suspect terrorists and follow with a discussion of how such items could be used to benefit the investigation.

     A suspects trash is very useful to investigators since they serve to create a profile of the suspect as well as  predict  what the suspect might do. They look for such items like receipts of purchases, phone bills, discarded medicine containers, and even discarded ID cards and passports besides looking for obvious pieces of evidence (Dagnan, 2008).

2. Differentiate between the meaning of domestic terrorism and international terrorism. Begin by providing a definition for each and identifying the key distinctions between the two. Follow by providing examples of each in the context of actual events that have occurred within the continental United States.     Domestic terrorism essentially involves individuals who hold extremist political views on certain local or national issues ranging from abortion to racism, and their use of terrorism is an expression of their disagreement with the policies of the government. One infamous example was Timothy MacVeigh who was responsible for the Oklahoma City bombing in retaliation for the governments takedown of the Branch Davidian Cult (Federal Bureau of Investigation FBI, 2009).
    International terrorism, on the other hand, is motivated by global issues such as American imperialism opposed by Islamic groups as Al-Qaeda as proven by the attacks on Sepember 11, 2001 (Laqueur, 2004) .

3. The Christian Identity movement, a quasi-religious movement, is significant in the discussion of right-wing extremism in this country. Define the term Christian Identity, and provide background on the origins of the movement in this country. Describe the philosophy espoused by the movement and how in your opinion it tends to reinforce a hate based extremist ideology. Also provide the names of several extremist groups that have adopted the Identity philosophy.     The Christian Identity movement involves several organizations that subscribe to an extreme form of Christianity that asserts the supremacy of Christianity, where its followers believe that they are the descendants of the ancient Israelites and regard themselves as their heirs. Ironically, they consider the Jews (as well as other minorities) as evil. One such group that subscribes to this movement is the Ku Klux Klan and Aryan Nation in the United States and the Broederbund of South Africa during the Apartheid years (Robinson, 2006).

4. Describe how trials of conventional criminals and terrorists differ. A complete answer should address, at a minimum, motions, plea bargains, security, counsel, sympathetic supporters, propaganda, jury nullification and jury tampering.

    A trial for criminals will have all the usual features common in a trial.  There would be motions filed by both defense and prosecution (counsels), plea bargaining, security provided by bailiffs, and the jury who are ideally the peers of the accused. Terrorists are of different nature because they are considered combatants and could not be brought before a civilian court instead, they are brought before military commissions. One other difference will be the absence of sympathetic supporters for the terrorists. Such trials would have little or no media coverage, and any kind of evidence or testimony regardless of origin can be used as compared to a conventional trial where evidence and testimony is qualified to ensure credibility (DellOrto, 2007).


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