Domestic and international Terrorism

One of the ways that human security can be threatened is through terrorism as can be evidenced after the incident of September 11th where terrorist attack resulted to people losing their lives and properties in destruction. This made the United States to be more alert on security and measures to counter any future threats and occurrences of the same nature were put in place. The protection of local and international welfare of all Americans was heightened with several projects being sponsored to ensure utmost security.

Terrorism can be defined as the violence or force against people or properties in violation of the state laws for the sole aim of coercion, intimidation or ransom (Nash 17). The terrorists will always employ threats among the public to create trepidation so that the citizens are convinced that their government security agencies are powerless in the art of preventing terrorism. The League of Nations defines terrorism as the any criminal activity which is directed against or planned to create fear in the minds of specific people or groups of people or the whole public in general (Nash 18).

Terrorists threaten human security through the use of chemical and biological weapons. The chemical agents are used by terrorist to kill or incapacitate their human targets or destroy animals and crops (Nash 18). Chemicals usually used by terrorists are tasteless and odourless and therefore very difficult to detect. They have immediate effect, which may range from a few seconds to a few minutes. The effect can as well be a delayed one meaning the effect is felt after a long time ranging from several hours to several days.

Biological agents have also been used to attack the unprotected population of civilians through the use of highly infectious toxins and microbes that are used to cause infections or death in people or animals and plants (Nash 18). The biological agents can either be dispersed to the target through airborne particles or aerosols. The terrorist may contaminate food and water sources in a manner that is tremendously complex to detect. According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, there are two types of terrorism domestic terrorism and international terrorism.

Domestic terrorism is the violence that involves individuals or groups of terrorist whose activities are aimed at the governments elements or populations within their country without any foreign involvement. A good example is the organized crime gangs (Anderson and Garner, 416). International terrorism on the other side involves the individuals or groups of terrorists who base their actions to foreign nature (Nash 20). The terrorist activities under the foreign classification emanate from countries outside the United States or the activities go beyond the national boundaries.

International Terrorist group refers to any set or that that has significant subsets practicing international terrorism. Terrorist groups can be political movements that employ terror as a master weapon to achieve some political goal (Nash 21). Examples of these movements that have been branded terrorists include the 15 May Organization, Abu Sayyaff Group (ASG), Abu Nidal Organization, Ansar Al-Islam, the Lord Resistance Army, the Egyptian Islamic Jihad, the HAMAS and so forth.

There is significant need to stop the violence and extremism aspects of terrorism than to keep on defining and analyzing terrorisms as several innocent people are killed and economic progress brought to a halt. The establishment of regional and international mechanisms, which include joint operations against terrorists, international laws, as well as exchange of intelligence, are some of the steps which have been put in place to counter terrorism (Anderson and Gardner 412). Techniques already existing can be used to identify and intercept terrorists even when these methods have moral implications. An example of these technologies can be Signal Intelligence (SIGINT), which can be used to tap communications from terrorists and use the information to prevent any planned attack (Nash 23). SIGINT is the intelligence-gathering done by intercepting signals between two people, known as communication intelligence (COMINT) or between two electronic signals that are not used directly in communications (ELINT) (Nash 23). The two technologies may be combined for enhanced results.

The information accessed by these technologies is very sensitive and therefore it is encrypted and often involving cryptanalysis and traffic analysis to ensure total security and protection from decryption (Nash 23). Information is collected and used to identify critical terrorist activities that may cause public panic. The kinds of information that can be intercepted include voice data, text and signal channel.

Another important technology that can be used to detect and intercept terrorist communication is Lawful Interception (LI), which takes advantage of advanced technologies such as GSM, WLAN and WiMax. In these technologies, voce communication processes have had a paradigm shift from fixed network to highly efficient wireless technologies (Nash 35).

There are several ethical, moral and legal implications that result when using these technologies of intercepting information from terrorists. Each individual is protected from being infringed into his or her private life and the interception can be a violation of the rights to privacy (Nash 35). Unless the person (terrorist) is made aware that critical information is being accessed from him from a remote area through SIGINT or LI, the procedure is not legal and tends to infringe into the terrorists private life.

In general, homeland security is important in enhancing economical and social growth. Extremism and terrorism constitute a persistent threat to the security, peace and stability of all states worldwide. It is therefore important for the problem to be fully addressed using the greatest investments of technology and other resources to endsure that the problem is culminated.


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