Terrorism is a problem that has existed in the world throughout history. This has been associated with the emergence of groups that are focused on sabotaging business environments in the areas where their enemies are operating (US Dept. of State, Bureau of Public Affairs, 1990). The emergence of terrorism first took place in the eighteenth century when there was a post-revolutionary movement in France (Browne, 1978). Subsequently, there have been various understandings with regards to terrorism. Currently, it is defined as the act of aggression against another person for the purpose of undermining national unity (Altheide, 2006).
There have been various attempts to ensure that terrorism is completely eliminated in the world. Some of the attempts included the ousting of governments that seem to provide niches for growth of these groups while other attempts were the efforts to destroy the very terrorist groups. For instance, the international community joined forces in ensuring President Saddam Hussein was evicted from power. This is because he was associated with the support of terrorist groups such as the Al-Qaeda or creation of weapons of mass destruction (Busch, & Joyner, 2009). The other president who was ousted from power is Colonel Gaddafi who was perceived to cooperate with terrorist groups and provided funding for them. The other efforts made include prevention of certain countries from producing weapons which are assumed to have the capability to destroy the lives of people. For instance, the U.S and the United Kingdom joined forces to fight Iran’s ambition to create nuclear weapons. This is because it was assumed that Iran’s involvement in production of these weapons could result in their exposure to terrorist groups that cooperated with Iran (Brockmann, 2002). Despite these efforts to ensure that terrorism is eradicated in the world, it has not been successful in ensuring terrorism does not become a menace to the world population. This is because there have been a number of terrorist attempts to destroy certain activities in the world. Some of these attempts have been successful while others have been intervened. In the intercepted terrorist attacks, it has been found that these terrorists are ordinary people who are employed by influential people in the society such as established businessmen or politicians (Edwards, 1988).
This has resulted into the need to investigate certain avenues that have not been properly applied in ensuring terrorism is eliminated. For instance, there is need to determine whether governments have invested enough in the areas of defense to ensure terrorism is controlled (Friedlander, 1983). There is also need to determine whether enough training of anti-terrorism specialists is done to ensure they assist in combating terrorism. This paper also investigates the possibility of lack of coordinated approach towards eradication of terrorism as a factor that has ensured it does not end.
This paper tries to explain the methodology that can be used to investigate the reasons why it has not been possible to control terrorism in the world. This is significant in obtaining the approach that can be used to ensure terrorists are prevented from conducting their attacks as well as ensuring peace prevails in the world.
Terrorism is a problem that is faced by almost all countries in the world irrespective of economic capability of a country. Both first world and developing countries have been observed to fall victims of terrorism. This is a phenomenon that has resulted in death of many innocent people as terrorist attacks take place in the target country (Hippchen, & Yim, 1982). For instance, in the late 20th century, Al-Qaida terrorist attacks took place in the United States resulting into deaths of thousands of innocent people. This is contrary to the fact that the U.S is the most powerful country in the world. There have also been many cases of terrorist attacks in other countries that share common interest with the U.S. For instance, there were similar attacks by Al-Qaeda in Kenya’s capital city, Nairobi, and Dar-es-Salaam in Tanzania in the late 20th century despite the peaceful and innocence of people in these countries (Howard, & Forest, 2008). Consequently, a number of attempts have been made to try and control terrorism but success has not been achieved according to expectation. Despite few successes, including the killing of Osama Bin Laden, the terrorist group leader, it has not been possible to eradicate terrorism completely (Perera, 2007). This paper provides a discussion of reasons why terrorism has not been successfully controlled in the world. It gives a methodology that can be used to study the reasons why terrorism is still a problem in the world and how this methodology will assist in coming up with a solution to the problem under study.
Reasons why Terrorism has not been Easy to Control
Lack of Accountability for Terrorism-Related Activities
In the United States, federal agencies that are responsible for disbursement of funds for combating terrorism are not required to provide information regarding terrorism-related activities. As a result of lack of accountability for terrorism-related funding, it has become difficult to determine the government allocation for the fight against terrorism (Cooley, 2000). Agencies that have been surveyed regarding their spending on terrorism-related activities provide their own definitions of spending on terrorism-related activities.
There has also been uncertainty in the amounts of government spending on terrorism-related activities. There are varied definitions of terrorism and counterterrorism in various agencies in the Unites States. In addition, most agencies have not allocated specific funds for combating terrorism activities (Shanty, 2011). A number of agencies involved in the fight against terrorism serve multiple functions and it is not easy to allocate funds that can be used to fight terrorism. This is because the U.S defense is focused on not only fighting terrorism, but also fighting thefts, disputes in classified documents and public demonstrations. A number of agencies such as Department of Energy and Transportation have distributed accounting and budgeting activities that do not involve terrorism-related funding within its branches (Cutter, & Richardson, 2003). Furthermore, most programs receive their findings from more than one source within a particular agency that results into difficulties in tracking collective totals. Furthermore, when appropriations are done it is not always clear which amounts should be allocated for combating terrorism.
Furthermore, there is usually no mechanism between agencies that is significant in ensuring efficient, focused and nationwide utilization of funds in various agencies’ programs with the objective of combating terrorism (Smart, 1997). In addition, there is no priority in collection of federal funds with the intention of utilizing them in the fight against terrorism. All agencies are allowed to identify and seek findings for its priorities within its budget (Whittaker, 2001). Due to the continuous practice of each agency of identifying and determining priorities for its funding in an effort to fight terrorism, it is important to ensure there is annual crosscutting evaluations of the agency budget requests for these programs to ensure duplicated efforts do not emerge. There has not also been implementation of federal policies for combating terrorism (Stout, 2002).
Agencies involved in formulation of policies and operational issues related to combating terrorism operate on consensus basis which prevents them from making independent decisions and do not have the power to determine the priorities for combating terrorism (Kegley, 1999). There is usually lack of understanding and review of terrorism combat related requirements by the agencies responsible for these functions. For instance, when FBI requested for funding from the government, the agency in charge of reviewing the capabilities of the purposes of FBI did not provide evidence regarding the capabilities of effective use of these funds by FBI in their laboratories. It also did not analyze the request by FBI for increased staffing requirements based on the workload that this investigation unit was facing in combating terrorism threats (Sterling, 2001). Furthermore, due to lack of priorities for terrorism-related requirements across a number of agencies, it was not possible to consider the tradeoffs between competing priorities. It was also observed that the agencies involved in funding the FBI activities were not willing to provide the company with an aircraft that was intended for use in combating terrorism. This can be argued that the US government did not prioritize in the fight against terrorism (Bassiouni, 2001).
Existence of Groups that Provided Sponsorship, Sanctuary and Support for Terrorists
It has been observed that there are a large number of political and business individuals who provide support for certain terrorist groups. For instance, certain political leaders provide sanctuary for terrorist groups and are usually not willing to provide information regarding their whereabouts (Carlton, & Schaerf, 1995). This made the fight against eradication of terrorists very difficult. For instance, when America was attacked on September 11th by Osama Bin Laden’s Al-Qaeda terrorist groups, he was provided sanctuary in Afghanistan for over a decade before he was killed. In addition, many business individuals who have the resources that can assist the operations of terrorist groups usually provide financial support for such groups (National Research Council, 2004). This support is sued in such areas as purchase of firearms and recruitment of more members into terrorist groups. The business personnel may also use these terrorists as a way of achieving their business purposes. They may be employed to attack certain organizations that are regarded as threats to the existence of their operations. When such terrorist groups attack another business, it results into deaths of many people and destruction of property. The problem is that these business people and politicians are never held accountable for their role in protecting or funding terrorists. Consequently, it has not been possible to combat terrorism completely in the world because a number of politicians, businessmen and sponsors are solidly in support of their operations (Innes, 2003).
Furthermore, there are usually high connections among terrorist groups and it is not always easy to track all terrorists and destroy them. Terrorists exist in almost any country in the world and it is not easy to determine the exact place where they can be found. For instance, Al-Qaeda network is able to use the existing technologies to communicate in various parts of the world, provide training to their members and determine whether they are being tracked (Howitt, & Pangi, 2006). The particular groups of terrorists in a specific country can form groups with the intention of ensuring they have the capability to destroy many things and property.
Methodology of Research
The methodology involved in the study of the reasons why it has not been possible to control terrorism in various parts of the world will include the analysis of various areas where government has not shown effectiveness in controlling terrorism. One of these areas will include a survey in the following areas of operations of terrorists.
A Survey on the Government Department of Defense
In this study, an in-depth survey will be conducted to determine various ways in which governments have been supportive in ensuring terrorism is eradicated. In addition, it will involve a study of the amounts of resources that have been put in place in terms of finance to ensure the role of the government in controlling terrorism if effective and there is success in control of terrorism. Furthermore, the actual financial allocations in the field of defense will be determined to know how the government is committed towards control of terrorism. In terms of financial allocation towards control of terrorism, government allocation in the areas of defense and counter-terrorism will be compared to other departments such as the department of industrialization. This will assist in estimating the level of prioritization of the fight against terrorism in comparison with other sectors of the economy.
In terms of training of defense forces in the fight against terrorism, the number of training institutions put in place to assist in the fight against terrorism will be compared to the level of training in other training institutions. This will assist in coming up with a conclusion regarding the level of training in the field of defense against terrorism (Gurr, & Cole, 2000). In the areas of actions against terrorist attacks, the department of defense will be required to provide information concerning actions taken against terrorist suspects or punishments vetted on those suspected of terrorism. This will assist in determining the commitment of the government in the fight against terrorists as well as evaluating its commitment in protecting lives of its people.
In terms of eradication of weapons of mass destruction, the department of defense will be required to determine the number of weapons that have been seized from terrorists. They will be also required to provide information regarding the safety of dangerous arms from terrorists access. This will be useful in determining whether there is commitment by the department of defense in ensuring that terrorists have least access to weapons of mass destruction (Cooper-Hill, 2006). Furthermore, the department of defense will be required to provide information regarding safety measures that have been put in place to ensure trade in firearms and weapons of mass destruction are not handled by unauthorized persons. In addition, they will be required to provide regulatory measures that have been put in place to ensure legal ownership of firearms, preventing easy access to firearms by terrorists (Evans, & Murphy, 1998). This will be useful in determining whether there are any efforts made to ensure that handling of firearms is under control. In terms of tracking of terrorists, the department of defense will be required to provide information regarding any identified terrorists` bases (Friedlander, & Levie, 1999). This will be useful in determining whether there is any effort made to ensure terrorist hideouts are traced and their networks eradicated. This information will also act as an indicator on whether the government has played any role in ensuring that terrorists do not operate in the country.
Furthermore, the study will involve a survey of measures, objectives and goals put in place to ensure that the level of terrorism does not increase in the country. This will be based on the ways in which government placed defense at the borders with other countries to ensure terrorist do not migrate or sneak into the country. This evidence will be used to estimate the government commitment in controlling infiltration of terrorist groups into the country.
Furthermore, the department of defense will be required to determine whether there has been any expert assistance for international anti-terrorism units that have to ensure terrorism does not continue and terrorists in the country are identified. This information will be significant in determining whether the government is committed towards ensuring the people`s safety.
A survey on the Role of the Media in Promoting Terrorism
In this study, a survey will be conducted in a number of media organizations such as television stations and other broadcasting stations. The stations will be required to provide information regarding any reports associated with terrorism (Hachten, & Scotton, 2002). One of these is to determine whether they were ever approached by terrorist groups to broadcast their information or to connect with their colleagues. They will also be asked to determine ways in which they have ensured their institutions are protected from terrorists and the information they broadcast is not affected by terrorist opinions. This will be useful in determining whether there is any way in which media has been used by terrorists to accomplish their missions.
Moreover, the media will be required to provide facts regarding their involvement in the fight against terrorism. This will be based on their commitment towards reporting terrorists’ attacks in the country, their efforts to locate where terrorists operate and inform the authorities and to ensure victims of terrorism are reported for assistance. This will be significant in determining whether the media is playing the expected role in control of terrorism.
Furthermore, the media personnel will be required to provide information regarding whether there were some terrorists threats in an attempt to discharge their duties. This may be in terms of kidnapping or prevention of media coverage. They will also be asked to identify security measures put in place to ensure terrorists do not affect their reports. This will be useful in determining whether the media is focused on the fight against terrorism or is acting as assistant to the government in the fight against terrorism.
The role of the media in the fight against terrorism will also be investigated based on their efforts to ensure these groups are not sponsored by businessmen or politicians. This will be achieved by asking the media personnel to determine their reports regarding financial support of terrorist groups by politicians and established businessmen (Wolfgang, 2004). They will be asked to specify some businessmen who may be providing financial assistance to terrorists. The feedback from this investigation will be useful in estimating the level of commitment towards ensuring that terrorist groups do not get sponsorship or assistance from politicians and businessmen.
Financial allocation by the government towards control of terrorism in comparison to other state departments such as the department of industrialization is an optimal measure of the priority of the fight against terrorism by the state. Further, the evaluation of the impact of effort towards eradication of weapons of mass destruction and the skills offered to the forces will help in determining the level of training in the field of defense against terrorism.
The information concerning actions taken against terrorist suspects is a good measure of the commitment of the government in the fight against terrorists as well as in assessing states’ commitment in protecting the nation.
The information on regulatory measures that have been enacted regulate possession of legal firearms, and preventing access to weapon by potential terrorists, will be a useful measure to determine the efforts made to ensure that handling of firearms is under control. On the other hand, the information on the tracking of terrorists is useful in determining the effort made to ensure terrorist hideouts are traced and their networks eradicated, it will also indicate whether the government has ensured that terrorists do not operate in the country.
The role of media is a significant measure of fight against terrorism and its investigation will be useful in estimating the level of commitment towards ensuring that terrorist groups do not communicate freely to get assistance from corporate world.