Homegrown Terrorism: The Threat Within   [open pdf - 212KB]

"This paper attempts to illustrate how difficult, if not impossible, it is to find root causes of domestic terrorism that are of general applicability. There may be similarities from one nation to another, but focusing on such similarities may well lead the analyst astray. The fact that each terrorist sought to cause fear in their fellow countrymen may well be the only common denominator. It is likely to be more important to focus on the unique cultural stamp of the individual nation to assess the reason for violence-prone disquietude among its citizens and residents. Unfortunately, many countries are now beginning to see similar threads of resentment that have begun to be expressed with violence at home. Here we briefly examine the experience of six countries with homegrown terrorism. Certainly, there are others that should be included in this survey; however, due to constraints of length we chose only six. In this paper, we eschew focus groups, such as animal and environmental rights groups, which are rightly described as terrorists when they use violence. We also leave aside the terrorist who acts to bring pressure on another nation--for example, the anti-Castro Cuban or the Sikh separatist who bombs a facility to express outrage at the conduct of another nation. Rather, we focus on the citizen and/or resident who seeks to cause harm to fellow citizens and residents, whether targeted for a single purpose, as with Theo Van Gogh, or murdered indiscriminately as in Spain and the United Kingdom."

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National Defense University. Center for Technology and National Security Policy: http://www.ndu.edu/ctnsp/
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