The thread must be a minimum of 200-250 words. MINIMUM OF TWO SOURCES BESIDES THE TEXTBOOK. Must cite at least 2 sources in addition to the Bible.
TEXTBOOK: Prunckun, H. (2019). Counterintelligence theory and practice (2nd ed.). New York, NY: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers. Inc. ISBN: 9781786606884.
Ronczkowski, M. R. (2018). Terrorism and organized hate crime. (4th ed.). Boca Raton FL: Taylor & Francis (CRC Press). ISBN: 9781138703469.
A terrorist, as defined by various scholars and practitioners in the field of counterterrorism, is an individual who employs violence, or the threat of violence, to instill fear and achieve a political, religious, or ideological goal. The term “terrorist” is often debated and contested, as the adage “one man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter” suggests (Hoffman, 2017). The line between a terrorist and a non-terrorist becomes blurred when individuals or groups use violence to advance their objectives while being perceived as legitimate by a segment of the population.
An individual becomes a terrorist when they transition from holding extremist beliefs to actively engaging in violent or destructive acts in pursuit of their goals. This radicalization process is complex and multifaceted, influenced by personal, social, and environmental factors (Hussain, 2018). For example, radicalization often involves exposure to extremist ideologies, personal grievances, social isolation, and the search for identity and belonging. In addition, a sense of real or perceived injustice can be a powerful catalyst for radicalization (Hussain, 2018).
Furthermore, terrorists exhibit various behaviors and engage in various suspicious activities. These may include planning and preparing for attacks, procuring weapons and materials, conducting surveillance, establishing secure communication channels, and recruiting or indoctrinating new members (Jameel et al., 2020). Terrorists may also use propaganda and social media to disseminate their message, gain support, and intimidate their adversaries (Kettle & Mumford, 2017).
Additionally, radicalization occurs through a series of stages, including pre-radicalization, self-identification, indoctrination, and finally, action (Hoffman, 2017). During the pre-radicalization stage, individuals may experience personal, social, or political grievances that make them susceptible to extremist ideologies. The self-identification stage involves seeking identity and belonging, often facilitated by radicalizing agents such as charismatic leaders or extremist networks. Indoctrination follows, wherein individuals adopt the extremist ideology and develop a commitment to the cause. The final stage, action, is when an individual actively engages in terrorism-related activities, including planning, training, or executing attacks.
The most effective recruitment tool for terrorists varies according to the specific group and context. However, the internet and social media are among the most potent tools (Asongu et al., 2019). Extremist groups use online platforms to disseminate their propaganda, connect with potential recruits, foster community, and belong among their supporters. In addition, social media allows terrorists to amplify their message and reach a global audience, making it easier for them to identify, radicalize, and recruit vulnerable individuals (Asongu et al., 2019).
Defining a terrorist and understanding the radicalization process is complex and nuanced. The behavior of terrorists and their suspicious activities varies depending on their goals, methods, and organizational structure. In addition, the internet and social media have emerged as powerful recruitment tools for terrorists, enabling them to connect with potential recruits and spread their extremist ideologies globally. To effectively counter terrorism, it is crucial to comprehensively understand these factors and develop tailored strategies to address the root causes of radicalization.
1 Peter 3:16 (English Standard Version Bible, 2001) states, “Having a good conscience, so that, when you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ may be put to shame.” This verse emphasizes the importance of maintaining a clear conscience and displaying good behavior as followers of Christ. This principle can be applied to our approach to countering terrorism and addressing radicalization. Instead of resorting to violence or promoting divisive ideologies, Christians are called to exhibit good behavior and promote unity, understanding, and compassion in the face of adversity.
Asongu, S. A., Orim, S. I., & Nting, R. T. (2019). Terrorism and social media: Global evidence. Journal of Global Information Technology Management, 22(3), 208-228.
English Standard Version Bible. (2001). EVS Online. https://esv.literalword.comLinks to an external site.
Hoffman, B. (2017). Inside terrorism (Third Edition ed.). Columbia University Press.
Hussain, A. M. (2018). Understanding terrorism – The lure of terror. TAJ: Journal of Teachers Association, 26, 1-2. https://doi.org/10.3329/taj.v26i0.37571Links to an external site.
Jameel, A., Ahmad, R., & Mehdi, M. (2020). Understanding terrorism: A review of the psychosocial theories. Global Strategic & Securities Studies Review, V(IV), 20-30. https://doi.org/10.31703/gsssr.2020(V-IV).03Links to an external site.
Kettle, L., & Mumford, A. (2017). Terrorist learning: A new analytical framework. Studies in Conflict and Terrorism, 40(7), 523-538. https://doi.org/10.1080/1057610X.2016.1237224Links to an external site.