Democracy terrorism essay - what is a thesis statement in a rhetorical analysis


 

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democracy terrorism essay

democracy terrorism essayDemocracy terrorism essay -It is exactly the mistake we made when we lumped the Chinese and the Soviets together in the 1950s and early 1960s, calling them ‘international Communists.’ ”)Eli Berman, an economist who has done field work among ultra-orthodox religious groups in Israel, is even more granular in his view of what terrorists want: he stresses the social services that terror and insurgent groups provide to their members.Terrorists have political or ideological objectives (the purpose can’t be mere profiteering).Paul Bremer’s de-Baathification of Iraq, in the spring of 2003, in which the entire authority structure of Iraq was disbanded at a stroke, creating a leadership cadre for a terrorist campaign against the American occupiers.(Examples of that ultimate kind of success would be the Irgun and the Stern Gang, in Israel, Sinn Fein and the Provisional I. A., in Northern Ireland, and the Palestine Liberation Organization, in the West Bank and Gaza.)Cronin goes through an elaborate menu of techniques for hastening the end of a terrorist campaign.Its most influential published expression is General David Petraeus’s 2006 manual “Counterinsurgency.” Written in dry management-ese, punctuated by charts and tables, the manual stands as a rebuke of the excesses of Bush’s global war on terror.“Soldiers and Marines are expected to be nation builders as well as warriors,” the introduction to the manual declares.But in the case of counterterrorism the laboratory approach can’t be made to scan neatly, because there isn’t a logic that can be counted upon to apply in all cases.As Cronin dryly notes, “In the wake of major attacks, officials tend to respond (very humanly) to popular passions and anxiety, resulting in policy made primarily on tactical grounds and undermining their long-term interests.What dominates the writing of experts about terrorism, however, is a more fine-grained idea of terrorists’ motives—at the level of ethnic group, tribe, village, and even individual calculation.Their intention is to intimidate an audience larger than their immediate victims, in the hope of generating widespread panic and, often, a response from the enemy so brutal that it ends up backfiring by creating sympathy for the terrorists’ cause.Suicide bombing represents merely one end of the spectrum; its use is an indication not of the fanaticism or desperation of the individual bomber (most suicide bombers—recall Muhammad Atta’s professional-class background—are not miserably poor and alienated adolescent males) but of the supremely high cohesion of the group.Pape asserts that “offensive military action rarely works” against terrorism, so, in his view, the solution to the problem of terrorism couldn’t be simpler: withdraw.Today, few consider the global war on terror to have been a success, either as a conceptual framing device or as an operation.They don’t have firm control over the area within their borders, and they lack the sort of legitimacy that would make terrorism untempting.What he doesn’t do is torture, kill in revenge, or overreact. It’s hard to think of a service that the manual suggest, except maybe yoga classes. The American colonel who was running the program went out to talk to people and find out how effective the program was at meeting its larger goal.The book jacket identifies Perry as “a military, intelligence, and foreign affairs analyst and writer,” but his writing conveys a strong impression that he has not spent his career merely watching the action from a safe seat in the bleachers.By contrast, Mark Moyar dismisses the idea that “people’s social, political, and economic grievances” are the main cause of popular insurgencies.Much of the book is devoted to a detailed description, complete with many on-the-record quotes, of a series of meetings in Amman, Jordan, in 2004, between a group of Marine officers based in Anbar province, in western Iraq, and an Iraqi businessman named Talal al-Gaood.And we’re so grateful to Muqtada al-Sadr for doing this program.” Evidently, Sadr had simply let it be known that he was behind this instance of social provision, and people believed him.For Berman, the lesson is “a general principle: economic development and governance can be at odds when the territory is not fully controlled by the government.” That’s a pretty discouraging admission—it implies that helping people peacefully in an area where insurgents are well entrenched may only help the insurgents.Not long after that, Gaood died suddenly, of a heart ailment, at the age of forty-four (according to Perry, he was so beloved that his wake had to be held in a soccer stadium), putting an end to any possibility of further talks.democracy terrorism essayIn Iraq, during the recent elections, some Sunni groups set off bombs near polling places, but others won parliamentary seats.The crux of his story is that a promising negotiation was tragically cut short, just as it was about to bear fruit, when the key negotiator, a Marine colonel, was “PNG’d”—declared persona non grata—by Washington and denied entry to Jordan.Once you take terrorists to be rational actors, you need a theory about their rationale.Like most other terrorism experts, Berman sees no crevasse between insurgents and terrorists.Robert Pape, a political scientist at the University of Chicago, built a database of three hundred and fifteen suicide attacks between 19, and drew a resoundingly clear conclusion: “What nearly all suicide terrorist attacks have in common is a specific secular and strategic goal: to compel modern democracies to withdraw military forces from territory that the terrorists consider to be their homeland.” As he wrote in “Dying to Win: The Strategic Logic of Suicide Terrorism” (2005), what terrorists want is “to change policy,” often the policy of a faraway major power.His foreign-policy speech in Cairo, last June, makes an apt bookend with Bush’s war-on-terror speech in Washington, on September 20, 2001.The emotion—and its companion, thirst for revenge—inevitably figure large in the political life of the targeted country.Suicide bombing, Berman notes, increases when the terrorist group begins to encounter hard targets, like American military bases, that are impervious to everything else.For outsiders, reading this material can be a jarring experience.If the September 11th attacks were meant in part to provoke a response that would make the United States unpopular in the Muslim world, they certainly succeeded.But the Russians have tried that intermittently in Chechnya, without the same effect; the recent suicide bombing in the Moscow subway by Chechen terrorists prompted an Op-Ed piece in the by Robert Pape and two associates, arguing that the answer is for Russia to dial back its “indirect military occupation” of Chechnya.We had a worldwide enemy with a cause that was general, not specific (“They hate our freedoms”), and we now had to take on the vast, long-running mission—equal in scope to the Cold War—of defeating all ambitious terrorist groups everywhere, along with the states that harbored them.Adamson Chair of Insurgency and Terrorism at the Marine Corps University, tells us that, in Afghanistan, the Taliban’s pay scale (financed by the protection payments demanded from opium farmers) is calibrated to be a generous multiple of the pay received by military and police personnel (financed by U. aid); no wonder official Afghan forces are no match for the insurgents.Effective counterinsurgency, he says, entails selecting the élites you can work with and co-opting them.They are “non-state actors,” not part of conventional governments.Gaood, a Sunni and a former member of Saddam Hussein’s Baath Party, suggested he could broker a deal that would make the horrific, almost daily terrorist attacks in western Iraq go away. Tough, brave, tight-lipped officers do endless battle not just with the enemy in the field but also with cowardly, dissembling political bureaucrats in the Pentagon, the State Department, and the White House.(Abimael Guzmán, the head of the Shining Path, in Peru, was, after his capture in 1992, “displayed in a cage, in a striped uniform, recanting and asking his followers to lay down their arms.” That took the wind out of the Shining Path’s sails.History is about managing that struggle, sometimes successfully, sometimes not, rather than eliminating the impulses that underlie it.A surprise ambush that martyred him might not have.) Negotiating with terrorists—a practice usually forsworn, often done—can work in the long term, Cronin says, not because it is likely to produce a peace treaty but because it enables a state to gain intelligence about its opponents, exploit differences and hive off factions, and stall while time works its erosive wonders.In the world of terrorism studies, the rhetoric of righteousness gives way to equilibrium equations. Terrorists, even suicide bombers, are not psychotics or fanatics; they’re rational actors—that is, what they do is explicable in terms of their beliefs and desires—who respond to the set of incentives that they find before them. democracy terrorism essay Yet this is not an effective way to gain the upper hand against nonstate actors.” The implication is that somewhere in the world there might be a politician with the skill to get people to calm down about terrorists in their midst, so that a rational policy could be pursued. Another fundamental problem in counterterrorism emerges from a point many of the experts agree on: that terrorism, uniquely horrifying as it is, doesn’t belong to an entirely separate and containable realm of human experience, like the one occupied by serial killers.The idea is to take advantage of the group’s highly decentralized structure by working to alienate its far-flung component parts, getting them to see their local interests as being at odds with Al Qaeda’s global ones.Experts on terrorism have produced shelves’ worth of new works on this question.The war on terror wasn’t a hollow rhetorical trope.One could say that the way to reduce a group’s terrorist activity is by reaching a political compromise with it; Northern Ireland seems to be an example.Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan all have pro-American governments that are weak.Pape thinks of terrorists as being motivated by policy and strategic concerns; Cronin, of the National War College, shares Pape’s view that most terrorists are, essentially, —people who want control of land—but she is also attuned to their narrower, more local considerations.The Taliban used traditional guerrilla-warfare techniques when they fought the Northern Alliance in the mountains.One of Moyar’s chapters is about the uncontrollably violent American South during Reconstruction—a subject that a number of authors have turned to during the war on terror—and it demonstrates better than his chapter on Iraq the power of his theory to offend contemporary civilian sensibilities.For Americans, the gravest terrorist threat right now is halfway across the world, in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan.“Bin Laden and Zawahiri have focused on exploiting and displacing the local concerns of the Chechens, the Uighurs, the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, the Salafist Group for Call and Combat in Algeria, and many others, and sought to replace them with an international agenda,” Cronin writes.In “A Question of Command: Counterinsurgency from the Civil War to Iraq” (Yale; $30), Mark Moyar, who holds the Kim T.Now that General Petraeus is the head of the Central Command and has authority over American troops in the region, our forces could practice all that he has preached, achieve positive results, and still be unable to leave, because there is no national authority that can be effective against terrorism.few days after the September 11th attacks—which killed seven times as many people as any previous act of terrorism—President George W.Pape’s “nationalist theory of suicide terrorism” applies not just to Hamas and Hezbollah but also to Al Qaeda; its real goal, he says, is the removal of the U. military from the Arabian Peninsula and other Muslim countries.They must be able to facilitate establishing local governance and the rule of law.” The manual’s most famous formulation is “clear-hold-build,” and its heaviest emphasis is on the third of those projects; the counterinsurgent comes across a bit like a tough but kindhearted nineteen-fifties cop, walking a beat, except that he does more multitasking. Petraeus has clearly absorbed the theory that terrorist and insurgent groups are sustained by their provision of social services.After the Hezbollah attack on the Marine barracks, in 1983, President Ronald Reagan pulled out of Lebanon, a decision that may have set off more terrorism in the Middle East over the long term. Bush, rather than Reagan—can work in one contained area and fail more broadly.The tools of analysis are realism, rational choice, game theory, decision theory: clinical and bloodless modes of thinking.Moyar admires General Petraeus personally (Petraeus being the kind of guy who, while recuperating from major surgery at a hospital after taking a bullet during a live-ammunition exercise, had his doctors pull all the tubes out of his arm and did fifty pushups to prove that he should be released early). One of the most prolific contemporary terrorist groups, the Tamil Tigers, of Sri Lanka, appears to have been defeated by the Sinhalese Buddhist-dominated government, through a conventional, if unusually violent, military campaign, which ended last spring.Audrey Kurth Cronin, a professor of strategy at the National War College, reminds us, in “How Terrorism Ends: Understanding the Decline and Demise of Terrorist Campaigns” (Princeton; $29.95), that one can find out about Al Qaeda’s policy for coördinating attacks by reading a book called “The Management of Barbarism,” by Abu Bakr Naji, which has been available via Al Qaeda’s online library. democracy terrorism essay Even if one could prove that a set of measured responses to specific terrorist acts was effective, or that it’s always a good idea to alter terrorists’ cost-benefit calculations, there’s the problem implied by the tactic’s name: people on the receiving end of terrorism, and not just the immediate victims, do, in fact, enter a state of terror.None of them rise to the level of major policy, let alone a war on terror; in general, the smaller their scope the more effective Cronin finds them to be.Rather than disempowering the former Confederates and empowering the freed slaves, Moyar says, the victorious Union should have maintained order by leaving the more coöperative elements of the slaveholding, seceding class in control.It’s startling to read about American military commanders in the field taking on a freelance diplomatic mission of this magnitude, and to imagine that there was a businessman in Amman who, on the right terms, could have snapped his fingers and ended what we back home thought of as pervasive, wild-eyed jihad.She believes, for instance, that jailing the celebrated head of a terrorist organization is a more effective countermeasure than killing him.The United States should now try to “sever the connection between Islamism and individualized local contexts for political violence, and then address them separately.” It should work with these local groups, not in an effort to convert them to democracy and love of America but in order to pry them away, one by one, from Al Qaeda.Lesser terrorist groups remain violent but seem gradually to lose force, and greater ones rise to the level of political participation.Yet this proof of concept does not solve the United States’ terrorism problem.The point of social science is to be careful, dispassionate, and analytical, to get beyond the lure of anecdote and see what the patterns really are.But Moyar is appalled by the manual’s tendency to downplay the use of force: “The manual repeatedly warned of the danger of alienating the populace through the use of lethal force and insisted that counterinsurgents minimize the use of force, even if in some instances it meant letting enemy combatants escape. In that instance, brutal repression seems to have been the key.It led to the American conquest and occupation first of Afghanistan, which had sheltered the leaders of Al Qaeda, and then of Iraq, which had no direct connection to September 11th.When their enemies became Americans and other Westerners operating from protected positions and with advanced equipment, the Taliban were more likely to resort to suicide bombing. The idea of approaching terrorists as rational actors and defeating them by a cool recalibration of their incentives extends beyond the academic realm.On paper, in all three countries, the experts’ conceptual model works.One could criticize the manual from a military perspective, as Mark Moyar does, for being too nonviolent and social-worky. As operations in Iraq and elsewhere have shown, aggressive and well-led offensive operations to chase down insurgents have frequently aided the counterinsurgent cause by robbing the insurgents of the initiative, disrupting their activities, and putting them in prison or in the grave.”Because terrorism is such an enormous problem—it takes place constantly, all over the world, in conflict zones and in big cities, in more and less developed countries—one can find an example of just about every anti-terrorist tactic working (or failing to).That approach, along with these scholars’ long immersion in the subject, can produce some surprising observations.Their members are also subject to high defection constraints, because their education and their location don’t put them in the way of a lot of opportunity and because they know they will be treated brutally if they do defect.He regards anti-insurgent campaigns as “a contest between elites.” Of the many historical examples he offers, the best known is L.But doing that can make terrorism more attractive to other groups—a particular risk for the United States, which operates in so many places around the world.(“Calling the al-Qaeda movement ‘jihadi international,’ as the Israeli intelligence services do,” she writes, “encourages a grouping together of disparate threats that undermines our best counterterrorism.Pape says that “American military policy in the Persian Gulf was most likely the pivotal factor leading to September 11”; the only effective way to prevent future Al Qaeda attacks would be for the United States to take all its forces out of the Middle East. democracy terrorism essay Paul Bremer’s de-Baathification of Iraq, in the spring of 2003, in which the entire authority structure of Iraq was disbanded at a stroke, creating a leadership cadre for a terrorist campaign against the American occupiers. democracy terrorism essay




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