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Terrorism and Ethnic Conflict

by: Kerrigan Unter

Terrorism and Ethnic Conflict PSC 1003

Marketplace > George Washington University > Political Science > PSC 1003 > Terrorism and Ethnic Conflict
Kerrigan Unter
GPA 3.0
Introduction to International Politics
Olson, L

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Introduction to International Politics
Olson, L
Class Notes
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This 4 page Class Notes was uploaded by Kerrigan Unter on Monday October 19, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to PSC 1003 at George Washington University taught by Olson, L in Fall 2015. Since its upload, it has received 21 views. For similar materials see Introduction to International Politics in Political Science at George Washington University.

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Date Created: 10/19/15
PSC 1003 Terrorism and Ethnic Con ict De ning Terrorism political in the sense that it seeks to effect political change used as a tactic by nonstate actors deliberately targets noncombatants or civilians explicitly rejects international norms and conventions which binds states Purpose of Terrorism seeks to coerce a government and a broader society to effect changes by demonstrating a Willingness to strike anywhere and at any time 0 Not interested in military victory against a state 0 Actual target of the terrorist attack is less important than the broader effects it Will have on the government and the society 0 Democracies are generally targeted more often than nondemocratic states reaction of the government is also an important consideration for the terrorist group Types of Terrorism categories of terrorism can be distinguished based on the level of destructiveness and the purpose of the terrorist attack demonstrative terrorism 0 Seeks to call attention to the group s cause 0 Loss of life is usually low but property damage is often high destructive terrorism 0 More aggressive in the sense that civilians are targeted and the loss of life is often high 0 Still attempts to mobilize support Within the potentially sympathetic population through more precise targeting suicide terrorism 0 Most aggressive in the sense that it is indiscriminate and only seeks to in ict damage 0 No attempt to mobilize support Within the population 0 Often alienates potential supporters Technology and Terrorism technological developments and the strength of terrorist groups go hand in hand 0 Many refer to the contemporary manifestation of this phenomenon as the dark side of globalization technological developments in uence the types of attacks terrorist groups carry out and the destructiveness of the attacks 0 After the invention of dynamite this became a preferred weapon for anarchists Globalization and Terrorism communications revolution the 1990s is the latest example of terrorist groups using technological development to their advantage 0 Allow transition to network based on organization 0 Can operate more effectively transnationally due to the fact that territory is less necessary 0 Loosely connected cells can operate independently o Introduces problem of lone wolf terrorist Realist view of terrorism while recognizing terrorist groups as nonstate actors realists will maintain a statecentric approach Robert Pape The Strategic Logic of Suicide Terrorism examining the individual motivations of the terrorist tells us very little must focus on the group as a rationalactor a group will be more likely engage in suicide terrorism if the benefits outweigh the relatively low costs Pape argues terrorist groups are successful when 0 Attacks are part of coordinated sustained campaign 0 Nationalist goals such as the removal of an enemy from a territory are pursued o Democracies are targeted 0 Enemy is willing to give concessions such as when no vital national security interest is involved Ethnic con ict as an Emerging Problem Intra state con ict has become far more common since 1990 than interstate con ict within the context of globalization such con icts are often seen as a fragmentary dynamic existing simultaneously with the integrative dynamic that exists at the system level not simply a backlash to integration as many ethnic groups in con ict take advantage of the technological developments of globalization Ethnic Groups share a common identity based on a cultural traits historical experience or common descent demands of ethnic groups can be material political andor cultural ethnic groups make diverse demands 0 Minority peoples often seek access to state institutions 0 Ethnonationalist groups often seek exit from existing states and from secessionist movements the causes of ethnic con ict can be traced to a variety of sources including relative deprivation demographic stress sociocultural factors a history of ethnic tension and state failure Realists and Ethnic Con ict apply the security dilemma at a domestic level to understand ethnic con ict groups in a society will act as rational actors but calculations of power and the assessment of threat posed by other groups will be different 0 Ability to mobilize group as a cohesive unit increases the power of one group and potentially threatens others 0 In ethnic con ict because small arms are the primary weapon each side assesses threat and calculates power based on the assumption of offensive advantage Preemptive strikes are particularly tempting under these conditions 0 Geographic dispersion of the group is another factors and will affect the types of demands made and the nature of the con ict If a group is concentrated in a specific area secessionist demands are often made If a group is dispersed this increases the threat felt by the group and often leads to ethnic cleansing o Likelihood of outside intervention Realist Solutions following the logic of the security dilemma balancing power between groups is the best solution advocate separation of the groups to prevent further con ict 0 Assumes ethnic identity is hard wired and immutable Reconciliation is not possible 0 Critics argue that this policy rewards aggression


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