Posted: February 10th, 2017
Discussion 1: Prior to beginning work on this discussion, read Chapters 4, 8, and 9 in Martin (2016). Review the list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations from the U.S. Department of State and the State Sponsors of Terrorism webpage. To check your understanding of the material required for this discussion, you may also wish to access the quizzes and flash card activities on the companion website for the Martin text.
For this week’s discussion on terrorism we need to consider terrorism as an initiative by a group to change or modify political policy. It can be used by governments to adjust the will of groups; it can be used by groups in an effort to affect official state policy; and it can be used by one government to influence policy in another state government. Depending on where one stands, the methods and techniques can be justified or condemned.
Martin lays the foundation for this discussion with a wide variety of perspectives and models to characterize terrorism as just one more element in the political spectrum. To grasp an understanding of terrorism we must look at the intended audience and how it is used; the tools available for terrorist to affect domestic or foreign policy; how terrorism groups are funded; and understand how terrorism shapes domestic and foreign policy.
Select one terrorist organization from the provided partial List of Foreign Terrorist Organizations, adapted from the U.S. Department of State. It is recommended you initiate your research on that specific organization using the chapters in Part II of your Martin text before expanding your research to external resources. You may find this sufficient to provide an analysis of that terrorist organization based on one or more applicable models identified in Chapter 4 of the Martin text. This discussion lays the groundwork for your Weeks Four and Five assignments, as well as the Final Paper in Week Six.
For your initial post, analyze your chosen terrorist organization using one of the models identified in Chapter 4 of Martin. Each of the models can be found in summary in the tables throughout the chapter. Explain the historical reasons and the socio-political environment that lead the terrorist movement for your chosen organization. Your initial post must be a minimum of 500 words in length for discussion 1. Support your post with examples from required materials, scholarly sources, or official government sources. Use APA formatting to cite your sources in-text as well as at the end of your post.
Guided Response: Review several of your classmates’ initial posts, and respond to at least two of your peers by Day 7 of the week. You are encouraged to post your required replies earlier in the week to promote more meaningful and interactive discourse in this discussion.
The U.S. State Department list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations and the State Sponsors of Terrorism identifies the “legal ramifications of designation” and “other effects of designation” on their website. For your responses, select two classmates who chose a terrorist organization different from your own. Assess how effective the designation on the Department of State list has been in countering the terrorist group identified by your classmate. In your assessment, determine whether the group should continue to be on the Department of State list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations.
Discussion 2: Prior to beginning work on this discussion, read Chapters 5 and 6 in Martin, and review Chapter 4 in Martin as well as the provided List of Foreign Terrorist Organizations, adapted from the U.S. Department of State. To check your understanding of the material required for this discussion, you may wish to access the quizzes and flash card activities on the companion website for the Martin text.
Religious-centered terrorism seems to be a central tenant of a new era of terrorism, but in fact, religiously motivated terrorism has a long history and can be seen in the Book of Joshua as the Israelites enter Canaan (c. 1200 BC), with the Assassins of Persia (1090 – 1250 AD), in India (1300 – 1900 AD), and with the Christian Crusades (1100 – 1400 AD). This type of terrorism can be especially concerning, as the belief that the soldiers are following the will of their god can be a substantial force multiplier. When religious beliefs are also bolstered by nationalism there are additional complications. It is interesting to note the number of religious affiliated groups on the U.S. Department of State list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations. At the end of Chapter 6, Martin lays out several questions for discussion, reiterated below. Address only one of these questions in your initial post.
Is faith-motivated activism a constructive force for change? At what point does the character of faith-motivated activism become extremist and terrorist? Does faith-based natural law justify acts of violence? Why do religious traditions that supposedly promote peace, justice, and rewards for spiritual devotion have so many followers who piously engage in violence, repression, and intolerance? What is the future of faith-based terrorism? Your initial post must be a minimum of 500 words in length for discussion 2. Support your post with examples from required materials, scholarly sources, or official government sources. Use APA formatting to cite your sources in-text as well as at the end of your post.
Guided Response: Review several of your classmates’ initial posts, and respond to at least two of your peers by Day 7. You are encouraged to post your required replies earlier in the week to promote more meaningful and interactive discourse in this discussion.Identify ethical or social justice issues, if any, which should be considered. Evaluate whether or not your classmate might want to consider addressing additional questions above to address religious fundamental extremism.
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