Future of Terrorism
How do globalization and technology impact the incidence of terrorism?
The September 11, 2001 attacks on the twin-towers in The United States shifted the debate on terror due to the impact of technology and globalization on terror attacks. Due to September 11 attacks, the US embarked on a war on terror which scattered terrorism organizations across the world. To stay relevant, many terror organizations are now embracing what is known as “Open-source jihad” whereby attacks are launched by individuals or small groups of people (Lia, 2013). This recently happened in London two men hacked a soldier to death in broad daylight. An Al Qaeda leader was quoted talking about a strategy that would involve every individual becoming an “army of one”.
Due to advancements in technology which make it possible for security agencies to quickly detect large-scale terrorism attacks, terrorists are shifting to small-scale unsophisticated attacks to avoid detection. Such small scale attacks easily escape surveillance and are executed by radicalized individuals. The recent Boston bomb attacks are also a sign that terrorism is shifting to small-scale attacks by individuals. Individuals are becoming radicalized after watching radicalized speeches and reading radicalized sermons which are readily accessible online due to globalization and the technological revolution (Taylor & Horgan, 2012). Radicals are emerging in Western nations such as Europe and the United States. Some of them are leaving for training with groups such as Al-Shabaab in Somalia only to return to their home countries and masterminding terror attacks.
Prevention of small-scale terrorist attacks is a Herculean task for most security agencies and law enforcement officers. Internet surveillance is increasingly being used to monitor terrorist attacks but it poses a dilemma to law enforcers due to infringement of the individual right to privacy. Globalization has also led to the emergence of dominant economies and weak economies. Since weak economies harbor resentment against the dominant economies, they become perfect breeding grounds for terrorists.
Are there times when torture is justified
There is contemporary international debate on whether terror can ever be justified. Civil rights and liberties activists hold the view that all forms of terror can never be justified. Torture has historically been part of the criminal justice system since in medieval time criminals were punished through means that are currently considered as torture. Counterterrorism attacks used as measures to respond to terrorism are often cited as justified forms of torture (Lia, 2013). Torture can also be used to force an informant to confess about an imminent terrorist attack rather than cause millions of people to die from a terrorist attack that would have been prevented if torture had been used to extract information from a knowledgeable informant. Use of torture to extract information from terrorists is however discouraged on a basis that terrorists usually give interrogators the information they want to hear rather than giving them true information about terrorist attacks.