One of the non Islamic examples that I found interesting was in 2001 when two white supremacists tried instigating a race war by destroying Jewish and African American landmarks. This scenario actually reveals a scenario where terrorist motives and violence were used, but human beings were not directly impacted by it.
The destruction of monumental landmarks that represent so much history just seems like a method to erase history not necessarily start up a race war. I think the motive here with how they went about it thankfully was dumb because how is this really sending a race message but fabulous that no human being got hurt. This kind of reminds me how during the black Lives Matter Movement when statues of Christopher Columbus were being torn down. Individuals wanted to get rid of these statues because they were connected to history, but all in all the statues resemble a part of history that can not be erased.
Another non Islamic example that I had found interesting was the ‘self proclaimed mission to revenge waco’ that was carried out by father and son.The duo killed an armed guard in the process of trying to rob a bank in Oklahoma in order to fund a terrorist campaign.
This case just seems to be like the duo thought this was a ‘perfect world’ scenario where they’d smooth sailing be able to kill a guard, rob the bank, and then take the time to use those funds to purchase ammunition for a terrorist act they were planning. It just does not make sense nor is it rational (not saying terrorists are rational but this was just carried out thankfully terrible). Although the guard had passed due to this, it’s a good thing that they were caught on their first criminal act as opposed to going through with bombing hundreds of innocents.
The church and the state are believed to be two separate and powerful entities. In reality, the two are deeply intertwined with each other, especially in certain civilizations. A state, is inherently political. Merriam-Webster dictionary defines political as: “of, relating to, involving, or involved in politics…” (n.d.). Church, or rather religion in general has its roots in politics. Instead of seeking to govern and determine the rules of society through man, it is done through God. Thus acts of violence carried out due to religious purposes can be terrorism since they are political at their core.
Numerous acts of jihadi terrorism have been conducted over the years. There are 2 forms of jihad, the form tied to terrorism is the lesser jihad. This jihad is a declaration of war against non-Muslims in order to create a society/world governed by sharia-abiding Muslim rulers (Law, 2016, p. 272).
The Qur’an is the reigning authority in the Islamic world. Thus, all ethics, laws, and acts are governed by the teachings of the Qur’an. To jihadists, it is the supreme law of the land, transcending nations and borders (Haleem, 2005, p. ix). Jihadi terrorists disregard the political, moral, and practical restraints that may affect other terrorists due to their belief that their acts of terrorism are done through the will of the divine and in keeping with the Qur’an (Hoffman, 2017, loc. 2295). As an example, the Qur’an states to “Fight those of the People of the Book who do not [truly] believe in God and the Last Day, who do not forbid what God and His Messenger have forbidden, who do not obey the rule of justice, until they pay the tax, and agree to submit” (Haleem, 2005, p. 117-118).
Often the words insurgency and terrorism are interchanged. Though the two share many similar characteristics there is a distinctive difference between them.
Insurgency embraces both guerilla operations and psychological warfare in order to garner support in the effort against a foreign power. Unlike insurgents, terrorists do not operate as armed units that combat the military, hold/attempt to hold territory, have difficulty creating a focused effort of mass political mobilization, and have no direct control over a population (though they try to spread their influence/agenda through acts of violence) (Hoffman, 2017, loc. 1115).
Thus it is largely due to the scale of the terrorist organization, its power over an area, and the methods through which it combats those it deems enemies that differentiates it from an insurgency.
In 1979 the Shah, the secular leader of Iran, fled to the united States, as millions of Iranians began to revolt in the streets. During that time, an exiled Imam, the Ayatollah Khomeini returned to Iran and established an Islamic republic. The Islamic republic was governed by Sharia law and portrayed the United States as the “great Satan”. By doing this, Khomeini was able to to keep everyones attention on battling the “great Satan” and not on returning Iran to the secular state it had been. As a result of the constant anti-American rhetoric being spouted by Khomeini, a group of young radical Jihadists invaded the US Embassy in Tehran, in November of 1979. The radicals held 52 Americans hostage for 444 days. President Carter had no response to the situation causing the United States to look week in the eyes of radical Muslims and other world powers. In April 1980, 5 months after the hostages were taken, an attempt was made to rescue the hostages, but it failed. This made the United States look even weaker and President Carter to look totally incompetent. This emboldened the jihadists who have now learned that a small group, “willing to act decisively could garner international attention, humiliated the United States, and cripple a presidency through terrorism” (Law, R., 2016. pp. 279-280). The hostages were finally released on January 21, 1981 just hours after President Reagan was sworn into office. The 1979 Iranian Revolution also brought about the “celebration and pursuit of martyrdom” (Law, R., 2016, p.280), by an entire generation of young Muslims. In 1979, as a way to unite the people of Iran, the Ayatollah encouraged the youth to remember the 680 AD martyrdom of Imam Hussein and focus their hatred and discontent on the “great Satan”. This helped to discourage internal differences that Iranians may have with each other and to focus their hatred on the United States. Young Muslim radicals in other countries were now looking to Iran as the model to achieve an Islamic state