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Defining Terrorism

WP 3, Deliverable 4

October 1, 2008

‘Citizens and governance in a knowledge-based society’



1. INTRODUCTION................................................................................................................ 5 2. ACADEMIC DEFINITIONS .............................................................................................. 7 2.1 THE QUESTION OF PURPOSE .................................................................................... 8 2.2 PROBLEMS OF THE QUEST FOR REIFICATION ................................................... 10 2.3 THE ACADEMIC DEFINITIONS OF TERRORISM: UNBOUND STILL................ 15 2.4 CONCLUSION: AVENUES OF FUTURE THEORETIZATION ............................... 30 3. TERRORISM, POLITICAL VIOLENCE AND ORGANIZED CRIME .................... 33 3.2 ORGANIZED CRIME................................................................................................... 36 3.2.1 The concept ............................................................................................................. 36 3.2.2 The Nexus ............................................................................................................... 41 3.2.3 The Nexus in practice.............................................................................................. 45 3.3 POLITICAL VIOLENCE .............................................................................................. 49 3.3.1 Violence and the state ............................................................................................. 50 3.3.2 Violence and Legitimacy ........................................................................................ 52 3.3.3 Political violence and terrorism............................................................................... 53 3.4 CONCLUSION .............................................................................................................. 58 4. TYPOLOGY OF TERRORISM....................................................................................... 60 4.1 RELATIONSHIP TO THE ACADEMIC DEFINITION DEBATE ............................. 60 4.2 THE TERRORISM TYPOLOGY DEBATE................................................................. 63 4.2.1 Political orientation-based typology........................................................................ 65 4.2.2 Actor-based typology .............................................................................................. 66 4.2.3 Purpose-based typology .......................................................................................... 67 4.2.4 Motivation-based typology ..................................................................................... 68 4.3 SELECTED TYPOLOGIES .......................................................................................... 69 4.3.1 Geographical dimensions of terrorism .................................................................... 69 4.3.2 The role of state: terrorism by whom? .................................................................... 75 4.3.3 “Old” versus “new” terrorism ................................................................................. 80 4.4 CONCLUSION .............................................................................................................. 85 5. DEFINING TERRORISM IN THE EUROPEAN UNION ........................................... 88 5.1 REASONS FOR DEFINING TERRORISM ................................................................. 89 5.2 EUROPEAN DEFINITIONS OF TERRORISM........................................................... 90 5.3 DEFINITIONAL ELEMENTS ...................................................................................... 96 5.4 CONCLUSION ............................................................................................................ 102 6. WORKING DEFINITIONS – DEFINING TERRORISM IN THE MEMBER STATES................................................................................................................................. 104 6.1 GENERAL RESULTS AND DISCUSSION............................................................... 105 6. 2 COUNTRY SPECIFIC RESULTS ............................................................................. 107 6.2.1 Czech Republic ..................................................................................................... 107 6.2.2 Denmark ................................................................................................................ 107 6.2.3 France .................................................................................................................... 108 2

6.2.4 Germany ................................................................................................................ 108 6.2.5 Italy........................................................................................................................ 109 6.2.6 The Netherlands .................................................................................................... 110 6.2.7 Poland.................................................................................................................... 111 6.2.8 Portugal ................................................................................................................. 112 6.2.9 Russia .................................................................................................................... 112 6.2.10 Spain.................................................................................................................... 114 6.2.11 Sweden ................................................................................................................ 115 6.2.12 United Kingdom .................................................................................................. 116 6.3 CONCLUSION ............................................................................................................ 118 7. GENERAL CONCLUSIONS.......................................................................................... 120 8. BIBLIOGRAPHY ............................................................................................................ 123 INTERNATIONAL DOCUMENTS.................................................................................. 137 EU DOCUMENTS............................................................................................................. 138 COUNTRY SPECIFIC DOCUMENTS............................................................................. 138 Denmark ......................................................................................................................... 138 France ............................................................................................................................. 139 Germany ......................................................................................................................... 139 Italy................................................................................................................................. 140 Netherlands..................................................................................................................... 140 Poland............................................................................................................................. 140 Portugal .......................................................................................................................... 140 Russia ............................................................................................................................. 141 Spain............................................................................................................................... 142 Sweden ........................................................................................................................... 142 United Kingdom ............................................................................................................. 143 INTERNET SITES............................................................................................................. 144 APPENDIX I......................................................................................................................... 145 Table 1 European Convention on Suppression of Terrorism ............................................. 145 Table 2 Protocol Amending the European Convention on Suppression of Terrorism....... 146 Table 3 Council of the Europe Convention on the Prevention of Terrorism ..................... 148 Table 4 Council of the European Union Framework Decision on Combating Terrorism . 149 Table 5 Commission of the EC Proposal for a Council Framework Decision on Combating Terrorism ............................................................................................................................ 151 Table 6 Terrorism Act 2000 (United Kingdom) ................................................................ 152 Table 7 Nouveau Code Pénal (France) .............................................................................. 153 Table 8 Código Penal (Spain) ............................................................................................ 154 Table 9 Council Common Position on the application of specific measures to combat terrorism ............................................................................................................................. 155 Table 10 EC Council Regulation 2580/2001 ..................................................................... 156


............ 161 Table 16 Legal elements in European and other international definitions.... 167 Table 1 Czech Republic . 175 Table 7 Poland.. 158 Table 13 High Level Panel’s Report on Threats....................... 159 Table 14 Draft Comprehensive Convention on Combating Terrorism..................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 157 Table 12 United Nations Security Council Resolution 1566 (2004) ........................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 175 Table 8 Portugal ................................................................................ 173 Table 6 The Netherlands ................................................................................................................ 180 Table 12 United Kingdom.................................... 177 Table 10 Spain................................. Challenges and Change ............................................................................. 172 Table 5 Italy ......................................... 182 4 .......... 162 APPENDIX II ............................. 167 Table 2 Denmark........................................................................................................................................................ 176 Table 9 Russia .............................................................. 168 Table 3 France..................................................... 160 Table 15 Convention of the OIC on Combating International Terrorism........................................................................................... 178 Table 11 Sweden .................Table 11 International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism ................................................. 170 Table 4 Germany......................................................................................................................................................................................................................................

it asks what terrorism is -. words mean different things to different people. and international organizations mean when they use the word “terrorism” in their everyday speeches or documents. Namely it searches for differences between terrorism and two related terms. But although academia reflects reality. however. social sciences use words. Whereas the second chapter uses a positive way of defining the notion – that is. it is thus also necessary to ask how the term “terrorism” is understood in different legal 5 . terrorism has got many facets that may serve as a basis for such classification. and experience. Chapter four focuses on several important typologies that have been reflected in academic literature. theories and recommendations. chapter three approaches the task from the other direction and asks what terrorism is not. In order to articulate general statements. states. there can hardly be any common steps to counter terrorism. As we shall see. academia does not constitute reality. if we ask a group of people to discribe “freedom”. Therefore. In order to analyze the current situation and obstacles in international cooperation on counter-terrorism.1. whether at the domestic or the international level. when studying terrorism. it is necessary to have a look at what different people. This study should serve as an overview of how people. INTRODUCTION Where natural sciences use numbers to communicate an idea. Without a common agreement on the notion. culture. scholars try to group similar phenomena together according to common qualities. In chapters two and three. it is hardly possible to analyze what consequences there are to intranational and international relations. Without understanding the exact meaning of the term. Words such as “freedom” do not have the same meaning for everybody and such differences obviously hamper communication. states and international organizations define terrorism. The academic discourse is important for our understanding of terrorism and for imbedding it in the theory. Where anyone with a basic education is able to add “4” to “5” and come to the same result. we may end up with many different results depending on the particular persons’ origin. Unlike numbers. we shall analyze the academic discourse and have a look at what the common attributes that scholars ascribe to terrorism are. organized crime and political violence.

frameworks. focuses on the level of member states and draws conclusions from similarities and differences found in the nation states’ legal orders. Chapter six. 6 . then. paying special attention to the European Union’s efforts to reach a common definition of terrorism. Chapter five deals with the international level.

it is aimed to provide a review of existing academic definitions. Andrews (2004a: 375). followed by an account of the perceived problems in defining terrorism. In the first section.2. ACADEMIC DEFINITIONS ‘“Terrorism” may well be the most important word in the political vocabulary these days. Alex P. Despite the fact that terrorism ‘is not an unprecedented phenomenon. the academic discussion related to the necessity for arriving at a consensus in this matter is outlined. Terrorism indeed seems a contested and intensely political concept. internal and external tensions and major issues of contention. 2005: Introduction). the following lines could contribute to an expansion of such a contextual understanding even if the polyphonic and dialectical character of the contemporary discourse is projected onto them. perhaps not far from a ‘catch-all political signifier’ (Der Derian. 2004a: 395). and point to some potential avenues for establishing a deeper contextual understanding of the phenomenon. some potential avenues for future theoretizing of the phenomenon are sketched. In the next section. 2005: 23). ‘After thirty years of hard labor there is still no generally agreed definition of terrorism. …confusion prevails’ in the question of its nature (2004: 49).’ concludes Walter Laqueur of the Center for Strategic and International Studies (2003: 232. quoted in Schmid. Schmid. Elucidating its nature bears relevance in both theoretical and practical terms. In the end. Director of the Centre for Study of Terrorism and Political Violence at the University of St. However.’ as was remarked recently by one of its most prominent students. This chapter does not aspire to positively answer the question What is Terrorism? Instead. conceptualize problems related to the attempts to arrive at a consensus on the definition in the field. one could argue that little has changed since the time when the same scholar concluded in 1984 that ‘[academic researchers from many fields] have spilled almost as much ink as the actors of terrorism have spilled blood’ and yet have reached no consensus on what terrorism is (reprinted in Schmid and Jongman. It is assumed that by means of presenting existing positions. it is as old as the hills. a concise review of existing definitions of terrorism illustrating various stances towards the phenomenon in the academic discourse of terrorist studies and international relations – with several brief excursions into the legal theory – is attempted. 7 .

3) enforcement of international agreements against terrorism. Schmid also points to a positive role of a universal definition in coordinating the states’ anti-terrorist based on his conviction that terrorism escapes any definition and that any effort to capture it into a stable. Laqueur’s scepticism about the possibility of arriving at a universal definition – his deprecation of attempts to define terrorism is discussed in more detail in the next section . Ambassador to the United Nations Sir Jeremy Greenstock’s remark after the 9/11 attacks ‘What looks. Both positions are outlined in this section. Similarly. extends so far that it results in discordant positions in regard to to the question ‘Is the academic definition is really needed?’. in which he had declared that a common understanding of what constitutes terrorism is important. Ohio. 1964: When one sees terrorism. smells and kills like terrorism is terrorism’ (quoted in Schmid. who consider the absence of a universal definition of 8 . for 1) a development of common international strategies.K. one recognizes it.S.’ holds Ganor (quoted in Schmid. 2004a: 375) then rather betrays an impatience with concerning oneself with theoretical debates when there is real business to be done. as a matter of fact. some authors claim.2. others provide theoretical and practical reasons to make a case for the opposite. Some authors indeed seem to be content with the notorious paraphrase of U. and 4) effective extradiction procedures (Ganor. 2005: 3). by the lack of a universally agreed definition of terrorism. He thus reiterated his earlier statement on the importance of this issue. Whereas some conclude that the academic definition is dispensable and that the attempts to reach a universal one are futile. quoting Dean and Alexander. ‘An objective definition of terrorism is not only possible: it is also indispensable to any serious attempt to combat terrorism. It almost predisposes him to the following quote: ‘[T]the study of terrorism can manage with a minimum of theory’ (quoted in Schmid and Jongman. 1998). 2) effective results of the international mobilization against terrorism. The U. 2004a: 375). monophonic definition is bound to fail. Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart’s statement on pornography in Jacobellis v. among other purposes. Yet the real business can be spoiled.1 THE QUESTION OF PURPOSE The lack of consensus in the academic community on the issue of definition of terrorism does not encompass only the question of its substantive content but.

g. prevented on normative grounds. e. 2004a: 378). In the absence of a universal legal definition. it can be argued. Some could even maintain that this plural character is rooted in the essence of the free academic debate as such. In view of the delegitimization. and Ganor and Schmid’s statements therefore cannot be considered as proper arguments in favour of the universal academic definition of terrorism. if not a monophonic and uncontested definition of terrorism. in each of the fields listed above (academic. Diversity of definitions in the academic discourse seems to be a rather minor problem in comparison to the preceding fields. are required to play a peculiar role and therefore focus on various issue areas in their quest. disagreement as to the root causes. The academia. Double standards and the might makes right principle applied both in the international and domestic scene – styling resistance movements. Yet there seem to be reasons for trying to find a deeper contextual understanding of the phenomenon. Whereas the strategic discourse may be assumed to be primarily concerned with terrorism as a method of combat. this seems to be a serious case for expanding a common understanding of terrorism. stigmatization and securitization issues discussed in the next section.. The first reason is that the absence of a commonly accepted definition invites abuse.have in recent times become a favourite instrument of authoritarian governments to legitimize crushing those actors abroad – in which the label “terrorism” is used as a powerful instrument in the hands of the stronger. the focus rests rather with those who can be punished for commiting terrorist acts. which. capabilities of prosecuting those who commit terrorist crimes are limited – nullum crimen sine lege – and the extradition channels are obstructed. in the legal discourse. but for manifold definitions of terrorism. they pave the way to the conclusion that in fact. there is a search going on not for one universal definition of terrorism. in the academic discourse nonetheless. which ought to be critical towards the realm of politics – even if it cannot be detached from it – should then play a crucial role in the deconstruction of similar 9 . strategic and legal). However. the focus is here shifted from the academia to the fields of strategic and legal discourse.terrorism as the main factor likely to encourage future terrorism – more eminent than. Nonetheless. guerillas or mere political opposition as “terrorists” . This should be. religionization of politics or exploitation of the media (Schmid. the perpetrators.

2 PROBLEMS OF THE QUEST FOR REIFICATION The central question of this section is Why is there no agreed definition of terrorism?. 3. the same phenomenon at any given point of time. such clarification would provide a paradigmatic stable point of departure for the research on terrorism – instead of the current state of confusion where results of individual researchers and teams can be compared or complement each other only to a limited extent.processes. Boaz Ganor. Yet she adds another reason in favour of the definition – its relevance for theory and research: ‘The definition inevitably determines the kind of data we collect and analyze. who speaks of the universalist definition as a prerequisite of a ‘responsible theory’ (2006: 3). Such arguments may be radicalized: arbitrariness in definitions as points of departure for research perhaps not only influences academics’ results and hinders their comparability. which in turn influences our understanding of trends and our predictions about the future’ (1999: 12). if so much hard labour has been invested into the effort to find one. Jessica Stern of Harvard University also concedes that ‘how we define terrorism profoundly influences how we respond to it’. but it also generates a sense of uncertainty that the participants in the discourse talk about. 2. Director of the International Policy Institute for Counterterrorism. provides a number of reasons. it should possess useful instruments of analysis. Uniformly defining terrorism in the academia thus seems relevant both in theoretical and practical terms. 2. it would contribute to mitigating the ambiguities associated with the term that invite abuse. indeed. In line with the “strategic” argument outlined above. The same argument is presented by Schmid. social science and popular notions of it are often diverging. From the practical point of view. 10 . to meet such expectations. as Walter Laqueur’s quote from the introduction implies. Terrorism is “a contested concept” and political. with different forms and manifestations. legal. There are many types of “terrorism”. of which Schmid (2004a: 395) cites four in particular: 1. From the theoretical point of view. Yet. which limits their potential for cooperation. The definition question is linked to (de-)legitimisation and criminalisation.

1980a: 1). the question Who should have the power to define what terrorism is and is not? is 11 . 2004a: 396). then it has indirectly persuaded others to adopt its moral viewpoint’ (Jenkins. justifying their agendas and mobilizing their responses’ (quoted in Schmid. ‘conveying criminality. a small but fundamental excursion is made to the realm of legal discourse in order to provide a different point of view to the tensions present in the academic debate. while reinforcing the righteousness of the labelers. and even madness. The attributing and – at least to some extent – the defining ability is therefore intrinsically related to power and language hegemonies. Terorrism is then ‘what bad guys do’. in Herbst’s words. What Jenkins wrote in 1980 perhaps applies now more than ever before: ‘Use of the term terrorism implies a moral judgment.4. and if one party can succesfully attach the label terrorist to its opponent. Even if one does not adopt such a sharp critical stance. followed by some other cited causes of the existing semantic boundlessness of terrorism. As Kiras (2004: 481) notes. The term has undergone changes in meaning in the more than 200 years of its existence. states of the Western world have been preserving the hegemonic control over “legitimate” use of violence in the international system. the absence of the Weberian wall between the world of the raging storm of values and that of social science makes scientific inferences about the definition of terrorism all but possible. It can consist of ‘almost any violent act by the opponent’ which is once labelled terrorist (1980a: 2). by denoting certain political violence as terrorist and thus delegitimizing it in this process. the application of the term terrorist shuts the door to discussion about the stigmatized group or with them. Philip Schlesinger notes in this context that ‘no commonly agreed definition can in principle be reached. because the very process of definition is in itself part of a wider contestation over ideologies or political objectives’ (quoted in Schmid. 2004a: 397). The first explanation provided by Ganor often resounds in the notorious phrase One man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter. These explanations are examined in detail below. This stigmatizing label of tangible evil hinders serious debate as. In accordance with this opinion. In the end of the section. which is reflected in Ganor’s second point. illegitimacy. Perhaps the main reason why terrorism is contested so much lies in its stigmatizing nature.

The existing diversity of the terrorist phenomena is the core subject discussed in the chapter dedicated to types of terrorism. concerning the plural character of the phenomena termed terrorism. and the rules of war. 1998) – employed by securitizing actors (e.. e. inchoate factors and notions that motivate diverse actions’ (2006: 117). however. administration’s references to the “war on terror”. The positions vary. which is focused on the contemporary academic discourse. who argued that ‘any attempt to be… specific [about terrorism] is bound to fail. was made explicit. The question of whether the plural character of terrorist violence – illustrated. relevant in relation to the diachronic comparison of the perceptions of terrorism is that unlike the early perpetrators of terrorist acts. Jenkins elaborates on the subject: ‘We should be careful not to think of terrorism or terrorists as monolithic. whereas actual terrorists are shaped by culture. The historical reflection of terrorism is not to be treated in much detail in this chapter.S.1 The third point.still of considerable relevance.g. in which case it would form a natural semantic component to the fervent securitization efforts that ensued as the “war on terror” may be suggesting an enduring struggle against an abstract and inexplicable evil (Nunberg.g. 2004a: 402). 12 . for the simple reason that there is not one but many terrorisms’ (2000: 28). What is.. Stated in more neutral terms. the terrorist groups – recognized as such. as was pointed out. governments and other state institutions and their members) vis-a-vis the general domestic and international public to frame some issues as existential threats. even between the authors quoted in this paragraph: Laqueur sees the obstacle as unsurmountable.. Terrorism is a generalized construct derived from our concepts of morality. terrorism has become an important and fairly succesful instrument of “securitizing moves” – to borrow the Copenhagen School of Security Studies’ terminology (cf. for example. by Hoffman with relation to the U. State Department – now often invoke images of 1 The distinction between terror and terrorism is sometimes blurred in the public discourse. law. in their titles. later in this report on the case studies of various phenomena – deprives the concept of any common denominator and thus effectively prevents a definition from being formulated is indeed a relevant one. as the ‘question of defining the term cannot… be detached from the question of who is the defining agency’ (Schmid. by Laqueur. ideology and politics – specific.S. e. As Hoffman points.g. e. Yet this semantic choice could also be deliberate. 2004). Wæver and de Wilde. Buzan. their more contemporary descendants resist the label. while Jenkins is more optimistic. in which terror refers to a state of mind while terrorism refers to a political phenomenon (2006: 19).g. by The List of Foreign Terrorist Organizations issued by the U.

more than ½ answered 'their own' (58%). It is frequent. that the terrorists in fact project the label onto their adversaries (e. none of which would gain a particular prominence in being listed significantly more than others (Schmid and Jongman.freedom and liberation. Jenkins. reluctance to explore the field because ‘imponderable factors might be involved [besides economic or political]: indoctrination but also psychological motives’. or since terrorism is an attractive subject making headlines and breaking news. 2005: 25). There are other problems cited in the literature besides those presented above: for example. even when a great amount of explosive material could be present. it is overused and applied to manifold forms of political violence (cf. e. Yet. The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). the Irish Republican Army (IRA) and its succesor organizations. The remaining part (42%) favoured a variety of definitions. even if this trend may have a certain negative impact on blurring the nature of the phenomenon. uncontested examples of each of the respective cases. the existing governments in case of liberation struggles). as such reasoning would pave the way to a conclusion that every violent offender denying being a terrorist is one. The negative effect of the media is explained in conflicting terms: either it is considered as stemming from their striving for unbiased reporting and political correctness. Schmid found that scholars in the field tend to prefer their own definitions to those of others – in a response to the survey question Whose definition of “terrorism” do you utilize?. 1980a: 1-2). 'guerillas' or 'insurgents' to 'terrorists' (Hoffman 2006: 30) with the essence of terrorism getting lost in the process. Whether this can be considered as an explanation sui generis or a mere consequence or evidence of the previous points. in general. which makes them prefer designations such as 'separatists'.g. no terrorism ensues (Laqueur. the infrequent incidence of terrorism in statistical terms that prevents sound scientific inferences about its nature. it could conversely be indicative in other respects – the reason is that this self-denial is in fact characteristic of the perpetrators of terrorist violence (2006: 21-22). it does point to the utterly negative associations that the term 'terrorism' has come to bear. or the role of the media.. or such images that are not at all related to their methods and objectives and the means selected to achieve their goals.g. military organizational structures. It could be 13 . Hoffman notes. in consequence of which. This does not necessarily lead towards defining the terrorist. 2004: 53). and al-Qaeda are fine and.

some of them because of the reasons mentioned in the previous section. the General Assembly or Ad Hoc Commitees. As one of the Judges of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) remarked.g. there has recently been a clearly demonstrated dynamic towards specifying terrorism in international law documents on the level of the U. The above-listed considerations have made some scholars take on a defeatist position: ‘It can be predicted with confidence that the disputes about a detailed. Jenkins. whether states should be included among the actors that can perpetrate an act of terrorism or whether one should consider the actor’s motivation in identifying the nature of the violence – for instance. widely disapproved of and in which either the methods used are unlawful. In the legal field too. But the convergence extends even further.. Security Council. pointing to the existing relativism and moral implications of the label. or the target protected. However. whether the violence can be considered terrorist if it has been commited in a struggle for national self-determination or by the allegedly oppressed. 1997: 28). deprived and/or exploited. it may still be instrumental for the purpose of this project to make a short digression to existing international legal definitions. Although this issue is not central to the topic in this part. despite the continuous lack of a Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism. Ganor. comprehensive definition of terrorism will continue for a long time. Yet others refuse such a defeatist stance (Schmid and Jongman. but controversial if translated 14 . or both’ (Higgins. quoted in Schmid. 1998). 2003: 79. ‘Terrorism is a term without any legal significance.argued that the effect is one of “mutual constitutiveness” – the above stated causes contribute to the lack of a standard academic definition. which makes the researchers use their own peculiar definitions – which are needed as departure points for their scientific inquiries – and this approach in turn perpetuates the fragmented status quo in the discipline. 1980a: 2. there is a sense of scepticism perceivable vis-a-vis the definition of terrorism. The discourse here reveals some similarities. and the quest for the definition of terrorism is faced with several like problems: e. It is merely a convenient way of alluding to activities. 2006). 2005: 27.N. that they will not result in a consensus and that they will make no noticeable contribution towards the understanding of terrorism’ (Laqueur. The common denominator of these definitions may be characterized as an individual character of the crime – understandable in the realm of law. whether of States or of individuals.

2. this section focuses instead on the discussion of the formal nature of a definition and the origin of the terms “terror” and “terrorism”. would not be enough for extending the contextual understanding of terrorism. it refers to ‘a statement expressing the essential nature of something’ and ‘the action or the power of describing. definire. The word “definition” derives from Lat. the elements present include violent acts against persons and property with an objective to intimidate the population and/or coerce the government or international organization to do or to abstain from doing an act2. In conclusion. together with some other academic definitions that illustrate the existing diversity of approaches vis-a-vis the phenomenon of terrorism. this segment has already been approved. Art. unlike Art. form the predicate. our focus may now be turned to a review of existing academic definitions. 4 See <http://www. 18. which. main issue areas in the existing academic definitions are identified and discussed. 2 less instrumental and more descriptive>. However. 15 . A presentation of two “aggregating” projects on definitions of terrorism follows. which relates to the issue of Who can commit the act of terrorism?. 4 A definition can be described as an equation in which the definiendum (the subject) is expressed by more than one definiens. A mere enumeration of existing academic definitions of terrorism. Since the debate has been a contentious issue. no generally accepted definition of terrorism followed the publication of Schmid and Jongman’s (1988/2005) analysis of numerous academic definitions. 1. for instance the draft of the Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism. 3 Therefore. 2. According to the Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary. in general. proposed by Schmid. “to bound”.3 THE ACADEMIC DEFINITIONS OF TERRORISM: UNBOUND STILL After having discussed the question of the purpose and having listed the main perceived problems in defining terrorism. more importantly. Par. explaining. The predicate may consist of a few parts in some instances and run for paragraphs in others. or making definite and clear’. A way to recognize a good definition. 3 Although the study formulated such an ambition. however exhaustive.m-w. together with the existential verb (to be). such an objective should be considered merely as a medium objective or as a means of attaining the underlying political and ideological goal. there has been a trend toward refraining from pointing to the political character of terrorist violence in the recent documents.

inflexible’. than the question would stand What is violence for political purposes? (Schmid and Jongman. in his reflection upon the French Revolution. prompt. clearly. “Terror” is therefore a state of mind and. Measured against this objective. Shortly after Robespierre’s own life was ended on the guillotine. Edmund Burke spoke. The “aggregate” definitions are here to stand for the outcomes of two projects in which numerous other definitions were analyzed in an attempt to arrive at a definition that would be acceptable to the academic community. relatively unknown and largely unforeseeable threat’ ( to transform the predicate into an interrogative sentence and see in a survey what the answer to the question is – e. “Terrorism” is derived from the word "terror" (of Lat. of ‘thousands of those Hell hounds called Terrorists… let loose on the people’ (Hoffman. to frighten). at least to some degree. the focus is now shifted to the recent academic discourse. terrere. 2006: 3-4). Hoffman. 2006: 3-20). 2004: 537). … denotes extreme fear. and it is debatable whether the term descriptions should not befit them better. the term was reshaped to reflect changing historical realities and employed to denominate acts of various entities with manifold diverse motivations. and not virtue – without which ‘terror is helpless’. Maximilien de Robespierre advocated the introduction of terreur as something ‘just. 2005: 5). neither of the two projects presented here was 16 . the instrument of Revolutionary terror par excellence. However.g. severe. which is therefore ‘an emanation of virtue. In the following decades and centuries. the “long” definitions can hardly be tested in this manner. it is not so much a special principle as it is a consequence of the general principal of democracy applied to our country’s most urgent needs’ (quoted from Schmid. cf. 2004a: 399).) – and here lay the grounds of the first definition of "terrorism" in the Oxford English Dictionary: government by intimidation. usually stemming from a vaguely defined. "terrorism" and "terror". terrorism was related to abuse. 2005: 20). a subjective category (Schmid and Jongman. if terrorism is defined as “violence for political purposes”. Both terms. It should just be noted that the unstable use of the term in the diachronic comparison is at the foundation of some author’s scepticism about our ability to capture the phenomenon in a finite definition. Instead of following this process (for an overview. which ‘in the most general sense. Here. according to Robespierre (Ibid. came to the spotlights of the political discourse during the Jacobinic terror period of the French Revolution (1793-1794).

perhaps description could be considered as a more pertinent title.succesful. as such.g. or to mobilize secondary targets of demands (e. the authors decided to refrain from incorporating as many elements as possible and. After having sent a draft definition to the members of the research community in the mid-1980s. 2005: 2. presented by a team of researchers composed of Leonard Weinberg. Yet both of them are illustrative of the various elements that are recurrent in the academic definitions. sectors of this audience might in turn form the main object of manipulation. group. a government) or targets of attention (e. (imperiled) victims. or a target of attention.“ Quoted in Schmid and Jongman. depending on whether intimidation. Studies in Conflict and Terrorism. 2005: 28). or the disregard for the rules of combat accepted in conventional warfare. for idiosyncratic. criminal or political reasons. and main targets are used to manipulate the main target (audience(s)). whereby – in contrast to assasination – the direct targets of violence are not the main targets. Threatand violence-based communication processes between terrorist (organization). The victimization of the target of violence is considered extranormal by most observers from the witnessing audience on the basis of its atrocity. public opinion) to changes of attitude or behaviour favouring the short or long-term interests of the users of this method of combat. Having analysed 73 definitions appearing in major academic journals in the field (Terrorism and Political Violence.g. a target of demands. coercion. it is a “long” one – and. whose members’ sense of security is purposefully undermined. is the target of terror. instead. the time (e. The immediate human victims of violence are generally chosen randomly (targets of opportunity) or selectively (representative or symbolic targets) from a target population. including the 16 most common elements: Terrorism is an anxiety-inspiring method of repeated violent actions employed by (semi-) clandestine individual. and serve as message generators. These instrumental victims share group or class characteristics which form the basis for their selection for victimization. The norm violation creates an attentive audience beyond the target of terror. chose the opposite approach. The second “aggregating” project. 17 . and Terrorism). proposed a consensus definition based on the lowest common denominator: 5 “Terrorism is a method of combat in which random or symbolic victims serve as an instrumental target of violence. In formal terms. Ami Pedahzur and Sican Hirsch-Hoefler (2004). or state actors. Schmid. or propaganda is primarily sought (Schmid and Jongman.5 Schmid projected their reactions into the final version.g. Through previous use of violence or the credible threat of violence other members of that group or class are put in a state of chronic fear (terror). turning it into a target of terror. peacetime) or place (not a battlefield) of victimization. This group or class. The purpose of this indirect method of combat is either to immobilize the target of terror in order to produce disorientation and/or compliance. The first aggregate definition discussed is by Alex P.

which could – in the absence of clear external borders – extend for pages to encompass entire volumes. Yet despite the different organizing principles behind both definitions. as is the case of the second definition – but also criminal or “idiosyncratic”. as opposed to the former’s 16 elements and 114 words. indeed “bounds”.Terrorism is a politically motivated tactic involving the threat or use of force or violence in which the pursuit of publicity plays a significant role. which elaborates more on conveying the message (communication element. the latter definition is composed of 5 elements and 25 words. by including the last motivation. which strives for the highest possible description value and is bound to invite criticism merely because there is more to criticize. the taxonomy loses much of its theoretical and 18 . it is suggested that the base causal structure of the second definition THREAT OR USE OF FORCE / VIOLENCE PUBLICITY ATTAINMENT OF GOALS is present also in the first definition. Yet it is subject to debate if the price for parsimony is worth paying – whether the minimalist definition. double victimization) and concedes that the motivation of the terrorists does not have to be merely “political”. victims and the terror inflicted toward them. The issue is the opposite of Schmid’s definition. In comparison to Schmid’s definition. disregarding perpetrators. Indeed. and this is besides the already made point of the convergence of such a definition with a description.

Schmid makes a similar point in saying that ‘the very fact that such a language of blood is used [in the non-state terrorism] tends to preclude dialogue’ – it is ironical that violence. is that ‘terrorists want a lot of people watching. according to Jenkins. at least until the internet gained prominence as a medium of global communication.6 It invokes the metaphor by Brian M. speaks about the ‘optical character’ of contemporary terrorism and emphasizes the role of the media. 2005: 21-25). 19 . 2005: 23-26). not a lot of people dead’ (Jenkins. see also Schmid and Jongman. that of Bruce Hoffman. 2004a: 382. ‘the most significant technology is not weapons but direct communication with their multiple audiences’ and points to the enhanced role modern media can play in the process (2006: 125). in this respect. yet even the “political” character of the second definition is not without problems. In similar terms. Jenkins . Der Derian. as discussed below. or because the control over the narrative. terrorists often lack the ability to communicate effectively – e. because they choose incomprehensible communication strategies. which ‘transmit the powerful images as well as triggering pathological responses to the terrorist event’ (Der Derian.. Yet as Jenkins remarks. 6 However it may not be readily discernable among the other elements. e. Other academic definitions of terrorism – chosen to be included here and following predominantly the criterion of their makers’ prominence in the field or a peculiar approach to the subject – include. has been in the hands of the news editors (2006: 125-126). speeches that overshadowed all other speeches made everywhere in the world. The reference to a model of violence as communication is an important shared element of both definitions. who. for decades associated with the RAND Corporation – contained in the statement ‘Terrorism is theater.another prominent scholar of terrorism. 2005: 13).g. chosen as a means of communication. Speaking of communication.’ What follows from this assumption. it may be instrumental to recall Osama Bin Laden’s early reflection of the 9/11 attacks: ‘Those young men [the hijackers]… said in deeds.g. 1985: 4).practical relevance as in fact any motivation can now be accomodated with the definition. becomes an obstacle to it (2006: 23). These speeches are understood by both Arabs and non-Arabs – even by the Chinese’ (quoted in Devji. in New York and Washington. Schmid elsewhere maintains that communication is of special prominence in his definition (Schmid. Jenkins maintains that for terrorists.

Terrorism is specifically designed to have farreaching psychological effects beyond the immediate victim(s) or object of the terrorist attack. Unlike other criminal acts. Many would also be violation of the rules of war if a state of war existed. uses the following “long” definition: Terrorism is defined [for the purposes of this database] by the nature of the act. or the threat of violence. or refrain from actions they desired to take. not by the identity of the perpetrators or the nature of the cause. calculated to create an atmosphere of fear and alarm. terrorists often claim credit for their acts. or public opinion in general.after having conducted a qualitative delimitation of terrorism from other kinds of political and criminal violence. These acts are designed to coerce others into actions they would not otherwise undertake. an entire country. influence. Finally. and terrorist actions are generally carried out in a way that will achieve maximum publicity. which in comparison to the previous one emphasizes the element of (lacking) power: [Terrorism is] the deliberate creation and exploitation of fear through violence or the threat of violence in the pursuit of political change. and power they otherwise lack to effect political change on either the local or an international scale (Hoffman 2006: 40-41). It is meant to instill fear within. All terrorist acts are crimes. Jessica Stern provides another example of a definition of "terrorism" with a rather short definition: ‘[Terrorism is] an act or threat of violence against noncombatants with the objective of exacting revenge. a national government or political party. The contentious issue of “noncombatants” in time of peace is discussed in the latter part of this section. enlists the following definition into the discourse competition. This violence or threat of violence is generally directed against civilian targets. Terrorism is violence. terrorists seek to obtain the leverage. a wider “target audience” that might include a rival ethnic or religious group. deliberately refraining from pointing to particular actors or purposes. The motives of all terrorists are political. RAND Terrorism Knowledge Base. terrorist acts are 20 . Terrorism is designed to create power where there is none or to consolidate power where there is very little. a recognized dataset of worldwide terrorist incidents. All terrorist acts involve violence or the threat of violence. intimidating. Through the publicity generated by their violence. and whereby intimidate. or otherwise influencing the audience’ (1999: 11).

g. declared in the first sentence. cases of collateral damage to civilians. Evaluating incidents of terrorism against this definition. guerilla warfare). comprising riots. guerilla warfare and spontaneous acts of collective political violence. Mitchell. demonstrations and even revolts etc. having long-term psychological repercussions on a particular target audience. The first one is the demand to define terrorism by the nature of the act.000 incidences of international terrorism from 1968 to 2007.000 fatalities. some authors. with the result of some 15. Yet such a definition arguably remains as contentious as any positive one. in fact become infinite. 2004a: 408). Instead of defining what terrorism is. a statement whose “bounding” effect is not insignificant. His enumerative exclusive list includes attacks on military installations and equipment. Thomas H. police stations in situation of armed conflict. most likely to be confused with terrorism (e. because the list – starting with the phenomena which are. Breaking the academic definitions in the sample (n=109) collected in the 21 . assasinations where the victim was the direct target of violence. In order to come to more general inferences about the nature of definitions in the academic discourse. to provoke governmental overreaction.g. Schmid’s quantitative analysis may be useful.intended to produce effects beyond the immediate physical damage of the cause. e. but then departing farther and farther away from the core – can. perhaps even moreso.. or simply to intimidate and thereby enforce compliance with their demands. Two notable elements are included in this definition. in the absence of external borders. The second notable element is the surreal effect of fear creating an atmosphere in which the target audience may not be able to rationally assess the power of the terrorist. even if the precise content and boundaries of the political are not subject to a closer examination here (see below). RAND Terrorism Knowledge Base now includes around 10. Yet disregard for perpetrators and the nature of the causes. propose a negative definition: ‘A definition of terrorism must clearly establish what terrorism is not’ (quoted in Schmid. is undermined when it is later maintained that ‘the motives of all terrorists are political’. in the author’s opinion. to discourage dissent. The fear created by terrorists may be intended to cause people to exaggerate the strengths of the terrorist and the importance of the cause.

random character 14.) effects and (anticipated) reactions 6.5% 13. Fear.1980s into elements and counting how often these appeared. Violence. systematic. terror emphasized 4. extortion. Terror (population) 3. Intimidation 15. Extranormality. induction of compliance 30% 28% 83. with a dataset (n=165) and criteria for selection (not only academic but nongovernmental definitions in general were included in the sample) which prevent a diachronic comparability with the previous conclusions.5% 65% 51% 47% 41. Victim-target differentiation 7.5% 11. demonstration to others 21. Method of combat. Political 3. Innocence of victims emphasized 17. Symbolic aspect. Arbitrariness. he presented a list of the most frequent definition elements. tactic 9. planned. The 10 elements that scored most often and some others that are considered to be of interest are (Schmid and Jongman. without humanitarian constraints 10.5% 37. Schmid (2004a: 407) reached the following order: 1. Publicity aspect 12. force 2. Political character 2. Civilians 68% 59% 42% 38% 36% 22 . Purposive. Criminal 21. in breach of accepted rules. Coercion. Coercion 5.5% 32% 30. strategy. impersonal. Threat 5.5% 6% In a more contemporary survey using somewhat different variables. Threat 4. 2005: 5-6): 1.5% 21% 17% 15. (Psych. organized action 8.

some deliberately choose to include only some of them: 23 . Some of the definitions listed above are formulated so as to define terrorism with respect to all of the issue areas. Psychological warfare 35% 30% 28% 27% 12% In this survey. where more emphasis is arguably put on rendering the terrorist acts illegal – and making them punishable accordingly. it could be argued – based on the quoted definitions and results of quantitative surveys – that the academic definitions of terrorism are concerned with several issue areas: namely perpetrators (1). The political character or communication elements do not appear frequently in the governmental definitions (Schmid. Illegal. victims (2). in the academia. 2004: 407). more interest is paid to those elements that are more descriptive and often more contested. objectives / motives of the perpetrators (3) and the means / methods to reach them (4). criminal 8. Departing from Schmid’s quantitative analysis and adopting another analytical viewpoint. the focus was most often on the political character (65%). terror (78%) and coercion of the government (53%) scored in most instances. Schmid also compared the results reached for non-governmental and governmental definitions in terms of the predominance of the elements listed above: whereas in the 165 analysed academic definitions.6. in 88 governmental definitions included in another sample. Tactic. strategy 7. Communication 10. the elements illegal / criminal character (85%). terror (59%) and threat (42%). Demonstrative use 9.

a variant of state terrorism in which the targets are not located in the state's own territory. or ‘double victimization’ (Crelinsten. then the state / non-state terrorism division should be considered for the basic division in typologies of terrorism. A frequent concept related to the victims of terrorism (2) in academic definitions is that of targets’ multiplicity.1 2 3 4 Schmid x x x x Weinberg. Whereas Schmid concedes in his definition with regard to the first “issue area” that state actors can commit an act of terrorism and Stern and Jenkins affirm that elsewhere ‘States and their leaders can and do unleash terrorist violence against their own civilians’ (Stern. Pedahzur. If acts commited by state actors are indeed included under the label of terrorism. and in some cases also the question of their inclusion into the definition. 7 However. but also the nature of objectives. their armies. Approaches to these issue areas. are matters sparking considerable controversy. The question of whether there is a "family resemblance" between “terrorist acts" commited by state and non-state actors – given that not only the perpetrators’ identity. other definitions leave the issue open. methods and to some extent also the direct and indirect victims of violence are different (that is. Hirsch-Hoefler x x Hoffman x x x Stern x x x RAND x x x Various authors differ in their emphasis and the degree of elaboration on those issue areas. The brief discussion of these issue areas included below provides an interlude to the discussion of the problems with the definition. their secret police may also be terrorists’ (Jenkins. it must be noted that this is not the case of state-sponsored terrorism. 24 . 1999: 14) and that ‘governments. 1980a: 3).e. there are contrasts in all “issue areas”7) – is a thorny one. i.

people ‘who are not part of the causal chain of agency relating to the situation the terrorist fights against’ (Goppel. where a distinction is made between the target of violence – often chosen indiscriminately or with respect to the symbolic value – and the target of terror.e. Title 22: “[Terrorism is] premeditated. it implicitly involves the notion of (absence of) “sin” as a reference criterion establishing “innocence”. Illustrative are also Bin Laden’s “political speeches” addressed to the Western peoples. 2005: 23). when there are no combatants or units of the parties of the conflict. The number of people who are “innocent” vis-a-vis governmental policies is thus arguably significantly reduced as citizens of a state are in fact part of the above-mentioned causal relationship. Department of State. which they transmit in the election process onto their representatives. does not solve the case either. Al-Zawahiri is clear on the issue of this causal relationship: ‘The Western countries were backed by their peoples. since it currently appears also in the Code used by the U. In order to denote the direct target of violence. Department of State postscript. The U. The term does have a stable place in international humanitarian law. usually intended to influence an audience. 1999) – in fact not only in the academia. which defines this group of persons as “civilians” – another term from the field of international humanitarian law – and as unarmed or off-duty military personnel or military units stationed in areas where the armed conflict is absent. Moreover. who are invited to 8 United States Code.8 Such a stance still raises the serious issue of the definition of “noncombatant”. Another proposed solution to the problem of denominating the direct targets of terrorist violence is to refer to them as “innocent”. and hold them accountable about how this money was spent’ (quoted in Devji. seems contentious. Yet such a solution faces the problems of subjectivity and relativity discussed in the second section.S. but its employment in times of peace. at least in liberal democracies. the term “noncombatants” is sometimes used (e.quoted in Schmid and Jongman. people are considered as the ultimate wielders of power in the state.g. demands or attention. 2005: 99-100). Section 2656f(d). who were free in their decision. 2005). however. i. but in the end they cast their votes in the elections to choose the governments that they want.“ 25 . It is true that they may be largely influenced by the media decision and distortion. Furthermore. politically motivated violence perpetrated against non-combatant targets by subnational groups or clandestine agents. Stern. pay taxes to fund their policy.S.

that Schmid lists the political cause as juxtaposed to idiosyncratic and criminal causes. 2005: 144). terrorism has failed. It is not. that this applies to non-state terrorism only. it scores among the most frequent definitional elements. however. let it just be noted that despite the fact that the terrorists often have tactical success and gain the desired attention to convey their message.‘seek to elect governments that are truly representative of them and that can protect their interests’ (quoted in Devji. In that sense. which mediates a modern man’s experience of ideas in such a narrowing way that only the elements of ideas to be negated are perceived – the Utopian striving to destroy the existing. Here. influence. it arguably served “Ideological” purposes 9 It should be pointed out. The problem of objectives (3) has been discussed to some extent above in relation to the ambivalences of “terrorism”. according to Jenkins. but just before the 2004 election they are reminded: ‘Your security is not in the hands of Kerry or Bush or al-Qaeda. the American people allegedly fell pray to manipulation. status quo reality (Mannheim. What perhaps could constitute a common denominator of these various meanings. It could be argued. 9 In Schmid’s quantitative analyses. Your security is in your own hands and each state which does not harm our security will remain safe…’ (Ibid.). however. rotation of those in power (change of regime or elites) or mere enactment of new or modified policies in various issue areas – may differ. the terror unleashed by the totalitarian dictatorships was indeed declared to bring about a new political order. but the phenomenon of terrorism continues’ (2006: 129). frequent in the academic definitions. related to a mode of thought (an instrument of a collective action). including both the “aggregate definitions” and those of Hoffman and RAND. clear what the authors consider as the essence and boundaries of the political.’ but even here the viewpoints on what constitutes a “political change” – whether emergence of a new political order. is the underlying Utopian motivation – “Utopian” in Mannheim’s sense of the word. reading that ‘terrorists seek to obtain the leverage. without the deep investigation into the essence of the political. however. The reference to the political realm appears in most of the definitions cited above. The most elucidating in this respect seems to be Hoffman’s definition. but in reality. that is. 26 . 1991). ‘[their] struggle has brought them no success measured against their own stated goals. In electing George W. Bush in 2000. and power they otherwise lack to effect political change. A second remark relates to the political character of terrorism.

The line between the conventional war and terrorist violence is often perceived as rather unproblematic in the academic discourse. on one hand10 and the asymmetrical character of terrorist violence on the other (in terms of power and technology. organization. Even Laqueur. 27 . 2004a: 376nn). not by identity of the perpetrators or the nature of their cause’ (1980a: 2). or states) do.instead. Similarly. Schmid. does not seem to resist the temptation to declare what terrorism is. i. etc. the preservation and consolidation of the regime – often. and when he does so. since it provides an implicit legitimization for the terrorists: ‘To declare war on terrorists or. who is otherwise sceptical about the definitions of terrorism. Arendt. Professor of War at Oxford. and will). Schmid notes that terrorism as a method of combat/action was introduced into the discourse already in the 1930s. pointed to the problem related to the label “war against terrorism” in this context. quoted in Schmid. Being the spiritus agens behind the RAND definition. rather than who they are or what they are trying to achieve’ (2006: 28). quoted in Schmid and Jongman. he terms it ‘a contemporary manifestation of conflict’ (2004: 58). intended impact.e. In the contemporary debate. international / domestic legality. and the latter makes the impact of the former much more resonant (NKVD document. Pillar sees terrorism as ‘a problem of what people (or groups. 1996). Jenkins (also in his own writings) promotes defining terrorism ‘by nature of the act. terror and propaganda appear as two sides of the same coin (cf. It is not a definition in a proper sense. it is. (2) an (3) led some authors to emphasize the role of the remaining issue area – the means or methods. even more illiteraly. (cf. is at once to accord terrorists a status and dignity that they seek and that they do not deserve’ (2002. 2005: 24). Ariel Merari who compares terrorism to the conventional war and guerilla warfare. on terrorism. what allegedly distinguishes the two is the existence of ius in bello in conventional wars. the opposition of terrorism and the conventional (limited) 10 Michael Howard. limiting the scope of warfare and the non-recognition of the terrorist as a party to the conflict under international norms. targets. employing variables such as unit size in battle. 2004: 383-384). for instance. it points to an interesting avenue of inquiry about the nature of terrorism in the academic discourse – terrorism as a specific mode of violent struggle. Nonetheless. This function is similar to the role of the media as carriers of non-state terrorist organizations’ messages to the target audience. Problems inherent to issue areas (1). Consequently. control of territory.

when the latter is not a private (inimicus) but rather a public enemy (hostis). from a pirate. an игра (a play) – is absolute.g. after having abandoned the edifice of protection and obedience within which he previously lived. as there exist numerous examples of parties to conventional conflicts turning to what could be. 1989). at least in the more precise legal discourse. 2004: 60). Enmity in this conflict – which is no more. norms. whereas governments are bound by them. 2004: 59). is related to terrorism in manifold ways: guerilla warfare. Moreover. 28 . but also an intense political character – which distinguishes a partisan.’s earlier concept of the so-called “fourth generation of warfare” (4GW). e. classified as terrorist acts or war crimes – the Allies’ bombing of Dresden (1945) intended to “break” Germans to capitulate looms as one of those dire instances in Europe’s history.war is a recurring phenomenon. this. forms the core of Schmitt’s concept of the political (1996: 26) – in the modern “total war”. Nonetheless. ‘Terrorists want total war… to be unfettered by laws. hostilities are dispersed and there is no delimited battlefield (Lind et al. after the 11 Such asymmetry is at the core of William Lind et al. In the terrorist conception of warfare there is no room for the Red Cross’ (Laqueur. for instance (Schmitt. the distinction does not seem that clear. a total immersion. in which the distinction between war and peace becomes blurred. 2004: 18). and the states are likely to continue to restrain themselves at least until the point where their survival is at stake (Laqueur. A guerrilla fighter shares with the terrorist not only the employment of asymmetrical tactics 11 and the lack of legal recognition. Perhaps even more serious is the blurring of the line between the conventional war and a phenomenon which. The refusal of terrorists to recognize limited warfare as a characteristic feature of terrorism is also pointed at by Jenkins (1980a: 2). It involves a complete personal engagement. in briefest outline.. it can be argued that both the partisan and the terrorist meet the same criterion of irregularity. [the partisan] finds the meaning of his cause and of his right. regulations and conventions. to use Lenin’s words. is asymmetric warfare’. as Carl Schmitt maintained.. under the present international law. ‘Terrorism does not accept laws and rules. but they also attest to Schmitt’s observation of a qualitative difference in enmity patterns – the friend-enemy distinction. Der Derian ascribes the new imbalance of terror that has emerged in the 1990s also to the ‘capacity to destroy other without the formalities of war’ (2005: 26). from the non-legal academic discourse’s perspective. ‘In enmity.

in targeting the “noncombatant” population). discussed in another part of this volume.laceration of the normative texture of legality from which he could expect legal protection. 29 .g. It is debatable whether it is a characteristic feature of the partisan not to adhere to certain norms of warfare – e. a modern “pirate” case. Yet it is suggested that even if the relevance of Schmitt’s absolute enmity concept for the understanding of guerillas is limited.g. 2005: 16). recently a concept of the crime-terror nexus has appeared on stage to face the reality of many organizations’ welter of terrorist activities. The telluric and defensive character of the former can be pointed out. indiscriminate “warfare”. limiting the activities on the military targets. the terrorist collective organization – still under the conception of terrorism as a mode of combat. If the concept is to be explored to the most. where at least part of the rebels bound themselves by those norms and denounced transgressions. on the other hand. The last qualification creates a dependence of this concept on a certain (collective) identity of the perpetrators – the first issue area – and thus prevents its generalization. guerilla warfare and organized crime (cf. Yet separating terrorism and guerilla warfare is not a tidy subject – some guerilla movements employ terrorist tactics (e.. yet it can still attack armed forces in order ‘to create an image of one military force challenging another’ (Schmid and Jongman. as is the case of terror networks. if the listed restrictions are admitted. To make the case even more complex. 2005). By employing the double victimization concept. together with the predominant military nature of the selected targets. however.g. this does not have to be the case for most of the terrorisms in the fourth definitional issue area – left out would be. as has been the case of the Chechen resistance movement. e. the terrorist organization may not have the control over a territory. Cornell. Yet for the contextual understanding of terrorism. a clear line should be drawn between terrorism and guerilla warfare. Then. 2004: 75). where there is no space for the action of isolated individuals – arguably enters the realm of unlimited. criminal terrorism. some of which could be qualifiable as terrrorist acts. every conventional play ends’ (Schmitt. this concept seems to bear a certain theoretical relevance nonetheless.

a distinction may be drawn between tactics (a limited use of violence for attaining an immediate objective) and strategy (a more time-extensive campaign for either immediate or more abstract objectives). if not for a monolithic definition.4 CONCLUSION: AVENUES OF FUTURE THEORETIZATION This chapter aimed at providing the main characteristics of existing academic definitions of "terrorism" – by means of both their elements. e. then at least for expanding the contextual understanding of terrorism. and the intense political character does not contribute to uncovering terrorism’s essence either. We have argued that there exist relevant theoretical and practical reasons to strive. however.2. also by means of clarification of crucial unresolved issues. their texts do not seem to provide the discipline with a paradigmatical anchor.. there do exist “canonical” authors – the quality of this chapter would certainly be questioned even more than it might be now if Schmid. universal definition were listed – including the contested nature of the phenomenon. stable. etc.g. in the research field. do exist avenues of future inquiries that could lead to expansion of the contextual understanding of terrorism. There. The lack of consensus concerns not only the content of the definition of terrorism. but it translates even into the question whether there is indeed a need for one. In the first case. There are sound reasons to be sceptical about the likelihood of an emergence of a universal. terrorism as a tactic could also be embraced by. Major existing explanations for the absence of a consensual. In the second case. victims. delegitimizing and criminalizing character of the label “terrorism”. But it is not necessarily so because ‘all reification is forgetting. There are numerous internal tensions inherent to the term. or the plurality of terrorisms.’ as maintained by Adorno and Horkheimer (1973: 267). and methods. and issue areas – perpetrators. the stigmatizing. which were analysed by Schmid and Jongman. positive and monolithic definition of what terrorism is. terrorisms as totalitarian and non-totalitarian ideologies can be 30 . objectives. Hoffman or Laqueur were not cited – but despite their prominence. It has been suggested that the main theoretical chasm in conceiving terrorism lies between its concept as either a material (terrorism as a mode of combat) or non-material phenomenon (terrorism as ideology). unless it is beyond the control of the guerillas' leaders or the movement is fragmented. guerillas and thus form a part of their strategy.

to answer the question of where lie the roots of terrorism’s stigmatization. terrorism conceived as a totalitarian ideology escapes the double victimization element that seems to play a rather crucial part in all other varieties of terrorism. the latter comprising a set of ideas legitimizing terrorist violence for attainment of the actor’s objectives (e. which is characteristic to the political realm. whereas the former involves a total immersion.g. a critical reading of the securitization narratives related to terrorism seems requisite.” The stated “Utopian” objectives in this case are so vague that the terrorist violence loses its instrumental character. non-recognition and dehumanization of “the other. can destroy the existing status quo and substitute it with a constructed but intersubjectively accepted image. Arguably. or theater – a performance production which. modern mass and democratic media play a crucial role in the process The issue of the political character of terrorism should be addressed. 2005: 11). but. Such performance production thus serves as a vehicle of “the Utopian”. and the violence is a purely accidental product of their mode of existence (Devji. then it should be decided whether the political intent should be considered a characteristic feature of terrorist violence. in evaluation of the terrorists’ real capabilities). First. So is the related metaphor of terrorist violence as a spectacle. in the case of success. Such an inquiry relates to the criminal or psychopathological terrorisms. it also relates to Islamist terrorism – for instance. and since this form of terrorism still remains rather in the realm of theoretical constructs or ideal types. it should be clarified what “the political” in the context of terrorism is. 31 . closely related is the question whether the terrorists’ behavior is rational or irrational and whether general inferences can be made about the issue at all. from a certain perspective.and to uncover the genealogies behind the abomination of terrorism in the historical perspective – that is.g. for instance.distinguished. in the case of national liberation movements). Finally. It should serve to demask the hidden hegemonies and motives for securitization steps by actors shaping people’s perception about the threat from “the other” – if. Devji suggests in this context that a modern jihadi organization like al-Qaeda operates in the “global landscape” with no organizing principle of intentionality and instrumentality. these are not intended to discipline the domestic realm . distorted from “the real” (e. the double victimization element is considered a valuable core for future conceptualization attempts.

as the recent progressive dynamics towards the legal definition of terrorism (cf. the risk of abuse of the term “terrorism” in this realm creates a powerful incentive to proceed in clarification attempts.The last remark relates to the influence of other discourse areas on the debate about the academic definitions. The influence of the political discourse may be seen as negative in the sense that the conflicting political ideologies perpetuate the contested character of terrorism. Despite the promising development towards a universal legal definition since the 1990s. discourse of terrorist studies. on the other hand. Chapters 5 and 6 in this study) could translate into the academic yet been the case. The influence of the legal discourse could have a significant positive influence. this has not 32 .

prohibited and punishable under the criminal law’. The Encyclopaedia Britannica. Thus. To comprehend this complexity. TERRORISM. Other examples include adultery and homosexuality. it does not constitute a crime in some countries. Defining terrorism thus as a form of crime probably seems obvious to the point of banality. a first step is to look at what crime is. Raping one's wife was not acknowledged as a criminal act for a long time. "crime" is seen as a synonym to “breaking the law”. the influences on what people or society consider to be a crime are large in number.3. criminologists argue that crime is socially constructed. Thus. This defining is mostly done by codifying certain behaviour or acts. In short. an example will be used: rape in marriage. In the normal context. into laws. it includes only acts which are codified as wrong in criminal law (written 33 . the conceptualization of an act as a crime is seen as dependant on the context of the act. there are basically two different vantage points of conceptualizing crime. political violence and (organized) crime. terrorism involves inflicting involuntary and illegal mental and physical harm. for example. the outcome of it and the individual or group defining it. and of course their outcomes. one should first address the following question: is terrorism itself a form of crime? In general. The definitions of this (narrow) concept of crime vary widely. states the following definition: ‘intentional commission of an act usually deemed socially harmful and / or dangerous and specifically defined. In other countries. It is impossible to give a universal description or definition of “what crime is”. homosexuality and adultery are seen as normal and have not been criminalized at all. which are still harshly prosecuted in some countries and can even result in the death penalty. but some extra notions should be added to this statement to appreciate the complexity surrounding it. To clarify the subjective scope of the construct of crime. Even in contemporary times. To most of us. This is an even narrower concept of crime. in contemporary criminological literature. 2002). it is (still) not punishable. The first is that every forbidden act or result of an act can be categorized as a crime (black letter law) (Muncie and McLaughlin. POLITICAL VIOLENCE AND ORGANIZED CRIME Before discussing the link and the dissimilarities between terrorism. and in many. which also applies to terrorism. varying from media influence and religious beliefs to the factor of time.

or 34 . Terrorism can be seen as a broad concept including a variety of acts ranging from the recruitment of followers to “core” acts such as carrying out bombings. In this chapter. such as public drunkenness. and the question posed remains: is terrorism a form of crime? When it comes to terrorist acts. as opposed to the narrow approach. Indeed.laws) and not in common law (civil law). 2002). the law related to treaties or private law. it should be pointed out that this approach is a more valid way of reconstructing what crime is because it takes in all aspects of construction. and it is deemed unsuitable by most criminologists for studying and examining crime in an effective way. since there is widespread international consensus on this type of crime. the UN definition focuses on the “crime” character of terrorism. which relates to the fact that most other international institutions focus on the crimes associated with terrorism. Schmid (2004b) argues that a narrow definition of terrorism that focuses on the mala per se crimes is desirable. Nevertheless. The second way of conceptualizing crime takes a broader approach and involves looking at socially (un)acceptable conduct (Muncie and McLaughlin. the view suggested by Schmid – focusing on the mala per se crimes – is employed because it aims at providing a sensible take on terrorism for the European Commission as an international institution. there is a good example of a codified crime which is accepted as non-criminal by such a large part of society that it generally is not punished as severely as was the case previously. unlawfully and intentionally. also forbidden acts that are hardly ever punished anymore because of the influence of public opinion. like. causes (a) Death or serious bodily injury to any person. on the other end of the scope. for example. for example. by any means. In most countries. This second approach to crime leaves even more room for debate than the first. The above-mentioned complexity also applies to terrorism. This includes acts codified in laws and. as can be seen in article 2 of the UN Draft Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism: …any person commits an offence within the meaning of this Convention if that person.

(b) Serious damage to public or private property. is to intimidate a population.. these types of crime or even subcategories of them (Makarenko. means that deconstructing terrorism according to the legal concepts of the European Union is more suitable. terrorism is only viewed within its legal frames. crimes are usually categorized into different groups. amongst others. Deflem. This is done in order for us to be able to analyse crimes more precisely because there are so many different types of crime to be distinguished. Arguably this would mean that this research does not take in different cultural opinions. the perpetrator specifics. terrorism is considered criminal because of the rule of law within the European Union and the codification of certain acts and organizations as terrorism as analysed thoroughly in chapters 5 and 6. the crime scene. 35 . Taking the above into account. Crenshaw. or systems […]. or to compel a Government or an international organization to do or abstain from doing any act. Differentiation can be found by looking at criminal law. a State or government facility. The research will take note of this differentiation. the damage caused and the victims’ specifics. but it aims at looking at terrorism within its EU framework. or comparable to. facilities. or types of crimes. As mentioned above. This. A second reason for opting for a narrow approach is the fact that the scope of this research is aimed at terrorism and the rule of law in Europe. Another type of differentiation can be made on the basis of the nature of the crime (Ruller et al. Now the focus can shift to the analysis of in what sense terrorism relates to political violence and organized crime. This. does not entail that in this chapter. it is established that terrorism can be considered criminal. In the praxis of criminological research. 2003. 2004. in this chapter. in effect. The variables for the types of crime categorization include. resulting or likely to result in major economic loss. as the cliché goes: ‘one man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter’. an infrastructure facility or the environment. where lawmakers distinguish crimes. Thus. 2001). 1998). including a place of public use. places. or (c) Damage to property. though. terrorism is considered to be closely related to. by its nature or context. when the purpose of the conduct. a public transportation system. the motives.

The definition is used in all EU documents on organized crime. 10. employing commercial or business-like structures.2. specialized division of labor among participants. 6. and 4. punishable by imprisonment for at least four years or a more serious penalty.3. operational across national borders. 2. First. This definition requires the presence of six characteristics. extending over a prolonged or indefinite period. 3.with the construct of organized crime. 9. Collaboration among more than two people. the central goal of profit and/or power. 36 . The second part of the chapter will deal with the isolation process by comparing the two forms of crime. we will look at the overlap and subsequently the differences between terrorism and organized crime. are: 5. 2001). Therefore. of which two must be present as well. companies). it makes sense to start with looking at the legal dimensions of organized crime . participating in money laundering. The remaining criteria. we will shortly describe and address the concept of organized crime. The EU associates eleven characteristics . exercising measurements of discipline and control. like annual reports. 11. political parties. in the parliament and in policy (Europol and the European Commission.2 ORGANIZED CRIME In this part. 7. of which the first four are mandatory: 1.specifically the EU definition. 8. exerting influence over legitimate social institutions (public figures.1 The concept We have already argued for favouring the legal approach to a broader way of looking at crime. the focus will shift to the nature of organized crime. employing violence or other means of intimidation.some are necessary and others optional . After this. suspected of committing serious criminal offences. 3.

The scholarly effort to define and conceptualize organized crime dates back to the 1920s and 1930s. which completes the required amount of criteria for them to be categorized as organized crime. organized crime can be anything from well-organized Italian mafia groups to three petty thieves working together while using a window-cleaning company as a cover. In the latter.whether it is a necessary part of the organized crime construct . The next part of this paragraph will elaborate these “specifics” of organized crime. and organized crime was almost synonymous with the workings of gangsters and their entourage. one of the thieves functions as a look-out. corporate crime in or from the category of organized crime (Levi. 2002). Maltz (1976) and Ruggiero (1996). However. Many scholars. many arguments on what variables constitute organized crime are issues even today. Some scholars argue that both are the same (Ruggiero. In the beginning. while others conclude that there are considerable differences (Nelken. for example.Applying these mandatory and optional criteria to the reality. most commentators viewed organized crime as a static. They also sue everyone who suggests that their business has a bad reputation and that they are stealing from their clients. The criteria used by the EU are grounded in criminological literature as well. hierarchically structured way of committing ‘mobster’ type crimes. In this regard. argue that violence is a necessary part of the construct of organized crime. like Al Capone’s racketeering organization. 2002). another one goes in to steal the goods and a third is charged with the money-laundering of the profits gained by selling the goods. This simplistic take on organized crime gradually became more sophisticated. A good example of this is the aforementioned discussion on violence . for example. the academics now describe a less folkloristic form of organized crime.or exclusion of. some distinctions can be discerned. Moving away from the old view of a ‘mafia’ type of crime. 1996). This does not necessarily mean that there is a consensus among scholars. Media and political coverage of the subject confirmed this view. like the EU’s choice to make violence an optional criterion for organized crime.and the in. criminologists like Woodiwiss (1993) note that there has never been an ethnicity based monopoly of crime syndicates like the ones portrayed in movies like The 37 . like.

in order to avoid law enforcement agencies or even competition that would intervene in their business (Fijnaut et al. As mentioned before. which is a costly affair if there aren’t any turnovers and profits to be made (Hobbs. there are. like the Japanese Yakuza. The adaptability and fluidity of the network enables a quick. A good example of this is the Colombian trade in cocaine. Most shipments (runs) are organized on a short– term basis and with different actors in order to be flexible and stay out of the reach of any competition and law enforcement agencies (Williams. Of course there are more hierarchically organized crime groups as well. 38 . 1995). 2002).Godfather. thousands of small networks of people which never exist long and have a decentralized structure rather than a hierarchical one. In reality. and were. 2001. 1998). Zaitch. There are generally three forms of organized crime networks: 1. The most important of these factors in creating a network seem to be the social ties or kinship between the persons involved in the network and the type of activity employed (Muncie and McLaughlin. Less demand means less of a purpose for a large group of people to stick together. Large networks based on a more or less hierarchical structure (monolithic) of command.. Organized crime generally infests itself in adaptive institutional structures rather than monolithic ones. 2002). profitable and risk avoiding way of operation. but even they tend to operate in not too tightly knit networks. a signature feature of organized crime is to operate in an inconspicuous way. The changing networks of cooperation are also caused by the fact that the crimes are led by demand and so is the organization of the crime. The bases and influences on the formation of these networks are manifold: • • • • • • Ethnicity based networks Kinship or “social ties” based networks Type of criminal activity Law enforcement activities and the perceived risks of being caught Socio-economic circumstances Personality of the leader.

giving illegal profits a legal stature – for example. organized crime especially thrives on the national differences – and thus opportunities – of cross border activities. In short. but all levels of society (Hobbs. people are capable of impressive achievements. by means of starting a legitimate business.g. The disposal of toxic waste into the ocean. A good example of this is money laundering . for serious crime groups. like customs or police functionaries. 1995). Organized crime shows features of industrial types of institutions. The reality of most forms of illegal business is that they fill the gap left by legal agencies. Another one is the fact that organized crime networks influence legitimate institutes and figures for their purposes. horizontally organized networks with hardly any form of centralized command. A form of organization which falls between the monolithic structure and the fluid network type. Organized crime. By working together. as well as legal business and other forms of crime.. The activities become organized crime at the start of the recruitment and division of labor – skilled and unskilled workers – in order to satisfy demand. i.e. the buyoff of public figures. these differences are called criminogenic asymmetries (Passas. On the contrary. one feature still holds today. 2001). Fluid. the crime aspect. namely the fact that organized crime is a phenomenon intertwined with not only criminal worlds. a large part of organized crime can be regarded as the illegal opposite of legal business (Ruggiero. like subsidy fraud or forced payment for protection. is not confined within national boundaries. 3. At the extreme end of the scope of functionality are also forms of crime that are totally dysfunctional and meet no specific needs apart from enriching. Trends like ongoing globalization have played a major role in ever widening and 39 . the use and threat of violence replace the strategies and tactics of normal business in order to maintain or obtain a profitable position in the chosen market (Hobbs. their activities are led mostly by demand and opportunities creating easy access to money and/or power.2. provides a valuable service to chemical industries but also causes long term environmental and health problems (Fijnaut et al. for example. 1998). Important to note at this point is that organized crime – next to meeting certain needs – causes damage. 1996). However. From the old views on organized crime. e. 1997).

The targeted and untargeted victims of organized crime cannot be categorized. fluid. The most important variables on which to determine the similarities and differences between organized crime and terrorism in the next section are: • • • • • • • • Network structure: hierarchical. especially in the EU definition. the notion that organized crime is a broad construct. horizontal. except for the fact that in most crimes. Another important note concerning the victimization done by organized crime is that not only persons but objects can be harmed as well. entailing many forms of activities in a network setting is important. the victims are young males as well. 2001). it contains many types of perpetrators and victims. Regarding the perpetrators and victims of organized crime. though. Illegal and legal worlds mixing Division of labor Basis of the networks Border crossing and globalization influence Threat and/or use of violence Business-type structure Perpetrator and victim specifics 40 .internationalizing crime networks and cross border activities. from smuggling goods and trafficking human beings to laundering money in states with less social and formal control (Pansa. the academic literature on organized crime reveals that the features described in the EU definition of organized crime fit the known reality. be they specifically targeted or as “collateral damage”.that perpetrators are mostly young males and in some cases young females (LaFree. In conclusion. For this chapter. Globalization is thus a facilitator – making lucrative markets accessible and distances bridgeable – and an instigator – making markets grow and enlarging differences between countries – of organized crime. Because organized crime is such a broad form of crime. there is no clear description. the assumption will be that the perpetrators come from all walks of live and that the targeting of victims is indiscriminate. The only guideline to be given in this respect is – a guideline that is true for most types of crime . For the further purpose of this chapter. etc. 2005).

Criminogenic factors

3.2.2 The Nexus

In this section, we will look at the similarities – the overlap – and the differences between organized crime and terrorism. We will start with the European Union’s definition(s) of terrorism – we opted to take the legal approach as the leading viewpoint in order to provide the same basis as in the paragraph on organized crime. A terrorist offence, according to the EU’s Framework decision, is an offence which may seriously damage a country or an international organization. These offences must be committed with the aim of intimidating people and seriously altering or destroying the political, economic or social structures of a country (murder, bodily injuries, hostage taking, extortion, fabrication of weapons, committing attacks, threatening to commit any of the above, etc.). Such offences may be committed by one or more individuals against one or more countries. The Framework Decision defines a terrorist group as a structured organization consisting of more than two persons, established over a period of time and acting in concert. Moreover, instigating, aiding, abetting and attempting to commit terrorist offences will also be punishable (Council of the European Union, 2002).

In general, terrorism seems to have the most similarities to crimes that have ongoing social structures connected to them like organized crime but also gangcrime and political violence. Why? Because terrorism, like these forms of crime, is characteristically organized, and terrorist groups have an organized and structured way of operating (Schmid, 2004b). 12 Such crimes also resemble terrorism in terms of representing a sustained program of violence (LaFree, 2005; Deflem, 2004). One might argue that not all organized crime and terrorist groups operate with the same levels of violence. There are groups, like the so-called eco-terrorists and animal rights groups, that rarely aim violence at persons (Schmid, 1996). On the other hand, one can argue that these groups do not impact the societal beliefs enough to be labeled as terrorists.

We are referring to terrorist groups’ activities, omitting the “lone wolf” terrorism in the same way as we talk about organized crime and not crime in general.


Although both organized crime and terrorist groups use violence, there is a difference as well, as Shelly and Picarelli (2002) note. Terrorist organizations emphasize the symbolism of the use of violence, while organized crime groups have a functional goal to achieve, like, for example, intimidation or removal of opposition. Secondly, there are similarities in the network structures in which terrorists, like organized crime groups, operate. Terrorist organizations display a wide variety of organization types, ranging from fluid one-time-use networks to hierarchically and strongly organized groups to a combination of these two opposites (Makarenko, 2003; Stern, 2003). Examples of these organizational structures include terrorist groups like Hezbollah, which is a mostly wellorganized group with different levels of command and also groups like Al-Qaeda, which seem to be organized to a certain extent but mostly function within a fluid and flat organizational structure with a cell-based structure, which provides flexibility and shelters the organization from law enforcement. Thus, terrorist organizations have a lot of variances in their organizational structures. On the one hand, we have traditional hierarchical organizations, and on the other hand, we have modern organization structures. These modern organization structures consist of network organizations and combinations of the two structures mentioned above. The traditional hierarchical organizations rely on a centralized command structure while the modern organizations are mostly based on a decentralized command structure (Muller et al., 2003; Dobbelaar and Haarman, 2005). Terrorist organizations are also mostly categorized by a division of labor. Schmid (1996) has found that, generalizing, most terrorist organizations are based on a three-layered structure:

1. The organizers: the policy and strategy level 2. The planners: the planning, goal determining level 3. The executers: the functional perpetrator level

The people behind the attacks, levels 1 and 2, mostly stay out of the view of the media and law-enforcement agencies, although a shift in this tactic can be seen with groups like Al-Qaeda. They are mostly well-trained and educated people,


able to run complex organizations; this is more often than not the case for the persons operating at the executers’ level. The bases on which terrorist networks are constructed are comparable to those of organized crime. This can be deducted from the fact that terrorists also have to deal with trust issues and potential threats to their organization (Schmid, 1996; Stern, 2003; Makarenko, 2003). Schmid (1996) stresses the fact that both groups are in need of some form of internal cohesion, which can be achieved by “employing” members of the organization that have, for example, family ties between them or are friends. At the basic level, there always seems to be some sort of lifestyle or visionary tie between the members, ranging from nationality to religion or any other shared belief. Thirdly, like organized crime groups, the examples of the above-mentioned Islamist terrorist groups and also groups like ETA and the IRA exhibit strong ties to the legal worlds as well as to the illegal spectrum. Just like with organized crime groups - and maybe even moreso with terrorist groups -, there is no clear distinction between the activities which are confined to the illegal world and those which are confined to the legal world. Indeed, Naím argues that terrorists are a small part of the global networks of legal as well as illegal trade with special motivation (2008: 242). The IRA and Hezbollah, for example, have a politically active part as well, next to their more dangerous terrorist branch. Hezbollah has been an organization that provided – if one supported them – a great deal of protection and even funds when necessary. This organization is highly intertwined with all spheres of normal (legal) life, but also with terrorist activities. Other similarities between crime and terrorism can be detected as well. For example, the types of perpetrators are alike. According to LaFree (2005), terrorism, just like common crime, is generally committed by young males, usually in their twenties. As is the case with common crime, young women can also be perpetrators (e.g. the suicide bombers in Iraq, Sri Lanka and the Palestine Territories or within the Red Army Fraction in Germany), but in general, they amount to only 5 to 10 % of the total of all terrorists (LaFree, 2005). However, when women commit terrorist acts, they are in the news, probably because they are still an exception. This does not automatically mean that their share in terrorist acts is indeed rising.


Crenshaw (1998) argues that terrorism upsets the social structure upon which the members of a society depend. By contrast. 2005). According to him. not wanting to lack behind. Firstly. The overriding objective of terrorism and its ultimate justification is the furtherance of an ideological cause. In fact. the levels of trust are reduced and individuals turn inward. 1998. However. and in general. one can argue that upsetting conditions of trust in a society is often a major goal of terrorists. terrorists often seek attention and exposure.A fifth similarity is that scholars (Crenshaw. 2005). Usually the difference is based upon the assumed motivation(s) of the perpetrator(s) or the social standing of their victims (Weinberg et al. A second difference is found in the goal of the crime or terrorist act. 2005) suggest that terrorism. which is not the case for organized crime. may be considered a terrorist act by some but not by others. after talking to different supposed terrorists. undermines social trust. The motivation and basis for the existence of terrorism will be discussed in the next chapter. they are in it for the money (LaFree. like societies with high levels of crime. Because no one can be sure of what they should expect from others. There are some differences to be recognized between terrorism and organized crime as well.. Thus. Terrorism undermines predictability in social relations. Hoffman (1998) argues that terrorists want maximum publicity for their actions. societies undergoing constant terrorist activity are likely to have lower levels of social solidarity. the modern news media plays a vital part in the terrorists’ calculus (more in WP 4 on media-effects). Lafree. a symbiotic relationship with the media and governmental impact. while common criminals usually try to avoid detection. The same act. this will be discussed in length in chapter 3. as Jessica Stern (2003) suggests. 2004). Terrorists are looking for exposure and have. just like sustained organized crime. Stern (2003) argues that the reasons for joining terrorist groups are not that different from the reasons for children joining criminal youth gangs: excitement. for example. some terrorists are also in it for the kick or because terrorist acts are part of their way of life. in regard to their actions. reduced cooperation and interdependence and declining levels of trust (LaFree. an assassination. following friends and for identity reasons. Brigitte Nacos (2002) in part confirms this idea but emphasizes that 44 . focused more on their own survival. organized crime actors do not have larger ideological purposes.

By using the 45 . seems to be the most profound when they look at the means and ways in which both categories of crimes gather their funds (Makarenko. it creates opportunity.many terrorists do not fit carefully constructed profiles and commonly held stereotypes. On the other hand. Maltz. Nacos focuses on the role the Internet plays in the forming of objectives and goals. few criminals see themselves as acting altruistically. just like for organized crime. and gives rise to ever increasing mobilization (of people. globalization and the fast impact of new cultures like the western one on the Middle Eastern societies is a feeding ground for terrorist motivations (Deflem. On a more positive note.2. 1998. Although common criminals vary widely in terms of how they perceive their activities. for most academics.3 The Nexus in practice In this part. 1976. goods and ideas. 2003). Stern. As has been argued in many researches. The link between terrorism and organized crime. Nassar. we will look at the existing links between organized crime and terrorism. 2003). By contrast. Terrorists use the Internet as a way to publicize their ideas (preach) and to reach as many people as possible. 2004). one could argue that the effects of globalization also have a positive effect on counterterrorism. 3. many terrorists see themselves as altruists. Nor do they limit themselves to the traditional means of communication. 2004. She introduces the word "E-terrorism" and describes the Web of hate. Lutz and Lutz. Globalization thus functions as a facilitator and a motivator for terrorism. there are many transnational counterterrorism efforts. Hoffman (1998) claims that terrorists frequently believe that they are serving a cause that will achieve a greater good for a wider populace. 2000). Hoffman. In addition to the above. Organized crime groups also make use of the Internet (examples are cyber crime and internet porn) but in secret and within small web communities (Speer. 2004. there is a difference in the way terrorists picture themselves. like global media and easy access to goods. Nowadays. The last comparison to be made is between the comparability of the influence of growing globalization and mobilization on terrorists and that on organized crime groups.

the Caucasus and Chechnya. the drugs-trafficking routes increased in volume after the Cold War. The other problem is that much of the empirical evidence that is presented is anecdotal and based on hearsay.. Scholars are divided on the link (nexus) between terrorism and organized crime. the debate will probably not be settled in the near future. 2003. 2002). such as producing and trafficking drugs and kidnapping for ransom (Clutterbuck.term of "narco-terrorism" (terrorism funded with drug money). 2005. academics attempted to explain why two intrinsically different groups (one motivated by politics and the other by profit) would find it beneficial to co-operate (Makarenko. For example. Van der Veen. It is often suggested that state sponsorship of terrorist groups declined in the post—Cold War era. But there was not that much attention paid to the dynamics and the depth of relations between organized crime and terrorism. the Chechen terrorist forces have gained power in the narcotics trade over the more conventional crime organizations (Curtis. Also. 2003. But the post-September 11 environment illustrated an unprecedented interest in ties between the criminal and the terrorist worlds. Narco-terrorism was seen as an exception to the rule that organized crime and terrorism were separate phenomena and thus require separate responses. Others insist that this narco-terrorism encompasses merely a fraction of the relationship between organized crime and terrorism. And according to Curtis (2002). the FARC (Fuerzas Armadas Revolutionarias de Colombia) and Peru’s Shining Path (Sendero Luminoso) have shifted most of their post–war attention from their anti-government campaigns to criminal activities. 1995). the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan is known to rely heavily on narcotics trafficking over a number of Central Asian routes to support its military and 46 . 2004). or question whether it even exists at all (Naylor. 2002). Gunaratna. Deflem. This can be explained by the fact that most terrorist groups were not concerned about operational funding as they received state sponsorship. Some argue that the only link between crime and terrorism is the socalled narco-terrorism. For example. in Central Asia. 2004. forcing terrorist groups to find their own sources of revenue (Makarenko. Weinberg et al. Since there are not many studies on the subject of the dynamics and relations between organized crime and terrorism. This controversy could develop because of the lack of in depth research. 2002).

Makarenko (2003) added some new views on the subject. So a whole picture of the current events is difficult to obtain. Even the ETA (the Basque Fatherland and Liberation organization) and the IRA (Irish Republican Army) are supposed to be connected with narcoorganizations in Latin America. For example. the current role of regional terrorist organizations in Central Asia is a matter of speculation. State Department’s list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations). it is difficult to get valid data on the extent of the crimes committed. the hit teams share a single motive in employing violence 47 . They take advantage of the same breakdowns in authority and enforcement in states under siege and seek increasing shares of the fortunes generated from narco-trafficking and other crimes. 2002). The criminologist Tamara Makarenko analysed the nexus between organized crime and terrorism.political activities. Glenn Schweitzer (2002: 288) agrees with this idea and summarizes this as follows: ‘Distinctions that had existed (between organized crime and terrorism) are fading fast’. Although this idea of a crime-terror nexus is not new. But still. according to the USA (U.S. flexible and multinational. 2003). According to her. what the CTC seeks to establish is that the differences commonly identified between organized crime and terrorism are currently deceased. as he and Makarenko point out. Because of the police inadequacy in these countries. as are the relations between terrorist and transnational crime groups (Karacan and Curits. Passas. He states that a few terrorist and criminal organizations already rely on the same global infrastructures for their illegal goals. the PKK (Kurdistan Workers Party) is a terrorist organization which allegedly has a substantial network that has engaged in terrorist and criminal activities. It is also suggested that Western Europe is a region where terrorist groups are often linked to organized crime groups (Karacan and Curtis. in which numerous points in the connection between organized crime and terrorism can be isolated and presented. Whether mercenaries are hired to do the bidding of drug lords or of terrorist kingpins. 2002. She introduced the term "crime-terror continuum" (CTC). This is because it becomes increasingly difficult to distinguish between political and criminal motivations. particularly the FARC (Karacan and Curits. 2003). The idea of terrorism funded by crime (the crime-terror nexus) is increasingly used but still not well defined (Makarenko. such as narcotics and arms trafficking in Turkey and Western Europe. 2002). The structure of arms and narcotics transactions is increasingly variable.

long-term) and in reasons. weapons. which are not constant over time: (this also aptly summarizes the practical nexus between organized crime and terrorism) 1. 2003). it is often suggested that militants linked to AlQaeda established connections with Bosnian criminal organizations to establish a trafficking route for Afghan heroin into Europe through the Balkans (Gunaratna. Although evidence is hard to assemble. they force government leniency and influence law enforcement) and terrorist groups taking part in criminal activities (the illicit drug trade. 3. a growing number of groups simultaneously displaced the characteristics of 48 . in the beginning. The cooperation seems to focus on smuggling operations that move various commodities such as narcotics. They vary in time (short-term. 2003).– earning their financial keep. Passas. A good example is their avoidance of their differences over strategies and mutual distrust. But it has to be noticed that hard evidence has not yet been produced. Both criminals using terrorism as an operational tool (using terror tactics and bombings which have tactical rather than political goals. Van der Veen. For example. such as seeking expert knowledge (money laundering. Criminal groups acquiring in-house terrorist capabilities and vice versa. and human cargo. criminal and terrorist groups avoid their relationship problems (Makarenko. for instance. 2002. Alliances between criminal groups and terrorist organizations. human smuggling) are expanding their operations (Gunaratna. 2. that groups like Hezbollah realized the financial gain that could be made by participation in the drugs trade (they would protect heroin laboratories in the Bekaa Valley). there are numerous allegations. credit card fraud. Why do they expand their activities? In doing so. Examples of these alliances on the international drug scene include the FARC/Medellin cocaine cartel-combination. Makarenko (2003) divides the crime-terror nexus into three groups. At the start of the 21st century. 2005). A gap in his thinking is the concept of other crimes because often. this boundary is not easily drawn. 2002. bomb-making) or operational support (access to smuggling routes). The convergence of both groups. It has been suggested.

Tilly. but in practise. For example. There is not enough relevant in-depth research that would allow us to make conclusions about what exactly this change includes.. However. with the number of conflicts rising considerably over the last two decades (Worcester et al. wars have been fought between civil orders. if not impossible. particularly through the apparently unproblematic application of the term by the media. Nevertheless. There is no doubt that almost everyone has a fair understanding of the topic at hand. and acts of terrorism make up only a small part of political violence. its primary goal for its terrorist activities seems to be the securing of its (drug) smuggling routes. internal divergence or a (rightful) sense of inequality often led to civil unrest and disobedience. the origins of violence are never the same. 3. Violence has always been predominant in human history. this is no different in the contemporary world.terrorism and organized crime. it is generally assumed. 2002: 49 . Demarcating terrorism as a specific form of political violence is subsequently also a difficult task. adversaries were defeated. that political violence is a straightforward and easy to understand subject despite the various forms and dimensions its nature encompasses. there is the role of the IMU (Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan) in central Asia. terrorists groups who engage mainly in criminal activities and use their political rhetoric as a facade or criminal groups who use terrorist acts in order to obtain economic and political power and get control over certain sectors of a state. change of authority.for instance. 2002: 1. there have been attempts to classify possible modes of cooperation and blurring of the formerly clear distinction. and conflicts arose from within. For the record. the scholars agree that the connection between organized crime and terrorism has changed. the ways in which violence portrays itself are numerous. and explaining the nature and root causes of this phenomenon is rather complicated. Within these established civil orders. To sum up. Still. and new enemies arose. it is still striving for an Islamic state in the region. Throughout centuries. To a large extent.3 POLITICAL VIOLENCE Political violence is a complex concept. making it harder to establish differences between the two .

as that one man can thereupon claim to himself any benefit. The following paragraphs will deal with the notion of political violence as a threat to the domestic security of a society.1 will briefly discuss the notion of violence from a traditional state perspective. this section will reflect on violence as a means of expression of an individual or a group of individuals impacting society.13-15). or not great enough for our security. the difference between man. ‘if there be no power erected. As a result. Paragraph 3. as has been established in Workpackage 2 of the TTSRL project. Yet. as that though there bee found one man sometimes manifestly stronger in body. for safety and for reputation (Ibid.: 223-224).3. is not so considerable. For this reason. Within this context.3. in the faculties of body. 50 . yet when all is reckoned together. Hobbes claims that there is a demand for a common power that would control and regulate the needs of men. while terrorist acts are unquestionably political and violent in nature. Wars or other violent conflicts between states will not be discussed throughout this study. and thus a form of political violence.: 185). Hence. every man will and may lawfully rely on his own strength and art. Then throughout paragraph 3.: 186). which would guide them to common prosperity. (Hobbes. and mind. terrorism. to which another may not pretend.2. as a political violent means to bring about change in society.1 Violence and the state Thomas Hobbes explains in his famous book Leviathan the natural condition of mankind: Nature hath made men so equall.. a common power that would support the foundation of fruitful conditions for ‘Industry … and consequently … Culture of the Earth’ (Ibid.for gain. 3. political violence is not always terrorism. as well as he. and man. 1985: 183) Hobbes continues his proclamation by explaining how the nature of men and his equality leads to quarrels . for caution against all other men’ (Ibid. or of quicker mind than another. the concept of political violence will be elaborated upon. is considered an increasing threat to domestic security. and subsequently terrorism as a specific form of political violence will be dealt with in part 3.

According to Hobbes. to be achieved and maintained.: 53). through force. (Van den Haag. it is ‘the right of office-holders to order. As Van den Haag puts it. one limits one’s individual liberties for the greater good of civil order. and there is no need to depend on one’s own strength to defend oneself. Authority can be exercised poorly or reluctantly. 1972: 54). Authority. Democratic states today reflect Hobbes’ ideas regarding civil order through the state’s monopoly of violence. Freedom to be right. becomes more restricted (Van den Haag.: 74). One is not solely responsible for one’s caution against all other men. but also the freedom to err. should not be taken for granted by those in power or by those subjected to it. Within that context. therefore. For such an objective to be realized. refuse to accept it. civil order. and the duty of those subject to their authority to comply’ (Ibid. The legitimate use of violence is generally defined as “force”. the subject under the Civitas becomes able to enjoy greater amounts of liberty. however. Hobbes focuses on the just causes of authority where justice is the foundation of an ideal order. it was necessary for the Civitas to recognize and establish a representational body (in the form of an “Assembly”) that would organize and facilitate the common interests and necessities of its subjects in order for the greater good. and accepted by those subject to it’ (Ibid. and (some of) the citizens subjected to it could. by shifting power from oneself to the representational body of the Civitas. Also. However. It is important to keep in mind that through the establishment of such a state structure.Hobbes’ classical realist thinking on the formation of nation states is an interesting starting point for understanding the relation between violence and civil order. the representational body must have the monopoly of violence within or on behalf of society. whilst the illegitimate use of aggression is labeled “violence”.e. Rather. one complies with those rules that are set forth by the state. i. Violence utilized to objectify the common good –civil order—is commonly accepted and therefore perceived as a legitimate form of violence throughout society. 1972: 81). one can rely on the greater strength of the state. The ideal order is subsequently characterized by a consensual social relationship between citizens and their leaders: ‘the effective exercise of authority by the officials vested with it. state authority could merely be considered or conceived to be 51 . One accepts that the modern state deals in one’s best interest and believes that one shall receive the benefits of prosperity and protection against our own errors and the errors of others.

is a manifestation of political. Whitehead also establishes that violence is generally considered an illegitimate form of the physical use of force by unauthorized actors and the right to legitimately use force is exclusively reserved for the recognized authority. restraint or intimidation of person(s) or the destruction or seizure of property’.) Therefore. and social disputes: a persistence of differences in identity. Whitehead. (Wilkinson. victims. 1986: 23) Subsequently. and necessary to the continuance of life itself? In other words the legitimacy of violent acts is partly defined as a result of how the act of violence is constituted in the minds of the observers. particularly in the light of today’s democratic states. 3. explains that ‘theoretical and research approaches to violence begin with the assumption that. a distinction is made between force. Whitehead continues by positioning the question of whether violence can be … ennobling. Matters of legitimacy are not at all separate from the way in which given acts and behaviors are considered violent in the first place. injury. the advent of the irrational. subsequently. and the commission of physical harm’ (Whitehead. and various academics have taken it upon themselves to conceptualize it. economic. particularly in the form of political. and social violence. which can be identified by the infliction of physical harm motivated by the inadequacy of an individual or of a social system. or threatened use of coercion resulting.poorly exercised by (some) societal partakers or by spectators vested outside of the society at hand. at its core. 2002: 1). or intended to result in. or the use of “force” as an executive instrument solely at 52 . The professor of anthropology Neil L. for example.. and the perpetrators. Whitehead hereby presents violence as a given form of human interaction. redeeming. It can be concluded that violence is commonly accepted as ‘the illegitimate use. violence represents the breakdown of meaning.3. the death. when discussing the concept of violence.2 Violence and Legitimacy ‘In both developed and developing states. Violence is a widely discussed topic. violence manifests itself in various ways. Violence. economic. (Ibid. 2007: 40). a tool for those opposing [for instance] the rights of women and minorities’ (Worcester et al.

the majority of societies tolerate the freedom of 53 . 2001: 9). It is important to note that despite their monopoly on the use of violence. such as the violence of language. More specifically. i. these forms will not be taken into consideration. force. 1991: 9) Violence as a form of expression could consequently be deemed necessary for the survival of an individual or a system to which the individual or a group of individuals belongs. whereas the perpetrator does not recognize it as such . and “violence”. 3. The victims – and in most cases also the observers – would perceive such an act of expression as illegitimate. They are considered ‘peripheral phenomena and dependant on the existence of bodily damage and vicious attacks as a substrate to these more ethereal examples of violence’ (Ibid.3 Political violence and terrorism Most societies abide the expression of disagreement with or distrust of state policy.e. but that it also encompasses other forms of violent acts. lies a potential danger: Those who claim to be in the business of social protection must in turn protect themselves from attacks upon their monopoly of force by invoking the mystique of legality and legitimacy: this then permits them to use force in ways accepted as different in kind from the ways of those who act against the state. governments can also act violently illegitimately. hostility or even threats.the disposal of the acknowledged order. As Merkl rightfully remarks. Even though it is rightfully argued that violence is not merely the physical use of force.3. Government violence and even unjust violent policies are exempt as long as we accord a legitimate monopoly of violence to the state and its duly authorized functionaries’ (Merkl.. Buijs.and thus the notorious expression now stands: ‘one man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter’. the illegitimate use of coercive aggression. 1986: 20). Violence should not therefore be merely limited to acts of non-governmental actors. a state or a collective society. Herein. (Schlesinger. throughout this effort. ‘we do of course have to relate to illegitimate breaches of the political and social order. however.

diverging participants turn to the use of physical force to coerce intended change.expression and thus also the expression of thoughts considered to be unconventional by society’s standards. The effects concern the desired outcome of the perpetrator (e. for example. Individual violent acts are political when they have such social claims. Buijs. the aims that the perpetrators aspire to. it is clear that the interpretation of “violence” is perhaps different for the perpetrator and the victim or government (subjective). of which the latter is in most cases considered a terrorist act. Regarding the conceptualization of aims. In a political system. For obvious reasons. When.g. The sociologist Buijs focused on defining and elaborating upon three central aspects of political violence that can be used to obtain a typology: ‘the instruments that are used. between civil disobedience during a demonstration and the bombing of a governmental building (objective). Furthermore. they do not have to be violent. Various academics have conceptualized the term “political violence” and arrived at various typologies. this expression can be produced both from within and from outside a system. and the disagreement regarding typologies continues. the relocation of an oil-producing company from 54 . it is suggested that the motivations are clear and that the identity of the perpetrator and the aim are fully understood. Nevertheless. Manifestations of divergence can be considered as a threat. a commonly accepted typology has not yet arisen. the threat becomes violent. does also recognize the limitations of a typology based on these conceptions. How political systems deal with these divergences differs to a great extent. As Van den Haag established. When individuals or groups resort to violence to attain change of a political nature. and the effects that are brought about’ (Buijs. however. Seeing as violence is not the most straightforward method of communicating and efforts to make narratives explicit are not always successful. however. however. violence only becomes political when used instrumentally to influence or control the distribution of power and the future actions of people. 1972: 60-61). With respect to the instruments. group violence is at all times political to all intents and purposes (Van den Haag. one speaks of political violence. there is a general acceptance that not all participants share the common interpretation of a given condition. classifying violence on the basis of aims is difficult and will not always be as precise as intended. a large grey area exists. 2001: 9).

whether as an immediate result of the terrorists’ demands or not. The typology is primarily based on Wilkinson’s typology in Terrorism and the Liberal State of 1986. 1986: 32). the following typology is useful. Here it must be noted that the scheme does not imply any order of escalation. a destroyed building. but it is moderately altered to include contemporary realities. This is an obvious aspect. or the withdrawal of American troops from Iraq). The scheme provides an adequate overview of mass and small group political violence according to a scale of intensity (Wilkinson. a second. A government may decide not to negotiate with terrorists. for example. difficulties arise because effects are difficult to measure. when discussing effects. it could be decided that the demand should be granted only years later. a kidnapped journalist). yet a necessity for a threat to materialize. 55 . However. particularly when the intended effects are not direct and involve the response of the victim or government to change. facet of effects needs to be addressed: the physical result of the instrument used (e. For a greater understanding of political violence. rather apparent.a specific area. On a final note. particularly with respect to terrorism. greater political structures (idem). Also.g.

as opposed to its symbolic. kidnapping and bombing: Often nationalist in origin. 1986: 33). protests and violent demonstrations can be exercised merely by an angry crowd. used both within national confines and across them. this is more difficult to say about assassinations. However. particularly in today’s world. they are not.To supplement the scheme and shed more light on the general aims or purposes political violence might serve. As demonstrated in the above schemes. 1991: 5-6) The reason why the term “terrorism” has been used in such an inadequate fashion is primarily because it has been so difficult to define and no commonly 56 . importance. different forms of political violence are presumed to be interchangeable with terrorism. Riots. While often. sometimes anti-systemic. (Schlesinger. the following scheme presented by Wilkinson is useful (Wilkinson. This has often gone under the label of “terrorism” and has contributed to a sense of instability out of all proportion to its material. political violence can materialize in various forms.

however. However. the guerrilla movement in the 1930s and 1940s in China. and therefore a conclusive and definite answer cannot easily be provided. or non-related targets. Consequently. and not through the mere act of violence. It appears we lack consensus on a clear demarcation of what constitutes terrorism conclusively within the multiplicity of other acts of political violence. According to this theory. Terrorism is generally a coercive strategy that involves the deliberate creation of a psychological effect – terror – through the use of violence. raises questions. this very much depends on the interpretation and association of observers. (Crenshaw. is indisputably a form of political violence. terrorism depends on its ability to awaken emotions throughout the target audiences but also through other people who might constitute the neutral. and the rebellions in many Latin American states who favoured a change of government over the last century should also be classified as terrorist organizations. it does underline what is central to terrorism. To achieve political influence. 57 . terrorism largely depends on the psychological effects it is able to generate through its violent acts and the threat of more violent acts that particular violent acts produce. as we have already shown in Chapter 2. however. Again. Such a discussion leads to confusion and much disagreement. victims and perpetrators. symbolic objects. namely ‘organized and systematic attempt to create fear’. ‘Terrorism is violence. This definition. terrorism can be defined on the basis of the acts it involves. Terrorism. but not every form of violence is terrorism´ (1999: 8). According to Schmid and Jongman. 1998: 380) As a result. The primary difference between terrorism and other forms of political violence is that terrorism is a strategy that aims at attaining specific political ends (motivation) through the creation of fear. the supportive. with organized and systematic attempts to create fear and direct a change in the political order (Schmid and Jongman. violent acts can be categorized as terrorism if they encompass serious forms of physical violence against adversaries. aimed at attaining political ends. 1988). Algerian insurgents who fought in the 1950s and 1960s against the occupation of the French. and/or the antagonistic. or a threat of violence. but a form of political violence is not necessarily terrorism. according to them. Like the opening statement of Walter Laqueur’s renowned work The New Terrorism states.accepted definition has yet come to be despite a great amount of effort by both academic and policy-making spheres. while the definition might not be allencompassing.

that the psychological effect related to terrorism can be used to distinguish it from a general political violence. however. Therefore. wherein terrorism is a certain type of political violence. These groups politically motivate their actions in pursuit of change. 3. this corresponds with the “double victimization” identified as a key definitional element in Chapter 2.4 CONCLUSION There are. A motivational background can be found in the more overarching construct of political violence. Though they are very different constructs. Whereas terrorists aim to change things and thus have certain specific mental and motivational processes working within. and in some cases similar. be it change of a society’s leadership or a system of power. organized crime groups are in business solely for profit and personal gain. they also share a number of very distinct features.To sum up. terrorism is a form of political violence. on an abstract. use the same funding strategies and even work together in practise. mostly labeled as such by its victims and a large part of its other words. The border between terrorism and other forms of political violence is controversial. many similarities between the notions of terrorism. Terrorism thus finds its motivational factors in a general or specific deprivation of certain groups within a society or from the outside directed inwards. in relation to the standards set by the society. Both are organized. we thus argue that organized crime and terrorism share similarities on the more practical basis of the functionality of organization. political violence and terrorism also share a causal relation: both constructs attempt to manifest an unconventional expression. The conclusion to be drawn from the organized crime and terrorism comparison in this regard is that terrorism and organized crime share an almost identical organizational and habitual basis. organized crime and political violence. in the basis for the existence of both phenomena. The aim of this chapter has been to attempt to isolate terrorism from these two comparable. The most imperative difference is in the criminogenic and motivational factors behind terrorism and organized crime . by means of violent 58 . It can be argued. constructs. In short. but also on a practical level. Broadly.

even then the distinct features of terrorism and other forms of political violence lie in the eye of the beholder: the perception and conceivability of the perpetrator.acts in pursuit of a change in the system. 59 . However. the victim and the observer of such acts of violence. Yet. the account of the degree of the change of the system – a society and the order within – would separate a terrorist act from other forms of political violence.

characterized by common features abstracted from a group of “similar” cases – perception of those features depending. aggregate units can be put into categories by the careful use of scales. In a comparable fashion. for example. Thus a type of terrorism. 60 . The user making the typology is an important consideration. 4. terrorism into a single word or (the other way around) to deconstruct a phenomenon in order to find the multiple facets. “State terrorism” as it is often defined.1 RELATIONSHIP TO THE ACADEMIC DEFINITION DEBATE The question of types of terrorism is intrinsically related to the problem of definition discussed in the first chapter. and specific questions arising in the current academic.4. 1981: 285). This entails that the functionality of a typology is mostly defined by the purpose of the user: different objectives make for different typologies (Schmid and Jongman. on a selected point of view –. In the rest of the chapter. TYPOLOGY OF TERRORISM Within the multitude of methodologies used in social science. e. which political bloc a local council department belongs to (Zisk. there is a number of techniques that allow the researcher to scale and order certain research objects. A general definition of a typology – from the Oxford English Dictionary . whether inside (terrorizing the own population) or outside (direct involvement of a sovereign state actor in terrorist activities in other countries). 1988: 39).is simply: ‘classification according to general type’. debate on terrorism are analyzed in greater depth. The guidelines used to make these categorizations or classifications can range from self-defined to theoretical considerations. respondents can be placed on a continuum on such topics as liberalism. For example. social efficacy or IQ.g. as the general section on typologies in this chapter indicates. possible typologies of terrorism used by various scholars are described and classified. may become one properly only after it has been located within the field of terrorism. as will be discussed in the next section. as well as in the legal. which has a profound effect on the number of terrorism typologies in use in academic literature. A typology is thus a categorization of phenomena and/or objects in order to make them more manageable for analysis. Typologies are useful tools for researchers to frame many facets of.

in the reflection on the nature of terrorism. In the debate concerning types of terrorism. most of the items on Schmid and Jongman’s list of ten common bases for classification (2005: 40) could be subsumed under these areas (e. etc. objectives/motives.. is terrorism in the first place. related to the nature of terrorism. perpetrators. in Laqueur’s view. a set of ideas. as a tactic. e. These criteria can be divided according to the issue areas proposed in the first chapter. causes and political orientations could all be comprised in the objectives / motives issue area). demands.or “criminal terrorism” (problematic due to the absence of “political aims”. quoted in Schmid and Jongman. the reason for the plural character of conclusions is not identical. while neither of those can be treated separately.’ Johnson notes (1978. the diversity in academic accounts may instead stem from the diverse set of criteria used in the process of categorization – apart from the more general ontological assumptions of the authors. and the plural character of the latter may even become. purpose. For instance. Yet it may also lie in the nature of the situation in which different definitions are sought for different purposes. The fundamental question is whether indeed this or that phenomenon. an insurmountable hindrance to the former: ‘Any attempt to be specific [about terrorism] is bound to fail. it can be argued that in these inquiries. Nonetheless. motivations. for the simple reason that there is not one but many terrorisms’ (1999: 28). Both seem to reflect the semantic vagueness of the phenomenon. a kind of political violence. In the chapter on the academic definitions of terrorism. defined on the basis of shared characteristics in a number of cases. it has been suggested that the cause of the absence of a standard definition of terrorism may be its contested and political nature – it is a powerful instrument of delegitimization and indeed dehumanization of the other. 2005: 40). ‘There are almost as many typologies of terrorism as there are analysts. the ordering (classification) criteria should follow the delimitation (definitional) criteria. Since no one set is per se more relevant than the others.. i. It would arguably even be contra-productive because assuming various 61 . and the means/methods to reach them. In other words.g. which are indispensable constituents in a number of definitions) are illustrative examples in this regard.g. the standard typology is unlikely to emerge.e. The lack of consensus on the nature of terrorism relates to the quests for reification of its boundaries (definition) and its precise content (classification of types). assumptions which again are related to the position on the definition of the phenomenon as such. victims.

These frameworks refer to the contexts of crime. leading to generalizations that would be reached rather inductively from the case-specific knowledge. 62 . and Hirsch-Hoefler mention other issues which are worth punctuating here (2004). Most significantly. a psychological perspective may also offer a conceptual framework that departs from a geographical or “root causes” means of classification (Taylor and Horgan. to “an essentially contested concept”. have suggested five conceptual frameworks. which can be utilized while observing terrorist actions (2005). which refer to the bias coming from the social or physical distance of the observer from the actual action. and possible disengagement of a terrorist with a terrorist group or action (also see Horgan: 2005). ranging from “political purposefulness”.viewpoints in reflection of terrorism is likely to increase academic and political communities’ contextual understanding of the phenomenon. evaluations. they omit a psychological dimension (although the discussions on communication and religion do touch upon this issue). through the “border” and “membership” problem. In other words. it can be the case that the distance may affect the observer’s point of view and alter his or her classifications. and religion / fundamentalism. such contextual lenses in various situations accentuate certain features whereas they virtually marginalize others. These introductory notes connected the problem of typologies with the definitional one. warfare. for instance. as Schmid has asserted. propaganda / communication. involvement. through and out of terrorism’ (2006: 5). nor are the frameworks thought to be hierarchically ordered or taken as mutually exclusive (2004: 213-214). as Taylor and Horgan show. Weinberg. they specify the problems of “stretching” and “travelling”. It is hence not surprising that the debate on typologies produces similar sentiments. These scholars assert that terrorism should be viewed as a process and focus on ‘pathways into. Schmid’s list is of course not meant to be exhaustive. Moreover the proximity of both topics would allow repeating virtually all of the arguments. Hence. In addition. politics. Pedazhur. However. Schmid and Jongman. While Schmid’s frameworks to a certain extent reflect the previously often emphasized interdisciplinarity of terrorist studies. and decisions (2004: 779). The study dealing with the efforts to define terrorism has mentioned several reasons for the discontent of various communities on the issue of terrorism. What seems to be crucial is to study frameworks related to the process of engagement. This approach might offer a very different categorization. 2006).

the point made here is that these phenomena only rarely involve violence or the threat of violence directed on humans.“Stretching” and “travelling” problems may also lead to the creation of different terms such as “narco-terrorism” or “cyber-terrorism”. acts which provide the core feature of the concept of terrorism itself. Additionally. The first is the actor-based typology. 63 . 3. It provides the most elaborate analysis on terrorism typologies to date and is therefore the best starting point to discuss the multitude of typologies that exist. Demand-based 10. 4. Perpetrators of terrorism range from lone-wolf terrorists to states of governments using terrorist tactics. see Collier and Mahon. thereby obeying the law of inverse variation. Laqueur. As they increase the extension. Hirsch-Hoefler. Collier and Mahone argue.and thus typologies to be made for terrorism. Motivation-based 8. 2004. Target-based Schmid and Jongman examine three of these classifications more closely. also quoted in Weinberg. It is often the case. that scholars tend to subsume new cases under a category which was defined through an originally different set of cases. they ‘adapt the category by climbing the ladder of generality. Actor-based Victim-based Cause-based Environment-based Means-based 6. there are ten bases for classification: 1. 1996). One of the first systematic studies undertaken to catalog all typologies of terrorism in order to make a general definition of terrorism is Schmid and Jongman's 1988 landmark study. 1999 or Schmid. 13 For a more general discussion of risks concerning the unexpedient extension and stretching of categories. 2.2 THE TERRORISM TYPOLOGY DEBATE There is a huge amount of terrorism typologies around. Political-orientation-based 7. 1993: 846). Leaving aside the critique adverting to the political and ideological background of the former (see. 5.13 4. Schmid and Jongman (1988: 39-59) state ‘that the construction of typologies occurs by classifying certain units according to the specified characteristics. they reduce the intension to the degree necessary to fit the new contexts’ (Collier and Mahon. which is one of the most obvious divisions – terrorism is perpetrated by an actor or actors . 1993. Pedazhur. Purpose-based 9.’ In the case of terrorism. for example.

Schmid and Jongman introduced such a model after analysing other scholars’ work (see Figure 1). (a1 vs. Moreover.1. Political T.) I. Pathological ("Crazy") T. Some of them will be discussed in the following paragraphs.b. This typology goes beyond the question of the actors involved and classifies the motivational base or origin of the organization.2. It should be noted that the overview is by no means exhaustive and that it does 64 . Schmid and Jongman also address the purpose and existence of multidimensional typologies. I. Eco-Terrorism) Source: Schmid and Jongman (1988) There are also many more contemporary researches available that make use of terrorism typologies. a. (incl.1. The overlying purpose of terrorism is to terrorize a group or state.1. a2) I.1.A second typology that Schmid and Jongman recognize is the political orientation-based one. ‘it is quite evident that not everybody is terrorized and that the sowing of terror is not in all cases an end to itself but a means to a variety of objectives’ (Schmid & Jongman. RightWing & Racist T.1. These typologies classify terrorism according to more than one of the above mentioned natures.e. or bases. II (Organized) Crime-Linked T. Insurgent T. 1988: 50). (A vs. a) I. The third typology Schmid and Jongman analyze is the purpose-based typology. State-sponsored T. where “political terrorism” may be split up into other sub-categories by the perpetrator. (& Millenarian T. III. every type identified may be further divided into several subtypes (possibly according to different variables). I. SocialRevolutionary T.4. One of them. (a vs. (Left-Wing) I. (A(b) vs. Nationalist & Separatist T.3 State (or Regime) T. Ethnic T.c. However. A) I. Next to these three bases for creating classifications and thus typologies. SingleIssue T. a2 signify Non-State Actors) I. (e. B.) I. “insurgent terrorism”.a. The table identifies three general types of terrorism.d.g. a1.) I. Religious T.1. may cover a number of types based on the terrorist’s motivation. Vigilante T. Fout!Figure 1: Typology of terrorism (Key: A signifies State Actor.

with the objective of effecting various changes in the structural-functional aspects of the particular political system. but it is aimed at providing insight into the types of terrorism typologies used in research. Revolutionary Terrorism: the threat and/or employment of extra-normal forms of political violence in varying degrees. though similar elements beyond the system’s geographical boundaries may also rely on such means. Such means may be employed by revolutionary elements indigenous to the particular political system or by similar groups acting outside of the geographical boundaries of the system. Purposebased and Motivation-based. the political component has been a major factor for defining terrorism throughout the academic and nongovernmental debate. The typology (slightly adapted) has been used by many other scholars. sub-revolutionary.3 in this study). Actor-based. by an established 65 . Such means are employed primarily by groups or movements indigenous to the particular political system.2. 2. depending on what side of the barricade the actors stand. Of the ten types of classification identified by Schmid and Jongman. only four seem to be frequently used in terrorism research: Political Orientation-based. who distinguished three types of terrorism: revolutionary. 3. The political orientation-based typology works with the notion of political change/persistence. One of the first to make such a typology was Wilkinson (1974). not abolish it in favor of a complete system change. The goal is to bring about certain changes within the political body.not indicate the usability of these typologies. Establishment Terrorism: May be defined as the threat and/or employment of extraordinary forms of political violence in varying degrees. Sub-Revolutionary Terrorism: the threat and/or employment of extraordinary forms of political violence in varying degrees. and repressive terrorism. appearing in 68% of the definitions (see Chapter 2. with the objective of successfully effecting a complete revolutionary change (change fundamental political-social processes) within the political system.1 Political orientation-based typology As we have seen in the previous chapters. 4. notably by Schultz (1978): 1. This is perhaps the broadest of the three categories: groups included span the political spectrum from the left to right (…).

2. such means may be employed by an established political system against other nationstates and groups external to the particular political system. against both internal and external opposition. as well as internally to repress various forms of domestic opposition/unrest and/or to move the populace to comply with programs/goals of the state. Richardson argues that the word "terrorism" has lost its meaning in politics because it has been used immoderately by politicians to label opposition activities (2006a: 3). and religious. Rapoport (2001) identifies four types of politically motivated terrorism since the beginning of the 20th century: anti-colonial/revolutionary. Examples are Armond (1999). The best example is the one conceptualized by Waugh (1982). but also the political orientation of actors may create a basis for categorization. 66 . ‘religious and ethnic identities often overlap’ (2001: 421). He looks at the geographical component of the actor. or Leman-Langlois’ categorization of religious terrorism (Leman-Langlois and Brodeur. Similarly. left-wing and revolutionary elements do not exclude each other. Nevertheless.2. left and right-wing. Another example may be the typology of Melenťeva (2002). one group being indigenous to the host state. 4.2 Actor-based typology In general. of course. Specifically. ethno-nationalist/separatist. Obviously.g. also primarily actor-based typologies of terrorism.political system. there are a number of scholars who work with these (or similar) categories and even further isolate various sub-groups. Moreover. Even Rapoport admits that the types may overlap. A similar approach can be found in Antonian’s work (1998). 2005). There are. Integrated Internal Terrorism: difference in nationalities of the terrorists and the victims. which also encompasses a motivational factor. resulting in a three-category typology: 1. utterly uncontested. however. who further divides right-wing terrorism. This is the case of the above-mentioned typologies of Wilkinson and Schultz that include a significant actor-related element. Spill-over Terrorism: the use of violence by foreign nationals against foreign individuals or property. actor-based typologies often include other bases too. Such division is not. e. not only the nature of change.

especially with regard to the debates over an international legal definition of terrorism (cf. i. the society as a whole. Examples of such typologies are most notably those by Thornton and later those by scholars like Boyer Bell. advertising (the act not only calls attention to the existence of the insurgents but also serves as a reminder of their program and ideals). The identification of the actor has been a highly contested topic. 67 . disorientation (the objective par excellence of the terrorist. The main issue has been the role of the state and how the state-actors fit into the picture. The relationship between geography and typologies of terrorism is analysed in more detail in Chapter 4. although this result may be incidental to the aims of some terrorists. like morale-building (within the terrorist movement itself as well as in that element of the population that is already sympathetic to the insurgents). The “global terrorism” has appeared in academic papers as well as governmental documents.3.3 Purpose-based typology Terrorists’ purpose has been a popular variable for scholars’ typologies. terrorist acts often are committed with the express purpose of provoking reprisals).1 of this study. Chapter 5 of this study).e.2 of this study.2. External Terrorism: the terrorists are located or the act is committed outside of the territory of the target government. elimination of opposing forces (either physically or by neutralizing their effectiveness). in the jurisdiction of another government. or provocation of countermeasures by the incumbents (in combating an elusive terrorist. The location of the perpetrator (as also reflected by Waugh) has gained some significance in the public debate on terrorism in recent years.3.3. 4. removing the underpinnings of the order in which his targets live out their daily lives). the incumbents will be forced to take measures that affect not only the terrorist but also his environment. We elaborate more on this in Chapter 4. Thornton (1964) argues that terrorists commit their deeds for different purposes.

4. more abstract approach to what categories of divergent purposes there are for terrorist activity. To be most effective. Again. harsh. 1995). and execution. punishment must be swift. Yet the deed must be more than a simple vengeance. Some widely used and accepted contemporary terrorism typologies with a motivational base are the ones developed by Hoffman (1999) and by Vasilenko (2004). perhaps without exception.Boyer Bell (1975) takes a different. 3. Allegiance terror: a less restrained variant of organization terror in order to gain mass support. 4. right-wing and religious terrorism. 2. defense. Organizational terror: every revolutionary organization. Manipulative terror: concentrates on exploiting the deed and escalating its impact to create a bargaining situation. Hoffman’s typology is very basic. Symbolic terror: must go beyond the organizational and functional and must select a victim who represents the epitome of the enemy. in which the terrorists threaten to destroy seized assets or hostages unless they are granted certain demands. Gross Stein. such as the identity of the actor or the target (cf. Vasilenko’s typology follows a similar yet distinct path and identifies the following five categories: 1. sentence. 5. with trial. inhibiting penetration. Terrorist purposes can be categorized into six categories: 1. must face the problem of maintaining internal discipline. Political terrorism: struggle for power 2. and punishing errant members.2. motivation is often used in combination with other variables as a base for the typology. Functional terror: is employed when in the course of armed struggle it is necessary to gain strategic advantage through specific action. Loneey. 1989) or the method used (cf. violation of territorial integrity of state 68 . It is therefore often highly formalized. identifying four rather self-evident categories: ethno-nationalist.4 Motivation-based typology Motivation-based typologies make up most of the currently used typologies in research. and visible. left-wing. Separatist terrorism: aimed at territorial secession.

Nationalist terrorism: exclusion of other nationalities and ethnic groups from all spheres of activity-political. 1999. The intricate relationship between geography and terrorism and the role of the state in perpetrating/subsidizing terrorism have already been mentioned in the previous paragraphs. international. Hoffman (1998). This criticism focuses on the often drawn conclusion that the geographical dimension of terrorism (domestic. section 2. manifestations of terrorism assumed more and more extensive dimensions (cf. global. Here the concept is first developed in more detail and then exposed to criticism. Laqueur. 2003. Kiras (2004) and Reinares 69 . etc.3. etc. In other words. suppression of other religious confessions 5. Criminal terrorism: profit-oriented. 4. Besides. transnational and global terrorism – has featured in the writings of a number of authors such as Schmid and Jongman (2005). i. Crenshaw.2.1 Geographical dimensions of terrorism Dividing manifestations of terrorism in accordance with geographical dimensions has been introduced in WP2 Deliverable 1. It also deals with the construction of the boundary between the internal and the external. economic. 4. Wilkinson (1977). The selection is based on the relevance to today’s debate on terrorism and the ambiguity of the terms. cultural.) is linked to the chronological development. 4. suppression and elimination of commercial and other rivals for selfish purposes Other motivation-based typologies of terrorism have been made by scholars like Antonian (1998) and Avdeev (2000).3 SELECTED TYPOLOGIES In the following sections. local and global terrorism. in the discourse. over time. the distinction between “old” and “new” terrorism has been very strong in the current debate on terrorism and is worth of a closer look. 2007).3. Kegley. which deserve further attention.e. The geographical classification of terrorism – introducing categories such as domestic. international. Religious terrorism: recognition of a leading role of own religion. Kegley (2003). selected typologies will be analysed in more depth.

refers to the acts ‘perpetrated by local nationals against a purely domestic target. 2. The MIPT's (Memorial Institute for the Prevention of Terrorism) Terrorism Knowledge Base defines incidents of international terrorism as those ‘in which terrorists go abroad to strike their its declared objectives. according to MIPT. Positive criteria used to determine under which geographical category an incident may be categorized include: 1) the state territory where the act occurs. personnel or equipment’.tkb. select domestic targets associated with a foreign state. Examples of definitions of international terrorism as – at least implicitly – contrasted to domestic terrorism include: ‘[The threat or use of violence for political purposes where…] its ramifications transcend national boundaries (as a result. 2) the citizenship of the perpetrators and 3) the citizenship of the target. spillover terrorism (foreign perpetrators and targets in relation to the locale).jsp>. 1976 (quoted in Schmid and Jongman. the identity of its institutional or human victims. ‘[…] Terrorism committed outside the borders of one or all of the parties to the political conflict […] when it is motivated by revolutionary objectives’ – Wilkinson. or the mechanisms of its resolution)’ – Milbank. Contrasted to this phenomenon is domestic terrorism. 2005: 42).. 70 . If either one or both of determinants 2) and 3) do not coincide with the state where the incident takes place. 2005: 43) elaborates on the concept of international terrorism. select victims or targets because of their connections to a foreign state (diplomats. 2005: 41). which. the incident is considered excluded from the domestic realm and elevated to the international one.. and ‘[. 1974 (quoted in Schmid and Jongman.(2005).’14 Waugh (quoted in Schmid and Jongman. for example. of the nationality or foreign ties of its perpetrators.] incidents in which terrorists go abroad to strike their targets. 2005: 42). or create an international incident by attacking airline passengers. 14 See <http://www. its locale. dividing it into three subcategories: 1. local executives or officers of foreign corporations). 1975 (quoted in Schmid and Jongman. attack airliners in international flights or force airliners to fly to a different country’ – Jenkins.

international terrorism’ to the activities of the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO). which internationalized its struggle with Israel by means of increased mobility of terrorists. Similarly. Hoffman (2006: 63-64) attributes the ‘advent of what is considered modern. when one of the groups is local).integrated internal terrorism (different nationalities of victims and perpetrators. ‘transnational terrorism in one way or another crosses state borders. from the perspective of the perpetrators of the violence.). For example. international terrorism strives for changing the structures and distribution of power in entire regions of the world or even on the global level. external terrorism (the terrorists are based outside the territory of the target country’s government). this phenomenon involves at least two essential criteria. For Reinares. Yet. in fact. those organizations or structures that are involved in international terrorism have spread their activity into a significant number of countries and regions in adherence with their strategic prospects and goals. when. As Reinares further notes. such transnational features do not necessarily refer to international terrorism. According to Reinares. Firstly. The debate tends to be also blurred by the terminological mayhem. As Reinares also notes. the latter includes the former but not vice versa (2005). 3. essentially because those who perpetrate it maintain organizational structures or carry out violent activities in more than one country’ (2005: 2). Reinares has elaborated on the issue of international terrorism while remarking that international terrorism is often confused with transnational terrorism. In other words. the latter criterion 71 . Most of the organizations are transnationalized and join various clandestine structures to raise the essential resources or enhance their operational capabilities (Ibid. in regard to the goals and aims of the terrorist endeavour. Secondly. targeting “innocent” civilians from other countries and hijacking airplanes. From a more historical point of view. it could yet be remarked that the terrorism related to the Palestinian cause has become more internalized again. the political background of terrorist activity may often surpass territorial boundaries (this issue will be also discussed later) and even more often involves more national or ethnic groups. Since the first intifada and the import of the suicide bombers’ tactic from Sri Lanka. it would be rather difficult to find today an organization that is systematically involved in terrorist activity but still remains strictly territorially and nationally defined. acts of transnational terrorism affect two or more territorial units and involve people of two or more nationalities.

It is suggested that the notion of a “global terrorist network” may stem more from the fancies of some of its proponents and/or be part of the rhetorical action intentionally increasing the sense of horror. however. 2. The latter phenomenon.g. The criteria distinguishing international and/or transnational terrorism from the global tend to be much less explicit. with the purpose of successful “securitization” of terrorism as such.should not be taken as given. Yet it is precisely in this accidental 72 . While not in general taking the issue at such a position. 2006. since it is possible to imagine a territorially defined and limited group which might obtain global influence (Reinares 2005: 2 – 3). and the technological development cannot be considered as an explanatory variable per se. The “global causes” as a determinant factor of the new terrorism are nonetheless. Devji asserts that ‘the jihad’s effects agglomerate diverse countries and peoples into relations that are divorced from any prior history and display little if any commonality. 2006: 125). weapons of mass destruction by nongovernmental actors. is perceived as related to major social.g.3).. but rather as a permissive structural condition of creating more extensive impact in terms of intimidation. a rather problematic concept. seen as an unprecedented contemporary manifestation of terrorism – e. political and economic processes such as globalization and reactive fundamentalization. as suggested below. Deliverable 1. however. increasing capacities to target the global public in the media (cf. it may be rather difficult to establish a firm link between recent terrorist incidents that are in discourse commonly subsumed under the banner of the global jihad or al-Qaeda. The technological advances may relate both to the instruments of violence – the employment of. 2003: 4) -. Whereas Reinares seems to embrace the global level under the label of international terrorism. That terrorism has assumed an unprecedented global face in the recent past due to the emergence of the global jihadi network is a stance assumed by many other researchers too (cf. First. Rapoport 2001). Hoffman. the purpose of the following lines is to suggest that it rests on assumptions that are very difficult to prove empirically. Jenkins. some scholars have emphasized the novelty of the recent fourth wave of terrorism (cf. in the sense that ‘with the death of distance borders no longer serve as barriers to terrorism’ (Kegley. 1999) and also in some previous deliverables of this project (WP2. Laqueur. or technological development. remains rather in the sphere of the imagined – and communication. e.

even bin Laden claimed that one purpose of al-Qaeda’s struggle was to expulse U. terrorist incidents. by the recent foundation of the Islamist emirate in Iraq by an organization which prides itself with the name of al-Qaeda in Iraq. the declared objectives of the terrorists in the Northern Caucasus have consistently been related to the aim of national liberation. i.g. This assertion may be considered as one possible alternative narrative.e.g. to seek a change in the political order. A suggestion that the objectives of some al-Qaeda network (collective) members may be local and telluric is perhaps supported. and the rhetoric of Moscow’s government since the end of the 1990s. troops from the Persian Gulf while in other instances. moreover with a strong religious dimension. i.universe that the jihad is globalized as a series of effects that have lost sight of their own causes’ (2005: 9). 73 . is not commonly related to the global jihad. 2006: 125) or the model of a business franchise are often used. the establishment of a Salafi-modelled polity on a defined territory. Hizb-ut-Tahrir in Central Asia or Jemaah Islamiyah in the Philippines. As the case study on Chechen terrorism proposes. but the common purpose of this global network. for which a metaphor of ‘a global enterprise’ (Jenkins.e. In fact. in Dubrovka (2002) and Beslan (2004). one of the prominent contemporary movements involved in terrorism. 2005).e. As undeniable as the relations of the movements listed above within the jihadi terrorist network – to some extent – may be. they could be suggested to be not more intense and “global” than those between national 15 Securitization of Hamas. e. is difficult to establish convincingly.. it should be added. ‘Adoption of name. nonetheless. It is. e. e.15 At some instances. Second. i. he opted for a more transcendent rhetoric of battle with the global crusaders (Pape.S. a change in its configuration. a change of its character. but rather – if international implications are assumed – to Iran’s policy in the Middle East. cause and even lexicon by radical Islamic groups after the 9/11 … by people who had perhaps never heard of them before’ (2005: 15) remains an unquestionable fact. Examples include the Muslim Brotherhood. rather than a change of the political order.g. despite the overt radical Islamic zeal and symbolic used. there is the question of the alleged unprecedented character of contemporary terrorism.. Hamas also can be presumed to strive for recognition of Palestine and its government by the international community. there are many other movements around the world that are said to cherish the idea of global jihad – in one form or other – but whose objectives are rather limited and political in nature.

g. The dataset of suicide terrorism that he assembled shows that ‘there is little connection between suicide terrorism and Islamic fundamentalism’ (2005: 4). 74 . It is then subject to debate to what extent the global terrorism is a (contemporary) result of a linear development of terrorism. quite problematic to attribute the undeniable increase of suicide terrorism to its globalizing dynamics or the declaration of the global jihad. It is in this process that the internal threat of local terrorism may become represented as a piece of the global picture and included into or mixed with a universal struggle. the involvement of. other scholars like Pape (2005) present sound arguments to the contrary. adhered to terrorism. its nature thus changing into a “global” problem. pointing out the unprecedented nature of the global terrorism along with conceding that it is manifested at various battlefields may be – perhaps even unconsciously – an instrument of the definition of the dehumanized Other. Marxist-oriented Tamil Tigers – LTTE – holding primacy in number of suicide attacks] to Kashmir to Chechnya. for instance. such as the Palestine Liberation Organization or Algeria’s FLN. the sponsors of every campaign have been terrorist groups trying to establish or maintain political self-determination by compelling a democratic power to withdraw from the territories they claim’ (Ibid. it is moreover proposed that it is.liberation movements in the 1960s or 1970s. In other words. From the critical perspective. to what extent it is indeed global. some of which. and the most extraordinary means of retaliation are allowed to the governments which combat them. 16 Besides the “global” character of the new terrorism. is either “new” or can be ascribed to the global jihad ideology and network. Instead. From Lebanon to Israel to Sri Lanka [secular.. suicide terrorist campaigns are ‘directed towards a strategic objective. and its objectives becoming unclear. it is an objective not much different from the ethnoseparatist terrorism of yore. the suicide campaigns. e.). Despite Rapoport’s (2001) linkage of the recent rise of suicide attacks to the emergence of radical Islam around the world. Hizb-ut-Tahrir in terrorist violence continues to be a subject of debate. Movements whose objectives related to national self-determination could otherwise be considered legitimate are thus represented as parts of a universal contest between the powers of good and evil.g. and to what extent this alleged feature of contemporary terrorism. e. which may add to its declared irrationality and lack 16 Vice versa.

it is proposed – if indeed state terrorism is established as a distinct type within the boundaries of terrorism as a general phenomenon – that we should distinguish between state terrorism (directed outside the state) and state terror (directed inside the state). be considered illegitimate –. or state actors’ (Schmid and Jongman. group. their nature is so different that indiscriminate inclusion of the latter under the label of terrorism confuses the discourse and opens venues to abuse due to the symbolic meaning attached to the words “terrorism” and “terrorist”.3. but also a serious obstacle to their contextual understanding in the academia. 1980: 3). 2005: 28).of intentionality. can a state commit an act of terrorism? A brief overview of various academic definitions’ positions on the issue and stances of political actors in the debate related to the international law on terrorism in the UN shows that the question is indeed a contentious one. Without deciding about the moral issues related to those types – both can. thus 17 ‘Terrorism is… [a] method of repeated violent actions employed by (semi-) clandestine individual. diverse extraordinary means (including suspension of standard legal procedures or the use of violence) vis-a-vis both the domestic and the international public. their secret police may also be terrorists’ (Jenkins. ‘governments.2. Following this overview. in fact. 1999: 14).2 The role of state: terrorism by whom? The distinction between state and non-state (and state-sponsored) terrorism. Framing terrorist movements (Chechnya. Distancing the contemporary terrorist movements and other movements from their real causes – whether legitimate or not – and elevating their local objectives to the global level may not only be a vehicle of abuse in the realm of politics. under the current paradigm of the war on terror. 4. their armies. points to the fundamental question posed already in the section discussing the academic definitions of terrorism: who can commit the act of terrorism? In more specific terms. Algeria). Section 2. 75 . ‘States and their leaders can and do unleash terrorist violence against their own civilians’ (Stern. outlined in WP2 Deliverable 1. separatist movements (Xinjiang) or opposition movements to authoritarian regimes (Uzbekistan) as a part of a global jihad then legitimizes. The authors of the definitions mentioned in the academic definitions section in general either concede that states can be perpetrators of terrorism17 or they do not comment on the issue area of perpetrators of terrorist acts.

18 Notwithstanding the different means to achieve intimidation and terrorization of the population available to non-state actors (bombs) and the state apparatus (e..implicitly allowing for any actor’s direct involvement. it is precisely the impact on the population that indeed makes state and non-state terrorism two sides of the same coin.g. The contentious issue whether states can commit terrorist acts and whether terrorists and freedom fighters are mutually exclusive categories (Schmid. which tend to account for their activities by pointing to the causal chain of events launched by the repressive states. 1980: 449). the repression by states or colonial empires. e. It has been the countries of the South and the Middle East which have consistently tended to assume the position that states indeed can commit terrorism (which could be related to Israel) whereas. Pape. representatives of the oppressed nations resisting foreign occupation. i. the most often practiced on the most complex scale’ (quoted in Mushkat. by extension. should be excluded.e. The question whether states can commit acts of terrorism has been intensely debated since the 1970s and currently represents one of the main obstacles to passing the Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism. the United States in al-Qaeda’s case and Israel in Hamas’ case. in contrast to the statesponsored terrorism discussed below – and non-state terrorism is allowed. In the realm of international law. the situation is rather more complex and arguably more tainted by political considerations. National Liberation Movements. the abuse of the secret police). quoted above in relation to the suicide campaigns. Thus Syria’s government could claim in an Ad Hoc Committee on International Terrorism in the 1970s that state terrorism is ‘the most dangerous brand of violence. and attention should rather be paid to the “root causes” of non-state terrorism. 76 . according to Richard A. whether state terrorism can feature as a distinct type of terrorism – does not preclude the discussion about indirect 18 To cite but one exception. Such a stance may be shared by many non-state terrorist movements around the world. State terrorism therefore becomes integrated as a distinct type and classification of a state – implying a direct involvement of the state institutions. thereby attempting their legitimization by projecting terrorism onto the nation state which is their principal enemy – Russia in the Chechen case. "terrorism involves the use of violence by an organization other than a national governmnent to intimidate or frighten a target audience" (2005: 9). 2004a: 389) – and.g. committing the first acts of terrorism.

For example. e.htm. ‘states intentionally attacking civilians in other countries in order to achieve political aims without declaring war’.involvement of states in terrorist campaigns conducted by non-state actors in different areas of the world. Iran. According to Hoffman. their conventionalization. or intelligence to external non-state actors using terrorist tactics to pursue objectives which coincide with the state’s interests. Libya.state. States operating terrorism.e. It also proposes a rather broad definition of (direct) state terrorism.e. ideological support and military or operational assistance. an instrument of their securitization as supporters of terrorism (and of the securitization of weak states as non-state terrorist movements’ harbours).. direct and perform terrorist activities’ by virtue of other non-state actors. 77 . including at present Cuba. Libya or supplying the IRA’s guerrilla and terrorist activities (see the relevant case study in this volume) were also reported. Besides the commitment “conventional” terrorist attacks by agents of the state – the 19 20 …or terror. States perpetrating terrorism using the agencies of the state. responses. See http://www. This distinct type of terrorism is commonly referred to as state-sponsored terrorism. North Korea. i. This classification effectively distinguishes two levels of indirect involvement of the state in terrorist activities (supporting terrorism and operating terrorism). enabling employment available conventional Defining types of state involvement in terrorism. statesponsored terrorism was often related to the great power competition – albeit cases of state-sponsored terrorism by small states such as.g. and Syria (Country Reports on Terrorism 20 ). State Department has been issuing a list of countries sponsoring terrorism19. equipment. and more generally. Ganor (1997) proposes the following classification: 1) 2) 3) States supporting terrorism by means of providing financial resources. In the contemporary This becomes. the U. i. state-sponsored terrorism tends to be linked to the policies of “rogue states”. it serves as a deliberate instrument of foreign policy (1998: 186) by channeling finances. those that ‘initiate. due to the delegitimating and stigmatizing power of “terrorism”. It also serves the territorialization of the of threats. During the Cold War. Sudan. the document uses the terms interchangeably.

As for the subversive terrorism. purges (perhaps involving the element of randomness. Some research (cf. however. or perhaps Sudan’s janjaweed). by effecting subversion in other states. The former aims at the change of a political order. Judgement on 27 June 1986). 78 . cf. but rather as regimes or individual state institutions) or non-state actors. disappearances. which in the former case partake in the subversive terrorism in an indirect way. amplifying the intimidation effect on the population. Ganor maintains that state acts against terrorists cannot be considered as terrorism because terrorists exclude themselves ‘from civilian community’ (2005) – echoing interestingly Schmitt’s comment on the status of a guerrilla combatant ‘having abandoned the edifice of protection and obedience within which he previously lived’ and risking all for the sake of his cause. which. as well as in those between the United States and Iran (Case Concerning United States Diplomatic and Consular Staff in Teheran. be sponsored by states. 1964. leads to total enmity as a mode of hostility (see the section on academic definitions. 2005: 59).Lockerbie incident (1987) representing an example of such direct involvement of a regime of state agencies in such a terrorist attack –. It is motivated. Schmitt. etc.e. any attack on civilians in other countries without declaring war can be classified as state terrorism21. Arendt. 2004: 73). by a radical Liberal utopian mode of thought (cf. death squads.. Judgement on 24 May 1980). Neither repressive nor subversive terrorisms are restricted to the domain of either state (not as sovereign collective agencies. Thornton.g. i. The International Court of Justice also elaborated on the issue in lawsuits between Nicaragua and the United States (Case Concerning Military and Paramilitary Activities in and against Nicaragua. concentration camps (Schmid and Jongman. It nonetheless bears some potential to shed light onto the nature of acts classifiable as committed by state and nonstate actors and thus to facilitate their discrimination. albeit instances of non-state repressive terrorism are rather rare (Latin America. This is a case of a typology in the issue area of objectives (change / status quo) rather than in that of perpetrators (state / non-state actors). – aims at preservation or petrification of the current status quo instead. according to Schmitt. 1991) or by fundamentalist visions of a return to primordial purity in a Salafi polity. 1996 [1951]). non-state actors may. or may not. It is worth noting in this context that speaking from an Israeli perspective. The latter. e. the latter case forms an 21 Besides the Lockerbie incident and the subsequent case. Wilkinson. 1974) introduces the dichotomy between subversive and repressive terrorism. – manifested in torture. Mannheim.

albeit instances of this. janjaweed and the Sudani army’s orchestrated raids in Darfur can be interpreted as genocide.g. Israel’s activities in the West Bank or Gaza and Sudan’s terrorization of a part of the population via sponsoring the Janjaweed militia can all be. from certain points of view. the decision would lie not between state terror and state terrorism. not only because the word “terrorism” used in this context in discourse would likely create confusion.. Thus it is suggested that we should differentiate between “state terrorism” and “state terror” – the former denomination referring to acts of the state institutions outside (direct involvement in the subversive terrorism). but between state terror and state-sponsored terrorism. Yet states can take part in terrorist acts aimed at subversion in other states also in a direct way. In the last case. are also rather rare. In some cases. which is crucial for the differentiation between state terror and state terrorism. of course. in comparison to the indirect involvement. democides in the cases of some past totalitarian and authoritarian dictatorships – may provide justification for a more explicit semantic discrimination between these two forms. Russia’s actions in the North Caucasus. The clarification would be desirable in the realm of both academic and political discourse. a theoretical abstraction from the empiric world. qualitative difference in the objectives and methods – and last but not least in the consequences. be interpreted as anti-terrorist operations. 79 . useful to discriminate between “terrorist” and authoritarian regimes employing means of state repression to secure their power. it must be conceded that the line between inside / outside. e. It is. contested cases22. but also because arguably other policies are requisite to alleviate the problem of subversive and repressive violence. suggested that the (desired) effect on the target of violence being in essence the same.instance of “non-state terrorism”.g armed invasion) against “rogue states” – and enabling a more precise description of political issues facilitating drawing appropriate policies. e. tends to be rather unclear. It seems. The immediate consequence of the distinction between state terror and state terrorism for the 22 The actions of Russia and Israel can. however. it may be argued. As indicated above. produces border cases as it is by necessity. Yet any typology. to a certain extent.g. limiting the potential of the label “terrorism” to be abused – in order to legitimize the use of extraordinary means (e. states may engage in both “repressive” (directed inside) and “subversive” (directed outside) forms of violence. the latter to various means of repression of the domestic population.

Moreover. ‘but are being recrafted through ambitious and innovative state efforts to territorially exclude CTAs [clandestine transnational actors] while assuring territorial access for “desirable” entries’ (Andreas 2003: 80). Préfontaine and Dandurand. 1996). Dishman. i. as Shelley has argued.e. Schmid. as. or. for example. for their own obvious purposes. However.23 The distinct types of non-state terrorism and state-sponsored terrorism would not be influenced. 80 . Andreas has shown. most of the attempts to break the analytical usefulness of the territorially defined state unit have so far yielded very limited results. have not. Indeed. new attempts in the realm of typology may involve above all the issue of the possible internal weakness of states as well as questioning the relevancy of the states’ territorial divisions. not until the 1990s 23 The question whether this sovereignty is real or imagined points directly to the inside / outside problem. 4. 2004. allowed inquiring into the concept of the state itself. however. It was. Whereas the problem of the weak and dysfunctional states has already been sounded in other branches of IR (e.g.’ (2003: 311). As the studies trying to conceptualize the relation between organized crime and terrorism have shown (see the corresponding study in this project. the debate on the geographic dimension and the debate on the role of the state.3 “Old” versus “new” terrorism The study of terrorism and the academic debate surrounding it have witnessed several trends or “paradigm changes”. 2001. Gutteridge (1986) first published research on “the new terrorism”. greater international mobility and faster and more secure communications. Both of the typological debates presented here. as it is often claimed. 2006. non-state and state-sponsored terrorism discussed in this section would be restricting the boundaries of state terrorism to subversive terrorism. ‘[t]ransnational criminals and terrorists have been major beneficiaries of globalization because they benefit from more open borders.triad typology of state. Picarelli. 2004.3. state borders may neither erode nor remain unchanged. Makarenko. direct involvement of the state in terrorist activities outside the territory over which it has sovereignty. conflict or international crime studies). for example. this issue has been one of the most essential in the discussions about the future of terrorism and the effects of globalization.

several scholars have claimed that the characteristics attributed to the new terrorism do not differ from what there was before. Furthermore. during the late 1980s. Laqueur described the impact of terrorism to be a mere historical nuisance. a decline in the number of terrorist attacks but an increase in the lethality (Hoffman. 1998). this period passed because of a greater accessibility to weapons of mass destruction and unchanged human nature. aims. also see Gurr and Cole. It is difficult to state the exact point when the new terrorism emerged. 81 . Tanzania. This new terrorism refers to the changing character of the phenomenon. As noted. Murrah building in Oklahoma City by Timothy McVeigh in 1995. The variables attributed by various scholars to the new terrorism differ. and the bombing of the Alfred P. The classification of “new” and “old” terrorism implies a fundamental breach of consistency with the past. Examples of these characteristics are the bombing of the World Trade Center in New York in 1993. the attack with Sarin gas on the Tokyo subway system by the Aum Shinrikyo sect in 1995. However. and Dar-es-Salaam. Kenya. Laqueur focuses on the accessibility of weapons of mass destruction (CBRN). scholars studying terrorism started to write about a new form of terrorism and attributed to it the following characteristics. 2002).that several articles and books appeared claiming that a new form of terrorism had emerged (Burnett and Whyte. According to Laqueur (1999: 4). 2008). According to the protagonists of the new terrorism. among others. the concept of the new terrorism gained more 24 Which is not surprising regarding the fact that there is no commonly accepted definition of terrorism in general either.. 2005: 2-3). religiously motivated form of terrorism that neither relies on the support of sovereign states nor is constrained by the limits of violence that state sponsors have undergone themselves or placed on their proxies’. it involves different actors. a heightened probability of catastrophic attacks (Carter et al. 1999b. similarly also Rosenthal and Muller. There are several distinctions to be made in the formulation of new and old terrorism. and there is not one commonly accepted definition of the new terrorism 24 . 2000. Simon and Benjamin (2000: 59) state that ‘the old form of predominantly state sponsored terrorism is joined by a new. motivations and actions. also known as CBRN (Stern. After the simultaneous bombing of the American embassies in Nairobi. the use of nuclearbiological-chemical weapons. thus casting doubt on the very term. In 1999. tactics.

and reports on terrorism with CBRN have been appearing since the 1970s (Cameron. 1999: 152). in contrast to the old terrorism. weapons of mass destruction. there has been only one major attack with a deadly gas in the recent past. Indeed. claim that the lethality and indiscriminate nature of the current attacks is rising. First.attention. Yet the following argument is used predominantly to claim that terrorists will use CBRN. Scholars. 1980b: 5). The violence used by old terrorists is seen as a rational and discriminate selection of targets to bring a message across to their opponents as well as their constituencies: ‘Terrorists want a lot of people watching. These arguments in part explain the argument for the use of CBRN within the concept of new terrorism. but not a lot of people dead’ (Jenkins. Jenkins has altered his statement in the following way: ‘Many of today’s terrorists want a lot of people watching and a lot of people dead’ (2006: 119). the new form of terrorism is conducted with. like the Aum Shinrikyo sect did. which will be chemical. biological. The disintegration of the Soviet Union in the early 1990s led scholars to believe that the proliferation of CBRN weapons would allow terrorists to gain access to a large stockpile of these weapons. secondly. Third. The alternation of the struggle into a religious 82 . The more dominant religious aspect of the new terrorism is for many scholars the reason that terrorist groups are seeking CBRN weapons and using more indiscriminate methods. Although CBRN weapons were used for the first time during the First World War. Hoffman (1999a: 94) claims that religion is one of the key characteristics of the new terrorism. which causes ‘radically different value systems. With the new terrorism. The nature of the 9/11 attacks proved the argument made by the proponents of the new terrorism because these attacks harboured the characteristics they attributed to the new terrorism. mechanisms of legitimization and justification. concepts of morality and world view…’. the number of terrorist incidents is declining while the number of fatalities of attacks is rising. the new terrorism is religiously inspired. and use these to attack civilian or military targets. radiological or nuclear (CBRN) in nature. or with the threat of. The justification by scholars for their belief that terrorists will some day use CBRN has to do with a wider set of circumstances described below. where the terrorists had a predominantly secular and political character. It is believed that terrorist organizations will try to obtain weapons of mass destruction. We shall look at these characteristics in greater depth below.

strategic and tactical leadership (Simon and Benjamin. and like-minded individuals with whom ideology and operational information can be exchanged in an anonymous setting. As can be seen in Chapter 3 of this study. Cronin. . it is argued that religiously motivated groups are not concerned with their legitimization to other people for support. Therefore the argument is made that it is more likely that these new religiously inspired terrorists will use indiscriminate violence and CBRN weapons. States would sponsor groups that attacked their enemies but always insisted on plausible denial to conceal their involvement.also related to the characteristics above . Scholars point out the indiscriminate violence which rules out states’ backing. Global communication and the Internet facilitate this development. These attacks were sufficient enough to please the sponsor state – my enemy’s enemy is my friend – but the results of the attack would not result in war with the opposing state. new terrorists provide themselves with funds through a variety of criminal means. but rather with the changing nature of political violence and the psychological and organizational characteristics of terrorism itself. In contrast to secular organizations. 2000). In contrast to the past.the new terrorists are for the larger part amateurs that operate on a part-time basis. Finally. according to the proponents of the new terrorism. weapon fabrication. the communication between the individuals and the leadership can occur via coded and anonymous messages in the vastness of the World Wide Web. This loose network structure makes the terrorist groups more difficult to infiltrate and detect. Their struggle is a divine one. like smuggling weapons or drug trading and trafficking.’ The fourth characteristic attributed to the new terrorism is the network structure that many of these groups have. and they only answer to their god (cf. More importantly. in turn.perspective has. poses a greater risk for states and society. ‘the heightened danger of nuclear terrorism lies not with the increased opportunities for micro-proliferation. providing access to terrorist tactics. The remainder of 83 . 2004: 30). Related to the fourth point is the lack of state sponsorship that the new terrorism seems to have. the new organizations mostly do not have a clear hierarchal organization structure with an ideological. Political aims and clear goals are lost as destruction and chaos have become an end in itself (Morgan. As Cameron (1999: 152) notes. This. 2002: 41-42). dire consequences. for this kind of violence does not serve the interests of states as the controlled violence in the 70s and 80s used to.

Cronin. There are. however. 2004: 444. leaving. even if the religion was not their main focus. there are arguments contesting the novelty of the terrorist groups’ structure (Duyvesteyn. backgrounds. He further notes that technological advances such as remote control and timing devices for bombs make terrorist groups increasingly lethal. do not need a state sponsor to back their actions. making critical infrastructure and prominent figures less vulnerable for attack. However. and are organized in such a manner that they do not need the structural membership of an organization. Similarly. These amateurs or part-time terrorists are able to find all their training material on the World Wide Web (more on the interaction and terrorism can be found in the deliverables for WP4). scholars who argue that this does not necessarily mark a radically new type of terrorism. 2006: 24). and constituencies. The only new terrorism attribute that remains uncontested is the use or the threat of use of CBRN weapons. mass transport systems vulnerable for – indiscriminate – attacks. they are a part of the very society which they are fighting against (Lesser et al. Duyvesteyn (2004: 445) disputes the claim that terrorist organizations of the past were irreligious and points out that nationalist or separatist movements have had religious origins. Spencer. assassinations and sabotage. 2002). 1999: 2). Further. Tucker. Even their ”ideological soul mates” can be found online. bombing. Hoffman (1999a: 87-129) states that religion has had a profound influence on terrorism that dates back to the times when Roman legions dominated the Western world. Similarily.. The rising lethality of terrorist attacks can hardly be contested as documented in collected data (cf. 84 . Spencer (2006) claims that the lethality of terrorist incidents has been rising since the beginning of the 1980s and thus that it is a trend that has been set in motion long before the “new” terrorism appeared in the debate. the anti-terrorism policies by states often targeted by terrorists have evolved and adapted to terrorist techniques such as hijacking.the time. among others. 2001: 1-4) as well as the numbers of amateurs/professionals taking part in terrorism (Tucker: 2001. many scholars have contested the particular arguments distinguishing specifically “new” terrorism. This fortification is not so easily done for some parts of society.

are a common determinant in these typologies. Increasing pressure from security services forces groups into new ways of operating and vice versa. “global terrorist network”. The fact is that a typology serves the purpose of the research and is therefore.4 CONCLUSION The subject of terrorism typologies in this paper is closely linked to the definitions chapter of the TTSRL project. This will continue in the future. As in the academic definition debate. bound to have as many forms as the different research objectives require. The first typology analysed in this research is the classification of terrorism on a geographical basis.g. while neither of those can be treated separately. the division between domestic and international terrorism. also in the discussion of typologies. The development of technology in communications and weapons enables terrorist organizations to operate in a manner not seen before. as Schmid and Jongman already indicated in 1984. The territorial aspect of terrorism has featured as an important variable in its classification. The notions of the operational reality of these accounts of terrorism. there is a considerable discontent and an absence of a common paradigm. the ordering (classification) criteria should follow the delimitation (definitional) criteria.g. As is the case with analysing and constructing definitions of terrorism. the plurality of typologies results from using various set of criteria. This evolution is spurred by internal and external factors.. e. or the suggested novelty of the non-telluric and 85 . there has not emerged a new form of terrorism. Ultimately. and cultural developments. National borders. as well as from varying underlying assumptions of the authors about the nature of terrorism. or the lines between the inside and the outside of the state. which has evolved along with technological. 4. is virtually impossible to construct. rather. The choice for CBRN weapons is spurred by their current availability and the changing dynamics within groups who contemplate their use.To sum up. In any reflection on terrorism. While the plurality of definitions of terrorism stems from the fact that the definitions are created according to different usages. societal. e. the analysis done in this chapter makes it evident that a universal terrorism typology does not exist and. terrorism has been a tactic for centuries. including. just like a definition. the complex phenomenon of terrorism is evolving and showing new features.

however. Beside the political bias. however. but rather that the complex phenomenon of terrorism is evolving and showing new features. the latter to various means of repression of the domestic population. 86 . with some in favour of identifying the current wave of terrorism as the “new” terrorism. The third analysis addressed the question whether new and old forms of terrorism can be discerned. This question points to the fundamental questions "Who can commit an act of terrorism?" and. next to predominantly religiously inspired terrorists. They may. The conclusion drawn in this chapter is not that a new form of terrorism has emerged. the state involvement in terrorist activities is uncontested. extraordinary measures (e. suspension of standard legal procedures or extrajudicial killings) against those branded terrorists by the security-providing actors. more particularly. According to these researches.g. the most discernable factor is the increased lethality. mainly national states. be used in the discourse deliberately to legitimize new. The second analysis done was based around the distinction between state and non-state (and state-sponsored) terrorism. Empirical evidence shows that if states are conceded to as possible actors of terrorism. For the sake of analytical clarity. the search for CBRN weapons and terrorist organizations with a flat and fluid structure. it is. "Can a state commit an act of terrorism?" The conclusions in the discourse of terrorist studies and international law do not necessarily coincide in their answers to the question. The current status of this topic in the academic debate is very controversial. Neither the typologies concerned with the geographical dimension of terrorism nor the actors (state/non-state) have allowed genuine inquiry into the concept of the state itself. This evolution is spurred by internal and external factors. in view of the different means employed and targets. they can either directly or indirectly engage – as well as non-state entities – in both subversive and repressive character of the new terrorism. elevating the local objectives of terrorist networks to the global level may also pose a serious obstacle to the contextual understanding of terrorism in the academia. In any case. be subjected to critical scrutiny and deconstruction. should. suggested that we should distinguish between “state terrorism” and “state terror” – the former denomination referring to acts of the state institutions outside (direct involvement in the subversive terrorism). in fact. Advances in areas such as technology.

87 .communications and weapons enable terrorist organizations to operate in a manner not seen before.

This chapter thus aims to provide an overview of the development and evolution of a definition of terrorism within the European Union. Following a brief synopsis of reasons for defining terrorism. and thus were handled by national governments. a Council Common Position and a Council Regulation established by the different organs of the European Union. we deduct six elements that are especially important in dealing with legal definitions of terrorism. the absence of a precise and comprehensive definition of “terrorism” that could be implemented across Europe and within the Member States. As such.5. 88 . Finally. the selected definitions from the various EU measures will be scrutinized on the way they deal with these elements. For a period of time. the chapter will assess the European Union’s efforts in defining terrorism through the proposal and adoption of a Framework Decision. a coherent definition of terrorism is needed more than ever before in order to harmonize efforts and ensure closer cooperation in combating terrorist activities at the level of the European Union and abroad. these national experiences did not automatically contribute to the establishment of a general European policy due to. including the effects on human rights and the potential jeopardy to the state and deliberative politics. Given the rising necessity to differentiate terrorism from other forms of political violence in the interest of protecting vital international community interests and values. first and foremost. DEFINING TERRORISM IN THE EUROPEAN UNION Terrorism has plagued Europe for decades. Dealings with groups such as the Basque National Separatist Organization (ETA) in Spain and the Irish Republican Army (IRA) and its splinter groups in the United Kingdom have varied greatly. In practise. with few countries being spared the wrath of terrorist activities. the politically charged term is often used to describe a variety of acts and methods of violence but has evaded both an internationally recognized classification and a coherent legal definition. these terrorist activities were mainly committed by groups with separatist motivations. a review of the basic elements of the definition of terrorism will be explored in their application and contribution to a wide-ranging definition at the international level. From this analysis. Bearing in mind the assets and drawbacks of the Framework Decision as it applies to the recognition and implementation of its content by the Member States.

in some cases. i. societal and national policies. interrupting individuals’ freedom to choose governmental. consensus was reached on a general definition (see i. 2004. and supplanting them with the assertion of frightening messages backed by violence. 2006. terrorism has a chilling effect on the institutions which constitutionally protect human rights. Furthermore. 2004. the European Union has had a long-standing history of attempts to develop and refine a wide-ranging definition at the international level. Olivier. Van Ginkel. At the regional level. Bulterman.5. Paust. Dinh.a. SAARC Regional Convention on the Suppression of Terrorism. Boyle. Paust. terrorism can have a destabilizing effect on civil society and poses an eminent threat to democracy or ‘legitimately constituted governments. 2006. 2006. 2003. Bearing in mind this necessity.’ thus differentiating the offence from other criminal acts. 2006: 4). Arab Convention on the Suppression of Terrorism. The chosen path in the multilateral arena was to tackle issue-specific aspects of terrorism. Cameron. Van Ginkel. a proper definition of terrorism is essential in bridging the gap in different legal treatments of terrorists between countries and invaluable for harmonization in combating terrorist offences. 2004. By replacing politics with violence. Van Ginkel & Wessel. 2002). thereby disrupting society’s essential elements of democracy. 2003A. whether politically motivated or otherwise (Saul.a. Throughout the years. 2004b. Reinisch. 2004. 2005. 2005. 2004. Clapham. (Den Boer. numerous international legal attempts dealing with terrorism mostly avoided the difficulty of drafting a general definition. 2004. Citing resolutions of the UN General Assembly and the Commission on Human Rights. Convention of the 89 . including the Commission of the European Communities in their proposal for a Council Framework Decision on Combating Terrorism of September 2001. the prevailing literature and reports from NGOs point to the potential disintegration effects of terrorism on the freedoms.1 REASONS FOR DEFINING TERRORISM Terrorism’s threat to democracy. human rights and general social development has been reverberated in numerous conventions and official government documents. Gross. Goldstone. 2004a. rights and liberties that also serve as the basis of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union. Van Boven.Human Rights Watch. 2003. Cameron. Thus. 2006. 2004. Condorelli.

such as hijacking. making it even more difficult to establish a comprehensive definition for criminalization. One could think of fulfilling the double criminality requirement in extradition treaties. the first and most significant efforts in the fight against terrorism were rooted in the European Convention on the Suppression of Terrorism. In an attempt to separate political offences from other violent acts inspired by political motives. An easier execution of international obligations based on the Convention relating to the Status of Refugees is yet another advantage. the 1977 Convention draws up a list of acts that could be considered terrorist offences (see Article 1 of the European Convention in Table 1 90 .2 EUROPEAN DEFINITIONS OF TERRORISM Progressively. there are some additional benefits that flow from a general legal definition (Saul. terrorist bombings. etcetera. 2006: 12). OAU Convention on the Prevention and Combating of Terrorism). a general definition will open up the possibility of drafting an international comprehensive convention on combating terrorism. terrorism – as it is perceived by the public – has assumed different forms. a definition of terrorism can put an end to the confusion between political offences – offering an exemption to the requirement of extradition – and terrorism – for which no exemption from extradition is allowed in most treaties. which will obviously have a wider scope of applicability than the sum of all the sectoral conventions that deal predominantly with issuespecific aspects of terrorism. adopted in 1977 under the mandate of the Council of Europe. Apart from the obvious reason that drafting a general definition would contribute to harmonizing national criminal laws. 5. taking of hostages. An individual’s involvement in terrorism may be a reason for not granting a refugee status in accordance with Article 1(f) of the Convention. Also with regard to extradition. Finally. as well as guaranteeing the fulfillment of the aut dedere aut iudicare regime (the "either prosecute or extradite" regime) for terrorist offences as laid down in many treaties. ranging from mass murder and threats to people’s lives to the destruction of property and damage to public or private facilities. In Europe.Organization of the Islamic Conference on Combating International Terrorism.

Considered the ‘sole common denominator in the field of terrorism. Yet while the terrorist attacks of 2001 undoubtedly served as an immediate impetus for establishing a Europe-wide policy for combating terrorism. the approach and a plan for policy action were already discussed at the 1999 European Council meeting in Tampere. the European Council cited the need for a maximization of benefits derived from cooperation between Member States as it applies to cross-border crime. public provocation and training of terrorists –. 91 . the European Council called for ‘joint investigative teams … to be set up without delay … to combat trafficking in drugs and human beings as well as terrorism. Additionally.. Following the events of September 11. 2001 in the U.’ While no specific consideration of a definition for terrorism was addressed.. within the EU. 1999). compounded by the events of the 2001 attacks on the U. Procedural in nature. an extraordinary session of the European Council took place with the aim of analysing the international situation and setting the fight against terrorism as a priority objective of the European Union. although more elaborate when describing different forms of terrorist acts – such as recruitment. the exception regarding not extraditing individuals for political offences does not apply for terrorism. The inherent inability of the Convention to oblige States to implement the definition and criminalize such acts domestically. especially highlighting the States’ responsibility for not regarding the acts as political offences.’ (Dumitriu.S. still fails to properly define terrorism and settles instead for an old trick: namely referring to a list of conventions in which issue-specific acts of terrorism have been criminalized (see Table 3 of the Appendix I). As evidenced in the Presidency Conclusions of the Tampere meeting (European Council. 2004: 587) the European Convention addressed a wide spectrum of terrorist acts but did not offer a precise definition of terrorism.of the Appendix I). adopted in Warsaw in 2005. for the purpose of extradition. The Protocol subsequently extended the number of “depoliticized” actions as they relate to a definition of terrorism (see Table 2 of the Appendix II). The Council of Europe Convention on the Prevention of Terrorism.S. the convention also sets forth guidelines for States in dealing with terrorism. promulgated its revision by the Council of Europe vis-à-vis the 2003 Protocol Amending the European Convention on Suppression of Terrorism.

’ the Council revises this definition to include actions ‘with the aim of seriously … affecting or destroying the political. which. As the Action Plan is continuously revised and updated. however. the Council called for a new arrest warrant altering the extradition policies between Member States. to the fact that while motivation is an essential element in evaluating a terrorist offence.’ As such. Incorporating elements of other international conventions. which was disputed by the Council. the legal implication of such offences as distinguished from other forms of violence. a lacuna exists with respect to the specific character of such motivation. included enhancing police and judicial cooperation and development of international legal instruments. Similarly. the perpetrators of terrorist acts are not clearly distinguished in the proposal. the European Council at the extraordinary session of 2001 called for an Action Plan with ‘the broadest possible coalition against terrorism’. inter alia. economic or social structures of a country or of an international organization. where the proposal states that a terrorist offence should include actions with the aim of ‘seriously altering or destroying the political. The introduction of the key concept of what constitutes a terrorist offence. which mentions that offences 92 . economic or social structures of a country.With an emphasis on rejecting any equation of groups of fanatical terrorists with the Arab and Muslim world. Credence must be paid. Additional distinguishing factors include the explicit verbiage used in the Commission’s proposal. the proposal for the Framework Decision outlined a number of terrorist offences and laid the legal groundwork for a common definition at the European Union level. In the same year. As one of the stated objectives in the Action Plan. the European Council and the Commission of the European Communities issued a proposal for a Council Framework Decision on combating terrorism with the aim of approximating the laws of the Member States regarding terrorist offences in accordance with the Treaty on European Union. the Council highlights the importance of including the intentional aspect of the act. For example. and the penalties associated with such offences are among the elements that set the proposal apart from other conventions (see Proposal for Council Framework Decision in Table 4 of the Appendix I). the proposed measures were eventually incorporated into the Council Framework Decision on a European Arrest Warrant.

The distinction emphasized the delicate issue of encompassing such activities within the definition of terrorism. namely offences ‘relating to a terrorist group’. 2) offences relating to a terrorist group (Article 2). Serving as the cornerstone for the European Union in the fight against terrorism. Additional modifications to the initial proposal therefore included the omission of ‘acts of urban violence’ as an association with a terrorist act. Bearing in mind the potential for Member States to limit the scope of democratic freedoms by encapsulating other politically motivated activities. there was a further need for a harmonized definition at the European Union level.’ ‘unduly compelling a Government or international organization to perform or abstain from performing any act. which clearly distinguishes between acts of terrorism and those acts which do not fall within the frames of the definition outlined in the Framework. 2004: 592-598) The Commission was widely criticized for including acts of urban violence as part of the explanation of terrorist offences in the initial explanatory memo of the proposal.committed by an individual or group are different from those perpetrated by a computer or electronic devices. Such activities are incorporated into the same broad heading of “terrorist offences” in Article 3 of the proposal (Table 5 of the Appendix I). The Council Framework Decision remedies such inconsistencies by providing a non-binding Declaration. the Framework Decision attempts to institute a common definition and explicitly highlights a new category of terrorist activities. 2004: 590). 93 . Article 1 characterizes terrorist offences by two objective elements – incrimination under national law and effective or potential consequences .and a subjective aspect which includes the aim of ‘seriously intimidating a population. in light of the possibility that utilizing such a broad concept could have a chilling effect on other scopes of political action. and 3) offences linked to terrorist activities (Article 3). which are not observed in other international conventions (see Article 2 of the Framework Decision in Table 4 of the Appendix I) (Dumitriu. Further revisions by the Council include broadening the definition to include ‘threatening to commit any of the offences’ (see Article 1 of the Framework Decision in Table 4 of the Appendix I). The document distinguishes three types of offences: 1) terrorist offences (Article 1).’ (Dumitriu.’ or ‘seriously destabilizing or destroying the fundamental … structures of a country or an international organization. With a broad list. such as political protests and the right to self-determination under the terrorism label.

many European countries simply include terrorism clauses under their respective Criminal Codes. the aforementioned countries also provide specific penalties for terrorist offences. see Chapter 6 of this study. the Spanish Código Penal states that terrorist acts are those aimed ‘to subvert the constitutional order or seriously alter public peace’ (see Article 571 in Table 8 of the Appendix I). In addition to providing a definition for terrorism.’ (Cohn. including extradition of the perpetrators. which constitutes acts of terrorism as those ‘aiming to seriously disturb the peace through intimidation or terror’ (Cettina. the non-binding clause reads that the definition ‘cannot be construed so as to argue that the conduct of those who have acted in the interest of preserving or restoring these democratic values … could now be considered "terrorist" acts.’ (Van Ginkel. where the list of terrorist offences is similar to that offered by the Framework Decision on Combating Terrorism. 2003: 224) The wide scope of the list set forth in the final Council Framework Decision. their scope is not conducive to a uniform system of punishment. 2004) At the EU level. While definitions of terrorism vary widely throughout international organizations. thus leaving it to the judicial system to decide the scope and intensity of the offence. are exceptionally broad in scope and can be misinterpreted as ‘blur[ring] the lines between protest and terrorist groups. as compared to the initial proposal from the Commission and other international conventions. The offences. (For more on the Member States’ definitions of terrorism. Yet as the broad reaching national definitions are acceptable for country-specific offences.) It is worth mentioning that the United Kingdom produced the largest piece of terrorist legislation of the EU Member States through the Terrorism Act of 2000. (see Article 421-1 in Table 7 of the Appendix I). France. which differ in severity from other ordinary offences. for example. Similarly.Specifically. terrorism is dealt with under all three institutional pillars with exceptional attention concentrated in the second and third pillars following the events of September 11 and the issuance of two Council Common Positions 94 . however. created a specific terrorist charge in their Nouveau Code Pénal. The legislation characterizes terrorism as occurring where ‘the use or threat is designed to influence the government or to intimidate the public or section of the public’ (see Terrorism Act 2000 in Table 6 of the Appendix I). 2003: 86). provides Member States with the structure necessary for criminalization of the offences under their national laws.

including acts of aggravated theft and extortion. outlines specific restrictive 95 . 2001a. Whereas the Framework Decision distinguishes and highlights ‘offences linked to a terrorist group’. the Council Common Positions define the approach of the EU toward particular issues where the individual Member States are required to implement national policies that comply with the position defined by the Union on a given issue. based largely on the UN Security Council Resolution 1373. 2001b). Three documents are of particular interest in terms of their use in defining terrorism: the Common Position on the application of specific measures to combat terrorism. 2002. see Table 4 of the Appendix I). on that definition. issued in 2001 (see Table 10 of the Appendix I) for purposes of streamlining procedures regarding terrorist organizations in the EU and third countries. The Council Common Position. may seriously damage a country or an international organization’ (see Council Common Position in Table 9 of the Appendix I). sets forth a definition which characterizes terrorist acts as ‘intentional acts. As measures of the second pillar – the Common Foreign and Security Policy -. therefore. EC Council Regulation No 2580/2001 on specific restrictive measures directed against certain persons and entities with a view to combating terrorism (see Table 10 of the Appendix I) and the Council Framework Decision on Combating Terrorism of 13 June 2002 (Council of the European Union. For example.of 27 December 2001 on combating terrorism and on the application of specific measures to combat terrorism (see Table 9 of the Appendix I) (Council of the European Union. the threat of committing any terrorist acts and participation in the activities of a terrorist group. which. adopted for the purposes of addressing specific measures to combat terrorism. both documents mention serious intimidation of the population. The definition provided in this Council Common Position is strikingly similar to that eventually utilized in the Framework Decision. Apparent differences are observed in the treatment of offences that are linked to a terrorist group. Similarly. A definition of terrorism is only given in the Common Position on the application of specific measures to combat terrorism. The interpretation of the obligations stemming from the second Common Position depends on the member states and. the Common Position draws no such distinctions. destruction of a Government or public facility. given its nature or its context. and Council of the European Union. Council Regulation (EC) No 2580/2001.

’ In taking a closer look at the references to terrorism in the aforementioned documents. In fact. In addition to providing a definition for ‘funds’ and ‘other financial assets. In contrast to the Common Position. in most cases. the Regulation refers to the Council Common Position for the definition of terrorist acts as used in that document.’ the Regulation clarifies the concept of ‘freezing of funds’ and draws out an in-depth list of institutions (including insurance and banking services) that qualify as ‘financial services. 2006: 4-6). However. have been included in a definition and further help us to determine which elements are especially of interest for a legal definition. It remains to be seen how the Member States will implement the Framework Decision in their domestic laws (cf. which was adopted by the Member States in 2002. The final Framework Decision. 5. offers a firm foundation for an internationally accepted definition of terrorism encompassing elements of other international conventions and keeping it broad enough to ‘reflect the normative consensus that terrorism undermines the State and the political process’ (Saul. all these different attempts as well as the definitions used by various institutions and academics provide us with information on the elements that.3 DEFINITIONAL ELEMENTS In spite of all the attempts to draft a general definition on a universal level. a pattern emerges in the Union’s position to cooperate and further harmonize efforts in combating terrorist offences. various political reasons have precluded any successful efforts. Further analysis of the definitions calls for a closer examination of some basic elements often found in other definitions based on international conventions (see below). The Regulation provides a definition and distinguishes the term ‘terrorist acts’ in the same vein as Article 1(3) of the Council’s Common Position (see Council Common Position in Table 9 of the Appendix I). Chapter 6). the Council Regulation places greater emphasis on defining the financing aspect of measures outlined to combat terrorism.measures directed to combat terrorism. but the identification of the fundamental wrongfulness of terrorism certainly offers a distinct manner in reserving the label for the most serious acts of political violence. 96 .

in breach of accepted rules. threat. At the same time. Ben Saul. the political. Such a definition should thus be precise. serial or campaign character of violence. violent. outsiders as victims. Any serious. the publicity aspect. Ranking from high to low frequency. tactic. the criminal. This is where the knowledge of the definitional elements of Schmid and Jongman comes in handy. It is therefore essential that individuals can ascertain the content of the laws (Smith. in his Working Paper for FRIDE. coercion. strategy. violence. terror emphasized. non-combatants. innocence of victims emphasized. 2006: 20). (psych. Schmid and Jongman counted 22 of them (Schmid & Jongman. force. purposive. Legal certainty demands that criminal offences are defined and prescribed in law. 1988: 5). extortion. 2003: 252). the symbolic aspect. without humanitarian constraints. 2. impersonal. systematic. intimidation. objective and certain in order to meet the principles of good legislation. where committed outside an armed conflict. civilians. The underlying perception of the wrongfulness of terrorism is echoed throughout the definitional elements. proposed the following definition: 1. victim-target differentiation. 97 . certain aspects have to be taken into account. group. covert nature. indiscrimination.It is possible to identify a number of definitional elements in academic literature. movement. demands made on third parties. extra-normality. For a definition to fulfill the quality standards required for use as a criminal definition. or to endanger life including by acts against property. incalculability. Although very useful for analysis and the drafting of a definition. unpredictability. the elements mentioned include: violence. unexpectedness repetitiveness. Emotive terms should therefore be avoided.) effects and (anticipated) reactions. fear. criminal act intended to cause death or serious bodily injury. planned. organization as perpetrator. arbitrariness. a direct copy of these elements into a definition is no guarantee of a sound legal definition. it should be remembered that legislation and criminalization also function as a powerful symbolic mechanism. demonstration to of occurrence of others. neutrals. organized action. as should ambiguous and subjective terms which are incompatible with the principle of retroactivity (Saul. method of combat. clandestine. induction of compliance. after studying several (mostly policy) definitions and taking into account the quality standards set for legal definitions. random character.

this definition does not deal with the threat of committing terrorism. and 4. for a political. an aspect that has been included in several other policy documents. according to 98 . Nevertheless. how delicate defining terrorism for legal purposes is. and b. namely the political motivation. unduly compel a government or an international organization to do or to abstain from doing any act. 2) the aim of the activity is always political. Moreover. or c. objective and certain. or threat to use violence against civilians or against civilian targets. especially when considering how state-sponsored terrorism may fit into the category. as far as individuals. the intent. serious bodily harm or serious risk to public health or safety does not constitute a terrorist act. ideological. 5. and 3) the targets are civilians. seriously intimidate a population or part of a population. where intended to: a. However. this proposal also leaves room for interpretation. What. the criminal aspect. dissent or industrial action which is not intended to cause death. for the reason that state-sponsored terrorism can be included. qualifies as a “serious” criminal act? Moreover. This proposed definition includes most of the characteristics of the study by Schmid and Jongman. Advocacy. in order to attain political aims’ (Ganor. and the target group. nor does it define who could be the perpetrators of the act. Ganor maintains that an internationally accepted definition of terrorism should be broad. Futhermore. Ganor's definition would never qualify as a sound legal definition installing individual criminal responsibility. group or the general public. 2005: 6). In an attempt to provide a concise definition of terrorism that could be utilized as a foundation for further academic research. Interestingly. Boaz Ganor of the International Institute for Counter-Terrorism has proposed that ‘terrorism is the intentional use of. This shows. for example. create extreme fear in a person. protest. ideological.3. once more. the creation of fear. religious or ethnic purpose. It is also a sound attempt to be precise. the goal of coercion. Ganor contends that the motivation of the act – be it religious. the use of violence. The broad scope of the definition is based on three elements that Ganor considers to be of utmost importance in establishing an agreed-upon legal definition: 1) use or threat to use violence. etcetera – is not relevant for defining terrorism.

using a semiotic approach. The perpetration of violence by whatever means. military. the selected elements are. 3. dealt with in most policy definitions. and thus comprise the elements of mens rea (criminal consciousness) and actus reus (the description of the criminal act). abstract elements are needed. In another study by Susan Tiefenbrun. In order to achieve some political. such as. With the intent to cause violence or with wanton disregard for its consequences. The targeting of innocent civilians. or religious goal. Furthermore. The categories of elements are: 99 . Assessing the various definitions used by the EU along the lines of these categories will give us valuable information for comparing these definitions. a category of perpetrators and an exclusion category have been added. The description of the actus reus should. ethnic. 4. which is the main focus of this chapter. for example. in comparison to Tiefenbrun’s categories. 2. in one way or another. Each different legal definition most likely deals with each of these categories of definitional elements in a slightly different way. For purposes of further analysis and comparison of terrorism definitions as used in EU measures. 2003: 362) In this analysis. These are: 1. law. however. murder or assault. in a sense. For the purpose of causing fear. five abstract elements were proposed. The elements that are identified partly follow the path of a logical construction of a description of a criminal offence. Most of the elements are. 5. abstracted from Saul’s proposal for a legal definition and also cover Tiefenbrun’s elements. (Tiefenbrun. coercing or intimidating an enemy. in the case of terrorism. can be held individually responsible for crimes committed by the state. In order to further focus the scope of the definition. make clear in what sense the offence is different from other criminal acts. these acts would fall under the scope of a different legal regime. we will use six categories of legal elements of a definition of terrorism.

intentionally or willfully. as used in the Council Framework Definition on Combating Terrorism and the Council Common Position on the Application of Specific Measures to Combat Terrorism. 6. will be scored on how they deal with these elements. 14 and 15 of the Appendix I respectively include the definitions used in the International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism. public or military? Perpetrators: individuals. Put in a chart. The two European definitions also mention the destabilization of political. economic or social structures. In order to be able to compare the European definitions to some other internationally used definitions. One definition refers to a criminal plan that has to lie on the basis of the actions. 12. compelling a government or other formal institutions to do or abstain from doing something. Purpose of the act: Intimidating a civilian population. When comparing the different definitions. 2. The mens rea aspect: the intentional character of the acts committed. Challenge and Change. Qualification of the act itself: Criminal. United Nations Security Council 1566 (2004). the definitions. it becomes clear that all fulfill the definitional element with regard to the mens rea aspect. Target: civilian. clearly most definitions use terms like ‘intimidating the population’. 5. the use of some form of violence irrespective of the result. justification or not for certain acts? Next. non-state actors. or ‘compelling a government or an international organization in doing or abstaining from doing an act’. or another purpose. the definition of the draft Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism. With regard to the motivation behind the attacks. constitutional. this will make it possible to compare the different definitions (Table 16 of the Appendix I). groups. 4. or the result of the act is prescriptive (bodily injury or material damage/economic loss). Most definitions use words as intent. only the Security Council resolution 100 . 3.1. ‘provoking a state of terror’. the proposal for a definition made by the High Level Panel in its Report on Threats. Tables 11. and the definition of the Convention of the Organisation of the Islamic Conference on Combating International Terrorism. 13. state actors? Scope: exceptions form the scope. which also suggests that there was a prior intention to commit a certain act. With regard to the definitional element of “purpose”.

one can conclude that state actors are implicitly excluded. several aspects are brought forward. In the other definitions. namely those of the International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism and the proposal of the High Level Panel. in the category that deals with the delimitations and the exclusions from the scope of the definition. The two European definitions are the most precise in the sense that reference is made to persons. With this phrasing. international targets such as are persons. Moreover. the terms used in the different definitions vary from ‘criminal’ to ‘offences under national law’ or ‘unlawful’. Two of the definitions state that any person who commits the specified acts falls under the scope of the definition. very carefully and in a non-binding declaration annexed to the 101 . the ‘threat’ to commit certain acts is also only mentioned in the European definitions and in the Convention of the OIC on Combating International Terrorism. or organizations Security Council resolution even states that acts (in general). mentioned. can be terrorist acts. All but one of the definitions (that of the Convention of the OIC on Combating International Terrorism) refer to death.and the Convention of the OIC on Combating International Terrorism stress that no motivation for whatever reason can ever justify the attacks. being defined as civilians and non-combatants. serious bodily injury or attacks on physical integrity as the main criteria of the attack. groups or entities as the possible perpetrators of the attacks. the suggestion is raised that acts against the military could be terrorist acts as well. It should be mentioned that only two of the definitions give a clear description of the target group. hegemony. The Council Framework Decision on Combating Terrorism. including those against civilians. casually governments. Three of the definitions make no reference to the perpetrators of the acts whatsoever. Material damage is only covered by the European definitions and the draft Comprehensive Convention. Only the proposal for a definition by the High Level Panel makes no reference of such a sort to qualify the acts. public The facilities. One aspect relates to the delimitation between terrorism and forceful resistance against foreign occupation. In the qualification of the attacks. From that specification. etcetera. and the use of force in the exercise of the right to self-determination. Finally. Most of the diversity between the definitions can be found with regard to the way they address the definitional element of the perpetrators.

these definitions are the most precise in defining the perpetrators. or where the perpetrator is a national of the state in which he has committed the act (Draft Comprehensive Convention). the use of force against civilians by states (High Level Report).Decision. namely to add a nonbinding declaration. touches upon this aspect. However. A very subtle reference is made to these aspects in the International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism as well as in the Security Council Resolution by a general preambular remark on the obligation to respect human rights. A model of six definitional elements was presented. the European definitions are among the most elaborate in their description and qualification of such acts. Furthermore. Other exclusions from the scope of the definitions are the political offences (mentioned in the International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism). In comparison with other policy definitions. the European definitions are less elaborate in the sense that they do not give a clear description of the target group. A balance was struck between the fear that any reference to underlying reasons for being violent might suggest a 102 . an overview has been given of the developments on defining terrorism within Europe. The delimitation question in the category that deals with the scope of the definition is the most political one.4 CONCLUSION In this chapter. The Convention of the OIC on the Combating of International Terrorism is far more straightforward on this topic and explicitly excludes these aspects from the scope of the Convention. the two European definitions are very elaborate in describing the purpose of the acts. the aforementioned analysis of the various elements of different definitions illustrates that the formulation of the EU definitions has not taken place in isolation from the developments on this topic within the international community. making it possible to compare the different definitions. but neither seizes the opportunity to symbolically state that there is no justification for terrorism whatsoever. is a clear compromise. 5. by including material damage and the threat to commit terrorist acts. On the other hand. In sum. The path chosen. Special focus was paid to the EU documents in which definitions of terrorism were incorporated. and the acts committed within the territory of one state.

In conclusion. 103 . on one hand.justification for terrorism. on the other. it can be stated that the EU definitions are in line with other internationally used definitions. one did not want the definition of terrorism to be interpreted in the sense that any political resistance would be criminalized. and the sense for political reality. After all. notwithstanding some differences in formulation. against the background of the resistance and protests during the Second World War.

which has served as one of the main reference points throughout this study. We will see how the introduction of specific anti-terrorist legislation. This section is also relevant as it is – to the best of our knowledge – one of the most elaborate internationally comparative analyses of the policy and the legal definitions governments have adopted in the past. these decisions are binding on all member states. 34(2)). Lastly. the Council of the European Union put forward a Framework Decision (FD) on Combating Terrorism in June 2002 (see Table 4 of the Appendix I). all researchers assembled the necessary information on previous legislation pertaining to the concept of terrorism.6. elaborations. has changed their counterterrorism policies. legal analyses and policy definitions within 104 . it is inevitable to look at the definitions of terrorism within the national legislation of the member states. published in 2004. including parliamentary sources of discussions. explanations. etc. it will be interesting to see what the effects of the Decision are with respect to the current counter-terrorism efforts. (see also Annex 1 and 2 for an example of the two templates used). Thus. As the majority of TTSRL sample countries already had terrorist legislation in place preceding the Framework Decision. Even more interesting from this point of view will be the analysis of those countries that did have experience in countering terrorism previous to the FD yet had deliberately chosen not to adopt specific anti-terrorist legislation during their – mostly nationally confined – struggles. This information was then placed within the historical and political context of the individual sample countries through the inclusion of relevant jurisprudence. although it cannot – in scope and length – surpass the publication edited by Christian Walter appropriately titled Terrorism as a Challenge to National and International Law. First. which contains a definition of terrorism. in order to evaluate the implementation of the Decision. WORKING DEFINITIONS – DEFINING TERRORISM IN THE MEMBER STATES It is undisputable that 9/11 has caused a renewed focus and attention on a global level to the concept of terrorism. although they leave room for a domestic differentiation regarding the exact procedures and methods. As such. the chapter holds relevance for the practise of counterterrorism. which contained a definition of terrorism. As a result of the Amsterdam Treaty (Art. The manner in which this research has been conducted is as follows. as well as in the present.

however. This sort of listing is often referred to as the objective approach because the classification of whether the offence has occurred or not is quite easy to determine and clearly made explicit within national law. It is important to note that the results will strictly pertain to the definition of terrorism in the legal and political sphere and will not focus on the special procedures and powers often accompanying such a definition. For a focus on definitions plus the special powers they entail. by pointing to the concrete results. which classifies certain acts 105 . This chapter is a shortened version of a lengthier study into the legal and policy definitions of the TTSRL sample countries and consequently has a slightly amended structure. The results and discussion of the extended study will be presented in the next section. on a national level. see Lord Carlile of Berriew (2007: 19). Table 4 of the Appendix I) is known in legal research on terrorism as a combination of the subjective and the objective approach. The intention of the perpetrator. divided into three separate goals. For more information on the issue of legal definitions and their relevance. purpose and functionality for counterterrorism. the intention of the perpetrator.departments. The second part consists of a list of the offences that will. After the presentation and discussion of these results. Summarizing. as well as.1 GENERAL RESULTS AND DISCUSSION The structure used in the EU definition of terrorism (cf. The similarities. please see the extended version of this paper on the TTSRL website. The subjective element refers to the first part of the definition. starting with the general results before introducing concrete. Article 1. where relevant. differences and other noteworthy developments concerning the EU and national definitions will be summarized there. It cannot be proven in and of itself. some general conclusions will be drawn. since the whole element is completely immaterial. be considered as terrorist offences. for instance. 6. country-specific findings in a more detailed manner per TTSRL sample country. taken together with the intention. These will pertain specifically to the effect of the EU definition in general. the structure of the EU definition is a combination of the objective approach. always contains a subjective element since it has to be interpreted by people.

Russia. As mentioned before. despite having terrorist legislation in place prior to the FD. while the Polish definition deliberately leaves out the second part of the EU terrorist by finding whether certain offences occurred or not. Italy and Spain. as employed by the legislators of Germany. has only been amended in the case of Germany through the inclusion of 106 . the majority of the TTSRL sample countries already had terrorist legislation in place. Germany. consisted of criminalizing terrorist groups (and consequently everyone belonging to them as terrorists) without mentioning the specific activities of these groups or their corresponding members. Italy. The circumventing manner. It is interesting to note that Portugal and Sweden. The other countries with terrorist legislation prior to the FD only added the precondition that international organizations can also be the target of terrorist attacks in order to fulfil the international criterion of the EU definition. All three countries used a combination of the subjective and the objective approach in order to define terrorism. the Netherlands and Poland – only introduced specific terrorist legislation after the FD. without explicating what the nature of these organizations is or how they come into being. the Czech and Danish definitions mirror the EU definition the most by upholding the same structure and a similar method. Russia and the United Kingdom were already quite comprehensive and detailed. The remainder of the TTSRL sample countries – the Czech Republic. Denmark. Sweden and the United Kingdom. Portugal. meaning that they adopted legislation that contained the word "terrorism" yet did not explicitly define it. similar to the FD definition that followed theirs. Spain. on the other hand. The Dutch approach is slightly more elaborate and broader in scope than what the EU proposed. The Spanish. Of these eight. Of these. employed almost the reverse of this principle by equating certain activities with terrorism only when executed by a member of an armed band or terrorist organization. The other five countries had defined terrorism in a circumventing manner. even before the introduction of the European Framework Decision. These countries are France. for instance. not adding. and the subjective approach. changing or removing any of the conditions. did alter their definition of terrorism substantially in order to make it correspond (almost exactly) to the EU definition. the definitions of France. The German approach. which classifies certain acts as terrorist according to the intention of the perpetrator.

Russia. arrest. no other attempts to define terrorism or actual definitions have been found in the history of the Czech Republic. still unclear. France. it is quite clear. but the outcomes of their trials are. Before this definition. 140/1961 Coll. 6. Spain and the United Kingdom have not undergone any fundamental changes as a result of the FD. certain terrorist suspects have been arrested. Portugal and Sweden have quite clearly used it as a general blueprint and/or guiding format.2 Denmark Although the Danish definition was introduced a month before the adoption of the EU FD. 2 COUNTRY SPECIFIC RESULTS 6. The article employed for the definition is article 114 of the Danish penal code. 6. in 2004 (see also Table 1 of the Appendix II). while Spain did not alter its definition in any form. Poland. convict or deport suspects of terrorism without explicitly mentioning terrorism as such. while the Czech Republic. Denmark. see Table 2 of the Appendix II): ‘[t]he concept of Terrorism is charged and ambiguous and 107 .2. given the enormous similarities. that the Danish definition took into account the European efforts already underway at the time of the national implementation of the counterterrorism legislation. a short and concise overview of the most distinctive and changing elements within the national contexts will be given before returning to the comparison with the EU definition and offering some more fundamental and profound conclusions. which Italy expressly left out.1 Czech Republic As noted above. Since the adoption of the definition. which was formerly used to detain. Instead. Germany. the article simply alluded to ‘the use of force to influence public affairs or cause disturbances of the established order’ as criminalized under Danish law (for the full article. the Netherlands. at the time of writing. the Czech Republic took the EU definition as a blueprint and copied it almost literally to be included in the Czech Penal Code as Act No. Generally speaking. Now. entitled the “Terrorist Act”. Italy.the second part of the EU definition.2. section 95.

though.4 Germany The old definition of terrorism in Germany. TTSRL research has not found any amendments to this definition apart from the inclusion of more offences that were not previously incorporated through the above-mentioned acts. 6. year 1976). Nevertheless. since May 2002. Table 4 of the Appendix II.2. it makes use of both the objective and the subjective method of defining terrorism by listing at least 39 main and related offences (objective element) that can.2. 18 March 2003. It had never been altered in a substantial manner by the German authorities until a critical law amendment called for by the FD was introduced and adopted in 2005.3 France Since the introduction of the Act of 9 September 1986. 9 March 2004 and 23 January 2006 ‘which have reinforced the basic legislation and procedural regulations’. The article was “part of a law package against terrorism that went into force in 1976” (Albrecht. Table 2 of the Appendix II. has never been substantially altered. the French Penal Code contained a definition of terrorism that has been updated “at regular intervals” through the Acts of 15 November 2001. the article has been amended to reflect the EU definition containing the objective list of acts coupled with the subjective terrorist intention and supplemented with articles 114 a. being a member of a terrorist organization. The definition of terrorism. b and 2 (cf. Even though the title of 108 . 2006: 24) and was purely directed against the RAF and other manifestations of German and local terrorism. taken with the notion of terrorist intent (subjective element). 1989: 118-119). 6. As already described. be considered as terrorism (cf. contained in the old Article 129a. Table 3 of the Appendix II). Year 2002). supporting a terrorist organization and campaigning for a terrorist organization (cf. distinguished four different types of activities: founding a terrorist organization.therefore unsuitable as a legal term for determining the scope of penalization’ and ‘[t]he penal code already contains sufficient paragraphs which can be used in any conceivable case’ (Vestergaard.

155 was enacted. which aim at undermining people’s trust in the established order and in its structure. but rather towards what these people represent. 6.the article still reads “Formation of Terrorist Organizations”. article 270-bis also includes foreign governments or international organizations as targets of terrorism (see Table 5 of the Appendix II. 438 in 2001. These actions.5 Italy The starting point for the definition of “terrorism” is contained within law n. In 2005. are not directed towards people. law n. Through the amendment. which refers to ‘the offence of associations with purposes of terrorism. The intention to intimidate a population or compel a government or international organization is now explicitly present (see Table 4 of the Appendix II. year 2001). this law does not explicitly define terrorism but leaves that option open to the Italian judiciary. 109 . year 2005). as quoted in the title of the original version of the article.’ (Montauti and Vettori. (Montauti and Vettori. Year 1980) Similar to the German approach. 2006: 4). which refers to the objective list of offences (cf. which for the first time explicitly defines terrorism within the Italian Penal Code and is based on the FD. Henceforth.2. year 2005). even though Germany added the objective element. year 2005). 15 of 1980. see Table 4 of the Appendix II. 2006: 3) (see Table 5 of the Appendix II. has to be intended as the purpose to strike terror in the community through indiscriminate actions. which provided a source for a definition through its decision in 1987. the purpose of the term terrorism. Table 5 of the Appendix II. introduced by law n. According to this sentence. the subjective element as contained within the EU definition has also been implemented within the new formulation of article 129a. it contains some sub-sections now refererring to specific acts that qualify as terrorist when executed by a member of a terrorist organization (for full article. including international terrorism. even though it only focuses on the notion of terrorist intent (subjective) and does not include the second part of the FD definition. or purposes of subversion of the democratic order.

cooperation and preparation (Koopstra and Ende. or social structures of a country or international organization (see Table 6 of the Appendix II for article 83a) All of these articles were incorporated in the Dutch Penal Code on the 10th of August.6 The Netherlands Even though the Dutch had some experience with terrorism in the form of bombings. The category of terrorist offences. also consists of three sub-categories. The manner in which the Dutch government has engaged in this is by introducing four notions related to the concept of terrorism: namely terrorist offences. 2007: 13). the first part of the FD. the Dutch government in that period deliberately chose not to adopt specific terrorist legislation. The current position of the Dutch government is that the present terrorist threat is substantially different from the old form of terrorism (House of Representatives. train hostage takings and other activities listed as terrorism in the FD. for example through the trial of the murderer of Theo van Gogh. but also through the trying of other suspected terrorists and organizations. the second part of the FD.) The category of terrorist intent. or at least a classification. Much discussion has 110 . terrorist intent. 2004 and have already led to jurisprudence on various occasions.6. other criminal offences that when committed with terrorist intent call for a higher penalty.2. constitutional. of terrorism and terrorist crimes in the Dutch Penal Code. economic. consists of three sorts of offences: - grave criminal offences committed with terrorist intent. - newly introduced offences committed with terrorist intent (see Table 6 of the Appendix II for a complete list of article 83. 2003-2004: 4) and thus calls for a definition. to destroy or disrupt the political. to force a certain action by a government or international organization. mentioned in article 83a of the Dutch Penal Code: - to cause serious fear amongst the population (or part thereof).

Lastly. 2003. despite certain actions by animal rights activists ‘forcing’ certain businesses to establish offices elsewhere (the businesses themselves cited that they were forced to move!) the government has quite explicitly ruled that such actions would not constitute terrorism. 2004. year 2004). another country or an international organization and excludes threats to the constitutional and/or social order. 111 . the Polish definition does not refer to population but. NCJM Congress. which clearly takes the EU definition as a starting point (cf. Firstly. similar to the Italian approach. Poland already penalized terrorist behaviour and activities on the basis of general criminal provisions without specifically alluding to terrorism within national law. or threat thereof. Thirdly. thus increasing the scope and applicability of the concept of terrorist crime. saw no need for the inclusion of it. it is interesting to note that the current Polish definition does not mention the second part of the European definition that lists possible crimes as crimes of a terrorist nature. which again widens the scope and applicability of the definition and also creates possible international actions and judicial procedures. apparently. or whether the difference between motive and intent has been sufficiently defined (cf. such as court rulings mostly citing problems concerning the evidence. it only refers to the disruption.2. Netherlands Association for the Judiciary. however. Lastly.taken place since on whether the definition as adopted now is not broader than intended in the Framework Decision. it adds to the definition the element that another country can also be the subject of the crime of terrorism. Table 7 of the Appendix II. rather simply put. No conclusive answer has been found as to why this part has not been adopted apart from the fact that the Polish government. Through the introduction of new legislation in 2004. Most of the trials executed have led to disputable outcomes. Dolman. There are. Secondly. 2004).7 Poland According to the Polish Penal Law of 6 June 1997. Polish national legislation now contains a specific definition of terrorism. to ‘a group of people’. 6. of the political and economic systems of Poland. a few interesting deviations from the general definition as proposed by the EU.

9 Russia The first Russian Terrorism Bill. whereas the latter refer only to those crimes that are instrumental for terrorist actions to be conducted. year 2003). adopted in 1997. 28-29) 112 . These articles. nevertheless did not lead to a clear definition of terrorism. the legislation remained largely unaltered until 2003. international entities. combined with the procedural provisions and powers contained within ‘The Internal Security Law’ – adopted by the Portuguese parliament in 1984 – and some amended articles on terrorist organizations and terrorism. the Portuguese government revoked all of the aforementioned articles with Act 52/2003.and second-degree terrorist acts. to what the Portuguese legislator considers terrorist organizations. and the established government structures through forcing government bodies to make decisions desired by the terrorists. Furthermore. This leads to the conclusion that not only has Portugal observed the necessary requirements of EU legislation. quite explicitly and in a very detailed manner. Yet.2.2. 2003. the Fight Against Terrorism (see Table 8 of the Appendix II. defined terrorism as using or threatening illegitimate violence against persons and entities or destruction/damage of property committed with the aim of undermining public safety. This law defined terrorism in a circumventing manner. (Perstev. On the 22nd of August. 6. article 4 deals solely with the crime of terrorism. The former are described as purely terrorist in that in and of themselves they are considered as terrorist actions.6. Article 2. as there occurred no more terrorist attacks on Portuguese soil. through articles 287/4 and 288. which introduced the notions of repenters and terrorist organizations respectively. as well as terrorist trials.8 Portugal The first anti-terrorist legislation Portugal adopted and implemented is found in law 24/1981. 2002: 25. it has also amended its previous definitions of terrorism into something much more concrete and consequently more legally explicit and clearer than before.1 within this law now refers. which includes both first.

(CODEXTER. such as societal security. Furthermore.‘Which was substituted to a modified list of terrorist acts as described in Articles 205. from proclaiming Iran free of terrorist ties and supporting separatist elements in Transdniestria. and a purpose of disturbing several concepts. the Russian Federation introduced a new Federal Law on Countering Terrorism. defining terrorism in exactly the same way as the 1997 Bill. and the terrorist crimes. such as those of terrorist activity. This law defined terrorism for the first time as a multifaceted phenomenon. 2003: 130). on the one hand. Moreover. year 1998). however. 277 and 360 of the Criminal Code’ (Behknazar. if Turkey aided the Chechens (or otherwise displeased Moscow)’ (Mockaitis and Rich. or raising attention. or exerting influence on the decision-making of the government authorities. Russia has ‘occasionally threatened to support the Kurds inside Turkey. the international variants of these. and Nagorno-Karabakh. such as the execution of an explosion or an arson attack. 207. The latter two sections in particular leave a very broad scope for interpretation regarding the difference between violence for personal gain. that this sort of definition has not prevented Russia. This Bill was complemented with the 1998 Bill on the Fight Against Terrorism (see Table 9 of the Appendix II. the Bill contains many more definitions explicitly laid out. Country Profile Russia) 113 . terrorist action. related to intimidation of the population and (or) to other illegal violent acts. a movement that Turkey labels as terrorist and separatist. 2004: 475) (cf. On 10 March 2006. It should be noted. The articles mention both acts. Abkhazia. Table 9 of the Appendix II for the whole 1997 Bill). but adding the required legal framework for counter-terrorism activities by the actual newly created departments responsible for coordinating counterterrorism efforts. The broadness of the definition becomes clear immediately when looking at Article 3 of the Bill. The article referring to terrorism now reads as follows: terrorism is an ideology of violence and a practice affecting the way decisions are made by national and local authorities or international organizations. frightening the populace. and terrorism on the other. unlike any of the other TTSRL sample countries.

in any case. This trend can be extricated out of the jurisprudence on defining terrorism of several judicial courts in the period dating from 1993 until the present day. but only when conducted in an armed band or organization (for a complete overview of most of the Spanish legal definitions of 114 . reiterative and. very often. rules and regulations surrounding Russian counterterrorism efforts. indiscriminate ways of such criminal activity. safety and public peace as established by the constitutional state of 1978 (Ministry of Justice. the activities that are considered to constitute terrorism are defined as such. In Spanish penal law. it is as of yet unclear how and in what exactly this new definition differs from the old one.10 Spain A first attempt to conceptualize terrorism in Spain can be found in the 1987 Agreement of Madrid on Terrorism. For example. 1987: 44). the effect of which is spreading an alarm or social insecurity situation. 2004: 518-519). the Spanish Constitutional Court formulated the following in a judgment of March 1993 as characteristic to terrorist activities: their purpose of or.2. 1993: 2) This statement incorporates the incentive of the Constitutional Court to pronounce a deductive way of defining terrorism. (Spanish Ministry of Justice. This brief statement on terrorism outlines a trend within the Spanish codification process on terrorism or rather the focus on maintaining democracy in relation to the danger terrorist attacks pose to democracy and its values and rights for citizens. namely through delineating the intention of terrorist activity to create a situation of fear and insecurity amongst the population. The Constitutional Court complemented this statement on terrorism in 1993 with the addition of the concept of ‘systematic and repeated violence’ to the definition of terrorism (Martínez Soria. as a result of the systematic.Even though the new Bill also contains some new provisions on the procedures. where terrorism was established as the ‘continuous assassinations […] and other forms of violence or intimidation […] which prevent the development of citizen liberties and tolerance’ (Ministry of the Interior. 2002: 38). thereby diminishing their democratic right to freedom. 6.

This was defined as any foreigner who ‘belongs to or works for an organization or group which can be expected to use violence. Table 4 of the Appendix I). repeatedly or on an isolated occasion. proceeded to individually or under the cover of an organization.terrorism. and by carrying out acts aimed at creating a state of serious insecurity. it does meet all of the FD criteria (cf. 1973: 37). 1977: 290). see Table 10 of the Appendix II). The title of the law 1973: 162 was ‘Law on specific measures to prevent certain violent crimes with international background’. The EU definition is more detailed than the Spanish one. has the objective of subverting. Thus. An explicit definition of terrorism has been adopted in case law through a High Court ruling of 29 November 1997. (CODEXTER. the government introduced its first anti-terrorist legislation in 1973. As the law was implemented as a result of certain acts of violence on Swedish soil and admittedly implied ‘certain deviation from principles we otherwise usually follow in our legislation’ (Swedish Parliament. since the former establishes a catalog of terrorist acts that are non-existent within the latter. Finally one has to note that even though the Spanish definition is more general and less precise than the EU definition. it did introduce a new concept of the presumed terrorist.2. fully or partially.11 Sweden When in the early 1970s Sweden was confronted for the first time with terrorist attacks with an obvious international connection. the social and institutional order. and although it did not explicitly define terrorism as such. which stated that terrorism is: [a] planned activity that. it was introduced as emergency legislation for the duration of only one year. 115 . Country Profile Spain) Specific amendments adopted after the Framework Decision in the context of counterterrorism efforts have also widened the scope of the definition of terrorism. the 'conspiracy to perform a terrorist act' and the 'glorification of terrorism' have been included in the criminal definition of what constitutes terrorism (Carlile of Berriew 2007: 25-26). threat or coercion…’ (Elwin. 6. social fear or public peace disturbance.

that the first piece of legislation to combat terrorism was created. or of altering or destroying political. economic or social structures’ (Privacy International. 6. the Prevention of Terrorism Acts (Northern Ireland) were dedicated completely and totally to the Irish situation (WODC. it was only with regard to the problems on British soil with the (Provisional) Irish Republican Army (IRA). Although certain organizations within Sweden. The criminalizing of terrorist acts only happened after Sweden implemented the European Union Framework Decision on Combating Terrorism of June 2002 via the New Act on Criminal Responsibility for Terrorist Crimes (see Table 11 of the Appendix II). the Swedish government has by this implementation of legislation fulfilled the formal requirements of EU legislation and the definition is more precise than it used to be in the past. or their citizens with the aim of intimidating.In the end. starting in 1968. have noted the vagueness of this definition. In May 2002. Article 9 in the first Act states that ‘terrorism means the use of violence for political ends. 2006: 27). one implementing the United Nations Convention on the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism and the other adopting the Framework Decision of the European Union Council on Combating Terrorism that was issued in late 2001. One of the most crucial alterations in the new law was that a presumption of being a terrorist would be sufficient to claim that someone is a terrorist. From 1974 to 1989. and includes any use of violence for the purpose of putting the public or any section of the public in fear. the law continued to be in place for two years. their institutions. the Swedish government adopted two anti-terrorism laws. yet neither of these contained an explicit definition of terrorism. such as the Swedish Helsinki Committee. This new act entered into force in July 2003 ‘and classifie[d] certain crimes – such as murder or kidnapping – as terrorist acts when they are committed against countries.2.12 United Kingdom Although the first British experiences with terrorist tactics and assaults occurred during notable anti-colonial struggles abroad.’ (Prevention of Terrorism Act (Northern 116 . 2004). after which the provisions it contained were simply – with minor alterations – transferred to the Aliens Acts of 1975.

The whole piece of legislation was finally put in force in February 2001. 2007: 3). There is a plurality of reasons given for this. In this Inquiry into Legislation against Terrorism (Berwick. Notably. and it is interesting to note that there has been only one alteration in the definition since . Additionally. the British felt it necessary to review their counterterrorist legislation in 1996. Though it excluded threats of violence. the addition of (an) international organization(s) as (a) possible target(s) of terrorist offences. or for a non-ideological end. clear. Lord Lloyd of Berwick concludes that a different definition is imperative in order to combat international terrorism effectively.namely. which is much broader but at the same time also more specific than the previous definitions. namely in the Reinsurance (Acts of Terrorism) Act 1993 section 2(2). but the most pivotal appears to be that this inquiry finally noted that the terrorist threat had changed markedly and drastically since the first definition of terrorism was put forward. it was restricted in terms of intention/design. efficient and proportional to the threat derived from international terrorism (for contrasting views of non-governmental organizations and the British government. 1996). 2005. Conversely. Carlile of Berriew. Due to certain developments regarding terrorism on British soil. Amnesty International.Ireland) 1974) As stated in a review on definitions requested by the Select Committee on Home Affairs: [t]hat definition had major drawbacks. 117 . 2007: 21-22). Although there has been criticism from several non-governmental organizations that it would be too broad. cf. another definition can be found in British legislation. otherwise it was very broad so far as actions were concerned. it did not require a serious level of violence or a serious damage or risk to health and safety or electronic disruption. in that it excluded violence for a religious end. This culminated effectively into the new definition as put forward in the Terrorism Act 2000 (see Table 12 of the Appendix II). all state actors that have reviewed the definition see it as workable. (Carlile of Berriew. which has a different angle in that it criminalizes people acting in connection with or on behalf of an organization that employs terrorist tactics.

which refers to the intent of the perpetrator. consisting of the list of criminal acts. which are also. The EU definition also refers to offences specifically pertaining to a terrorist group (see Article 2. The subjective element that is specifically linked to terrorist intent is present in all contemporary definitions. one notices that Germany. one can distinguish certain noteworthy developments. participating in.3 CONCLUSION The overview presented above clearly shows the effects of the FD as all TTSRL sample countries have revised or introduced definitions of terrorism based on and specifically referring to the FD. In this respect. most countries use a combination of the subjective and the objective approach. The countries that have not included this specific list are Italy. participating in. This extension of targets offers a significant broadening of the scope and applicability of the definition of terrorism as previously used. it is disconcerting to see that some countries have deliberately chosen not to include the latter part of the definition. with a specific list of actions. Table 4 of the Appendix I). considered participation in terrorism as such. even though in the past. In general. this was not always the case. in and of themselves. As of 118 . Poland. In light of the new definitions and revisions made. for instance in Germany. Concerning the implementation of the definition as envisaged by the EU. Portugal and Sweden have altered their definitions substantially. supporting and campaigning for terrorist organizations. in order to derive a definition of terrorism. supporting and campaigning for terrorist groups as terrorism. thereby combining the notion of mens rea. Italy. Spain. whereas France. Spain and the UK hardly introduced any changes as a result of the FD.6. This means the founding. Regarding deviations from the EU definition. the following conclusions can be drawn. only three countries (Germany. Lastly. Russia. whereas the other countries simply opted for including the activities of founding. which are the ordinary general criminal offences. Portugal and Spain) make use of the criminalization of terrorist organizations and their activities as such. all of the observed countries have included foreign governments and/or international organizations operating on their national soil as possible targets of terrorism. Evaluating the amendments to terrorism definitions already in place prior to the introduction of the FD. Sweden and the United Kingdom.

there have been no cases brought forward that would give ground to the foundation of these claims in reality. the Netherlands. Concerning the applicability and broadness of definitions in general. the condition has not been brought forward in any of the terrorist trials currently in progress. In general the criticism consists of the fact that the scope and wording of the definitions in those countries would allow for the disruption of legitimate political protest(s) and thus also for the potential arrest. Russia. one should note that several NGOs have voiced their concerns over the definitions in the following countries: Denmark.yet. detention and trial of lawful political activists. It is comforting to note that as of yet. Sweden and the United Kingdom. 119 .


There are many relevant theoretical as well as practical (especially legal) reasons to define terrorism. Many people, states and international organizations have therefore tried to define the term. In this study, special attention has been paid to definitions that appear in the academic discourse and to the definitions adopted by the European Union and some of its Member States in the international context. The more definitions there are, however, the clearer it is that an agreement on a single, universal, and stable definition of terrorism is unlikely. This is especially true for the academic discourse, where scholars use their own ways of defining the phenomenon according to the need and nature of their respective research. Similarly, the international community has widely failed in drafting a universal legal definition of terrorism so far – because of the ambiguity of the term, and also because of its political charge. At the level of regional organizations, there have been some achievements, though. For the purpose of this study, the European Union’s definition of terrorism as adopted in the Framework Decision on Combating Terrorism has been of the greatest interest. However, as we have shown in Chapter 6, even a common definition at the EU level does not guarantee a full compatibility of definitions as they appear in Member States’ penal codes. Yet, there are several general findings / conclusions that we are able to make about terrorism. Despite the fractionalised academic debate, we argue that the “double victimization” (or, idiomatically, “terrorism as a spectacle”) element constitutes and will constitute a core for all conceptualisation efforts. This is less unambiguous for the political character of terrorism, but we still argue that terrorism is a certain type of political violence. The distinction between terrorism and “other types” of political violence may be difficult to set, depending on the observer and the particular situation – possibly the level of desired system change or the level of violence used. However, we suggest that the “double victimization” or the “psychological effect” of terrorism may serve well in this respect and offers a strong tool in distinguishing terrorism within this category.


The border is much clearer between organized crime and terrorism. The two phenomena may share the practical aspects of organization, recruitment, or leadership, but their motivational sides differ fundamentally. Unsurprisingly, the plurality of definitions is followed by a number of possible ways to classify terrorism. This study has offered several typologies of terrorism that have been pronounced in the public discourse lately – namely the geographical, actor-based, and new/old terrorism classifications. We have argued that none of them are unambiguous and that all of them entail a powerful political charge. Similarly to the academic definitions, the legal definitions also aim at understanding what terrorism is. There is, however, a stronger emphasis on clarity – in order to allow courts to come to the same conclusion in similar cases, the legal definition must be precise, objective and certain enough. This makes the matter even more complicated because the more precision there is in a definition, the more difficult it is to reach a politically plausible compromise. We have offered a tool for analysing legal definitions and came to the conclusion that the definitions agreed in Europe are in line with texts adopted elsewhere. The Europeans have paid a lot of attention to the purpose, perpetrators and exact description of the act, but much less to the target groups. The most political question, that of motivation, has been solved, we argue, in a compromising, non-binding way. This supports the view that a universal definition is hardly attainable. If there is a need for such circumvention in the European Union, where the values of participating countries lie very close to each other, it is difficult to imagine a more precise decision within the international community. Whereas the previous chapters deal with the definition at the level of academic theorizing or international fora, Chapter 6 aims at the heart of the matter – the Member States. After all, it is the nation state level where terrorists are prosecuted and tried. As our research has revealed, the adoption of a common European definition of terrorism has indeed influenced the penal codes of the Member States. Some of them have even introduced the definition into their legal order for the first time. Others have altered their laws substantially in order to conform to the European norm. However, we have also shown that some countries have not adjusted their law-books and some, despite amending their penal codes, have even deliberately left out part of the European definition. The Member States’ decision not to implement the European Union’s definition


fully or at all complicates a possible cross-border cooperation in prosecuting terrorism in Europe. It questions the very achievement of the Framework Decision indeed because if not implemented into national legal orders, the common European definition loses its universality on the EU’s territory and cannot have the intended impact. Furthermore, the compromise reached at the EU level loses relevance when the nation states do not make use of it. The reluctance of some countries to implement fully the EU definition further supports the view that a universal definition of terrorism is hardly attainable. To sum up, like so many before us, we have failed to identify a universal, overall definition of terrorism. We have at least shown why it is so difficult to create one (theoretical and legal) and how the discussion currently stands in Europe. In this respect, this study should serve as the basis for further research within and beyond the TTSRL project.


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517-556. Spain CODEXTER.Mockaitis. Rich (2003) Grand strategy in the war against terrorism. in Terrorism as a challenge for national and international law: security versus liberty?. Spanish Government (2002) ‘LO 6/2002 de Partidos Políticos (Organic Act on Political Parties)’. No. retrieved from http://www. G. London: Cass. Ministry of the Interior (2000) ‘Acuerdo para las Libertades y Contra el Terrorismo (Agreement in favour of liberties and against Terrorism)’. No. Official State Gazette. art. Spanish Government (1995) ‘On the crimes of Terrorism’.htm. retrieved from http://www. Spanish Government (2000) ‘LO 7/2000 de la responsabilidad de los Menores con los delitos de Terrorismo (Organic Act on the liability of minors in relation to terrorist crimes)’. Soria. retrieved from www. 307. Sweden Elwin. pp. and P. (1977) Swedish anti-terrorist legislation. Country Profile Spain. Official State Gazette.coe. T. 571-579. December 2006. Criminal Code art. J. retrieved from http://www. Berlin: rrorism/4_theme_files/apologie__incitement/CODEXTER%20Profiles%20(2006)%20Spain%20E. Amsterdam: N/A. Official State Gazette.2.mir.boe. ocInf04.. Privacy International (2004) ‘The Kingdom of Sweden’.org/article. retrieved from www. 142 .shtml?cmd%5B347%5D=x-34783530 on 15 November 2007. (2004) ‘Country Report on Spain’.mir.privacyinternational.M. ocInf06. No.pdf Ministry of the Interior (1987) ‘Acuerdo de Madrid sobre Terrorismo (Agreement of Madrid on Terrorism)’. B.htm.php?coleccion=iberlex&id=1995 /25444 on 6 November 2007. 154.

co. het Verenigd Koninkrijk. The New York Times. Review of the Operation of the Terrorism Act 2000. HM Government (2006) ‘Countering International Terrorism: The United Kingdom’s Strategy’.uk/hmso/pta1974. on 31 October 2006. The Home Secretary’s Response to Lord Carlile of Berriew’s Report on the Operation of the Terrorism Act 2000. Q. retrieved from http://web/amnesty. M. (2007) ‘The Definition of Terrorism’..htm on 26 July 2007. Spanje.United Kingdom Prevention of Terrorism Act (Northern Ireland) 1974. Carlile of Berriew. Lord Lloyd of Berwick (1998) ‘A consultation Paper’. Y. Amnesty International (2005) ‘The Prevention of Terrorism Bill: A grave threat to human rights and the rule of law in the UK’.M.ulst. August 21. Mekhennet. retrieved from www. Cm7052. retrieved from (2007) ‘Review of definition of “Terrorism” in British Law published’. ‘Legislation Against Terrorism’.C.htm. retrieved from http://www. Home Department. 11). Cm 4178. Buruma. Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Office (2005) ‘Counter-Terrorism Legislation and Practice: A Survey of Selected Countries’. retrieved from 143 het Verenigd Koninkrijk en de Verenigde Staten – Workdocument No. 6. and on 1 August 2007. Italië. retrieved from http://www. Counter-terrorism-law. WODC: Eerste inventarisatie van contraterrorismebeleid: Kempen (2006) ‘Strafrechtelijke antiterrorismemaatregelen in Nederland. Duitsland. Souad and Dexter Filkins (2006) ‘British Law Against Glorifying Terrorism Has Not Silenced Calls to Kill for Islam’.statutelaw. Cm 6888. Aksu. Presented to the Parliament by the Secretaryof State for the Home Department and the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland by Command of Her Majesty.archive. Terrorism Act 2000 (c. Frankrijk en Italie’.

retrieved from www.nytimes. Clive (2002) Blackstone’s Guide to Anti-terrorist Walker.http://travel2. retrieved from http://www. London: nerica.html&dkey=31&TableName=PJINFODOCS&DocName=dfAudienciaNac ional&ContentName=dfAudienciaNacional.htm 144 .html on 3 September 2007.htm ‘Jurisprudence of the Constitutional Court 12 March 1993 and 29 November 1997’.com/2006/08/21/world/europe/ retrieved from www.poderjudicial. pp. INTERNET SITES ‘De la Audiencia Nacional’. ‘Jurisprudence of the Supreme Court of 11 October 2001. 20 March 2002 and 21 May 2002’.htm on the 5th of November 2007. 20-30.

Article 2 (1) For the purpose of extradition between Contracting States. against the life. (e) an offence involving the use of a bomb. (c) a serious offence involving an attack against the life. a Contracting State may decide not to regard as a political offence or as an offence connected with a political offence or as an offence inspired by political motives a serious offence involving an act of violence. automatic firearm or letter or parcel bomb if this use endangers persons. if the act created a collective danger for persons. rocket. physical integrity or liberty of a person. (f) an attempt to commit any of the foregoing offences or participation as an accomplice of a person who commits or attempts to commit such an offence. physical integrity or liberty of internationally protected persons. other than one covered by Article 1. including diplomatic agents. signed at The Hague on 16 December 1970. other than one covered by Article 1. grenade. (2) The same shall apply to a serious offence involving an act against property. (d) an offence involving kidnapping. the taking of a hostage or serious unlawful detention. signed at Montreal on 23 September 1971. (b) an offence within the scope of the Convention for the Suppression of Unlawful Acts against the Safety of Civil Aviation. (3) The same shall apply to an attempt to commit any of the foregoing offences or participation as an accomplice of a person who commits or attempts to commit such an offence. 145 .APPENDIX I Table 1 European Convention on Suppression of Terrorism Year 1977 Document Title European Convention on Suppression of Terrorism. adopted 27 January 1977 Institution /Actor Council of Europe Definition Article 1 (a) an offence within the scope of the Convention for the Suppression of Unlawful Seizure of Aircraft.

h an offence within the scope of the Protocol for the Suppression of Unlawful Acts Against the Safety of Fixed Platforms Located on the Continental Shelf."g an offence within the scope of the Convention for the Suppression of Unlawful Acts Against the Safety of Maritime Navigation. In sub-paragraph b of this paragraph." 146 . . adopted at New York on 17 December 1979. done at Rome on 10 March 1988.. . 1 of the Convention shall become paragraph 1 of this article. adopted 15 May 2003 Institution/ Actor Council of the European Union Year 2003 Definition Article 1 Introductory paragraph to Art. adopted at New York on 9 December 1999. adopted at New York on 15 December 1997. 1 of the Convention shall be supplemented by the following four sub-paragraphs: .j an offence within the scope of the International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism. d." Paragraph 1 of Art. adopted at New York on 14 December 1973.i an offence within the scope of the International Convention for the Suppression of Terrorist Bombings. done at Montreal on 24 February 1988."c an offence within the scope of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of Crimes Against Internationally Protected Persons. Including Diplomatic Agents. e and f of this paragraph shall be replaced by the following sub-paragraphs: . . . .e an offence within the scope of the Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material. done at Rome on 10 March 1988. the term "signed" shall be replaced by the term "concluded" and sub-paragraphs c.d an offence within the scope of the International Convention Against the Taking of Hostages.Table 2 Protocol Amending the European Convention on Suppression of Terrorism Document Title Protocol Amending the European Convention on Suppression of Terrorism. adopted at Vienna 3 March 1980.f an offence within the scope of the Protocol for the Suppression of Unlawful Acts of Violence at Airports Serving International Civil Aviation. .

or directing others to commit or attempt to commit. (b) the participation as an accomplice in any of the foregoing offences or in an attempt to commit any such offence. any of these principal offences. the same shall apply." Article 2 Paragraph 3 of Art. 1 of the Convention shall be supplemented by the following paragraph: . 2 of the Convention shall be amended to read as follows: "3 The same shall apply to: (a) the attempt to commit any of the foregoing offences. not only to the commission of the principal offences as a perpetrator but also to: (a) the attempt to commit any of these principal offences." 147 . (b) he participation as an accomplice in the perpetration of any of these principal offences or in an attempt to commit any of them."2 Insofar as they are not covered by the conventions listed under paragraph 1**. for the purpose of extradition between Contracting States. (c) organizing the perpetration of. or directing others to commit or attempt to commit. any of the foregoing offences. (c) organizing the perpetration of.The Text of Art.

adopted 16 May 2005 Institution /Actor Council of Europe Definition Article 1 (1) For the purpose of this Convention.Table 3 Council of the Europe Convention on the Prevention of Terrorism Year 2005 Document Title Council of Europe Convention on the Prevention of Terrorism. ‘terrorist offence’ means any of the offences within the scope of and as defined in one of the treaties listed in the Appendix 148 .

or − seriously destabilizing or destroying the fundamental political. a public place or private property likely to endanger human life or result in major economic loss. (g) release of dangerous substances. (b) attacks upon the physical integrity of a person. constitutional. (h) interfering with or disrupting the supply of water. an infrastructure facility. (e) seizure of aircraft. and development of. a transport system. (f) manufacture. as well as research into. established over a period of time and acting in 149 . a fixed platform located on the continental shelf. as defined as offences under national law. possession. including an information system. (c) kidnapping or hostage taking. or causing fires. ships or other means of public or goods transport. power or any other fundamental natural resource the effect of which is to endanger human life. given their nature or context. Each Member State shall take the necessary measures to ensure that the intentional acts referred to below in points (a) to (i). "terrorist group" shall mean: a structured group of more than two persons. economic or social structures of a country or an international organization. or − unduly compelling a Government or international organization to perform or abstain from performing any act. For the purposes of this Framework Decision. floods or explosions the effect of which is to endanger human life. (i) threatening to commit any of the acts listed in (a) to (h) Article 2 (Offences relating to a terrorist group) 1.Table 4 Council of the European Union Framework Decision on Combating Terrorism Year 2002 Document Title Framework Decision on Combating Terrorism. shall be deemed to be terrorist offences: (a) attacks upon a person’s life which may cause death. acquisition. transport. (d) causing extensive destruction to a Government or public facility. which. biological and chemical weapons. biological or chemical weapons. explosives or of nuclear. 13 June 2002 (2002/475/JHA) Institution /Actor Council of the European Union Definition Article 1 (Terrorist offences and fundamental rights and principles) 1. may seriously damage a country or an international organization where committed with the aim of: − seriously intimidating a population. supply or use of weapons.

2. or by funding its activities in any way. with a maximum sentence of not less than fifteen years for the offence referred to in Article 2(2)(b) a maximum sentence of not less than eight years. In so far as the offence referred to in Article 2(2)(a) refers only to the act in Article 1(1)(i). continuity of its membership or a developed structure. 3. Each Member State shall take the necessary measures to ensure that offences listed in Article 2 are punishable by custodial sentences.concert to commit terrorist offences. Article 3 (Offences linked to terrorist activities) Each Member State shall take the necessary measures to ensure that terrorist-linked offences include the following acts: (a) aggravated theft with a view to committing one of the acts listed in Article 1(1). with knowledge of the fact that such participation will contribute to the criminal activities of the terrorist group. are punishable by custodial sentences heavier than those imposable under national law for such offences in the absence of the special intent required pursuant to Article 1(1). Each Member State shall take the necessary measures to ensure that the terrorist offences referred to in Article 1(1) and offences referred to in Article 4. Each Member State shall take the necessary measures to ensure that the offences referred to in Articles 1 to 4 are punishable by effective. Each Member State shall take the necessary measures to ensure that the following intentional acts are punishable: (a) directing a terrorist group. 2. "Structured group" shall mean a group that is not randomly formed for the immediate commission of an offence and that does not need to have formally defined role for its members. 150 . the maximum sentence shall not be less than eight years. which may entail extradition. save where the sentences imposable are already the maximum possible sentences under national law. proportionate and dissuasive criminal penalties. inasmuch as they relate to terrorist offences. (b) participating in the activities of a terrorist group. (c) drawing up false administrative documents with a view to committing one of the acts listed in Article 1(1)(a) to (h) and Article 2(2)(b) Article 5 (Penalties) 1. (b) extortion with a view to the perpetration of one of the acts listed in Article 1(1). including by supplying information or material resources.

(j) Attacks through interference with an information system. acting in concert to commit terrorist offences referred to in paragraph (1)(a) to (1)(k). (g) Fabrication. (b) Bodily injuries. animals or the environment. defined according to its national law. infrastructure facilities. possession. (i) Interfering with or disrupting the supply of water. terrorist group shall mean a structured organization established over a period of time. (k) Threatening to commit any of the offences listed above. economic. supporting of or participating in a terrorist group. 151 . of more than two persons. endangering people. and property. property. places of public use. (m) Promoting of. For the purpose of this Framework Decision. Each Member State shall take the necessary measures to ensure that the following offences. transport or supply of weapons or explosives. power. (c) Kidnapping or hostage taking. (h) Releasing contaminating substances. or causing fires. COM (2001) 521 final – 2001/0217 (CNS)) Institution/ Actor European Commission Definition Article 3 (Terrorist Offences) 1. means of public transport. which are intentionally committed by an individual or a group against one or more countries. or other fundamental resources. (f) Unlawful seizure of or damage to state or government facilities. acquisition. (d) Extortion. 2. or social structures of a country. will be punishable as terrorist offences: (a) Murder. 27 November 2001 (2001/C 322 E/17. explosions or floods. (l) Directing a terrorist group.Table 5 Commission of the EC Proposal for a Council Framework Decision on Combating Terrorism Year 2001 Document Title Commission Proposal for Framework Decision. their institutions or people with the aim of intimidating them and seriously altering or destroying the political. (e) Theft or robbery.

or to property. (d) creates a serious risk to the health or safety of the public or a section of the public. religious or ideological cause. or (e) is designed seriously to interfere with or seriously to disrupt an electronic system. of a Part of the United Kingdom or of a country other than the United Kingdom. wherever situated. (b) involves serious damage to property. and (c) the use or threat is made for the purpose of advancing a political. (5) In this Act a reference to action taken for the purposes of terrorism includes a reference to action taken for the benefit of a proscribed organisation. (c) endangers a person's life. (3) The use or threat of action falling within subsection (2) which involves the use or firearms or explosives is terrorism whether or not subsection (1)(b) is satisfied.Table 6 Terrorism Act 2000 (United Kingdom) Year 2000 Document Title Terrorism Act 2000 (Available through the Stationery Office Limited as the ‘Terrorism Act 2000’. ISBN 0 10 541100 0) Institution/ Actor United Kingdom Definition 1 (1) In this Act "terrorism" means the use or threat of action where – (a) the action falls within subsection (2). 152 . (b) a reference to any person or to property is a reference to any person. (2) Action falls within this subsection if it – (a) involves serious violence against a person. (b) the use or threat is designed to influence the government or to intimidate the public or a section of the public. other than that of the person committing the action. (c) a reference to the public includes a reference to the public of a country other than the United Kingdom. and (d) "the government" means the government of the United Kingdom. (4) In this section – (a) "action" includes action outside the United Kingdom.

The receipt of the product of any of the offences listed in points 1 to 4 (Law 96647 of 22 July 1996). The manufacture or possession of machines or devices designed to kill or to explode. weapons and munitions. defined in Article 6 of Law 70-575 of 3 July 1970. possession. destruction. when they are “intentionally” in connection with a one-man or collective undertaking. 2. reforming laws regarding gunpowders and explosive substances. the production. the offences defined in Articles 1 and 4 of Law 72-467 of 9 June 1972 prohibiting the perfecting. extortion. as well as offences defined in Articles 434-6 and 441-5 (Law 96-647 of 22 July 1996). the possession. transportation or illegitimate carrying of explosive substances or devices made with the help of those substances. the hijacking of aircraft. sale. import or export of explosive substances. possession. storing and use of chemical weapons and on their destruction (Law 98-467 of 17 June 1998). 153 . carriage or transportation of weapons and munitions of the first and fourth categories. purchase and transfer of biological weapons or weapons based on toxins. Offences regarding combat groups and disbanded movements as defined in Articles 431-13 to 431-17. repealing the decree of 4 September 1870 concerning the manufacture of weapons of war. 3. storage. defined in book II of the current code. ships or any other method of transport. manufacturing. as well as offences regarding information technology. aiming to seriously disturb the peace through intimidation or terror (Law 96-647 of 22 July 1996): 1. Theft.Table 7 Nouveau Code Pénal (France) Year 1996 Document Title Nouveau Code Pénal Institution/ Actor France Definition Article 421-1 of the Nouveau Code Pénal sets out that : The following acts constitute acts of terrorism. 28. manufacture. 5. Any deliberate attacks on the life or integrity of a person. 4. and the offences foreseen by Articles 58 to 63 of Law 98-467 of 17 June 1998 relating to the application of the Convention of 13 January 1993 on the prohibition of the perfecting. defined in Article 3 of the law of 19 June 1871. damage and deterioration. defined in Article 38 of the decree-law of 18 April 1939 determining the regime with regard to materials of war. the purchase. kidnapping and illegal confinement. defined in book II of the current code. defined in Articles 24. 31 and 32 of the decree-law of 18 April 1939 (Law 96-647 of 22 July 1996).

Table 8 Código Penal (Spain) Year Document Title Código Penal (Official State Gazette No. organizations or groups whose objective is to subvert the constitutional order or seriously alter public peace” commit the attacks described in Article 346 (attacks on buildings or transportation or communications infrastructure with the use of explosive devices) and Article 351 (arson causing risk of injury or death). acting in the service of or collaborating with armed groups. 281 of 24 November 1995) Institution/ Actor Spain Definition Article 571 of the Código Penal defines terrorists as “those who belonging. 1995 154 .

supply or use of 155 . terrorist acts or who participate in. a fixed platform located on the continental shelf. including an information system. groups and entities involved in terrorist acts” shall mean: − persons who commit. “persons. 3. constitutional. including funds derived or generated from property owned or controlled directly or indirectly by such persons and associated persons. or attempt to commit. This Common Position applies in accordance with the provisions of the following Articles to persons. transport. (b) attacks upon the physical integrity of a person. or (iii) seriously destabilising or destroying the fundamental political. acquisition. a transport system. which. economic or social structures of a country or an international organisation: (a) attacks upon a person’s life which may cause death. may seriously damage a country or an international organisation. For the purposes of this Common Position. or under the direction of. or (ii) unduly compelling a Government or an international organisation to perform or abstain from performing any act. groups and entities involved in terrorist acts and listed in the Annex. such persons. as defined as an offence under national law. given its nature or its context. “terrorist act” shall mean one of the following intentional acts. (d) causing extensive destruction to a Government or public facility. and persons. groups and entities acting on behalf of. an infrastructure facility. groups and entities. For the purposes of this Common Position. the commission of terrorist acts. (c) kidnapping or hostage taking. (f) manufacture. groups or entities. or facilitate. likely to endanger human life or result in major economic loss. − groups and entities owned or controlled directly or indirectly by such persons.Table 9 Council Common Position on the application of specific measures to combat terrorism Year 2001 Document Title Council Common Position of 27 December 2001 on the application of specific measures to combat terrorism (2001/931/CFSP) Institution /Actor Council of the European Union Definition Article 1 1. (e) seizure of aircraft. where committed with the aim of: (i) seriously intimidating a population. ships or other means of public or goods transport. 2. a public place or private property. possession.

(g) release of dangerous substances.weapons. (i) threatening to commit any of the acts listed under (a) to (h). with knowledge of the fact that such participation will contribute to the criminal activities of the group. (k) participating in the activities of a terrorist group. the effect of which is to endanger human life. and development of. explosives or of nuclear. biological and chemical weapons. par. Table 10 EC Council Regulation 2580/2001 Year Document Title EC Council Regulation 2580/2001 of 27 December 2001 (L 344/70 Official Journal of the European Communities ) Institution /Actor European Council Definition Article 1. 4 For the purposes of this Regulation. (h) interfering with or disrupting the supply of water. biological or chemical weapons. (j) directing a terrorist group. power or any other fundamental natural resource. as well as research into. or causing fires. or by funding its activities in any way. 2001 156 . including by supplying information or material resources. explosions or floods the effect of which is to endanger human life. the definition of “terrorist act” shall be the one contained in Article 1 (3) of Common Position 2001/931/CFSP.

or to any other person not taking an active part in the hostilities in a situation of armed conflict. directly or indirectly. Article 21 Nothing in this Convention shall affect other rights. in order to carry out: (a) An act which constitutes an offence within the scope of and as defined in one of the treaties listed in the annex. when the purpose of such act. or to compel a government or an international organization to do or to abstain from doing any act. Article 14 None of the offences set forth in article 2 shall be regarded for the purposes of extradition or mutual legal assistance as a political offence or as an offence connected with a political offence or as an offence inspired by political motives. a request for extradition or for mutual legal assistance based on such an offence may not be refused on the sole ground that it concerns a political offence or an offence connected with a political offence or an offence inspired by political motives. Accordingly. in full or in part. unlawfully and willfully. by its nature or context. in particular the purposes of the Charter of the United Nations. international humanitarian law and other relevant conventions. Any person commits an offence within the meaning of this Convention if that person by any means. 157 . or (b) Any other act intended to cause death or serious bodily injury to a civilian. obligations and responsibilities of States and individuals under international law. adopted 9 December 1999 (A/RES/54/109) Institution /Actor Multilateral Treaty Definition Article 2 1. is to intimidate a population. provides or collects funds with the intention that they should be used or in the knowledge that they are to be used.Table 11 International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism Year 1999 Document Title International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism.

ideological. in particular international human rights. to ensure that such acts are punished by penalties consistent with their grave nature. committed with the intent to cause death or serious bodily injury. and calls upon all States to prevent such acts and. religious or other similar nature. or taking of hostages. 8 October 2004 Institution /Actor UN Security Council Definition Operative paragraph 3: “ …criminal acts. and should adopt such measures in accordance with international law. refugee. ethnic.” Preambulair paragraph: Reminding States that they must ensure that any measures taken to combat terrorism comply with all their obligations under international law. philosophical. including against civilians. racial. and humanitarian law. with the purpose to provoke a state of terror in the general public or in a group of persons or particular persons. if not prevented. which constitute offences within the scope of and as defined in the international conventions and protocols relating to terrorism. 2004 158 . intimidate a population or compel a government or an international organization to do or to abstain from doing any act. are under no circumstances justifiable by considerations of a political.Table 12 United Nations Security Council Resolution 1566 (2004) Year Document Title United Nations Security Council Resolution 1566 (2004).

(d) Description of terrorism as “any action. or to compel a Government or an international organization to do or to abstain from doing any act”. if of sufficient scale. ‘A more secure world: Our shared responsibility’. 146: “ (a) Recognition. A/59/565) Institution /Actor UN Secretary General’s High Level Panel Definition Par.Table 13 High Level Panel’s Report on Threats. Challenges and Change. the Geneva Conventions and Security Council resolution 1566 (2004). in addition to actions already specified by the existing conventions on aspects of terrorism. constitutes a war crime by the persons concerned or a crime against humanity. in the preamble. and a declaration that they are a crime under international law. that is intended to cause death or serious bodily harm to civilians or non-combatants. and. (b) Restatement that acts under the 12 preceding anti -terrorism conventions are terrorism. Challenges and Change Year Document Title High Level Panel’s Report on Threats. that State use of force against civilians is regulated by the Geneva Conventions and other instruments. is to intimidate a population. when the purpose of such an act. 2 December 2004 (Doc. 2004 159 . (c) Reference to the definitions contained in the 1999 International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism and Security Council resolution 1566 (2004). and restatement that terrorism in time of armed conflict is prohibited by the Geneva Conventions and Protocols. by its nature or context.

2) Institution/ Actor United Nations Sixth Committee Definition Article 2 (1) Any person commits an offence within the meaning of this Convention if that person. facility or system. or where such destruction results or is likely to result in major economic loss. a public transportation system. unlawfully and intentionally. is to intimidate a population. or (b) Serious damage to a State or government facility. when the purpose of such act. does an act intended to cause: (a) Death or serious bodily injury to any person.Table 14 Draft Comprehensive Convention on Combating Terrorism Year Document Title Draft Comprehensive Convention on Combating Terrorism (Document A/C. Article 3 of the draft Convention states that the Convention is not applicable when an offence is committed within a single state. communication system or infrastructure facility with the intent to cause extensive destruction of such a place. First propos al in 1996 160 . and when the offender is a national of that state and is present in the territory of that state. or to compel a Government or an international organization to do or to abstain from doing any act. by its nature or context. by any means.6/55/L.

started or participated in to realize a terrorist objective in any of the contracting States or against its nations.Table 15 Convention of the OIC on Combating International Terrorism Year Document Title Convention of the OIC on Combating International Terrorism. 1999 161 . political unity or sovereignty or independent States. freedoms. Article 2 (a): Peoples’ struggle including armed struggle against foreign occupation. or threatening the stability. Terrorist crime means any crime executed. aimed at liberation and self-determination in accordance with the principles of international law shall not be considered a terrorist crime. or international facilities. assets or interests of foreign facilities and national residing in its territory punishable by its internal law. security or rights or exposing the environment or any facility or public or private property to hazards or occupying or seizing them. perpetrated to carry out an individual or collective criminal plan with the aim of terrorizing people or threatening to harm them or imperiling their lives. honour. territorial integrity. aggression. adopted on 1 July 1999 Institution /Actor Organisation of the Islamic Conference Definition Article 1 (2): “ [T]errorism means any act of violence or threat thereof notwithstanding its motives or intentions. and hegemony. colonialism. or endangering a national resource.

a definition is given of a ‘terrorist group’ in article 2. Article 1 refers to the fact that the acts should be offences under national law. Special mention is made of the threat of committing these acts Article 2 adds that also directing a terrorist group. no mention is made of the motivation behind the acts. compelling a government of international organisation. or funding is also considered to be a terrorist offence. Government or public facilities. A non-binding declaration distinguishes acts of terrorism from political protests and the peaceful exercise of the right to selfdetermination. destabilizing or destroying the fundamental political. . Target Perpetrator Scope 162 . as well as participating in. constitutional.Table 16 Legal elements in European and other international definitions Document title Mens Rea Purpose Qualification of the act Council Framework Decision on Combating Terrorism Article 1 refers to the ‘intentional’ character of the acts Article 1 refers to the aims of the acts. Although no specific perpetrators are appointed. and article 1 also lists several specific outings of terrorist acts. No specific mention is made of a delimited target group such as civil population or noncombatants. However. namely: seriously intimidating a population. Article 1 refers to acts against persons. economic or social structures. they can be causing death or be attacks on the physical integrity of a person. and can cause serious material destruction.

economic or social structure. attacks upon the physical integrity of a person. The motivation behind the acts is not mentioned. groups and entities as the perpetrators of terrorist acts. scope.Council Common Position on the application of specific measures to combat terrorism Article 1 (3) refers to the intentional character of the acts. Article 1 (1 and 2) No exceptions are made to the refers to and defines persons. as well as activities such as directing a terrorist group and participating in activities of a terrorist group. extensive destruction of a Government of public facility. reference is made to specific acts. Clearly. obligations and 163 . compelling a Government or an international organisation. Article 1 does mention however that individuals. are excluded from the scope of the definition. kidnapping and hostage taking. destabilising or destroying a political. constitutional. state entities are not included in these categories. Article 1 (3) points to the aim of the acts. Moreover. namely the intimidation of a population. Any person can be Political offences the perpetrator. International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism The intentional character of the act is emphasized in Article 2 by referring to the term ‘wilfully’ and the intension to cause death and The purpose of the act should be to intimidate a population or to compel a government or an intentional organisation to do Article 1 (3) demands that acts should be offences under national law. Targets can be civilians or noncombatants. such as attacks upon a person’s life. The acts committed must be unlawful. Furthermore. The lawful exercise of other rights. threats are included as terrorist acts. The definition further refers to causing death and serious bodily injury No specific mention is made of a delimited target group such as civil population or noncombatants. as well as Government or public facilities could be the target.

racial.serious bodily injury. The resolutions only mentions that criminal acts. The resolution stresses that under no circumstances as consideration of a political. ideological. the preambulair paragraph does refer to the obligations under international law that should be adhered while combating terrorism. No mention is made of the perpetrators of the act. No mention is made of the further motivation behind the attacks. philosophical. The purpose of the act should be to provoke a state of terror in the general public or in a group of persons or particular persons or compel a government or an international organisation to do or to abstain from doing any act. ethnic. These rules include human rights. as well as taking of hostages fall under the scope of the definition. Although no exclusion of the scope in included in the definition. responsibilities of States are moreover not affected by the scope of the definition. 164 . including against civilians. This means that the rightful exercise of for example the right to selfdetermination is preserved. fall under the scope of the definition. This suggests that also states or other organisations can be the target. religious or other similar The acts are characterized as criminal. UN Security The intentional Council Resolution character is 1566 (2004) stressed. or to abstain from doing any act. Furthermore acts that cause death or serious bodily injury. and the for example the rightful exercise of the right to selfdetermination.

Reference is made however to people. Any means can be used to perpetrate the act. Excepted from the scope of the definition is the struggle against foreign occupation. and No specifics are given in reference to the perpetrators. Excepted from the scope of the definition is the use of force against civilians by states. The purpose of the act should be. nature can be justifiable. or noncombatants. Draft Comprehensive Convention on Combating Terrorism The intentional character of the act is stressed by reference to the words ‘intentionally’. by its nature or context. Any person can be Excepted from the scope of the the perpetrator. or to compel a Government or an international organisation to do or to abstain from doing any act. colonialism. the State or government facility. ‘intended’. Convention of the OIC on Combating International Terrorism The intentional character of the act follows from the reference to the fact that a criminal plan is being carried out. The target group can be any person. No specific delimitations as to the target group are given. Acts of violence or threats that follow from a criminal plan. and 165 . No perpetrators The target group consist of civilians are specified. The purpose of the act should be to intimidate a population. a communication system or infrastructure facility. and the ‘intent’ to cause extensive destruction. Death or serious bodily injury and serious damage to a State or public or governmental facility. Challenges and Change Acts should have an intention to cause the specified effects. Convention are acts committed within a single state. or when the offender is a national of that state and is present in the territory of that state.High Level Panel’s Report on Threats. to intimidate a population. The motives or intentions of the perpetrators do not have any influence on the terrorist character of the acts when the aim is to The acts should be unlawful. since these crimes would fall under the scope of the Geneva Conventions and other instruments. governments. Any action that causes death or serious bodily harm with the specified purposes falls under the scope of the definition. or to compel a Government or an international organisation to do or abstain from doing any act. aggression.

territorial integrity. hegemony. honour. international facilities. aimed at liberation and selfdetermination. or endangering a national resource. political unity or sovereignty or independent States.terrorize people or threatening to harm them or imperil their lives. or threatening the stability. as long as these acts are in accordance with the principles of international law. or international facilities. security or rights or expose the environment or any facility or public or private property to hazards or occupying or seizing them. 166 . freedoms.

the effect of which is to endanger human life or endangers property with damage of great scale.APPENDIX II Table 1 Czech Republic Year 2004 Document Title Czech Penal Code – Act No. biological or chemical weapons. explosives or of nuclear. or the physical integrity of a person. (c) causing extensive destruction to a Government or public facility. a fixed platform located on the continental shelf. possession. including an information system. electricity or other dangerous substances or undertakes similarly dangerous acts or increases such danger or interacts with lowering or averting the danger. biological and chemical weapons or different weapon or fighting mean or explosives forbidden by the law or international treaty or endanger human life or seriously threatens their health or endangers property with damage of great scale by causing fire or flooding or damaging influence of explosives. safety of transport means or endangers property with damage of great scale. a transport system. damage or destroy the basic political and economic or social structure of the state or an international organization. gas. (e) seizure of aircraft. ships or other means of public or goods transport. or takes over the control. transport. power or any other fundamental natural resource. likely to endanger human life or result in major economic loss. (d) interfering with or disrupting the supply of water. supply or use of weapons. acquisition. seriously intimidating a population or unduly compelling a Government or other government body or an international organization to perform or abstain from performing any act. an infrastructure facility. § 95 Institution /Actor Czech government Definition Art 95 ‘Terrorist Act’ who with the intention to damage the constitutional order or the defense capability of the state. (a) attacks upon a person's life which may cause death. (b) kidnapping or hostage taking. or damages navigation equipment or in greater scale interferes with the operation or give an important false information and endanger human life or health. 140/1961 Coll. a public place or private property. and development of. 167 . as well as research into. manufacture.

p. 2) 5) hijacking of means of transportation (§183a) 6) gross violation of the law on weapons (§ 192 a or § 10. other assets or any financial or other services To persons. constitutional. when the act in its character or the context in which it takes place can cause severe damage to a country or international organization: 1) manslaughter (§ 237) 2) severe violence (§ 245 or § 246) 3) confinement (§ 261) 4) disturbance of the road safety (§ 184. p. A Person who participates in an illegal military organization or group will be punished with a fine or up to 4 months imprisonment or under aggravating circumstances with up to 2 years imprisonment” Art 114: For acts of terrorism a person will be sentenced with up to life time if the person with the intent to scare a population severely or wrongfully force Danish or foreign public authorities or an international organization to act or abstain from acting or to destabilize or damage a country or an international organization’s fundamental political. of radioactive substances (§ 192 b) This carries into effect the EU decisions on fighting terrorism.Table 2 Denmark Year 1996 Document Title Danish penal code Institution/ Actor Danish Government/ Ministry of Justice Definition Art 114 :“A person who participates in or contributes substantially financially or in other ways to a corps. spreading of injurious gasses. group or union which has the intention through use of force to influence public affairs or cause disturbances of the established order will be punished with up to 6 years imprisonment. 1. Stk. According to § 114a it is punishable with up to 10 years to 1) directly or indirectly contribute financially. flooding. 1) hazardous contamination of objects intended for common spreading etc. § 193. (187. groups or organizations which commit or intent to commit acts of terrorism as 2002 Danish penal code Danish Government 168 . p. 2) directly or indirectly provide or collect funds. damage of railway or other means of transportation (§ 183. 2. Additionally §114 a and b penalizes financial or other types of aid to terrorism to a broader extent than prior. p. p. 3) directly or indirectly provide money. 1. economic or societal structures commits one or more of the following acts. ship wreck. 1 and 2) hazardous contamination of the water supply (§ 186. §291. 2) 7) arson (§ 180) explosion.1) 8) possession or employment etc. p.

2 when the activity or goals result in one or more of these actions being committed. 169 . According to § 114b it is punishable with up to 6 years to encourage. These decisions are partly an effectuation of the UN convention on the financing of terrorism and the UN resolution 1373 (2001). advice or act in ways that contribute to criminal activity or to the goals of a group or organization.defined in § 114. 1 or no. which commits one or more of the actions mentioned in § 114 or § 114 a no. A specific decision on prevention of the spreading of weapons of mass-destruction has been added in § 114e.

import or export of explosive substances as defined by article 6 of the Act no.Table 3 France Year 1996 Document Title French Criminal Law Titel II – Of Terrorism Institution/ Actor French Government Definition Act no. 441-2 to 441-5. 98-348: The following offences constitute acts of terrorism where they are committed intentionally in connection with an individual or collective undertaking the purpose of which is seriously to disturb the public order through intimidation or terror: 1° wilful attacks on life. transport or unlawful carrying of explosive substances or of devices made with such explosive substances. and also computer offences. defacement and damage. . . . destruction. 2° theft. carrying. weapons and ammunition. wilful attacks on the physical integrity of persons.the detention.the production. as defined under Book III of the present Code. defined by Book II of the present Code. keeping. and transport of weapons and ammunition falling under the 170 . vessels or any other means of transport. 70-575 of 3rd July 1970 amending the regulations governing explosive powders and substances. dangerous or explosive devices. 4° the production or keeping of machines. 3° offences committed by combat organisations and disbanded movements as defined under articles 431-13 to 431-17. set out under article 3 of the Act of 19th June 1871 which repealed the Decree of 4th September 1870 on the production of military grade weapons. sale. as defined by article 38 of the Ordinance of 18th April 1939 defining the regulations governing military equipment. abduction and unlawful detention and also as the hijacking of planes.the purchase. 96. extortion. and the offences set out under articles 434-6.647 & Act no.

It describes a form of violence that our country has known for more than two centuries. France accepted it from the start. stocking and use of chemical weapons and on their destruction. Livre blanc du Gouvernement sur la sécurité intérieure face au terrorisme French Government French Government 2006 171 . 31 and 32 of the aforementioned Ordinance. 5° receiving the product of one of the offences set out in paragraphs 1 to 4 above. is to intimidate a population or to compel a Government or an international organization to do or to abstain from doing any act. . by its nature or context. production. we must be able to name it and define it: ‘any action that is intended to cause death or serious bodily harm to civilians or non-combatants.the offences referred to under articles 58 to 63 of the Act no.: Les délits d'initié prévus à l'article L. 98-467 of 17th June 1998 on the application of the Convention of the 13th January 1993 on the prohibition of developing.421 sub 7. . 72-467 of 9th June 1972 forbidding the designing. keeping. producing. Which means in combination with the rest of the article that finance of terrorism and monetary offences have been made punishable.the offences defined by articles 1 and 4 of the Act no. 1996 French Penal Code Govern-ment White Paper: “La France face au terrorisme”. stocking. 465-1 du code monétaire et financier. purchase or sale of biological or toxin-based weapons. To fight terrorism effectively. Art.’ Although there is not an international consensus behind this definition yet. when the purpose of such an act.first and fourth categories defined by articles 4. 28.

(7) In cases under subsections (1) and (2) the court may order supervision of conduct (Section 68 subsection (1)). 1-7: (1) Whoever forms an organization.Table 4 Germany Year 1998 Document Title Strafgesetzbuch (German Criminal Code): Section 129a Formation of Terrorist Organizations Institution/ Actor German Government Definition Art. 309 subsections (1) to (5). or 316c subsections (1) to (3). (4) The court in its discretion may mitigate the punishment (Section 49 subsection (2)) in cases under subsections (1) and (3) in the case of participants whose guilt is slight or whose participation is of minor significance. or whoever participates in such an organization as a member. 314 or 315 subsections (1). (5) Section 129 subsection (6). the objectives or activity of which are directed towards the commission of: 1. the court may deprive the person of the capacity to hold public office and the capacity to attain public electoral rights (Section 45 subsection (2)). 308 subsections (1) to (4). (2) If the perpetrator is one of the ringleaders or supporters.212 or 220a).3 or 4. 313. manslaughter or genocide (Sections 211. then imprisonment for no less than three years shall be imposed. 172 . or 3. 2. 316b subsections (1) or (3). shall be punished with imprisonment from six months to five years. (6) Collateral to imprisonment for at least six months. crimes against personal liberty in cases under Sections 239a or 239b. shall be punished with imprisonment from one year to ten years. shall apply accordingly. crimes under Section 305a or crimes dangerous to the public in cases under Sections 306 to 306c or 307 subsections (1) to (3). murder. (3) Whoever supports an organization indicated in subsection (1) or recruits for it.

the purpose of terrorism is verified as also including violent acts targeted at a foreign State. 438 of 2001 Italian government 173 . institution and international organisation. 4. In the case of conviction for this offence. or purposes of subversion of the democratic order 1. Whoever takes part in these associations is sentenced from five to ten years of imprisonment. establishes. establishes. 2001 Law n. organizes or runs associations aimed at violently establishing the dictatorship of a social class on the other classes or at violently suppressing a social class or subverting the economic and social systems constituted within the State is sentenced from five to twelve years of imprisonment. Whoever promotes. Whoever takes part in these associations is sentenced from one to three years of imprisonment. organizes. 15 of 1980 Institution/ Actor Italian Government Definition Art 270 bis: Associations with purposes of terrorism. 3. 4. Art 270 bis: Associations with purposes of terrorism. including under a false name or fake form. the things which were used for its commission and those representing the price. including international terrorism. The same sentence applies to whoever within the territory of the State promotes. 2. Sentences are increased for those who re-establish. 2. Whoever.Table 5 Italy Year 1980 Document Title Law n. or purposes of subversion of the democratic order 1. including international terrorism. within the territory of the State. Under penal law. who promotes. establishes. product and profit of the offence or the use thereof are mandatorily confiscated. 3. the abovementioned associations whose dissolution has been ordered. organizes or runs associations aimed at violently suppressing each political and legal system of the society. runs or finances associations aimed at the commission of violent acts with the purpose of terrorism or of subversion of the democratic order is sentenced from seven to fifteen years of imprisonment.

174 . economic and social structures of a country or of international organization. due to their nature or context. can cause serious damage to a country or to an international organisation and are committed in order to intimidate the population or force public authorities or international organizations to perform or not to perform a given act. by conventions or other provisions of international law which are binding for Italy. 155 of 2005 Italian government Art 270 sexies: On Conducts with the purpose of terrorism Conducts with the purpose of terrorism are all the conducts that. or committed for the purpose of terrorism.2005 Law n. or to destabilize or destroy the fundamental political. constitutional. as well as any other conduct defined as terrorism.

304a. paragraph four. and 288a. any of the crimes described in Articles 92 to 96..Table 6 The Netherlands Year 2004 Document Title Crimes of Terrorism Act Institution/ Actor Dutch Government Definition Article 83 A terrorist crime is understood to mean: 1°. 170. or to tolerate certain actions and/or to seriously disrupt or destroy the fundamental political. 285. 122. 108. 3) cause a serious disruption to the political or economic system of the Republic of Poland. as well as Article 80. section 3°. 2. Article 33a of the Explosives for Civil Uses Act and Article 79 of the Nuclear Energy Act. paragraph two.) force a state institution of the Republic of Poland or of other country or of an international organization to assume or forbear a specific action. constitutional. 168. Table 7 Poland Year 2004 Document Title Kodeks Karny art. of other country or of an international organization – or to threat with such actions. 2°. comitted in order to: 1) seriously intimidate a group of people. any of the crimes which carry prison sentences by virtue of Articles 114a. any of the crimes described in Articles 140a. paragraph three. 115/20 Institution/ Actor Ministry of Justice Definition A crime of terrorist nature is a crime . 161quater. paragraph two. 282c. 115. 289a. of the Nuclear Energy Act. Article 6. 166. 174. of the Economic Offences Act. of the Nuclear Energy Act. 304b. 282b. 3°. not to do something. paragraph two. 175 . 157. 415a and 415b. 121. as well as in Article 55. section 3°. economic or social structures of a country or an international organisation. 120b. section 2°. 114b. 130a. Article 83a A terrorist objective is understood to mean the objective to cause serious fear in (part) of the population in a country and/or to unlawfully force a government or international organisation to do something. and 289.. 164. paragraph two. paragraph five of the Weapons and Ammunition Act. 117. paragraph three. paragraph two. as well as in Article 80. 120a. paragraph two. 176b. if the crime has been committed with a terrorist objective. section 2°. 176a. section 3°.

or the normal purposes of communication means or pathways. Article 1 on “Legal definitions” includes in article 1. referring to articles 2 and 3 of Act 52/2003. of common danger. these actions may seriously affect the State or the population intended to be intimidated”. to prevent. telephone. alter or subvert the operation of the institutions of the State foreseen in the Constitution. biological or chemical weapons. flooding or avalanche. or to intimidate specific persons. so as to commit terrorist crimes.1 establishes what a terrorist organization is: “A terrorist group. referring to article 2. d) Actions that destroy or prevent the operation. groups of persons or the population in general by committing: a) Crimes against the life. try to damage national integrity and independence.Table 8 Portugal Year 2003 Document Title Act 52/2003 of 22 August for the Fight Against Terrorism Institution /Actor Portuguese government Definition Article 2. violent or highly organized criminality: 2003 Criminal Proceeding Code (Act 78/1987 of Portuguese government 176 . fire arms.1 of the same act (Act 52/2003). provided that due to their nature or the context in which they are committed. Article 4.2 a definition of terrorism equaling it to violent or highly organized criminality. organization or association is a grouping of two or more persons that. refrain from making or tolerate the making of an action. f) Crimes implying or using nuclear energy. radio or television. through fires. explosions. contamination of food or water for human consumption or spreading of diseases. all manner of incendiary means. b) Crimes against transport or communication security. totally or partially. bomb letters. Article 4 deals with the crime of terrorism: which is any of the previous acts within the scope of terrorist organizations. which includes the punishment of international terrorism acts. which are qualified robbery. telegraph. including computer. It sets forth that “ behaviors that fulfill the following characteristics shall be deemed as cases of terrorism. It contemplates punishment. collapse of constructions. to force the public authorities to execute. harmful plants or animals. public service installations or installations for the supply and satisfaction of vital needs of the population. in bad faith. theft or extortion.2 includes a series of “second degree” crimes of terrorism (instrumental). physical integrity or freedom of people. acting in a coordinated manner. c) Crimes entailing the creation. the forgery of administrative documents. toxic or suffocating gases. definitively or temporarily. plagues. or explosive devices. release of radioactive substances. e) Research or development of biological or chemical weapons. like article 5.

17 February). criminal association (criminal organisation) or an organised group for the implementation of an act of terrorism. dissemination of materials or information urging terrorist activities. Table 9 Russia Year 2006 Document Title Federal Law on Countering Terrorism Institution/ Actor Russian Government Definition Terrorism shall mean the ideology of violence and the practice of influencing the adoption of a decision by state power bodies. f) popularisation of terrorist ideas. local self-government bodies or international organisations connected with frightening the population and (or) other forms of unlawful violent actions. substantiating or justifying the necessity of the exercise of such activity Terrorist act shall mean making an explosion. arson or other actions connected with frightening the population and posing the risk of loss of life. arming. preparing. a) Integrate the crimes foreseen in Article 299 of the Criminal Code and Articles 2 and 3 of Act 52/2003 of 22 August. as well as participation in such a structure. training and using terrorists. Are targeted. b) instigation of an act of terrorism. physical integrity or freedom of people and are punishable with prison sentences of 5 years or over”. e) informational or other assistance to planning. financing and implementing an act of terrorism. Subsequent modificatio ns. c) establishment of an unlawful armed unit. as well as other especially grave consequences. preparing or implementing an act of terrorism. local selfgovernment bodies or international organisations. as well as the threat of committing the said actions for the same purpose 177 . against the life. Terrorist activity shall mean activity including the following: a) arranging. planning. in bad faith. d) recruiting. for the purpose of unlawful influence upon the adoption of a decision by state power bodies. of causing considerable damage to property or the onset of an ecological catastrophe .

65: States which criminal offences are assigned to La Audiencia Nacional including offences against the crown and government. in economic terms or others. fitting out.”). cooperating. 2000 Acuerdo para las Libertades y Ministeri o del Articles 571-579 “On the crimes of terrorism”. and. kidnappings. assets or premises. in or with the activities of the aforementioned armed bands.2 and 516.3 sets forth that “continuous assassination. shall be regarded as collaboration acts. 66: States specifically that La Audiencia Nacional deals with terrorist acts. threaten to destroy the Basque society itself. It establishes that terrorism is a State problem. Item 1. Spain) Spanish Criminal Code Art. but are also made with the purpose of subverting the constitutional order or the public peace. A crime of terrorism is that intended to subvert the constitutional order or seriously alter public peace. building. terrorist organizations or groups.Table 10 Spain Year Document Title Institut ion/Act or La Audienci a Nacional Definition 1977 De La Audiencia Nacional (Spain) 1987 Acuerdo de Madrid sobre Terrorismo (Agreement of Madrid on Terrorism) 1995 Introduced by LO 10/1995 de reforma del Código Penal (Organic Act on the reform of the Criminal Code) Ministeri o del Interior (Ministr y of the Interior. thus reaching its goals because since these are only 178 . hiding or transferring persons linked to armed bands.) committed by people belonging to organizations or groups. in any other similar manner.) It defines the ETA strategy as follows: “It tries to spread fear so that citizens and institutions give up their principles.1. terrorist organization or group. as methods of a false political action. The Criminal Code also contemplates the belonging to an armed band. The Code contemplates specific crimes (attacks. Article 577 also contemplates serious crimes carried out by persons that are not part of a terrorist organization. Art. money laundering and other offences which affect the organized democratic state and civil peace. arms possession. terrorist organizations or groups. devastation. without defining what these organizations are (Articles 515. providing or using housing or deposits. in general. etc. It categorizes and defines what collaboration with a terrorist organization is (Article 576. ideas and rights. and create conditions that prevent the overcoming of the deep economic crisis it is going through. prevent the development of citizen liberties and tolerance. injuries. helping or mediating. the purpose of which is to subvert the constitutional order or public peace. organizing or being present in training sessions. economic extortion and any other forms of violence or intimidation.2 of the Criminal Code: “Reporting on or surveilling people.

justifying or exculpating attacks against the life or the integrity of persons. b) Promoting. Spain) Ministry of Justice (Spain) shared by a minority. they would never find a place within democracy”. in political terms. are exclusive and are xenophobic. trying to subject public authorities. or beliefs. by reason of their ideology. sex or sexual orientation. or helping multiply the effects of terrorist violence and the fear and intimidation generated by it.2 sets forth that parties “whose activities are against the democratic principles” are illegal “if they seek to deteriorate or destroy the regime of liberties or to prevent or to eliminate the democratic system through any of the following behaviors. promoting. the action of terrorist organizations for the purpose of achieving their goal of subverting the constitutional order or seriously altering the public peace. specific persons or groups of the society or the population in general to a terror atmosphere. nationality.2002 Contra el Terrorismo (Agreement in favour of liberties and against Terrorism) LO 6/2002 de Partidos Políticos (Organic Act on Political Parties) Interior (Ministr y of the Interior. performed repeatedly and seriously: a) Breaching fundamental liberties and rights. 179 . encouraging or legitimating violence as a means to achieve political goals or to eliminate the required conditions for democracy. Item 1 of the Agreement states that terrorism is a State problem and item 5 stresses that crimes of terrorist organizations are particularly serious and reprehensible because they try to subvert the democratic order and spread fear among citizens Article 9. race. pluralism and political liberties. or the exclusion or persecution of persons. c) Complementing and supporting. religion.

1) murder (penal code. 3) 2) manslaughter (penal code. If a higher sentence is mentioned as the lowest possible in the penal code this will be valid. 13) 8) malicious damage ( penal code. chapt.13) 10) hijacking or sabotage of shipping or aviation ( penal code. chapt. 22) 14) intentional crimes with weapons ( weapons law § 1. § 3 the following acts can be considered acts of terrorism under the conditions mentioned in § 2 in this law. or lifetime. 13) 13) illegal association with chemical weapons ( penal code § 6a. 3) 3) severe cruelty ( penal code. 2) wrongfully coerce public authorities or an international organization to act or abstain from acting. chapt. The sentence will be between four and ten years. devices for spreading radiological. § 2. §1. § 1. § 3. 16) intentional crimes according to § 25 and § 26 of law (1992:1300) on war equipment that is nuclear. biological or chemical substances and special parts or substances for such equipment. § 4 and § 5. 3) seriously destabilize or damage fundamental political. 3 of law 1988:868 on inflammables and explosives. 13) 12) spreading of poisons or infections ( penal code § 7. 12) 7) arson causing loss of life and severe arson causing loss of life ( penal code § 1 and § 2. chapt. 4) 5) illegal confinement ( penal code. If the crime is less severe the sentence will be between two and six years. § 2. radiological. biological or chemical. 13) 9) sabotage and severe sabotage ( penal code. economic or social structures of a state or an international organization. § 6. p. Chapt. chapt. 4) 6) severe damaging of person ( penal code § 3.Table 11 Sweden Year 2002 Document Title New Act on Criminal Responsibili ty for Terrorist Crimes Institution/ Actor Swedish Government Definition § 2 For terrorism the person who commits an act mentioned in § 3 will be sentenced if the act can severely damage a state or an international organization and the intent of the act is to: 1) severely scare a population or a group within a population. chapt. 3) 4) kidnapping ( penal code. chapt. chapt. constitutional. chapt. chapt. chapt. 180 . chapt. chapt. 13) 11) sabotage of airports ( penal code § 5b. § 5 a. 9) 15) crimes according to § 21.

chapt. 19) illegal threats (penal code § 5.17) crimes according to § 18 and § 20 of law (2000:1064) on control of products with dual spheres of application and of technical assistance. 18) smugling or severe smugling ( § 3 and § 5 law (2000:1225)) if goods mentioned in 14) through 17) are smuggled. 4) threatening to commit the acts mentioned in 1) through 18) 181 . biological or chemical weapons. where such products or assistance can be used for manufacturing nuclear-.

(b) the use or threat is designed to influence the government or to intimidate the public or a section of the public. (3) The use or threat of action falling within subsection (2) which involves the use of firearms or explosives is terrorism whether or not subsection (1)(b) is satisfied. other than that of the person committing the action. (c) a reference to the public includes a reference to the public of a country other than the United Kingdom. (5) In this Act a reference to action taken for the purposes of terrorism includes a reference to action taken for the benefit of a proscribed organization.Table 12 United Kingdom Year 2000 Document Title Terrorism Act 2000 Institution/ Actor British Government Definition (1) In this Act "terrorism" means the use or threat of action where(a) the action falls within subsection (2). (e) is designed seriously to interfere with or seriously to disrupt an electronic system. (b) involves serious damage to property. (4) In this section(a) "action" includes action outside the United Kingdom. wherever situated. (c) endangers a person's life. (b) a reference to any person or to property is a reference to any person. religious or ideological cause. or to property. and (c) the use or threat is made for the purpose of advancing a political. (d) creates a serious risk to the health or safety of the public or a section of the public. (2) Action falls within this subsection if it(a) involves serious violence against a person. of a Part of the United Kingdom or of a country other than the United Kingdom. and (d) "the government" means the government of the United Kingdom. 182 .

183 .