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Terrorism Portal

Terrorism is the main systematic use of terror especially as a means of coercion. At present, there is no internationally agreed definition of terrorism. Common definitions of terrorism refer only to those violent acts which are intended to create fear (terror), are perpetrated for an ideological goal (as opposed to a "lone wolf" attack), and deliberately target or disregard the safety of non-combatants. Some definitions also include acts of unlawful violence and war. The history of terrorist organizations suggests that they do not select terrorism for its political effectiveness. Individual terrorists tend to be motivated more by a desire for social solidarity with other members of their organization than by political platforms or strategic objectives, which are often murky and undefined. The word "terrorism" is politically and emotionally charged, and this greatly compounds the difficulty of providing a precise definition. Studies have found over 100 definitions of “terrorism”. The concept of terrorism is itself controversial because it is often used by states to delegitimize political or foreign opponents, and potentially legitimize the state's own use of terror against them. A less politically and emotionally charged, and better defined, term (used not only for terrorists, and not including all those who have been described as terrorists) is violent non-state actor. Terrorism has been practiced by a broad array of political organizations for furthering their objectives. It has been practiced by both right-wing and left-wing political parties, nationalistic groups, religious groups, revolutionaries, and ruling governments. One form is the use of violence against noncombatants for the purpose of gaining publicity for a group, cause, or individual.

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Northern Ireland shown in red
The Real Irish Republican Army, otherwise known as the Real IRA (RIRA) and styling itself as Óglaigh na hÉireann (Volunteers of Ireland), is a paramilitary organisation which aims to bring about a united Ireland. The RIRA was formed in 1997 following a split in the Provisional IRA. It is an illegal organisation in the Republic of Ireland and designated as a terrorist organisation in the United Kingdom and the United States. The organisation has been responsible for a number of bombings in Northern Ireland and England, including the 15 August 1998 Omagh bombing, which killed 29 people. On 7 March 2009 RIRA members claimed responsibility for an attack on the Massereene Barracks that killed two British soldiers, the first to be killed in Northern Ireland since 1997.

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A plaque at the Antelope post office commemorates local resistance to the Rajneeshee "invasion".
Credit: TravisL

The 1984 Rajneeshee bioterror attack was the first bioterrorism attack in the United States, and the single largest bioterrorist attack in United States history. The attack is one of only two confirmed terrorist uses of biological weapons to harm humans.

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Timothy McVeigh

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Ziad Jarrah
Ziad Jarrah was named by the FBI as one of the hijackers of United Airlines Flight 93 as part of the September 11, 2001 attacks. He is believed to have taken over as the pilot of the aircraft and made an unsuccessful attempt to crash the plane into either the White House or the U.S. Capitol. After a wealthy and secular upbringing, Jarrah became involved in the September 11 conspiracy in college. Unique among the hijackers, he had a girlfriend and was close to his family. There are disputes concerning whether or not Jarrah was actually on Flight 93, although the 9/11 Commission concluded that his was not a case of mistaken identity.

Terrorism News

17 June 2019 – Boko Haram
Boko Haram terrorists exchange gunfire with Nigerian troops in the Nganzai local government area of Borno State. (Al Jazeera)
14 June 2019 – Iran–Japan relations, Iran–United States relations
Kyodo News Agency reports that during his visit to mediate between the U.S. and Iran, Japanese PM Shinzō Abe asked Iran to release American prisoners held by Iran, though the response is "unclear" to the press. But Iran says it will not negotiate with the United States, rejecting Abe's bid to broker dialogue between the two countries amid escalating tensions in the Middle East. Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif accuses the "B-Team" (Mohammed bin Salman, John Bolton and Benjamin Netanyahu) of sabotaging diplomacy, including Abe's meeting, to hide its "economic terrorism" by accusing Iran of attacking oil tankers. (The Washington Post) (Kyodo News)
12 June 2019 – Terrorism in Australia
Clavell brothers rammed a police car and then lunged at police with a knife and a tomahawk before they were shot on Wednesday afternoon by Victorian police. (9News)
7 June 2019 – Terrorism in the United States
Authorities arrested Ashiqul Alam who allegedly planned to attack Times Square in New York City with grenades, guns and a suicide vest. (NY Times) (CNN)
4 June 2019 – 2019 Darwin shooting
A mass shooting in Darwin, the capital of Australia's Northern Territory, leaves four people dead and another injured at five different locations. The 45-year-old suspect, who had been on parole since January, is arrested. Authorities say the shooting was not terrorism-related. (ABC News) (BBC)
27 May 2019 –
French police arrest four people in connection with last Friday's bombing in Lyon's historic city center that injured 13 people. Anti-terrorist prosecutors are leading the investigation. District mayor Denis Broliquier said the bomb was a relatively weak explosive that was too small to kill. No one has claimed responsibility for the attack. (BBC)



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Tommy Franks
"The global war on terrorism will be a long fight. But make no mistake about it: We are going to fight the terrorists."


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