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Waziristan: Geography of Modern Terrorism - Research Paper Example

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The province of Waziristan is considered as the geography of modern terrorism; this thesis has historical and probably contemporary truth. Historically speaking, Waziristan had been the most difficult place for the imperial British government to totally subjugate…
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Waziristan: Geography of Modern Terrorism

Download file to see previous pages... In the present-day context, another Western invader is attempting to subjugate such region; like the British, this modern-day invader is finding it hard to colonize, physically and mentally, the Waziristan tribes. This paper explores and examines several factors associated to the thesis that Waziristan is the geography of modern terrorism:
(1) a brief historical background of Waziristan province;
(2) the relationship of the terms “geography” and “terrorism;”
(3) the connection or network of the “terrorist” organizations (i.e., Taliban and Al Qaeda) to Waziristan;
(4) the affinity or relation of bin Laden to Waziristan peoples;
(5) the concepts of modern terrorism;
(6) Waziristan as the geography of modern terrorism; and
(7) the dilemma of such thesis. Background of Waziristan Lyon (2008, 174) depicts the inhabitants of Waziristan region in a gloomy fashion: raiders. Historically, it has certain grain of truth. Since the 19th century, the tribes from Waziristan had been raiding other tribes or peoples -- especially the British troops and officials -- living from or at the neighboring lands. It must be noted, however, that Lyon refers to this local people as that tribe that greatly belongs to the Mahsud. Of the two major tribes from said region, the Mahsud tribe is the fiercest. The depiction of Mahsud peoples as robbers entails the economic aspect of raiding. Beattie (2002, 216) states that the 19th-century British colonizers had thought that the main reason of raiding practices by the local people from the Waziristan region was that of poverty. In fact, they, the colonial masters, blamed poverty for the prominence of raiding or robbery in the said region. Nevertheless, the notorious activities (i.e., of robbery) committed by the locals were a phenomenon associated not largely to economic rationale but to the “ethos and martial values” marked in Waziristan peoples (Beattie 2002). Perhaps Lyon’s thesis -- that feud is an institution for the peoples in Waziristan -- points to the enduring feudal war mainly between the Mahsud’s and the Wazir’s tribes. Ahmed (1983, 33) argues that these two principal tribes had “long been at feud” against each other that the British colonizers were able to subjugate, at certain extent, the Waziristan region. Thence, it shows that the pre-19th century Waziristan -- and even to these days -- was a geographical place in which multifaceted tribal systems were commonplace. In contrast to the ancient time, nonetheless, the number of tribes in the present-day Waziristan is reduced into two major groups. Geography and Terrorism Marburger (2003, xvii) says that geography as a body of human knowledge provides an essential tool in fully visualizing, organizing, and assessing the “real world data.” True, to gather and obtain spatial data from places that are of interests to certain group of peoples are highly significant. For one, such information or “real world data” have the potentiality to be utilized for specific purpose or purposes. Geographical data greatly facilitate the visualization, among other things, of the place or region in which the interested party has plans or schemes in the immediate future. On the other hand, Gallaher (2009, 251) notes that geography as a discipline has not been used or explored in studying “political violence, generally, or terrorism more specifically.” Despite the importance of geography as described by Marburger, such field of human knowledge has “not usually been a source discipline.” Presently, there are two frames in which the concepts and praxis of geography and terrorism are tackled and examined. Of the two theoretical frameworks, the frame of geopolitics focuses more on the ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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I think there is no great difference in whether, let’s say, ten people are killed by a maniac or by a terrorist. The only difference is in their reasoning – one kills for satisfying a mania, the other – in the name of an idea. The results, however, are the same – pain, fear and terror.
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