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Domestic Terrorism: Yesterday and Today - Essay Example

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This essay describes domestic terrorism is as threatening and as prevalent as the danger of outside groups that cross our borders to inflict terror, as it is fueled by America’s own idealism. Terrorism can come from anywhere and may originate in the target country…
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Domestic Terrorism: Yesterday and Today
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Download file to see previous pages Violence is described in vague terms and the incident may be an Internet denial of service or a highly targeted bomb. The target may be a corporation, innocent civilians, or a specific government agency. Previous definitions have included exemptions for guerrilla warfare units and freedom fighters. These para-military groups were typically highly organized and their targets were very specific. They differed from terrorists in that they did not target the civilian population and did not use the threat of mass casualties as a psychological weapon. The new threats of massive communications disruption, loss of utilities, and the access to larger weapons have necessitated the broader definition of domestic terrorism.Modern domestic terrorism has been more destructive and wider spread. In 1993 Timothy McVeigh committed one of the most deadly acts of domestic terrorism known to date. This act would change the face of domestic terrorism by the willingness of a right-wing para-military philosophy to inflict large and indiscriminate killing of innocent bystanders. These groups usually view the United States as an oppressive government that limits individual freedom and expression. In fact, rights groups have often gone to court to impede or halt the government's investigation of these terrorist groups based on the right to privacy and the constitutional guarantees of the 1st, 2nd, and 4th amendments. Recent years have seen an expansion of the investigation of these right-wing groups and have uncovered a myriad of plots....
This differs from 'homegrown terrorism' that may be perpetrated by US citizens on behalf of a foreign entity such as Al Qaeda. The motivation, as well as the perpetrators, must come from within the US borders and target a US policy or institution.
The FBI's definition of domestic terrorism is broad and sweeping. It does not differentiate between the methods of attack. Violence is described in vague terms and the incident may be an Internet denial of service or a highly targeted bomb. The target may be a corporation, innocent civilians, or a specific government agency. Previous definitions have included exemptions for guerrilla warfare units and freedom fighters. These para-military groups were typically highly organized and their targets were very specific. They differed from terrorists in that they did not target the civilian population and did not use the threat of mass casualties as a psychological weapon. The new threats of massive communications disruption, loss of utilities, and the access to larger weapons have necessitated the broader definition of domestic terrorism.
Modern domestic terrorism has been more destructive and wider spread. In 1993 Timothy McVeigh committed one of the most deadly acts of domestic terrorism known to date. This act would change the face of domestic terrorism by the willingness of a right wing para-military philosophy to inflict large and indiscriminate killing of innocent bystanders (Vohryzek-Bolden, Olson-Raymer, & Wharmond, 2001, p.193). These groups usually view the United States as an oppressive government that limits individual freedom and expression. In fact, rights groups have often gone to court to impede or halt the government's investigation of these terrorist groups based on the right to privacy and the ...Download file to see next pages Read More
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