This chapter explores the increasing significance of disengagement and de-radicalization programmes in countering terrorism. It looks at initiatives supporting a transition away from militancy. Deradicalization can be defined as the psychological and sociological attitude change wherein an individual no longer feels personally responsible for progressing a political agenda through violence. Meanwhile, disengagement is the behavioural process that sees an individual cease involvement in political violence. The chapter discusses the history and evolution of deradicalization interventions before tackling the empirical evidence on deradicalization. Deradicalization programmes have become an important part of many states' counter-terrorism efforts. Examples here include Norway and Sweden.
Consolidating Democracy and Human Rights
This chapter examines the consolidation of democracy and human rights in Nigeria. With regard to the relationship between development and human rights, Nigeria presents an interesting puzzle. It is rich in oil, but has not been able to translate its immense natural resources into sustainable economic development and respect for human rights. Ethnic and religious tensions, a result of colonialism, have been exacerbated by disastrous economic development, which has in turn led to a deteriorating human rights situation and intense violence. The chapter first considers the political economy of Nigerian oil before discussing the country’s political and economic development, with particular emphasis on critical aspects of human security and civil society. It concludes with an assessment of the progress that has been made as well as ongoing development challenges Nigeria faces.
This chapter discusses how states use political violence and asks whether this sort of action could be considered terrorism or not. It lists the core points of study related to state acts of violence. These include instances of threatened acts of violence, state approval of violent acts, and the psychological impact of state and non-state acts of violence. State terrorism has become marginalized because the focus has been primarily on certain types of non-state political violence. States frequently sponsor or assist violent groups internationally when such acts serve their foreign policy objectives. The chapter examines examples of governments taking advantage of state terrorism. This tends to happen in totalitarian and authoritarian regimes, but also with colonial powers and liberal democracies too. The chapter clarifies how an accurate definition of terrorism is dependent on intent, which is difficult to determine for state and non-state actors.
Orla Lynch and Carmel Joyce
This chapter focuses on victims of terrorism and political violence. Psychological and criminological research on victimhood challenges the portrayal of victims as rand and unlucky targets of indiscriminate violence. Research on victims is often concerned with the psychological impact of violence and this results often in Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). The chapter also highlights how victims of terrorism often become public victims and are politicized in the process. It also looks at the hierarchy of victimhood, the Just World Hypothesis, characteristics of an ideal victim, and differences between good and bad victims.
This chapter looks into various conceptualizations of terrorism. Most terrorism scholars view terrorism as a distinctive phenomenon when compared with other forms of political violence. Terrorism is most often defined as the use of violence for the purpose of generating a psychological impact beyond the immediate victims or any sort of political motive. However, how to accurately define terrorism has long been the subject of contentious debates both within policy-making and the terrorism studies literature of the past fifty years. The chapter then lists the levels of analysing terrorism. These are: definition, conceptualization, and pejorative labeling. It notes how the psychological impact and terrorism is viewed as fundamental in understanding terrorism.
Bernhard Blumenau and Tim Wilson
This chapter discusses the history of terrorism. Terrorism, as it is understood in this chapter, is the deliberate use or threat of violence by non-state actors in order to achieve power and implement political goals. Historical studies help us to better understand the sheer complexity of terrorism from the past. The chapter looks into the gunpowder revolution in Europe. It cites David Rapoport's ‘Four Waves’ model and relates it to accounts of the historical evolution of modern anti-state terrorism since 1880. Rapoport's work has become the dominant explanation of the evolution of modern terrorism.
This chapter gives a basic overview of the field of terrorism studies. It looks at attempts to define the boundaries of terrorism as a subject. It traces the evolution of orthodox terrorism studies since the 1970s. The term terrorism was first coined during the French Revolution. Terrorism sparks powerful images of sudden, disruptive, and system-shaking political violence. The academic study of terrorism as it exists now reflects the shifting concerns of both governments and the public. Scolarship on terrorism has never been richer and more diverse than it is now. New research opportunties always raise new challenges so it will be interesting to see the field of terrorism studies evolve even further in the future.
Stefan Malthaner, Donatella della Porta, and Lorenzo Bosi
This chapter examines the concept of political violence. Political violence is analysed through the process of radicalization, escalation, transformation, and disengagement resulting from interactions between multiple actors. The chapter explains how processual approaches offer a new way of trying to understand dynamic and continuously changing phenomena. Using processual approaches means taking on a critique of political violence explanations as an effect of socio-economic structural conditions, individual predispositions, or ideologies. The chapter also looks at the social movement theory, political opportunity structure approaches, and resource mobilization theory as alternative ways to study political violence. Appreciating continuity, interaction, context, and contingency are vital in understanding political violence.
A Failing State?
Nadje Al-Ali and Nicola Pratt
This chapter examines whether Iraq is a failed state and how it drew such characterization. It focuses on the period since the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq in 2003 that toppled Saddam Hussein. The chapter considers three areas: the reconstruction of Iraq’s political institutions; post-invasion violence and security; and human and economic development. It shows how the failure to reconstruct political institutions capable of reconciling Iraq’s different political groupings has weakened central government, exacerbated corruption within state institutions, and contributed to ethnic/sectarian violence, thereby creating a favourable environment for the emergence of the Islamic State. The chapter argues that the Iraqi state is failing to provide necessary services and infrastructure for economic and human development and even basic security for much of the population.
This chapter offers a brief account of Frantz Fanon’s life and experiences, which provided the material for his analysis of the psychology of racialized colonialism. The chapter investigates his account of the psychology of race and gender with in a world where such categories operate to organize privileges. Fanon’s The Wretched of the Earth (1962) examines the violence of colonization and decolonization, especially with respect to the use of revolutionary violence and the struggles of transforming liberation movements into long-lasting regimes providing freedom. Moreover, Fanon’s prediction of the systemic dysfunctions of postcolonial regimes provides valuable tools for analysing contemporary global politics. The chapter also acknowledges Fanon’s ultimate message that overcoming oppression means accepting collective responsibility for making and remaking the world, regardless of conditions.
This chapter examines the power of gender in global politics. It considers the different ways in which gender shapes world politics today, whether men dominate global politics at the expense of women, and whether international—and globalized—gender norms should be radically changed, and if so, how. The chapter also discusses sex and gender in international perspective, along with global gender relations and the gendering of global politics, global security, and the global economy. The first case study in this chapter considers the Kurdish Yekîneyên Parastine Jin (Women's Protection Units) and the role of women in political violence. The second case study examines neo-slavery and care labour in Asia.