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Terrorism - PsychologyandLaw Terroristsandcults...

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    Psychology and Law Terrorists and cults
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    Defining Terrorism Schmid and Jongman list 109 different  definitions of terrorism US State Dept: “a premeditated, politically  motivated violence conducted in times of  peace, perpetrated against non-combatant  targets by sub-national groups of clandestine  state agents, usually intended to influence an  audience to advance political ends”
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    Terrorism definition continued McCauley & Segal “the use or threat of  violence, by small groups against non- combatants of large groups, for avowed  political goals” Ku Klux Klan? Mafia? Bloods and Crips?
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    One core element of most  definitions… Strategic use of fear to advance one’s  objectives (Kruglanski & Fishman,  2006)
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    Terrorism as syndrome or  tool? (Kruglanski & Fishman) Syndrome view assumes terrorism is a  monolithic psychological construct with  identifiable properties Who are terrorists?  What causes them  to do these things? Research fails to find particular  psychological traits or “root causes” Motivations varied
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    Terrorism as tool view Based on goals-means relations Means to an end, a tactic of warfare anyone  could use A given means will be used when its  expected utility is higher than that of other  means Chosen means will be instrumental to ends,  be better than other means, and not hinder  other objectives
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    Terrorist organizations
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