Terrorism: Definition of terrorism: Frequently debated, though some general characteristics can be outlined. Some characteristics: 1. Terrorism is always political: seeks to effect political change 2. Non-state actors: terrorism is a non-state actor activity. State violence is either war or repression, though some would argue there is such a thing as state terrorism, where the state terrorizes its population. However, this is different from terrorism by non-state actors, in that it seeks to keep status quo in place. 3. Terrorism deliberately targets non-combatants, or civilians 4. State violence is, in theory, subject to international norms and conventions. There is some recourse when states violate these norms. Terrorists do not recognize any such norms or conventions. The target of the terrorist group is less the actual victims of the terrorist act than the state and the society against which they are fighting. The terrorist seeks to coerce the
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