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 Format: MS WORD ::   Chapters: 1-5 ::   Pages: 130 ::   Attributes: Literature analysis ::   4,268 people found this useful

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The activities of terrorism in Nigeria and other countries of the world have increased overtime.

        Terrorism is violence or threat of violence calculated to create an atmosphere of fear or alarm and thereby bring about some social and political changes. This definition is in line with the explanation offered by a South American Jurist more than 30 years ago, according to him “Terrorism consists of acts that are in themselves may be classic-crimes, murder, arson, the use of explosives, but that differ from classic crimes in that they are excited with the deliberate intention of causing panic and terror within an arranged or organized society. It is the use of violence and most especially the fear it causes among people for political objectives.

It was also defined by the Terrorism Research Center as “the systematic use of physical violence against non combatants but with an audience greater than the immediate victim in mind to create a general climate of fear in a large population in order to affect some kind of political and social changes”.

The United States Federal Bureau of investigation (FBI) defines terrorism as “the unlawful use of force or violence against persons or property to intimate or coerce a government, the population or any segment thereof in furtherance of political and social objectives”. In basic terms, terrorism is an act of inflicting terror upon the people in the process of achieving personal or political objectives.

        There have been several strategies to end the issues as regard the growth of terrorism (feeman, 2002). Some of the terrorist groups identified are the Al-qaeda, the book haram, and ISIS; but the study will focus on the Al-qaeda.

        On May 2, 2011 Unites States Special Forces killed, “the most wanted man on the planet”, the leader of terrorist group al-Qaeda, which was responsible for the September 11, 2001 attack on the World Trade Center in New York, and the icon of the modern Islamic resurgence Osama bin Laden. He was assassinated in his Pakistani house, and buried in the sea within 24 hours. United States had captured and killed its number one enemy, but terrorism as a threat is still present. Death of bin Laden will influence the face of the global terrorism. Terrorism was not always labelled as a global threat, and therefore in order to understand the impact of killing bin Laden on global terrorism, this phenomenon has to be properly defined.

Diplomat’s dictionary sees terrorism as a “use of violence against non-combatants, civilians or other persons normally considered to be illegitimate targets of military action for purpose of attracting attention to a political cause, forcing those aloof from the struggle to join it, or intimidating opponents into concessions” (Feeman, 1997). Benjamin Netanyahu (1995), Israeli Prime Minister, defined it as “the deliberate and systematic assault on civilians to inspire fear for political ends.”

According to David Fromkin (1975) assigned terrorism with the creation of fear, which “leads somebody else not the terrorist to embark on some quite different program of action that will accomplish whatever is that the terrorist really desires.” All of these definitions contain two characteristic features: deed, or an action (which is in most cases violent), and achievement of a political goal.


What really instigated the study was due to the growth of terrorism in Nigeria and other countries of the world. Most research on terrorism has been centered on the economic development of Nigeria. There have also been several studies on the Al-qaeda; but most of the research ended their research on the activities of the Al-qaeda from 1998 to 2008 none of the researcher has really extended their research on terrorism and the al-qaeda after the death of osama bin ladin (2012-2016).

        Secondly other research did not really examine the structure and the strength of the Al-qaeda. The structure of the Al-qaeda structure is so flexible and loose that the replacement of the figurehead will not have any impact on its future actions (McCants, 2011). It will remain, also due to the specific type of communication, through information committees, which communicate either through internet, or directly, and have close ties with all senior members of al-Qaeda and with the al- Qaeda network. Even the death of al-Zawahiri will not hurt al-Qaeda (Farrall, 2011). Al- Qaeda set up the firm ideology which is followed by radical Muslims living in the Western Europe, and radical Muslims living in the Arab world. It is to this regard that the research wishes to examine terrorism and global security


The main aim of the research work is to examine terrorism and global security. Other specific objectives of the study include:

  1. to determine the causes of terrorism
  2. to examine the Al-qaeda and their activities from 2012 to 2016
  3. to determine the effect of negotiation on terrorism resolution in Nigeria and other countries of the world


The study came up with research questions so as to be able to ascertain the above stated objectives of the study. The research questions for the study are stated below as follows:

  1. What are the causes of terrorism?
  2. What are the Al-qaeda and their activities from 2012 to 2016?
  3. What are the effect of negotiation on terrorism resolution in Nigeria and other countries of the world?


The study on terrorism and global security will be of immense benefit to Nigeria and other countries of the world; the study will also be of immense benefit to other researchers that wishes to examine terrorism and global security. The study will reveal the history of terrorism, the causes, the features of terrorism and the Al-qaeda and their activities. The study will contribute to the body of the existing literature on terrorism and global security.


The study on terrorism and global security is limited to Al-qaeda and it covers for a period 2012 - 2016


The chapter one of the study will contain the study background, the statement of research problem, the aims and objectives of the study, the research questions, and the significance of study, the scope of the study and the definition of terms. The chapter two will discuss terrorism, the features of terrorism, the causes of terrorism, the terrorism and global security, the Al-qaeda, the structure of the Al-qaeda, the activities of the Al-qaeda, the Al-qaeda (2012-2016). The chapter three of the research work will cover the impact of the Al-qaeda on most of the countries of the world. The chapter four will discuss the end of Al-qaeda, the negotiations and peace to other countries. The chapter five of the research work will discuss the summary, conclusion and recommendation of the study.


TERRORISM: “Terror” comes from a Latin word “terrerre” meaning “to frighten”. The terror cimbricus was a panic and state of emergency in Rome in response to the approach of warriors of the cumbri Tribe in 105BC.

The definitions of terrorism have proved controversial. Various legal systems and government agencies use different definitions of terrorism in their national legislation. Moreover, the international community has been slow to formulate a universally agreed, legally binding definition of this crime. These difficulties arise from the fact that the term, “terrorism” is politically and emotionally charged. In this regard, the international community has never succeeded in developing an accepted comprehensive definition of terrorism. During the 1970s and 1980s, the United Nations attempts to define the term foundered mainly due to differences of opinion between various members about the use of violence in the context of conflicts over national liberation and self determination. These divergences have made it impossible for the United Nations to conclude a comprehensive convention on international terrorism that incorporates a single, all encompassing, legally binding, criminal law definition of terrorism. Moreover, since 1994, the United Nations General Assembly has repeatedly condemned terrorist acts using the following political description of terrorism; “criminal acts intended or calculated to provoke a state of terror in the general public by a group of persons or particular persons for political purposes are in any circumstance unjustifiable, whatever the considerations of a political, philosophical, ideological, racial, ethnic, religious or any other nature that may be invoked to justify them.

Nevertheless, by distinguishing terrorists from other types of criminals and terrorism from other forms of crimes, we come to appreciate that terrorism is;

- Ineluctably political in aims and motives

- Violent – or, equally important, threatens violence

- Designed to have far reaching psychological repercussions beyond the immediate victim or target

- Conducted by an organization with an identifiable chain of command or conspiratorial cell structure (whose members wear no uniforms or identifying insigma) and perpetrated by a sub national group or non-state entity.

Terrorism thus is defined as political violence in an asymmetrical conflict that is designed to induce terror and psychic fear (sometimes indiscriminate) through the violent victimization and destruction of noncombatant targets (sometimes iconic symbols). Such acts are meant to send a message from an illicit clandestine organization.

Terrorist attacks are usually carried out in such a way as to maximize the severity and length of the psychological impact. Each act of terrorism is a performance devised to have an impact on many large audiences.

Terrorists also attack national symbols to show power and to attempt to shake the foundation of the country or society they are opposed to. This may negatively affect a government, while increasing the prestige of the given terrorist organization and/or ideology behind a terrorist act.

Terrorism is a political tactics; like letter writing or protesting which is used by activists when they believe that no other means will affect the kind of change they desire. This change is desired so badly that failure to achieve change is seen as a worse outcome than the deaths of civilians.

        The terms “terrorism” and “terrorists” (someone who engages in terrorism) carry strong negative connotations. These terms are often used as political; labels to condemn violence or the threat of violence by certain actors as immoral, indiscriminate, unjustifiable or to condemn an entire segment of a population. Those labelled “terrorists” by their opponents rarely identify themselves as such, and typically use other terms or terms specific to their situation, such as separatist, freedom fighter, liberator, revolutionary, vigilante, militant, paramilitary, guerilla, rebels, patriots or any other similar meaning word in other languages and cultures, like Jihad, Mujaheddin and Fedayeen are similar Arabic words which have entered the English lexicon. The pejorative connotations of the word can be summed up in the aphorism, “one man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter”. This is exemplified when a group using irregular military methods is an ally of a state against a mutual enemy, but later falls out with the state and starts to use those methods against its former ally. More recently, Ronald Reagan and others in American administration frequently called the Afghan Mujahideen, “freedom fighters”, during their war against the Soviet Union, yet twenty years later, when new generations of Afghan men are fighting against what they perceived to be a regime installed by foreign powers, their attacks are labelled “terrorism” by George W. Bush.


WAR: War is a behavior pattern exhibited by many primate species including humans. The primary feature of this behaviour pattern is a certain state of organized violent conflict that is engaged in between two or more separate social entities. Such a conflict is always an attempt at altering either the psychological hierarchy or the material hierarchy of domination or equality between two or more groups. In all cases, at least one participant (group) in the conflict perceives the need to either psychologically or materially dominate the other participant. Amongst humans, the perceived need for domination often arises from the belief that an essential ideology or resource is somehow either so incompatible or so scarce as to threaten the fundamental existence of the one group experiencing the need to dominate the other group. Leaders will sometimes enter into a war, under the pretext that their actions are primarily defensive, however when viewed objectively, their actions may more closely resemble a form of unprovoked, unwarranted, or disproportionate aggression. In all wars the group(s) experiencing the need to dominate other groups is unable and unwilling to accept or permit the possibility of a relationship of fundamental equality to exist between the groups who have opted for group violence (war). The aspect of domination that is a precipitating in all wars, that is, one group wishing to dominate another, is also often a precipitating factor in individual one-onone violence outside of the context of war; that is one individual wishing to dominate another.

GLOBAL SECURITY: Global security consists of the measures taken by nations and international organizations, such as the United Nations, to ensure mutual survival and safety. These measures include military actions and diplomatic agreements such as treaties and conventions.

As cold war tension receded, it became clear that the security of citizens was threatened by hardships arising from internal state activities as well as external aggressors. Civil wars were increasingly common and compounded existing poverty, disease, hunger, violence and human rights abuses. Through neglect of its constituents, nation states have failed in their primary objective. The state centric notion of security has been challenged by more holistic approaches to security. Among approaches which seek to acknowledge and address these basic threats to human safety are paradigm which includes cooperative, comprehensive, collective measures aimed to ensure security for the individual and, as a result, for the state.

To enhance international security and potential threats caused by terrorism and organized crime, increased cooperation within police forces internationally has been applied. The international police, INTERPOL, shares information across international borders and this cooperation has been greatly enhanced by the arrival of the internet and the ability to transfer documents, films and photographs world wide instantly.

Governments’ first Cooperative Threat Reduction (CTR) programs were created in 1991 to eliminate the former Soviet Union’s nuclear, chemical and other weapons and prevent their proliferation. The programs have accomplished a great deal; deactivating thousands of nuclear warheads, neutralizing chemical weapons, converting weapons facilities for peaceful use, and redirecting the work of former weapons scientist and engineers, among other efforts.

The search for security remains the overriding concern for many peoples and nations. But the definition of what constitutes security and the strategies for attaining it varies greatly. For billions of people, the quest is to ‘secure’ basic needs: food, water, shelter and health care. In other words, freedom form wants. For others, it is to secure other fundamental human rights: freedom of expression, freedom from oppression, freedom from fear. Even among states, security has different definitions. For some, it is the achievement of economic or military parity or superiority. For others, the projections of power and influence and for still others, the resolution of grievances and disputes. The challenges, regardless of which aspect of security we consider, the current global picture is one of failure on many fronts. If we look at the quest to secure basic needs, we are struck by the persistent inequality in the global distribution of wealth.

        Yet, which ever definition of security we use, there are a number of commonalities. The first commonality is that security threats are all interconnected. Poverty is frequently coupled with human rights abuses and lack of good governance which results in a deep sense of injustice, anger and humiliation. This in turn provides an ideal environment for breeding violence of all types, including extremism, civil strife and interstate wars. And it is in regions of long standing conflict where countries are most frequently driven to increase their standing or seek greater security through the pursuit of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction. A surge in the sophistication of extremist networksunderscores the potential for nuclear and radiological terrorism.

POLITICS: The struggle for power which itself is the authority to determine or formulate and execute decisions and policies, which must be accepted by the society……it is the struggle for power of governance, especially executive authority (Onyekpe 1998: 16) according to this argument, the struggle for or the acquisition of power and the reaction of the society to it, depend greatly on the level of political development of the country.

Hijacking: An attempt to seize an airplane, ship or other vehicle with whatever hostage maybe in it, to force some actions or movement to another country upon an agreement by authorities involved to terrorists demand.

PLURALISM: Implies the existence of many groups of people, whether tribal, ethnic, political or religious.  Therefore, a religious pluralistic society will refer to an environment where there are many religious beliefs, concepts or ideologies.

AL-QAEDA: a radical Sunni Muslim organization dedicated to the elimination of a Western presence in Arab countries and militantly opposed to Western foreign policy: founded by Osama bin Laden in 1988


During the course of performing/researching this project work, the researcher encountered a lot of challenges as well as opposition which ranges from financial constraints, time factor, sourcing of material etc. this factors in their own ways, slowed down the speed progress of this work that resulted to the researcher not being able to finish the research work on time as is required. The research would have research on a wider range but because of this limitation, the researcher now narrowed it to Al-qaeda as a case study from 2012 to 2016.



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