This article originally appeared on Common Dreams.
What is terrorism? Many are convinced that the word is inherently so vague as to be meaningless. I have never understood this. To me the definition seems singular, and obvious, and it would appear that simply understanding it is the key to avoiding terrible missteps in the aftermath of an attack like the one in Paris.
Terrorism is a tactic in which the primary objective is to produce fear, rather than direct harm. Terrorist attacks are, first and foremost, psychological operations designed to alter behavior amongst the terrorized in a way that the actors believe will serve them.
The 9/11 perpetrators killed about 3,000 people, and did about $13 billion in physical damage to the United States.… Read the rest