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Global AlertThe Rationality of Modern Islamist Terrorism and the Challenge to the Liberal Democratic World$
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Boaz Ganor

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780231172127

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231172127.001.0001

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Introduction to Multidimensional Warfare

Introduction to Multidimensional Warfare

Defining Terrorism, Redefining War

(p.1) 1 Introduction to Multidimensional Warfare
Global Alert

Boaz Ganor

Columbia University Press

This chapter identifies terrorism as a multidimensional phenomenon concomitant with the historic and evolutionary trends of modern warfare. Far from being a traditional show of militaristic strength on the battlefield, terrorism also makes use of the media in discouraging military encounters via psychological warfare. At times, terrorist organizations might even challenge the legitimacy of those who govern by performing charitable deeds and the like—in a deft political maneuver that has since come to be known as “hybrid terrorism.” This highly adaptable and multidimensional nature of terrorism remains confounding to international think-tanks, who have yet to agree on a definition of terrorism. Beyond proposing a definition that makes a distinction between terrorism and guerrilla warfare, this chapter also notes that the usual Western tactic of implementing liberal democracy in Arab countries in order to snuff out terrorist inclinations can, in fact, be exploited by terrorist organizations to further their own agendas.

Keywords:   modern warfare, terrorism, terrorist organizations, hybrid terrorism, definition of terrorism, guerrilla warfare, liberal democracy

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