Terrorism is defined as the systematic use of violent activities to coerce, defeat, or generate fear.
While some pundits claim that there is no internationally accepted definition, the above of all definitions seems to be the most acceptable.
Terrorism may be perpetrated by religious, or political, or ideological organizations. While one group of people may describe those perpetrating terrorism acts, the opponent can, and often does claim the same.
There are different types of terrorism – civil disorder, political upheaval, social revolution, right- or left wing, all of which are the results of ideology.
The history of terrorism can be traced back to Sicarii Zealots (Jewish extremists) active in Judea in the first century A.D.
In the 1950’s terrorist activities increased substantially, mostly in western and North American industrialized countries.
Terrorists, seek to either force their ideology on another group, or create publicity for their cause, in the form of hijackings, cyber terrorism, eco terrorism, just to name a few.
Airline high jacking affect millions of people all over the world and have literally created industries i.e manufacturing of X-ray machines designed to check luggage, and containers, and security personnel to enforce laws. All of these precautions to prevent airline high jackings and/or destructions cost billions of dollars, which the travelling public must bear. Yet tourist numbers keep steady and in some countries even rise.
Last year, France attracted 79 million tourists, the U S A 61, China 56, and Spain 54 for the first in many years falling behind.
In-bound tourists to China increased substantially enough to surpass that of Spain whish used to be number three in the world thanks mostly sun-crazed Germans. Terrorism cannot be fully eliminated. In the western world, life is considered the most precious thing, whereas western or eastern terrorists it is not of great value. This mentality is the result of “brainwashing” potential terrorists and in some cases even my fraudulent means forcing individuals to become “martyrs”.
In Israel, to secure airports and airlines, checks start ell before a traveller nears airport buildings, and continues at different levels of scrutiny in a flawless manner by carefully trained and intelligent individuals. It is very effective, but time consuming and costly, but considered to be worth all the efforts and funds spent.
If counter check in airline employees in Boston, on that faithful September morning, had paid attention to details, the 9/11 tragedies would and could have been prevented. All terrorists had bought one-way tickets and paid cash, which is untraceable. The same is true for the Christmas bomber who was overwhelmed by a vigilant and observant fellow passenger.
It seems that governments are making rules to inconvenience travellers rather than increasing their efforts to discourage terrorists.
Terrorism cannot be fully eliminated as many people, even intelligent, well-educated, and technologically savvy individuals try to circumvent, and occasionally successfully exploit weak points in any system. The better way of combating these types of terrorists is to make all the populace vigilant and consistently bombarding them to report suspicious activities of individuals. There must be set limits as too much “snitching” may be become impossible to manage.
Terrorism costs billions and inconveniences millions. It must be everybody’s business to pay attention to his/her immediate environment, and report suspicious activity which must be immediately and professionally followed up.