Center for Global Affairs
The attacks of September 11, 2001, have brought the issue of transnational terrorism to the forefront of the global agenda. Terrorism, however, is hardly a new phenomenon. The employment of terrorist tactics for purposes of achieving social or political goals dates back at least several centuries. This course explores what terrorism is and how it has evolved. Some of the key questions that this course deals with include: What exactly is terrorism? What kinds of actors employ terrorist tactics? What are the most common terrorist strategies and tactics? How has terrorism evolved since the end of the Cold War? How much of a threat is terrorism? What are the new threats posed by terrorists in the current era? What role do societal factors, such as the media and public opinion, play in dealing with terrorism? How can governments and societies effectively deter and, if necessary, combat terrorism? What alternatives are available to the international community for combating transnational terrorism? What are the tradeoffs and costs societies might be asked to incur in order to wage a war on terrorism? How have recent wars on terror fared? How does terrorism end?