Terrorism & Sustainable Development
By Abdul Razak Baginda & Peter Schier
ASEAN Academic Press
101 pages, 6" x 9"
This book examines the relationship between combating terrorism and sustainable development against the backdrop of contemporary global conditions. The terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 - and the bombings in Bali, Jakarta and elsewhere - thrust terrorism and its potent threat into the global spotlight with its acts of immense destruction. The emergence of the threat of terror has posed a major challenge to governments. One of the fundamental issues is in the methods to be employed to combat this menace.
While we need to adopt a comprehensive approach and take immediate action, we must also address the longer-term perspectives, namely that of sustainable development. The need to trace terrorism to its roots is vital. Why do such groups resort to such indiscriminate forms of violence? There are political issues, internally and externally. Some say it is the domestic environment that has encouraged the burgeoning of terrorist acts. Underdevelopment and poverty, coupled with dictatorial regimes, with little real political participation, are fundamental domestic causes of terrorism.
There are also radical groups with their own agenda to enhance their popularity and exploit the internal situation, which then finds external expression. The impasse on the Palestinian issue and the dominance of Western power are all factors that contribute to the emergence of terrorism as a means to further the cause of these extremists. One important root cause of terrorism is the failure of a number of political and religious leaders to unequivocally condemn any act of violence against fellow human beings as immoral and inhuman and, in the case of terrorism, as a crime against humanity which cannot be legitimized by any ideology or religion.
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