Executive Branch Impacts on Terrorism.
Terrorism can be defined as the use of unlawful violence which brings about fear and destruction to people, society and governments for the sake of political, ideological, religious, and economic goals. Terrorism policy or a plan whose intentions are to cause terror or bring intimidation causing fear. Some of the root causes of terrorism are as a result of real or perceived oppression, inequality between the west and the third world countries. Terrorist nature is socially conditioned and can be thought of largely, as a result of environment. Oppression, combined with disillusionment with the perceived riches of the western world, which is largely an unfounded perception, lead in some to a feeling of being second class global citizens. (Clarke, 2004). Most of the efforts taken to fight the problem are usually in treating the effects instead of solving the root causes. In most cases the battle against terror is leading to our own societies becoming more restrictive. Common types of terrorism include civil disorders which involves a collective violence interfering with the security and the peace hence the normal functioning of the community. Political terrorism involves the behaviors that are criminal designed to bring fear in a community for a political purpose. Non political terrorism involves behavior that cause fear to a community which is not aimed for any political purpose. The result of this is individual or collective gain rather than achievement of political objective. This paper will discuss about the specific actions that have been taken by the executive branch so as to reduce the terrorism and their impacts. There have been scholars and instructors who are involved in the training and education programs for the American soldiers in order to fight terrorism. The training has brought positive impacts especially in protection of human rights and democratization. The U.S has not been working alone to fight terrorism, but the Organization of the America States supports the her
The executive branch has a specific role it plays in order to fight terrorism. The main role is to enforce the nation’s law. The President heads the executive branch which enforces the laws that the legislative branch creates. The vice president and the cabinet are also part of executive. It plays a major role in ensuring that there is good relationship with other nations. It also commands the armed forces and has the sole authority and responsibility for the daily administration of the state bureaucracy. The executive branch takes the actions in order to reduce the problem. In 2002, the president said that the battle should be taken to taken to the enemy and disrupts their plans and confronts the worst threats before they emerge. According to the president, the only path to safety is the path of action which involves national strategy for combating terrorism. Within the executive branch, there is the Ministry of Defense in which the interaction of the civil military mostly takes place. The president directs the role of the armed forces on daily basis. The power relationships between the armed forces and civilians are structured in the ministry and serves as the primary medium for division of responsibilities and tasks.
In the U.S. the power of the executive branch maintains the control of information about terrorism. In the past it has been argued that failing to grant the total access of information would compromise on the intelligence gathering capabilities of the government. The executive branch is the primary source of the media information coverage on terrorist attacks. This is because they it is the only branch which has the access to information about terrorism. One of the aims of the of the executive branch is to defeat the terrorist of global reach through information, financial intelligence, law enforcement, economy and other instruments of power. As a result, U.S. attacks terrorists’ sanctuaries, command, material support, leadership, communications and finances. They do not wait to be attacked so that they attack back, but takes the initiative before. This approach has helped in disrupting terrorist activities, and forced them to disperse along regional lines. This ensures that the U.S. works with the partners to squeeze and isolate terrorists. This strategic goal aims not at clashing the civilizations but it is a clash between civilizations and those who would destroy it. The second goal of the U.S strategy in fighting terrorism is to deny them opportunity to cause terrorism. In this goal, all nations should take the responsibility in fighting against terrorist that are within their borders. This means denying the terrorist a sanctuary and the opportunity to exist, train, plan and attack. Nations are held accountable for the actions of their guests. The U.S. government works with the weak nations to offer incentives and assist them to meet their international obligations. The third goal of the strategy ensures the reduction of economic, social and political conditions that potential terrorists exploits. The fact that most of the people in the world are living with poverty deprivation and social disenfranchisement and regional disputes, this does not give them a reason to use terror. The executive branch ensures the support of moderate and modern governments and those in the Muslim world. Some of the Muslims that have been assisted are those of Kuwait, Bosnia and Kosovo. In this goal of the strategy, finding a solution to Palestinian conflict is considered to be more important. The fourth goal of the strategy involves defending the United States citizens, their national interests, territory and democratic principles. (Purpura P. P. 59).
The U.S. department takes specific measures to reduce terrorism and their document has included 5 tools. Diplomacy is one of the tools used which helps in promoting counter terrorism co-operation. The major goal is to enhance the capabilities of allies for mutual benefit. The international law enforcement increased as a result of the September 11 attacks and it continues to expand. The Al-Qaeda capabilities were degraded and the more than 3400 suspects were arrested. The other tool for the U.S. department is the intelligence sharing. Intelligence sharing among the nations helps in tracking down terrorist and exposing their plans. As a result a terrorist threat integration centre was created to analyze any information that is threat related. Terrorist screening center has also been created in order to consolidate terrorists watch list. Financial scrutiny tool is used to interdict the flow of money to terrorist groups and over 100 million in terrorist assets have been blocked by nations. (Burke 263)
The Legislative branch also takes efforts in fighting terrorism. There are 100 senators and 435 representatives. The legislative branch is made of two parts the house of representative and senate. Three federal laws accelerated the process of “court stripping” and it limits and removes the meaningful judicial review of the exercise of authority. Antiterrorism and effective death Penalty Act granted the federal government new powers while protecting its enforcement actions- especially death sentences- from effective judicial system. Since 1988, 26 received death sentences where 57 of them are still waiting for trial. The expansion of federal system matched with the concerns over terrorism even before the 11th Sep terrorist attacks. Public opinion polls indicated that the people who were against the death penalty of the terrorists had several exceptions. A research showed different individuals and groups in America have different opinion on the punishment of the terrorists. About fifth of those people that oppose terrorist’s death penalty supports the execution of defendant convicted in this kind of attack. The rising of public opposition to the death penalty would support the execution of a defendant in this attack. According to Fouda and Nick (65) most of the terrorists perceive terrorism as a way of fighting for their freedom which has led to killing of the common and innocent people. The main cause of terrorism should not be mistaken as most of the terrorist claim that they have been deprived of their human rights, if this may be regarded as the factor then in the conflicts existing in the world would have given rise to many instances of terrorism.
The United States have been responding towards terrorism so as to prevent future terrorist activities. However, security has to be provided in the transport sector such as the airports, railways and busy commercial centers. Airport screening should be strengthened up to the highest level and this can be done by screening all travelers. Consequently, this will prevent the chemical and airborne terrorism. The United States of America transportation department is supposed to establish a secure screening program which will identify any terrorist before traveling. Counter insurgence method which is commonly used by United States of America to encounter terrorism can be considered as one way of terrorism. During the counter insurgence operations, military operations are used while trying to escalate the extremist militants which have led to many deaths of innocent civilians and destruction of properties worth millions of money (Alavasius 680).
Terrorism has had more of negative effects to the entire whole world to a point that no country or state can be said to be totally secure. United States of America has been a major target by the militants who have come up in the name of protecting the Islamic religion. The network of terrorism is to too intact to be broken, this has been promoted by some leaders who are reluctant to fight terrorism and some who involve themselves in the terrorist activities. With the development of technological tools that could be used as weapons for terrorism, frequent bombs attacks and religious wars, the executive Branch in U.S. together with other branches have taken responsibility to fight it. Strategic goals that have been set by the executive branch in the U.S. have been effective in controlling and giving the society the direction in combating the problem.
Alavosius, M. P. Preparedness in Times of Terror. Disaster Prevention & Management
Burke, Jason. Al-Qaeda – The True Story of Radical Islam. London, New York: I.B. Tauris. 2004. pg 263
Clarke, . 2004. Richard A. Against All Enemies: Inside America’s War on Terrorism. New York: Simon and Schuster. 2004.
Fouda, Yosri and Nick Fielding. Masterminds of Terror. Arcade Publishing.2004. pg65
Purpura P. P., Terrorism and homeland security: an introduction with applications
Butterworth-Heinemann, 2007 pg 5
Martha Crenshaw, Terrorism in context Penn State Press, 1995