ID:15901 Section: Noun

Updated:Sunday 12th October 2014

Terror ?

Terror Definition

(Wikipedia) - Terror This article is about the historical and political concept. For other uses, see Terror (disambiguation).Victims of Red Terror in Crimea, 1918

Terror, is from the French terreur, from Latin terror meaning "great fear", a noun derived from the Latin verb terrere meaning "to frighten", is a policy of political repression and violence intended to subdue political opposition. The term was first used for the Reign of Terror imposed by the Jacobins during the French Revolution. Modern instances of terror include red terror or white terror.

Before the advent of modern terrorism, the term "terrorism" in the English language was sometimes used interchangeable with terror. The modern definition of terrorism refers to criminal or illegal acts of violence at randomly chosen targets, in an effort to raise fear. It is practiced by extremist groups with a limited political base or parties on the weaker side in asymmetric warfare. Terror on the other hand is practiced by governments and law enforcement officials, usually within the legal framework of the state.

Revolutionary and counter-revolutionary terror Main article: Revolutionary terror

Revolutionary terror, also known as "Red terror", was often used by revolutionary governments to suppress counterrevolutionaries. The first example was the Reign of Terror during the French Revolution in 1794. Other notable examples include the Red Terror in Soviet Russia in 1918–1922, as well as simultaneous campaigns in the Hungarian Soviet Republic and in Finland. In China Red Terror in 1966 and 1967 started the Cultural revolution.

Counterrevolutionary terror is usually referred to as "white terror". Notable examples are the terror campaigns in France (1794–1795), in Russia (1917–20), in Hungary (1919–1921), and in Spain. Modern examples of counter-revolutionary terror include Operation Condor in South America.

Terror and terrorism Terrorism
  • Definitions
  • History
  • Incidents
By ideology Related
  • Ethnic violence
  • Militia movement
  • Resistance movement
  • Methods
  • Tactics
  • Agro-terrorism
  • Aircraft hijacking (list)
  • Animal-borne bomb attacks
  • Beheading
  • Bioterrorism
  • Car bombing (list)
  • Cyberterrorism
  • Dirty bomb
  • Dry run
  • Explosive
  • Hostage-taking
  • Improvised explosive device
  • Individual terror
  • Insurgency
  • Kidnapping
  • Letter bomb
  • Nuclear
  • Paper terrorism
  • Piracy
  • Propaganda of the deed
  • Proxy bomb
  • School shooting
  • Suicide attack (list)
  • Rockets and mortars
Terrorist groups
  • Designated terrorist organizations
  • Charities accused of ties to terrorism
State terrorism By state
  • State-sponsored terrorism
  • Financing
  • Fronting
  • Training camp
  • Lone wolf
  • Clandestine cell system
  • Leaderless resistance
Fighting terrorism
  • Counter-terrorism
  • International conventions
  • Anti-terrorism legislation
  • Terrorism insurance
  • v
  • t
  • e

David Forte states that the primary difference between terror and terrorism is that while terror can be neutrally evil, i.e. random violence committed by robbers, rapists, and even military personnel, terrorism has the additional political or moral dimension, being the systematized use of randomly focused violence by organized groups against non-combatants to effect a political objective.

However Charles Tilly defines "terror" as a political strategy defined as "asymmetrical deployment of threats and violence against enemies using means that fall outside the forms of political struggle routinely operating within some current regime," and therefore ranges from:

  • intermittent actions by members of groups that are engaged in wider political struggles to
  • one segment in the modus operandi of durably organized specialists in coercion, including government-employed and government-backed specialists in coercion to
  • the dominant rationale for distinct, committed groups and networks of activists.
  • According to Tilly, the term "terror" spans across a wide range of human cruelties, from Stalin''s use of executions to clandestine attacks by groups like the Basque separatists and the IRA and even ethnic cleansing and genocide

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