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Terrorism in South Asia

BY: ISAAC HILLER ARMSTRONG | Category: Issues | Submitted: 2011-07-19 11:33:15
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Article Summary: "Terrorism is a covert warfare, which targets innocent Civilians, Business men and the Politicians. State-sponsored terrorism and religious extremists are the two forces which have been unleashed to weaken and destablise secular countries in South Asian region. Narcotic trafficking, smuggling of arms and explosives is a part of t.."


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Terrorism is not a new event; its appearance in the present global strategic environment is certainly a cause for distress. The speedy globalization, increase in the cutting edge technologies, the information revolution, cross cultural migration across continents also become fundamental cause to the scourge of terrorism.

Terrorism in South Asia began to raise its head with the emergence of independence nations in the region. These newly independent nations were breaking out of centuries-old colonial oppression. The process of achieving independence itself was often wrought with violence.

South Asia is considered epicentre of international terrorism. One can confess to the fact that South Asia is one of the poorest regions of the world. There are prolonged conflicts of every nature; be it among states, ethnic groups, religious fanaticism, linguistic confrontations and subnationlistic tendencies etc. Cross border terrorism and state sponsored terrorism are widespread in the South Asian region. It is South Asia that is a pioneer in suicide terrorism.

South Asia, being an unstable region causes vulnerabilities to India's National Security. India is the only country that shares border be it land or sea with all the countries of South Asia. Hence, it becomes significant to analyse the impact of South Asian terrorism on India in order to obtain the response frameworks that exist in India and to imply a few solid measures to combat the menace of terrorism. Before looking in to the subject in detail let us see the definition and meaning of terrorism.

Terrorism is a phenomenon that is easier to describe than define. The term, indeed, has no precise or widely accepted definition. The problem of definition is compounded by the fact that terrorism has become a 'fad word' used promiscuously and often applied to a variety of acts of violence. Due to ideological and political views of the analysts the definitions of the term depend on one's point of view. For some, it is essentially a form of social protest, and for others it is the threat or use of violence to in still fear for political purposes. The complexity in defining the term has led to the cliché that one man's terrorist is another man's freedom-fighter; implication being that there could be no objective definition.

Terrorism is no longer a local problem of specific countries but an issue involving a number of international aspects. Scholars the word over describe it according to their own socio-economic and political conditions. Those viewing it in a perception of social and economic problems conceptualise terrorism as conflict in society between the haves and the have-nots, while those watching the use of terror tactics as means to gain political ends consider a political phenomenon. Apparently the word 'terrorism' is interpreted differently in agreement with different points of view.

South Asia remains as one of the most volatile regions of the world. Internal Security problems have disturbed the security environment of this region. South Asian nations have cross-border connections and inter-related. This gives a way for proliferation of small arms, the menance of drug trafficking and narco-terrorism.

Terrorism in South Asia should not be treated as the problem only to South Asian countries but one way or the other terrorism has outburst and come out with the international problem. This has to be dealt with comprehensively in all dimensions and at all levels-political, economic, social and militarily. Striking the right balance is the key in meeting these challenges effectively. We need a comprehensive security policy that will be implemented effectively at all levels.

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