Forum Post Response – Political Opinions, Religious Extremism and Secular Government

I need a forum response to the 3 forum posts below. Responses should be a minimum of 150 words and include direct questions. You may challenge, support or supplement another student’s answer using the terms, concepts and theories from the required readings. Also, do not be afraid to respectfully disagree where you feel appropriate; as this should be part of your analysis process at this academic level.

Forum 1: 
Political and religious views have influenced people all over the world to do good and bad things for hundreds of years. Recently, terrorist organizations such as Al Qaeda have developed ways to use these as inspiration to carry out and plan attacks on its enemies. These tactics consist of utilizing social media recruiting tools others to carry out attacks on innocent people, using people to give their own lives to carry out suicide attacks, and other acts of terrorism to strike fear into citizens. Religion is a form of ideology and is claimed to be a lack of economic development and can link unemployment with. Tarlow (2017) states that, “Bush was a strong proponent that poverty, lack of education and a lack of hope translated into young men and women becoming terrorists” (Tarlow, 2017). Political issues that lead to terrorism can be from ideologies, and concerns of the actions, and organization of the government. For example, in the United States, right winged groups such as neo-Nazism, left-winged socialism, or anarchists that are primarily anti-government and anti-authority (A Military Guide to Terrorism in the Twenty-First Century, 2007). Various types of as social, behavioral, and geographical can influence others to conduct attacks on their own governments and citizens, international or transnational, and individuals that act on their own accords which is considered “homegrown terrorism”. Ultimately, religious extremism motivates others into believing that a holy power compels others to conduct terrorist acts against others who do not worship the same god. However, most terrorist organizations were not believed to be religiously oriented until recently, and most terrorist organizations that are religiously more violent attacks than those who are not. Some examples of terrorism are the Palestinians and the Israels, and the Irish Republican Army (IRA) that has been of conducting terrorist attacks with nationalistic motivations. The ability for terrorist leaders to promote and recruit people to sacrifice themselves for their cause is through psychological vulnerability of people who they target by preaching beliefs and why they should act against others in a violent manner.          

Forum 2: 
We have all heard the term “Radical Muslim Terrorist”. This is a combination of both the political and religious aspects that inspire individuals that choose to carry out terrorist actions. These two aspects have become so intertwined where it comes to terrorists that it hard to tell where the political side ends and the religious side begins. 
When the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, also known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, began to rise in power it was as touted as a political up rising to bring peace and control back to the region. The leader of The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant believed their cause was to “Islamic lands of all alien and infidel influences.” (Gerges, 2016) and create an Islamic State that was ruled by Sharia Law. Granted he Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant’s actions were terrorist in nature and loosely vailed as a political movement. 
If you go back in time a little farther to the beliefs of the Taliban, namely Osama Bin Laden you can plainly see from his statement made after the September 11th attacks that his motivation had religious inspirations. Osama Bin Laden released a statement after that attacks in where he is quoted to say “God Almighty hit the United States at its most vulnerable spot. He destroyed its greatest buildings. Praise be to God” (Hoffman, 2006). 
If we move away from what is typically considered a terrorist and look towards other groups like the Irish Republican Army you can also see that they are driven by both political and religious motivators. While their primary goal is political by attempting to use terrorism to force the establishment of a Irish Republic and remove the British as the rulers of Northern Ireland (Arthur Et All, 2019). There are also religious undertones with the strong influence of the Irish Catholic Church being the main religious organization linked to most of the members of the organization.
It is easy to find the political and religious aspects that inspire people to commit terrorist acts. And modern terrorism really blurs the lines between a terrorist’s motivation being purely political or religious. What is found more often is that their motivations are wrapped up in intertwined in both aspects. 

Forum 3: 
The inspiration of politics upon individuals that choose to carry out terrorist actions are to influence political process of a country and political party beliefs. Individuals who choose to carry out terrorist action to influence political process of a country wants a country to change their political policy or a certain topic. Changing political policy is reshaping a country to adopt a terrorist ideals. An example of terrorist ideals is revolutionary. Individuals with revolutionary ideals would commit terrorist acts to replace current government with new political party like communist.  
An example of individuals choosing to carry out terrorist actions due to influence of politics is the bombing of commuter trains in Spain. Based on our reading “A Military Guide to Terrorism in the Twenty-First Century”, they have been many theories on why terrorist bomb commuter trains in Spain and one theory is to influence the political process in Spain. The theory says that the bombing of commuter trains ins Spain happens to have Spain oppose the war in Iraq. Spain withdrew troops from the Iraq war. 
The inspiration of religion upon individuals that choose to carry out terrorist actions are “violence is a sacramental act or divine duty executed in direct response to the theological demand or imperative”, view large scale attacks are acceptable and needed to speed up their plans, clerical authority, and view of individuals outside of a terrorist group. (AMU) The view of individuals outside of a terrorist group is that terrorist view individuals that are non-believers a threat to their religious goal. Also, view harming individuals as acceptable since those individuals are not part of their religion. 
Violence being a sacramental act in response to the theological demand means terrorist views using violence as acceptable means to obtain their religion ideal. An example of sacramental act is the Iran revolution. During the Iran revolution, the teachings of the Qur’an was happening and it was taught to resist United States influence. Also, “to create a true Islamic state”, it must be the advocate for the oppressed and aggrieved everywhere”. (AMU) Individuals who committed terrorist acts under Qur’an says it is necessary to commit terrorist act to “create a true Islamic state”. 

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