Terrorism : A Criminal Justice Approach

2244 Words9 Pages
The dilemma facing state leaders for the past decades has been whether to respond to terrorism through a criminal justice approach or a more involved military approach. The criminal justice approach treats terrorism as a law-and-order problem in which the main burden is placed on the judiciary and police. In contrast, the military approach treats terrorism as a perilous threat to the national security of the state, which can only be countered with military force and wartime procedures. The argument of this paper is that military procedures are not warranted in dealing with terrorism because the terror threat is not lethal or influential enough to threaten our democracy, and even if it was, military action has proven itself to be so fraught with problems and costly risks in past interventions that continued use of such a tactic would not only harm our national security, but also could precipitate the fall of the American Empire. Instead, law-enforcement has proven itself to be an efficient counter-terrorism tool that results in the capturing of terrorists, acquisition of intelligence, and spurring of cooperation with allied countries.
A primary consideration in deciding whether or not to use military force is to assess the lethality and influence of the threat to our democracy. Viewing the situation from the lens of the United States, terrorism has consistently been over-exaggerated. Just a few decades ago Washington
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