The Psychology of Terrorism

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Terrorism Psychology The assignment being completed within this report asks the author of this paper to answer several questions. The first relates to the psychological attributes of terrorists. The second question asks for historical and cultural antecedents to September 11th. The third and final one asks for mental illness and its inconclusive link with terrorism. Reasons for the inconclusiveness as well as reasons people become terrorists. Psychological Profile of a Terrorist The primary psychological component uses when describing terrorists is aggressiveness. When speaking of terrorist groups that work together to perpetrate violent and murderous acts, the most commonly cited psychological principle, at least relevant to the collective behavior of a group, is the social identity theory. This theory states that people in groups like terrorist entities forsake their own personal identity and mindset in favor of the collective mindset. When speaking of terrorist groups, this is mostly harnessed to attack Western interests or those that are known or perceived to be non- or anti-Muslim (Smith, 2008). Antecedents to Terrorism Events To those that pay any attention to the words and motivations espoused by terrorist groups, there are two primary motivators for terrorist events based on historical and social conditions. The first is the view of some, although extreme and not a mainstream Muslim view, that any ridicule, condemnation, abandonment or other incendiary
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