The 21st century signals the fact that technology and terrorism are two important issues and threats to people and society. This paper aims to present the various ways by which advances in technology may be used to prevent terrorism. The need for modern technology to be employed as a deterring effort against future terrorism attacks will also be discussed and emphasized in this paper. Crime in the 21st Century: Technology and Terrorism The contemporary world led to the advent of technological advances and acceptance to the fact that terrorism is the new form of crime besetting American societies.
In fact, the issues relating to technology and terrorism such as their hazards or even deadly implications are mounting that the contemporary society has continued to search for all possible means to address the problems. While technology modernization generally works to the advantage of people and the community, its damaging impacts are also undeniable. Hence it would be worthy to adhere to its benefits rather than use technology to the detriment of people and the society in general. Terrorism, on the other hand, is totally damaging.
Whether domestic or international in nature, there is no good to be derived from the act itself making it a serious issue impacting the 21st century. Efforts have already been initiated as well as various preventive and reaction measures are continuously being done in order to prevent, if not, stop terrorism. Despite these facts, however, terrorism remains to be a threat to modern people and society. The actions by the American government and criminal justice system are notable but they are not enough to eradicate the horror of terrorism.
It is a worthy consideration, therefore, that technology is used as a weapon not only for progress but also to deter and eventually bring terrorism to an end. This is for the reason that technology fundamentally functions as an acceptable evaluator of terrorism and provider of the needed actions and means that will consequently and effectively fight such kind of violence. The Relationship between Technology and Terrorism, an Overview The connection between samples or models of technology and the act of terrorism has been existing since the latter part of the nineteenth century (Wilkinson & Harman, 1993).
According to Wilkinson and Harman, the relationship exists during the period when dynamite was preferred the damaging equipment by havoc advocates such as the French rebels and Irish Fenians. In fact, the two have noted that the role that technology performs in the continued existence of terrorism is even more evident at the star of the 21st century until today which is an era marked by the use of Semtex and what are called the precision guided munitions of PGMs (Wilkinson & Harman, 1993). In order to determine more the link between technology and terrorism, it is initially essential to learn the nature and other components of the two issues.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation or FBI, which directly controls investigations as regard international and domestic terrorism, defines it as a hostile crime perpetrated against a population composed mostly of civilian people. The act is done in an objective to establish power or cruelty as well as to boost a political agenda. The Federal agency also identifies domestic terrorism as crimes which happen inside United States and are committed by a person or organization which fight for domestic cause.
International terrorism, meanwhile, are carried out by a person of group of persons from outside the country or those with external affiliation. As an acknowledged source of fear even for Americans in other countries, terrorism has already been regarded as a violation of federal law since 1986 for any organization or person terrorizing the nation’s interests and citizens around the world (Cited in Federal Bureau of Investigation Indianapolis Division, 2002). Technology and terrorism are serious issues and threats to contemporary society primarily because of the said connection which exist between the two.
Such kind of act of violence had noticeably remained consistent as regard the terrorists’ choosing of victims as well as the weapons and approaches they use. Additionally, radical terrorists tend to be conservative, adhering mainly to the same restricted operational record which they use every operation. The supporting role of technology is manifested through the various improvements applied mostly in the system of hiding and discharging of explosive and destructive weapons.
In the event that terrorism escalates and any efforts to stop it turn futile because of the attractiveness of more damaging devices such as biological, chemical and nuclear weapons, it is in this essence that technology modernization becomes a disadvantage (Hoffman, 1993). Technology against Terrorism The establishment of the correlating factor which exists between technology and terrorism and the realization that technology advancement is damaging when used in terrorism acts are concrete grounds for the need to use modern weapons not only for the country’s development but most importantly against violence.
This is manifested with the various accounts of how the government and criminal justice system are currently using technology to deter terrorism. One hundred days after the tragic September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks in the United States, American troops are defeating terrorists by joining together technology of the 21st century with tactics of the 19th century. American soldiers are pursuing terrorists on horseback while simultaneously using mobile phones and worldwide positioning schemes in order to locate targets for the U. S. Air Force.
Additionally, modern bombers depend on their advance targeting weapon as well as laser-guided and global-positioning system or GPS-directed bombs to demolish particular terrorist aims and even old caves which terrorists have used as hideaways (The Coalition Information Centers, 2001). Meanwhile, Ham and Atkinson (2002) emphasized the significance of information technology or IT in the nation’s counter-terrorism efforts. They said that IT can be set-up not only to discontinue terrorism but also to renovate government systems such as the law enforcement, response to emergency situations and public health.
Some IT advancements which may prevent terrorism include an expanded form of data sharing, the “smart ID cards,” “smart visas,” digital form of surveillance and a technology that recognizes known terrorists among a crowd (Ham & Atkinson, 2002). The issue of nuclear terrorism, on the other hand, can be technologically solved by identifying the origin of a nuclear weapon. This ca be done if after it exploded, its residue will be examined thus the country where it came from can be known. Although this action provides less comfort to the done damage, this technique, in essence, will pave the way for deterrence of the next terrorism act.
This is because the identified would be or sponsor country of terrorism will be threatened thus preventing future attacks (Levi, 2004). The United States must capitalize the fact that other countries are still unable to match its technological and scientific expertise. This is evident with the country’s expertise in the production of pharmaceuticals and biotechnologies, electronics, computer science and other modern weapons that assist in prevailing over and beating the terrorists’ technologies which they can still use in similar destructions in the future.
These comprised the long-term research and development (R&D) projects. Other R&D plans which can be used are new sensors which may uncover nuclear weapons in transit such imaging systems; high-powered ultraviolet rays which will wipe out and sanitized contaminated places; fresh kinds of tripwires which will be placed in several entry levels; and high-tech vaccinations specifically intended to address nuclear terrorism (National Commission on Terrorism, 2000). Conclusion
While terrorism will likely never cease to exist in today’s society, technological advances are essential weapons which may be used to prevent the recurrence of such violence. Technology has long proven its worth to the better chances of the American nation to compete globally. It is now time the developments in technology are employed to battle terrorism, its perpetrators and eventually prevent its horrifying implications from happening again. In doing so, not only is the contemporary people and society are being saved but the arrival of the next generations is also assured.
The efforts done by the government and concerned sectors are reinforced if advances in technology are used in such a way that it concurrently promote the country worldwide and protect the nation and most importantly its people from terrorist attacks. References Federal Bureau of Investigation Indianapolis Division. (2002, October 22). International and Domestic Terrorism. Retrieved September 26, 2008, from http://indianapolis. fbi. gov/pginternatdomterr. htm Ham, S. & Atkinson, R. D. (2002).
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National Commission on Terrorism. (2000). Countering the Changing Threat of International Terrorism. Retrieved September 26, 2008, from http://www. fas. org/irp/threat/commission. html The Coalition Information Centers (2001, December). The Global War in Terrorism: The First 100 Days. Retrieved September 26, 2008, from http://www. whitehouse. gov/news/releases/2001/12/100dayreport. html Wilkinson, P. & Harman, C. (1993). Technology and Terrorism. United States: Routledge.