Criminal Justice-COLL | Terrorism
P407 | 31275 | Verma


The use of violence for political purposes in the form of terrorism
has been part of human history. However, terrorism today is far more
sinister and damaging due to powerful weapons, greater number of
vulnerable targets, global connectivity and wide-ranging
communication systems. Terrorists stationed in remote backwaters of
Afghanistan are able to attack targets half the world away. The
threat of a bio-nuclear attack by some crazed group is no more a
matter of fancy but real and impending. Even though protecting every
possible target seems impossible there are nevertheless situational
factors that create opportunities for the terrorists to strike. By
understanding the nature of terrorist threats and their modus
operandi it is possible to devise effective preventive methods. The
policing of terrorism is a complex policy and executive inter-play
where strategies, planning, intelligence, investigation,
surveillance and routine functions play a major role. Modern police
forces around the world have evolved a variety of mechanisms and use
sophisticated technologies to deal with terrorism. This course will
examine the nature of terrorist activities in different parts of the
world and ways in which the police are responding to them. We will
study about the motivation, recruitment, operational planning and
situational methods used by the extremists to carry out their
attacks. We will also examine the roles of intelligence gathering,
physical and electronic surveillance, interrogation, investigation,
community involvement and management of resources by the police in
this battle. The course will debate the issues of legal boundaries
and systems of checks and balances in police operations. A number of
case studies covering the Middle East, South and Central Asia,
Northern Ireland, Italy, Japan, the Philippines and the Americas
will be undertaken to understand these issues. Course evaluation
will be on the basis of class participation, short essays and a
final research term paper.

Readings:  All readings will be on e-reserve.

Class meeting:  5:45-8:15, Monday, SY 210

Distribution credit:  S&H, intensive writing

Instructor: Professor Arvind Verma, criminal justice department