There are more than 100 different definitions of terrorism. One possible reason for this lack of consensus is that the pejorative connotation of the terrorism label motivates individuals to set it apart from forms of aggression they wish to condone. That is, because terrorism is considered heinous and illegitimate, those considered terrorists by others often reject such a label because they see their cause as righteous and justified. This is embodied in the often-heard assertion that one person's terrorist is another person's freedom fighter. One common element in the different definitions of terrorism represents its core: Terrorism is the strategic use of fear to advance one's political objectives. This definition, however, creates a situation wherein the use of fear by organized states in order to ...

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