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Historical Perspective

Assassination of a high-ranking governmental official or other well-known personality has always been considered a special type of violence. The term assassin comes from the Arabic word hashshashin and is defined as the sudden or secret attack of a politically important person for hire or for fanatical reasons. Many assassins plan their attacks, and there is an abundance of evidence that some of these individuals follow their “prey” prior to the events. Understanding this type of individual lends another perspective on the multifaceted phenomenon of stalking. Assassination is as old as recorded history and as common as the morning headlines. Franklin Ford's classic Political Murder: From Tyrannicide to Terrorism is the most comprehensive text on the history of assassinations.

Ford points out that some ...

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