Author: Aboszoda Zafar


Terrorism is one of the variants of political struggle tactics associated with the use of ideologically motivated violence.

The essence of terrorism is violence for the purpose of intimidation. The subject of terrorist violence is individuals or non-governmental organizations. The object of violence is the government represented by individual civil servants or society represented by individual citizens (including foreigners or civil servants of other states). In addition – private and public property, infrastructure, life support systems. The purpose of violence is to achieve the development of events desired by terrorists - revolution, destabilization of society, outbreak of war with a foreign state, gaining independence of a certain territory, a fall in the prestige of the authorities, political concessions on the part of the authorities, etc.

Defining terrorism appears to be a difficult task. The forms and methods of terrorist activity have changed significantly over time. This phenomenon has a stable negative assessment, which gives rise to arbitrary interpretation. On the one hand, there is a tendency for an unjustifiably expanded interpretation, when some political forces call their opponents terrorists without sufficient grounds. On the other hand, there is an unjustified narrowing. Terrorists themselves tend to call themselves soldiers, partisans, saboteurs behind enemy lines, etc. Hence the difficulties of both legal definitions and general theoretical understanding of terrorism.

Terrorism is associated with a more general, generic concept of terror. Terror is a way to control society through preventive intimidation. This method of political action can be resorted to by both the state and organizations (or forces) that set themselves political goals. For many years, the tactics of preventive intimidation, regardless of the nature of the subject of the terrorist action, were designated by the general concept of terror. In the 1970s–1980s, a terminological distinction between terror and terrorism emerged. Today, “terror” is interpreted as illegitimate violence by the state towards society as a whole or towards dissidents and opposition. “Terrorism” is the practice of illegitimate violence carried out by forces and organizations opposing the state.

Terror is based on violence and achieves its goals through demonstrative physical suppression of any active opponents in order to intimidate and deprive all potential opponents of power of the will to resist. It is important to emphasize that terror is a policy of preventive violence and this distinguishes it from the most severe repressions against lawbreakers. The government resorts to terror when it seeks to radically change the existing order of things. In such cases as foreign conquest, or social revolution, or the establishment of authoritarianism in a society with democratic traditions - that is, whenever political reality changes radically, and these changes inevitably provoke resistance from a large part of society - politics lies in the arsenal of political strategies of the new government terror.

The words “terrorism”, “terrorist”, “terrorist attack” are translations from English (terrorism, terrorist, act of terrorism). In their original meaning, they are all connected with terror as a policy of intimidation. But here the differences become crucial. First of all, the subject of terrorist activity, that is, a terrorist, as a rule, is not the state, but organizations that set themselves political goals - coming to power, destabilizing society, pushing it towards revolution, provoking entry into war, etc.

A prerequisite for terrorism is the resonance of a terrorist action in society. Terrorism is fundamentally declarative. Widespread information about a terrorist attack, making it the most discussed event, is a key element of terrorist tactics. A terrorist attack that goes unnoticed or is classified loses all meaning.

Terrorism is the most dangerous (according to the criterion of invested resources / results obtained) way of political destabilization of society. Such methods of destabilization as military intervention, uprising, outbreak of civil war, mass riots, general strike, etc. require significant resources and require broad mass support for those forces that are interested in destabilization. To launch a campaign of terrorist acts, it is enough to support the terrorist cause from a relatively narrow layer of society, a small group of extreme radicals who agree to everything, and modest organizational and technical resources. Terrorism undermines power and destroys the political system of the state. Lawyers classify terrorist acts as “crimes against the foundations of the constitutional order and state security.”

According to the general opinion of legal scholars, terrorism in any of its forms is the most socially dangerous of all crimes described by criminal law (in the sanctions of articles providing for criminal liability for a crime of a terrorist nature, there should be the most severe punishment of all types of punishment provided for by criminal law).

Forms and methods of terrorism.

Analyzing the methods of terrorist activity, researchers identify:

  1. Explosions of government, industrial, transport, military facilities, newspaper and magazine editorial offices, various offices, party committees, residential buildings, train stations, shops, theaters, restaurants, etc.
  2. Individual terror or political assassinations - officials, public figures, bankers, law enforcement officers, etc.
  3. Political abductions. As a rule, major government figures, industrialists, journalists, military personnel, foreign diplomats, etc. are kidnapped. The purpose of the kidnapping is political blackmail (demands for fulfilling certain political conditions, release of accomplices from prison, ransom, etc.)


  1. Capture of institutions, buildings, banks, embassies, etc., accompanied by the taking of hostages. Most often, this is followed by negotiations with government officials, but history also knows examples of the destruction of hostages. Possessing hostages allows terrorists to negotiate “from a position of strength.” Today it is one of the most common forms of terrorism.
  2. Capture of aircraft, ships or other vehicles, accompanied by the taking of hostages. This form of terrorist activity became widespread in the 1980s.
  3. Robbery of banks, jewelry stores, individuals, taking hostages for ransom. Robbery is an auxiliary form of terrorist activity that provides terrorists with financial resources.
  4. Non-fatal wounds, beatings, bullying. These forms of terrorist attacks pursue the goals of psychological pressure on the victim and at the same time are a form of so-called “propaganda by action.”
  5. Biological terrorism. For example, sending letters with anthrax spores.
  6. Use of toxic substances and radioactive isotopes.


The arsenal of methods and forms of terrorism is constantly expanding. Now they are already talking about computer terrorism. In principle, any infrastructure of society, any industrial facilities, technological structures, waste storage facilities, damage to which is fraught with environmental disasters, can become the target of a terrorist attack.


1st year doctoral student

Aboszoda Z.I.