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International Terrorism - Challenge and Response - Proceedings of the Jerusalem Conference on International Terrorism

NCJ Number
B Netanyahu
Date Published
390 pages
Essays and speeches by leading public figures from the United States and several foreign nations address the threat posed to democratic societies by international terrorism, the nature of contemporary terrorism, and measures to combat terrorist movements.
Speeches presented at the conference's opening session focused on broad themes -- the moral intolerability of terrorism, its natural connection with other forms of tyranny, and its use by antidemocratic states. The next group of speakers detailed the collusion of governments in supporting international terrorism, with particular attention to Soviet support for terrorism and Arab state support for the Palestine Liberation Organization. The subject of the third session was the impact of rampant terrorism on a democratic society. Participants examined the dilemma of striking a proper balance between protecting citizens from terrorists and protecting Western freedoms, media sensationalism, and the possibility of nuclear terrorism. In discussing democratic states' responses to terrorism, many individuals felt that Western societies had not met the challenge by yielding to blackmail and deporting terrorists to welcoming countries. Officials from The Netherlands, Northern Ireland, and Italy described their countries' efforts to reduce terrorism. The conference then considered the media' role, concluding that the media's dramatization of the terrorist's threats and demands often contributed to moral confusion and romanticized the terrorist, leaving the victims forgotten. Other speakers felt that the free press did not understand terrorism and suggested that governments impose a code for treating terrorism on publicly owned stations. The final session concerned countermeasures, such as improving intelligence systems and international agreements over punishment and extradition. An index is provided.