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PSC 309: Terrorism & Developing Countries

Class Discussion Notes on Terrorism section of PSC 309 course

by Prof. Jeremy Lewis, revised 28 Aug. 2013


Week 1
- Is it ever justified to invade the territory of a sovereign state? 28 Aug. 2013
When nation states developed
The meaning of nation state
When notions of sovereignty came to be exercised
Limitations placed by international law on violations of sovereignty
Examples of states' pre-emptive attacks across borders
Grievance of those states suffering an attack across their borders
Current issue of an attack upon a sovereign state without going to war
When a state is sovereign over territory
Coalitions and client states complicate choice of attacking
Non-state actors haivng a footprint within a state
Deniable proxy actors for a state, engaging in asymmetric warfare
Difficulty of securing UN Security Council support, and risk of national vetoes
(Attitude of some, even in US, against UN)

30 Aug. 2013
Consideration of the possibility of bombing and rocket attacks on Syria that might occur this weekend.

Given the options of do nothing but talk; selective bombardment of chemical stocks and command centres, with minimizing collateral damage; and full replacement of the regime, including large infantry force -- most of the class favored bombardment, and none favored a full infantry occupation.
Review of the discussino of sovereignty above, with some additions
Automatic v selective recognition of new states and new regimes
professional ambassadors v the spoils system for top envoy positions
Presentations on the CT helicopter raid tactics.
Minor correction to the New Yorker details
Consideration of the sources for these. For exposing classified raids, who does it serve politically?
Does the third article reveal the risks taken militarily and politically with the Bin Laden raid?
Presentations of the 9/11 report will occur in week 2
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From Week 5, 2013

Sami Yousafzai & Ron Moreau, Too Radical for the Taliban, Newsweek, 30 Aug. 2013
notes by Kaison Darden, Fall 2013

In 2001 the Taliban was falling in Northern Afghanistan.
Afghans were fleeing to Pakistan .
Mullah Najibullah took men to fight in the capital outside of Kabul.
His brother was shot and killed and he was shot and eventually retreated to
his home in Zabul so he could recover.
Years later he is furious that the Taliban is working with America.
Once a senior officer to the insurgent group he left to form his own faction.
The group openly refers to the Taliban as traitors.
He has 25,000-30,000 men nationwide.
They are the first group of their kind, openly opposing the Taliban.
This faction can weaken the Taliban because instead of hating and fighting
others they are fighting within themselves.
This could play a detrimental role in establishing peace between the US and the Taliban.
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