Fatal Future?

Fatal Future?

by Richard M Pearlstein


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The nature and goals of terrorist organizations have changed profoundly since the Cold War standoff among the U.S., Soviet, and Chinese superpowers gave way to the current "polyplex" global system, in which the old rules of international engagement have been shattered by a new struggle for power among established states, non-state actors, and emerging nations. In this confusing state of global disorder, terrorist organizations that are privately funded and highly flexible have become capable of carrying out incredibly destructive attacks anywhere in the world in support of a wide array of political, religious, and ethnic causes.

This groundbreaking book examines the evolution of terrorism in the context of the new global disorder. Richard M. Pearlstein categorizes three generations of terrorist organizations and shows how each arose in response to the global conditions of its time. Focusing extensively on today's transnational (i.e., privately funded and internationally operating) terrorist organizations, he devotes thorough attention to the two most virulent types: ethnoterrorism and radical Islamic terrorism. He also discusses the terrorist race for weapons of mass destruction and the types of attacks, including cyberterrorism, that are likely to occur in coming years. Pearlstein concludes with a thought-provoking assessment of the many efforts to combat transnational terrorism in the post-September 11 period.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780292702653
Publisher: University of Texas Press
Publication date: 04/08/2004
Pages: 216
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.49(d)

About the Author

RICHARD M. PEARLSTEIN is Associate Professor of Political Science at Southeastern Oklahoma State University. He is also the author of The Mind of the Political Terrorist.

Table of Contents

  • Preface
  • Acknowledgments
  • One. What Is Terrorism?
  • Two. The Rise of the New Global Disorder
  • Three. Transnational Terrorism and the New Global Disorder
  • Four. Ethnoterrorism: Menace from Within and Without
  • Five. Holy Rage
  • Six. Superterrorism: What's in It for You?
  • Seven. After September 11: Responding to Transnational Terrorism
  • Notes
  • Bibliography
  • Index

What People are Saying About This

J. Garry Clifford

As the media has zeroed in on the individual victims, heroes, and perpetrators of 9/11, followed the fighting in Afghanistan, and chronicled the 'war against terrorism' at home, there has been a crying need for a short, sober book like this one . . . [to] provide a broader context. It shows that 9/11 was not unexpected, if unpredicted.
J. Garry Clifford, Professor of Political Science, University of Connecticut

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