New terrorism is generally perceived to be fuelled by religious extremism and incorporates the use of heavy weaponry that can be expected to span to weapons of mass destruction. It is highly decentralized and aims to causing as much damage as possible by making use of technological and communication instruments. The fact that new terrorism is decentralized has been observed to be supplemented by a tendency of new terrorism to incorporate high levels of networking. However, this aspect of new terrorism is still to be ascertained (Spencer 2006). New terrorism in this regard is different from political terrorism which also explains why it focuses lesser on target killing and more on mass destruction.
Other key characteristics of new terrorism include that the fact that it centres on the instigation of sheer fear into the hearts and minds of people. New terrorism is based on carrying out of attacks such that a major incident is followed by a number of small threats that hint towards the possibility of the incidence of a similar major incident. Terrorism takes is based on the utilization of fear in a manner such that the general public can be put in a constant state of unrest and instability. In this regard, it is essential to realize that new terrorism is a form of terrorism that is entirely different from the form that terrorism held in earlier days.
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