Influence of Globalization on the Development of Terrorism


The end of the 20th and the beginning of the 21st centuries are characterized by an unprecedented splash of the acts of terror that rolled through many countries of all the continents of the Earth. A lot of innocent people were killed, and many material values were destroyed in a result of these actions.

After some demonstrations of violence, such as an attack on the World Trade Centre on 11 September or the mining London underground trains and buses, globalization appeared to have a dark side of its development and forced governors to reinterpret its results to the world’s security. People understood that they cannot be insured from the acts of terrorism. Terrorism brings threat for people’s lives and rights, destabilizes countries and stands on the way of the social and economic development. It has arisen as an opportunity for some global changes. Terrorists have a possibility to use globalization progress, such international trade, technological advantages, and expansion of boundaries in order to achieve their goals.

Thesis statement: terrorism shows some dark sides of globalization and undermines all its development and progress and forces everyone to be afraid of acts of terror and those consequences that they cause. Globalization created peaceful world relations, while terrorism made a world of fear and showed that globalization assists its development.


There were many discussions about the concrete definition of globalization. According to Grahame Thompson and Paul Hirst, globalization is defined as streams of investment and trade between different countries (Nassar 5). A lot of scholars agreed with the explanation that the processes of globalization lead to the global interdependence and augment speed of exchange through enormous distances. At the same time, some scholars claim that globalization should assist in creating a world economy without borders. It means that people from First and Third World can freely cooperate and integrate their economy.

A lot of people think that globalization has a bad influence on their countries; which is why, they make it a main point of occasional violent protests and hostile passions.

A lot of workers in poor countries are unenthusiastic towards corporate globalization. They are anxious about miserable working conditions and low wages. People spend hours and hours on the sweatshops only because the last are using cheap work force to allure stockholders. For instance, many sweatshops employ children to work in unhealthy and dangerous environment with low wages.

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At the same time, many activists and religious groups disapprove corporate globalization because of its influence on values. Some of them say that TV and the Internet propagandize cruelty and immorality. Kids and youth play different kinds of video games that teach how to kill or destroy and how to make violent things and stay cold at the same time. All this background information helps understand that globalization has dark sides, which arouses a subconscious idea of terrorism and aspiration to change living conditions for a better.


Terrorism is described in different meanings, such as war, strategy and tactic, a reaction of the oppressed people, the only duty etc. Nowadays, to resolve a conflict, some people turn the states, society, or the whole world into the global disaster with thousands or millions of people affected. Terrorism is defined by The United States Department of Defense as “…the reckoned use of forbidden violence to establish fear; intentionally planned to intimidate, or coerce governments and societies in the achieving of goals that are religious, political, or ideological” (What is Terrorism?). Three key elements in the definition are violence, intimidation, and fear. However, one more important element of terrorism is religion. With the help of these factors, people commit terrorist acts in order to prove the point of view of their beliefs, disagreement, persuasion etc.

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Speaking about international terrorists, they can be divided into four types. The first are Islamists (Purpura 11). Their main ideas cannot reach any compromise except their messianic beliefs. This group can be named as the most powerful and threatening for the people. They can make serious damage for organizations, countries, and, theoretically, the whole world. For instance, the act of terror that they made on September 9, 2001 has been evaluated by Peter Novarro as between $ 10 and 13 billion for property damages; the economic value of the lost lives is nearly $ 40 billion and the economic output is $ 47 billion (Rosencrance & Stein 41).

The next are nationalists, who use terror to obtain political power in the name of some religion or ethnicity. This means that they create their own state by separating it from the existed. Doing this, they make more damages not only for the state they want to separate from but for their own people as well. This internal disorder can grow into international disorder, which would later involve many opposing sides and can lead even to war (like in Yugoslavia).

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The third are the international Mafias, which are united with the business of illegal substances and human trade. These people can immigrate to other country and live there making their illegal business. Furthermore, they are now interested in undermining the process of globalization, because they are involved into the commerce and trade. These terrorists are not extremely dangerous by themselves, but they can help others in their terrorist acts.

Finally, popular nowadays terrorists are IT terrorists or cyberterrorists, who have appeared at the last 2 decades. These people cause loses to organizations or states governments by hacking their computer networks, and scholars and experts cannot give an exact definition for this phenomenon. Cyberterrorism means breaking different sites or computer networks, for instance, military, governmental and others, for stealing or destroying data or damaging computer systems, sometimes, by putting computer viruses into it. Governments and almost all structures sound the alarm, because they realize that this type of terrorism is very dangerous, however, in one day their sites could be broken and all people could find much private and secret information, and no one knows how they would behave later.

Globalization and Terrorism

Terrorism appeared as a partner of globalization, a phenomenon that is directed on its destruction. Globalization evoked terrorism as a global threat and, at the same time, received a knock-out punch from it. A feeling of jeopardy or danger becomes constant and general, especially, in the United States that has not experienced so serious threats in its existence before; the same can be said about Muslim world.

Globalization, which penetrated into Islamic world, stimulates some internal contradictions, such as increase of degradation of political systems, failure of moral values or breakup of a family. It has enormous destructive effects in the Islamic world, because it has its own political and religious beliefs, values and systems. With the development of globalization, Islamists can see how people in different counties live and develop and compare all this with their own country. They have poor conditions for a living, but high religious and family values. The spread of globalization makes them struggle for better living level and conditions. However, not all of them can reach good results, and they feel a considerable gap between expectations and achievements. This gap is identified by social scientists as a main contributor to violence (Yetiv 202).

Everyone is aware that the information is one of the most powerful weapons, which people could have. It does not have borders. Governments are helpless, because they do not want to be behindhand and, sometimes, they do not want to allow the information appears. With the help of globalization, people can find information about everything they want in the Internet. For instance, in the Internet, people can find a step by step guide about how to create an explosive device at home and where to buy all necessary materials. Moreover, using the Internet and all the information that can be found there becomes more dangerous.

Another effect that globalization has, is that people can live without boundaries. It means that people can communicate at a great distances. Terrorists are using this possibility with pleasure. They have an opportunity to communicate and coordinate their operations and relations between their members in different countries without problems. Terrorists may plan acts of terrorism with migrants of the same nationality in every country they want. Moreover, it helps to direct and spread illegal selling and actions. For instance, kidnapping, selling and buying drugs or weapons.


To conclude, it can be said that globalization and terrorism are incontrovertibly linked.

As it can be understood from the work, terrorism is one of the dark sides of development of globalization. It achieves its goals in an aggressive way. Globalization evoked terrorism as a global threat and, at the same time, received a knock-out punch from it. 

At the present day, terrorists are powerful enemies of the government, because they can buy a lot of different weapons that can affect different people, places, countries and almost everything. Globalization may reduce terrorism, but it would depend on such factors as trade levels and economic development. Some scholars say that terrorism helps to make globalization equal for countries, while others suppose that terrorism shows that there can be another hegemon except the United States.

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