Terrorist Profile Yassir Arafat Essay Research Paper

Terrorist Profile: Yassir Arafat Essay, Research PaperThe Development and Defining of Arafat: A Terrorist Personality Because a instead big figure of persons fall into the class of terrorist, sorting them as a individual personality type is an impossibleness. The definition of a terrorist is equivocal plenty to include persons runing from the Abu Nidal to the Baader-Meinhoff group.

By definition, terrorists do non accept social criterions of what is right and what is incorrect. They are non confined to what other persons, states, and the international community has deemed acceptable behaviour. They do non adhere to the same Torahs and regulations with which the norm citizen complies. Terrorists appear to be a different strain than the remainder.

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Although there are many different types of terrorists and restricting them to a individual personality would be impracticable, the huge bulk do keep certain similar basic features. First and foremost, is their ability to give others for the furthering of their ain docket. Terrorists by definition commit Acts of the Apostless of force in order to accomplish a end. Their end is seldom the act of force itself, but alternatively the impact of the act.

Equally long as the violent act has a lay waste toing affect on the intended audience, the initial mark is frequently randomly chosen. Terrorists intend to scare the audience, whether it be the populace, a peculiar authorities, or an organisation, into sing its platform ( if so it has one ) . This brings about the 2nd characteristic common to terrorists and terrorist groups, committedness to an political orientation. Although political orientations vary from race murder to national release, terrorists normally have formulated an political orientation which they attempt to further through their Acts of the Apostless of force. Amoral behaviour and committedness to an political orientation are traits which define a terrorist, but what features lead to the development of an person into a terrorist? Some factors have been presented as commonalities among terrorist persons. Among these are the function of childhood in the development of the terrorist, the function of mind and instruction on personality development, and the development of a terrorist image.

In order to to the full understand the phenomenon, it is necessary to concentrate on an single terrorist and use the features that both developed the terrorist and define him. This paper intends to concentrate on Yassir Arafat as a terrorist personality and follow the subject of the development of a terrorist. In specifying Arafat as a terrorist personality, it is of import to first observe his following to certain features indispensable to terrorists. The first being his willingness to give others in order to accomplish his ends. Both as leader of the Palestinian Liberation Organization and before his deputation as president in 1969, Arafat has been linked to terrorist activities. Get downing in 1964, Fatah, headed by Arafat, began its onslaughts on Israeli marks. Under the name of Assifa, these initial terrorist activities were normally unsuccessful but did pull off to derive the attending of authoritiess within the region.

1 Fatah did non efficaciously go a outstanding terrorist organisation until the Munich Olympics. Under the name Black September, Fatah operatives captured nine Israeli jocks and held them ransom for the release of Palestinian captives. Although the incident was a failure in that the demands of the group to let go of their cohorts were ne’er met, and all nine of the sureties were killed, and five of the eight terrorists had been killed, the universe media focused on the incident.2 A commentary in Al-Sayyad newspaper stated, & # 8220 ; A bomb in the White House, a mine in the Vatican, the decease of Mao Tse-tung, an temblor in Paris ; none of these could hold produced the far-reaching reverberation to every adult male in the universe like the operation of Black September in Munich.

& # 8221 ; 3 The incident in Munich brought Fatah to the foreground of Palestinian terrorist organisations. Arafat & # 8217 ; s group had achieved its chief aims, outdone other Palestinian terrorist groups in an attempt to prehend control, and more significantly, brought its political platform to the attending of the universe. The enterprise indicates Arafat and Fatah & # 8217 ; s ability as terrorists to give others in order to accomplish set aims. Terrorism conducted by Fatah non merely gave immediate coverage to the Palestinian issue, but besides & # 8220 ; contributed well to the widely accepted image of the PLO as the representative of the Palestinian people. & # 8221 ; 4 The decease of their primary marks along with the decease of their secret agents, was good in capturing the attending of the universe audience and fostering their fastness among the Palestinian people.

Arafat, as the leader of a terrorist group sacrificed others in order to accomplish his aims. A terrorist by definition must be willing to give others in order to foster his political orientation. Arafat did so non merely in Munich but on legion occasions. Terrorism is non the terminal but instead the agencies for Arafat and the PLO.

Their Acts of the Apostless of force are intended to foster the Palestinian motion. The ultimate aim of Arafat and the Palestinian Liberation Organization is national release. The political orientation of the PLO is apparent, the creative activity of a fatherland for the Palestinian people.

Although ab initio Arafat & # 8217 ; s & # 8220 ; freedom combatants & # 8221 ; called for the obliteration of Israel as the Abu Nidal group still does, the PLO is now committed to the constitution of a Palestinian province coexisting with the Israeli province. The particulars of the political orientation have evolved over the past 50 old ages but it remains instead straightforward. The constitution of a Palestinian province is the chief constituent of the PLO philosophy. At what cost? This is where committedness to an political orientation creates an sphere for terrorist act. With no other effectual mode of showing their instance, Palestinian guerilla groups have found that panic unambiguously draws the attending of the universe. This avid committedness to the constitution of a province has created a field for terrorist act and guerilla warfare. From an early period, Arafat and his followings recognized this and drew upon non merely national nationalism but spiritual ardor.

They emphasized the thought of martyrdom for the cause. Islamic philosophy condones the construct of Jihad. Jihad is defined by some as holy war where supporting one & # 8217 ; s religion and fatherland are sacredly justified. Therefore, the thought of martyrdom non merely has a political entreaty but besides a spiritual 1. Arafat and his group used this political orientation to maximise enlisting for terrorist activities. In Arafat the Man and the Myth, Thomas Keirnan writes, In Orthodox Islamic tenet, decease is frequently thought of as a wages, peculiarly when it has heroic dimensions.

The release of the fatherland was so a heroic aim ; therefore any decease in the service of that aim was viewed as ipso facto heroic, promoting the deceased and his household subsisters to places of celebrity and honor. Arafat and his co-leaders used this construct to promote voluntaries for guerilla missions and to transfuse in them the necessity of avoiding capture.5 The most utmost show of committedness to a peculiar political orientation is that of selflessness. It besides conforms to the demands of a terrorist secret agent. Arafat himself on juncture has expressed the thought of martyrdom for the attainment of the political orientation.

He one time professed that he desired martyrdom in set uping Jerusalem as the capital of the Palestinian state.6 This statement non merely emphasizes Arafat & # 8217 ; s committedness to the constitution of a Palestinian province but besides illuminates his committedness to Islam and the importance of Jerusalem as a Muslim metropolis. Though this was simply a symbolic gesture, it is an indicant of the necessity for grim committedness to the political orientation both by a leader and by his followings. Arafat has reasonably implemented spiritual battle into that of the Palestinian cause. His committedness to the constitution of a Palestinian province coincides with spiritual desires of a great many Palestinians and other Arabs every bit good to command the & # 8220 ; Holy Land. & # 8221 ; Arafat & # 8217 ; s committedness to his political orientation is unwavering even when in order to accomplish it terrorist methods seem to be the lone plausible attack. Arafat has implemented terrorist act as a agency of showing the Palestinian state of affairs to Israel, the Arab universe, and the remainder of the Earth.

Arafat & # 8217 ; s committedness to the Palestinian cause and willingness to establish panic root from his young person, his instruction, and the image he has created for himself. Arafat & # 8217 ; s childhood is vague mostly due to his involuntariness to uncover important information. This ambiguity creates an aura of enigma, which is a common pattern of terrorists whose namelessness is indispensable in guaranting their endurance. Sing Arafat & # 8217 ; s young person, there are a few key incidences which can be linked to his development as a terrorist. The first being the resettlement of himself and his brother back to Jerusalem to populate with his uncle after the decease of his female parent. This is of import in that it places him in the bosom of Jerusalem at a volatile period in the metropolis & # 8217 ; s history. The Arab rebellion against the British in 1936-9, profoundly impacted the young person. He non merely witnessed increased tensenesss between Arabs and Jews, but besides & # 8220 ; observed the detainment of relations by the British governments.

. . and he was present during tormented household arguments about the hereafter of Palestine.

& # 8221 ; 7 This event initiated his connexion to the Palestinian cause and exposed him to violent behavior associated with the cause. Upon returning to Cairo, where his male parent and new stepmother were shacking, Arafat was non removed from a violent atmosphere. Harmonizing to histories, the stepmother & # 8220 ; was cruel to the Arafat kids and the house was more or less a battlefield.

& # 8221 ; 8 Turning up in an ambiance where violent behaviour is the norm desensitizes an person, possibly to the point where violent behaviour becomes acceptable. This political orientation can be correlated to the amorality of a terrorist. A 2nd factor that can be linked to the development of Arafat as a terrorist is his engagement in Egypt with the extremist group, the Muslim Brotherhood. Arafat belonged to the Muslim Brotherhood with whom he received military preparation and & # 8220 ; mastered their conspirative methods. & # 8221 ; 9 He would smuggle guns back and Forth from Palestine to Egypt and would vanish as a & # 8220 ; secret voluntary & # 8221 ; of the Muslim Brotherhood to contend the British near the Suez Canal.10 Although his political orientation remains distinguishable from the fundamentalist political orientation of the Muslim Brothers, he became acquainted with the impact of spiritual ardor on political activity.

Arafat & # 8217 ; s exposure to violence both in Jerusalem and in Cairo along with the preparation he received from the Muslim Brothers developed Arafat as a terrorist personality. Another factor that greatly contributed to his utmost political activism was his intelligence and instruction. A common yarn among terrorist in a leading function is the combination of a high degree instruction coupled with a comparatively high intelligence. In order to be a slightly successful terrorist, one must be able to efficaciously organize activities and avoid gaining control. To make so, one must be educated and intelligent. Arafat began his instruction early on. While go toing secular schooling in Cairo, as a young person he was sacredly educated by his great uncle.

In both, he showed promise. Keirnan provinces, & # 8220 ; He was a natural pupil, as everyone recalls, with a particular propensity for mathematical subjects. & # 8221 ; 11 Later Arafat would take his temperament for mathematics to analyze technology in a university in Cairo. His focal point nevertheless was political activity within the university kingdom.

In the late mid-fortiess and early 1950ss, the University of Fuad the First, where Arafat matriculated, beamed with political activism. In the political activism prevalent on his university campus, Arafat and his fellow Palestinians interacted with communist groups, the Muslim Brotherhood, and other groups with the purpose of heightening their ain organisation of Palestinian students.12 Arafat served as President of the Union of Palestinian Students, where he maintained & # 8220 ; an bossy manner of leading & # 8221 ; 13 similar to that of his leading of the PLO.

In his function as leader he exhibited a flair for promotion, and a volatile pique, features easy attributed to a terrorist personality. Arafat & # 8217 ; s educational experience is of import because it laid the foundation for his development into a terrorist. In his treatment of the impact of the university on terrorists, Michel Wieviorka provinces, & # 8220 ; The university is ansphere for the formation of political and societal elites, elites that will travel on to fall in or organize organized groups.

”14 The university is the perfect venue for the growing of mind and political organisations chiefly, because it encourages free thought and creates an independent chance for the organisation of these free minds. An exposure to new thought procedures and different political orientations from one extreme to the other is frequently the ambiance that a university offers that can seldom be found elsewhere.The importance of Arafat & # 8217 ; s instruction is twofold. One, the survey of technology is a good property for the executing of terrorist activities. Two, his political activism at the university degree planted the foundation necessary for the development of a leader. Arafat & # 8217 ; s intelligence lies in his creative activity of the Palestinian motion.

He provided the major push to the Palestinian cause, largely through terrorist activities. He has besides managed to slightly keep the delicate balance necessary to unit the Palestinian people who are scattered across the Earth. In their fresh Arafat: In the Eyes of the Beholder, John and Janet Wallach write: For 25 old ages Arafat has connived, maneuvered and manipulated to remain at the top of the Palestinian Liberation Organization.

He has learned to talk with several linguas at one time, to state whatever it takes to delight the audience he is aiming. He is a consummate politician, clever with words and willing to be all things to all people. . .in the turbulent Middle East, he has continually been able to accommodate himself to the invariably altering political environment. Arafat is a subsister, and it is this elusive nature that has allowed him to endure.

15 Arafat & # 8217 ; s intelligence is his ability to outmanoeuvre his oppositions and remain on top. Whether it be political dialogues, financing the PLO, or terrorist activity, Arafat has managed to somehow draw it together. His capacity as a leader of a terrorist organisation stems from his turbulent young person, his educational experiences, his intelligence, and most of all the image he has created for himself. In an attempt to cancel his personage as an person and replace it with a fabulous image, Arafat & # 8217 ; s history has been obscured. Like a great figure of other terrorists who have attempted to steep themselves in enigma so as to heighten the romanticism of their cause and more evidently to avoid gaining control, Arafat & # 8217 ; s image is an mystery. Arafat was born to a male parent from a affluent Ghazan household and a female parent from a distinguished Jerusalem household.

The remainder of Arafat & # 8217 ; s history, runing from his name to his place of birth is problematic. Many historiographers believe that he was born in Cairo in 1929. Others place his birth in Gaza. Most significantly, he himself asserts that he was born in Jerusalem near the Judaic Wailing Wall. Keirnan writes, & # 8220 ; All imperativeness and promotion despatchs emanating from & # 8216 ; important & # 8217 ; Palestinian beginnings since 1968 have emphasized Arafat & # 8217 ; s place of birth as Jerusalem. & # 8221 ; 16 To foster his claim Arafat provinces that his house was bulldozed by the Jews in 1967. It is nevertheless more executable that he was born in Cairo.

This is supported by university records and statements by household members. Why the mystery? He is doubtless of Palestinian descent. The accent of puting his birth in Jerusalem demonstrates the necessity of linking himself with the predicament of Palestinians of the West Bank.

He stated, & # 8220 ; I am a refugee, for I have nil, for I was banished and dispossessed of my homeland. & # 8221 ; 17 If he so was born in Cairo, he could non keep that he is a victim of the constitution of the Israeli province. An indispensable constituent of his image as the leader of the Palestinian opposition motion lies in his supplanting as a Palestinian. If born in Cairo, he is non a refugee and thereby non the most idealistic individual to head up a rebellion.

For this ground, Arafat maintains Jerusalem as his place of birth and non Gaza or Cairo. Arafat & # 8217 ; s name is besides debatable. Yasser is non his given name. It is either a childhood moniker or a name given to him in his early old ages of activity with the Muslim Brotherhood. In Arabic, Yasser means & # 8220 ; simple, unsophisticated, or homely. & # 8221 ; He was born Mohammed Abdel-Raouf Arafat al-Qudwa al-Husseini. Some beginnings omit & # 8220 ; Mohammed & # 8221 ; as a first name on the footing that it is a fear to the Prophet Mohammed which is a customary add-on in Egypt.

Arafat has, throughout the old ages, been given several monikers other than Yasser, most notably that of & # 8220 ; Abu Ammar. & # 8221 ; This name refers to a friend of the Prophet Mohammed who was known to hold suffered torment for his faith.18 This name furthers Arafat & # 8217 ; s attempt to follow to the spiritual and chauvinistic image which would represent him as a leader. Other monikers that demonstrate this thought are & # 8220 ; al-khatiar & # 8221 ; which means old adult male and & # 8220 ; al-walid & # 8221 ; which means male parent. They both & # 8220 ; property to Arafat the feature of male parent of the state, which surely flatters him. & # 8221 ; 19 They non merely flatter, but besides reiterate the image of the leader. Like the enigma of his place of birth, the elusiveness of Arafat & # 8217 ; s name creates a nothingness which he attempts to make full with the image of Palestinian patriotism.

The remotion of a unequivocal name and place of birth create an sphere for political symbolism. One of Arafat & # 8217 ; s comrades one time said: The secret of Arafat is that he lives all our emotions. Arafat is non merely a political symbol. We sense and we know that he is populating all of our frights, all of our dreams, and all of our agony. When one of our Palestinians is enduring, Arafat feels our hurting. When one of our combatants is killed, a little portion of Arafat is killed. . .

In this one individual is all of us, all our emotions, all of our strength, all of our failings, all of our contradictions.20 This is the exact response that Arafat desires. The riddance of his name and place of birth, which are really of import in Arab civilization, allows for the cosmopolitan application of his personage to the Palestinian quandary in its entireness. In order to competently take an organisation like the PLO whether in legitimate projects or terrorist activities, Arafat must be able to appeal to the multitudes. The creative activity of his image non merely supports this, but besides emphasizes his function as leader. Similar to the enigma behind the individuality of Abu Nidal, Arafat has similarly implemented a vagueness sing his individuality.

To farther body the image of a opposition leader, Arafat has instituted the terrorist look The stereotyped expression of a guerilla or terrorist is that of green fatigues, unshaven, rugged, callused, and dirty. Arafat Donnes fatigues in order to show himself as a & # 8220 ; freedom fighter. & # 8221 ; His uniform besides eliminates a sense of individuality and reaffirms the image of the adult male for the collective. Similar to the romantic feeling associated with Che Guevarre & # 8217 ; s uniform, Arafat & # 8217 ; s attire serves to typify the impression of the & # 8220 ; freedom fighter. & # 8221 ; To foster develop this image, Arafat maintains an unshaved face. His barbate expression serves several maps. First, it completes the image of the combatant who does non hold the clip nor the installations to shave21.

Second, it functions as a imposter spiritual look, as most Muslim sheiks Donne face funguss. Last, in combination with a brace of dark glassess which he often wears, it furthers the enigma factor. Most significantly, Arafat wears the traditional Palestinian headgear, the checked kaffiyah. The kaffiyah is colored & # 8220 ; black for the state, and white for the town. & # 8221 ; 22 Arafat & # 8217 ; s mode of erosion of the kaffiyah emphasizes the political orientation of the constitution of the Palestinian province.

He ties the headgear in such a manner that the terminal of it forms a resemblance to the form of Palestine.23 Arafat began have oning the keffiyah at a really early point in his political bearer. Besides doing a statement, he ab initio wore it to stress the historical point that & # 8220 ; those engaged in opposition against British military personnels and the Zionists in Palestine in the 1936-9 rebellion had worn the keffiyeh as portion of their battle-dress. & # 8221 ; 24 The keffiyah has besides become a symbol of the Palestinian insurgency. In order to dissemble their individuality, stone-throwing young persons of the Intifadah wound the keffiyah around their faces. The headgear non merely represents dedication to the Palestinian cause but besides the intension of the violent defending of it.

Arafat & # 8217 ; s keffiyah creates an indispensable portion of his garb. It is design to remind the Palestinian people that he is one of them, and willing to contend for them. Arafat & # 8217 ; s overdress strongly resembles that of the stereotyped terrorist or freedom combatant. And it is deliberately done.

It emphasizes his connexion to the cause, strengthens his fastness as leader among the Palestinian constituency, and it reminds the remainder of the universe of the lengths he will travel to accomplish his aim, a Palestinian province. The image Arafat has created for himself clearly demonstrates his function as leader of the Palestinian cause. It besides complies to the stereotyped definition of a terrorist. The ambiguity and elusiveness of his name and beginning along with his physical garb create the image of a adult male dedicated to an political orientation, and willing to give himself and others in order to accomplish his ends. Arafat has been recognized as the representative of the Palestinian people. His function over the past 50 some old ages has ranged from that of a terrorist to that of the negotiant. As a outstanding force in the development of Middle Eastern History, it is of import to analyse Arafat and his function both as conciliator and as terrorist. As a terrorist Arafat has changed the class of history.

He realized from the beginning that acts of panic grab the attending of the universe and has utilized this to foster his cause. Arafat & # 8217 ; s function in the political sphere is best defined in Ghassan al-Immam & # 8217 ; s verse form: This old adult male is a sportswoman without a resort area, But he plays with all the balls and on all the evidences, The job is that in association football he handles the ball In hoops he uses his pess And in handball his caput. When the referee gimmicks him he insists that person else take the blame. He is ne’er thrown out because he has no replacing No replacing could foul like he does, And when he losingss the game, he wins the hand clapping of the masses.25 Arafat has played dirty in order to keep the attending of the universe and the media. As a terrorist personality Arafat has achieved his immediate end of showing his political orientation to the universe, even if it means non playing by the regulations. He has evolved the image of the terrorist to accommodate his demands and his cause.

Physically, he dresses the portion. The ambiguity of his name, place of birth, and personal history attention deficit disorder to the mystique of his terrorist personality. His educational background and possibly his traumatic childhood prepared the manner for the development of one of the originators behind some of the most hideous terrorist incidences in human history. Arafat the terrorist has upheld his dedication to his political orientation, and has sacrificed others in the aspiration of it.

Whether it be the influence of the Muslim Brotherhood or his political activity in his university & # 8217 ; s pupil organisations, Arafat has managed to keep the leading of the PLO and the focal point of the universe. Arafat realized from the beginning that acts of panic grab the attending of the universe and he has utilized this to foster his cause. Arafat & # 8217 ; s Acts of the Apostless of panic evidently do non follow with the criterions that humanity has set forth as sensible behaviour. Like Abu Nidal and the Baader-Meinhoff organisation, Arafat maintains certain shared features typical to terrorists. Although they can non be defined as a individual personality, they do hold commonalities.6b5Alexander, Yohan. Middle East Terrorism, Current Threats and Future Prospects. New York: G.

K. Hall & amp ; Co. , 1994.

DAWN & # 8211 ; international ; 13 February, 1998. hypertext transfer protocol: //dawn.com/daily/19980213/int7.htm Gowers, Andrew, and Tony Walker.

Behind The Myth: Yasser Arafat and the Palestinian Revolution. New York: 1992. Hart, Alan. Arafat, a Political Biography. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1984.

Keirnan, Thomas. Arafat, the Man and the Myth. New York: W. W. Norton & A ; Company, Inc. , 1976 Parry, Albert.

Terrorism: From Robespierre to Arafat. New York: The Vanguard Press, 1976. Rubinstein, Danny.

The Mystery of Arafat. South Royalton: Steerforth Press, 1995. Wallach, Janet, and John Wallach. Arafat: In the Eye of the Beholder. New York: Carol Publishing Group, 1990. Wieviorka, Michel.

The Making of Terrorism. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1988.


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