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date: 24 May 2020


A Concise Oxford Dictionary of Politics and International Relations
David CarltonDavid Carlton

Term with no agreed definition among governments or academic analysts, but almost invariably used in a pejorative sense, most frequently to describe life‐threatening actions perpetrated by politically motivated self‐appointed sub‐state groups. But if such actions are carried out on behalf of a widely approved cause, say the Maquis seeking to destabilize the Government of Vichy France, then the term ‘terrorism’ is usually avoided and something more friendly is substituted. In short, one person’s terrorist is another person’s freedom fighter.... ...

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