?Introduction a common definition with no precise legal

?Introduction Within the post 9/11 realm in which we reside in the word “terrorism” has been subjected to use within global politics, the media and international law to incite fear and angst among everyday citizens. The ineffable nature of the word has left the international community unable to agree on a common definition  with no precise legal content, the term is left to be interpreted through discourses of ethics, morality, politics and international relations. Within military literature terrorism has been associated with or used contextually to describe irregular warfare, revolutionary warfare and guerrilla warfare. Inciting terror represents a range of destructive exercises justified in the name of progress towards the greater good. “An objective definition of terrorism is not only possible; it is also indispensable to any serious attempt to combat terrorism.” – Boaz Ganor, Director of the International Policy Institute for Counterterrorism “‘terrorism’ is a term without legal significance” – Judge Rosalyn Higgins former president of the International court of justice While there is legislation outlawing acts of terrorism and justifying counterterrorist engagements between states, there is no comprehensive anti-terrorism treaty available for discussion or guidance. Without ‘legal significance’ as quoted by Judge Rosalyn, the idea of legally countering terrorism and terrorist in a justifiable way becomes problematic. The  term insurgency creates a similar amount of discrepancies and legal discretions. Explained simply by Galula and Nagl (1964) insurgency is a civil war characterised by a power imbalance between the insurgent and the government . The creation of disorder and disruption from the insurgent group seeks to shift power from the government to itself.  As terrorism is “agreed as a strategy of insurgency, counter-terrorism is thus best understood as a component of counter-insurgency” . Counterinsurgency embraces all of the political, economic, psychological, civic paramilitary and military actions taken by a government for the suppression of insurgent, resistance and revolutionary movements.  Historically, it has been attributed to colonial war fighting and imperial policing.  The mix of offensive, defensive and stability operations including aid and governance seeks to empower and legitimise the largely uncommitted civilian population therefore isolating the terrorist . Presently it is considered the most frequent form of warfare fought across the world. A US Navy Strategy document argues, this form of conflict ensures continued “stable functioning of the international system” which guarantees the ‘core interests of the US.Counterinsurgency requires the classification of the civilian population into combatants and non-combatants the distinction between the two becomes fully gendered where all-encompassing suspicion against all men is operationalised into specific actions, while women are afforded the status of being objects of ‘protection’ . Gender in this context is defined by Gardam and Javis (2001) as the socially constructed roles of women and men ascribe to them on the basis of their sex – which refers to the biological and physical characteristics that define an organism . Masculinity and femininity should not be conceptualised with a single rhetoric but rather that ideas and values of masculinity and femininity . The argument presented in this essay will show how counterinsurgency operations since the 9/11 terror attack by the United states of America have used the ambiguity of international law and the gendered assumptions of women as victims to justify the ‘War on Terror’. By no means is this essay a defence of terrorism or a pardoning of the political and social occurrences within Afghanistan in the 90s, instead it seeks to attribute aspects of Michel Foucault’s “abnormal’ account of how power is used in the creation of the ‘monster’ within the terrorism discourse to justify counterinsurgency operations. Men as monstersThe Taliban were cited as being the worst government Afghanistan has ever had , they enforced severe punishment to those who committed crime – public hanging and were punitive persecutors of Afghan women. Afghan women were denied rights to healthcare, education and the working world and were consequently subordinated to the household under the protection of male family members . The Feminist Majority Foundation (FMF) along with other western feminist organisations had fronted the ‘stop gender apartheid in Afghanistan’ campaign . Eleanor Smeal was among the first to campaign against the construction of the pipeline through Afghanistan that would have supplied millions in profits to the Taliban regime . Celebrities and key influencers got behind this campaign, which encouraged the western media to report on the Taliban’s treatment of women, incited outrage among the masses.  The portrayal of Afghan/Iraqi men as ‘monsters’ who prevented women from enjoying ‘freedoms’ shared within western countries and societies was already engrained within the minds of the general public. Historically from Edward Said’s 1978 book Orientalism, cultural representations based on the orientalist ways of framing the Middle East by distorting Islam to serve the purpose of imperialist domination. While the ‘West’ is presented as the beacon of civilisation, Arab society has come to personify barbarism (Edward Said 1981). In the words of Rai (2004) in order to proclaim its humanity, the west needed to create the ‘other’ as slaves and monsters. This representation of barbarianism comes from cultural and historical considerations of racialized and sexualised group of monsters described as the ‘abnormals’  . “the monster operates as a kind of master category for understanding contemporary forms of exclusion, erasure, surveillance and control” Foucault  Indeed, the racial and sexual monsters of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries were tied to the monstrosity of criminality a discourse which can be presented as a critique of terrorism studies, international law and the media . Keywords use within the discourse such as “democracy”, “freedom” and “humanity” how come to oversee the monstrous figure presented. The metaphor of the monster or “abnormal individual” was defined within Foucauldian reading of the ‘abnormal’ to function as a way in which the law constitutes itself as the authority responsible for the control of ‘abnormal individuals’. This has been a vital part of the way the law has been interpreted by the counterinsurgent states and how is has been used in respect to culture and race to justify the ‘War on Terror’. Women as objects to be protected After 9/11 President Bush wasted no time launching an extensive bombing crusade in Afghanistan to find Osama Bin Laden . Similarly, the Bush administration wasted no time emphasising gender in its role in the ‘operation enduring freedom’ from the beginning of the counterinsurgency . ”Afghan women know, through hard experience, what the rest of the world is discovering: the brutal oppression of women is a central goal of the terrorists,”Laura Bush November 17 2001 Laura Bush became the first wife to give the presidents Saturday morning radio address – a subtle proclamation of how superior and advanced the United States was, devoting much of her speech to condemning the Taliban’s war on women and qualifying the US war as an effort to free Afghan women. Through his presidency the Bush administration has repeatedly clarified its role as protector of the innocent and liberator of the repressed (Women) to justify the dominative war abroad . The perpetrators were de-humanised to figures of monsters with associations with brutality and ‘otherness’  . Women’s rights within this counterinsurgency operation are used to differentiate between ‘civilised’ and ‘uncivilised’ cultures and countries, the uncivilised a code for ‘monstrosity’. Central to the idea of masculine protection is the subordinate relationship with those who need protecting, this was indicated by the use of language from the Bush administration   Another example of this is in his 2002 State of the Union address,  “The last time we met in this chamber the mothers and daughters of Afghanistan were captives in their own homes, forbidden from working or going to school. Today women are free, and are part of Afghanistan’s new government” George W. Bush  Such depictions, suggest historical connotations of the colonial women, the third world women and the Muslim women as the other who is oppressed and needs to be liberated ( On International Women’s Day, Laura Bush spoke to the U.N. Commission on the Status of Women, linking the terrorist attacks with the oppression of women and thus, by implication, the war on terrorism with the liberation of women:”The terrorist attacks of September 11 galvanized the international community. Many of us have drawn valuable lessons from the tragedies. People around the world are looking closely at the roles women play in their societies. Afghanistan under the Taliban gave the world a sobering example of a country where women were denied their rights and their place in society. Today, the world is helping Afghan women return to the lives they once knew. Women were once important contributors to Afghan society, and they had the right to vote as early as the 1920s. . . . This is a time of rebuilding— of unprecedented opportunity—thanks to efforts led by the United Nations, the United States, the new Afghan government, and our allies around the world” (Laura Bush speech to United Nations Commission on the Status of Women, March 8, 2002) The important moral goal of the protection of society and innocent life is used by both terrorists and counterinsurgents for the justification of torture Strangely enough the Bush administrations domestic policies had no or little care for women’s agency, as seen in the quote below from Viner (2002), indicating a hijacking of feminist language to substantiate the “War on Terror” at home, Bush is no feminist. On his very first day in the Oval office he cut off funding to any international family-planning organisations which offer abortion services or counselling (likely to cost the lives of thousands of women and children) ; this year he renamed January 22 – the anniversary of Roe vs Wade which permitted abortion on demand – as National Sanctity of Human Life Day and compared abortion to terrorism: “On September 11, we saw clearly that evil exists in this world, and that it does not value life… Now we are engaged in a fight against evil and tyranny to preserve and protect life.” Characteristics such as violence, strength and courageousness has been applauded and admired in the name of defending one’s country particularly the women and children waiting at home . e logic of masculinist protection constitutes the “good” men who protect their women and children by relation to other “bad” men liable to attack International Law The dichotomy between the ‘feminist’ language used by President Bush and US government to defend women’s rights to democracy, justice and freedom and the vilification of ‘terrorists’ – at the time code for Arab and/or Muslim men into ‘monsters’ was so powerful in how it persuaded the international community that warfare was the only way to establish international peace. The global ‘war on terror’ was articulated through a range of justifications for the use of force, and supported by vague legal definitions. One such definition was the UN Security Council resolution 1368 adopted shortly after 9/11 on 12 September 2001 which states; “Determined to combat by all means threats to international peace and security caused by terrorist acts. Recognizing the inherent right of individual or collective self-defence in accordance with the Charter”  The use of the term ‘self-defence’ was argued to establish an almost unlimited authorisation to use force , legitimising any form of counterinsurgency operation. The Security Council declared the terrorist attack not just a threat to American peace and security but to international peace and security and expressed that perpetrators and sponsors of this attack should be brought to justice. Based on the resolution 1368 specifically articles 42 and 51 the Security Council essentially authorised member nations to use military force in response to a terrorist attack. It also takes into consideration that the states that sponsor terrorist groups should be held accountable and not such the individual groups themselves. The US attacked the Afghan state, based on the Resolution 1361, which interpreted the Article 51 of the UN Charter in the way that the Afghanistan is a sponsoring state. Interpretation of Resolution 1361 gave the right in this way to the US to use military force against Afghanistan, however the terrorist attack of 9/11 was perpetrated by the Al Qaeda, not the Afghan state.Resolution 1268 (2001), was also adopted unanimously on the same day, expressing the resolve of the Security Council to “to combat by all means threats to international peace and security caused by terrorist acts” and condemned “the horrifying terrorist acts which took place on 1’1 September 2001” as being, “like any act of international terrorism… a threat to international peace and security” Similarly adopted resolution 1373 on the 28 September 2001 which requires states to: “Ensure that any person who participates in the financing, planning, preparation or perpetration of terrorist acts or in supporting terrorist act is brought to justice and ensure that … such terrorist acts are established as serious criminal offences in domestic law…” The international reaction to the events of September 11, 2001 established the view that the concept of a terrorist attack can be seen as a state-on-state attack and not just an organisation attacking a state. This is how the US justified military action against Afghanistan and not simply an attack from Al-Qaida. The lack of clarity within international law to determine whether a state is responsible for the acts of a non-state establishment only aided the US reasoning behind the conflict. In order to bring a terrorist to justice they must first be considered a criminal. Vice President Cheney famously said, “Terrorists don’t deserve the same guarantees and safeguards that would be used for an American citizen going through the normal judicial process”. The Bush administration argues that the prisoners are illegal combatants not covered by international law as stated in the Geneva Convention . This is a perfect example of how the monster ideology was subconsciously used within the politics of the war to justify brutality and illegal treatment of criminals. It was interpreted as the US declaring before the world that any non-Americans whom it apprehends and claims to connect with terrorism will not be given the protection of the law Conclusion Law engages with the cultural, political and social structures within our society. Nothing has engaged with more than the global “War on Terror”, used frequently as a political term to describe and justify US acts of foreign policy. The narrative that continue the historic rhetoric of women as object to be protected has been discussed as something coming from a western feminist perspective first, and then used to convince the wider public of the good intentions of the war. The other narrative expressed in this essay is one whereby the terrorist was a monstrous, misogynistic entities with the sole intention of destroying the American way of life. Within the War on Terror racial and cultural otherness has been used as another form of justification of counterinsurgency and warfare. The Arab/Muslim man has been portrayed as uncivilised or ‘abnormal’ and therefore deserving of correction and education. As the law controls much of what we do in our daily lives and how we think I believe the manipulation of gender, race and culture to support an ideology such as the war on terror example given is a dangerous use of power.  ReferencesAmit S. 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