Terrorism and Political Instability: Cause and Effect

By Toby Tunwase

Terrorism is a menace that has been plaguing the world in the past decades. While the international community keeps fighting it, there is an undeniable link between thriving terrorism and political instability in nations. A glance at all the nations of the world where terrorism thrives, and we see that many of these nations suffer from one political instability or the other.

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A typical case study will be Syria. Terrorism thrives in Syria because of the crisis befalling the country. Terrorist organizations took advantage of the unrest to sponsor their ideas and interest in the nation.

Political instability is usually marked by a breakdown of law and order, as well as weak institutions of government. This combination is precisely the habitat that suits the operations of groups whose aim is usually to sabotage a state for political reasons. They find the acquisition of weapons easier and the penetration of facilities and structures far smoother.

Image credit: REUTERS/Eloisa Lopez

What must be done?

While it is clear that terrorism impacts stability, the world must realize that the absence of political stability also enables terrorism. In the fight against terrorism, therefore, the world must work towards creating politically stable states. This stability must not be false stability where a dictator enforces his will. We have clear examples that teach us that such situations breed revolts. These revolts often result in instability that breeds terrorism (Syria as a case-study).

What the world must build are states that are stable because they possess strong institutions that safeguard this stability.