THE TITLE OF MY PRESENTATION differs from the general title of this Conference which misleadingly links terrorism and the Middle East. Unintended inferences will inevitably be drawn from that title. This can only be deplored in light of the serious efforts of those concerned scholars who are seeking rational solutions to the complex problem of "terror-violence."
Social and behaviorial scientists will in time tell us more about the conditions, reasons, causes and motivations leading to "terror-violence." With such knowledge jurists will be better equipped to develop the type of legal controls most likely to reduce the impact of violent strategies. However, any scheme for the legal regulation and control of types of behavior cannot be framed without a value-oriented goal. I shall not elaborate on this point, but it is nonetheless my position that no regulatory scheme can rest on a repressive basis because of the conflicting values reflected in the very activity sought to be regulated and controlled. Indeed, what is terrorism to some is heroism to others.' An international regulatory scheme must therefore be in a position to mediate between conflicting values and claims, and therefore, it must, as much as possible, remain neutral in respect to competing values and claims. To whatever degree a regulatory scheme embodies certain values, they must be clearly identified to avoid any ambiguity. This is significant at the level of interpretation and implementation. The value-oriented goal which serves as the premise of my discussion is the attempt to minimize violence, to prevent its spill-over effects to uninvolved participants and to limit its arenas. In other words, our goal is (1) to reduce the impact of violence; (2) restrict its extension to potential victims, and (3) prevent its exportation to arenas beyond those wherein a given conflict exists.
Bassiouni, M. Cherif
"Methodological Options For International Legal Control of Terrorism,"
Akron Law Review: Vol. 7
, Article 3.
Available at: http://ideaexchange.uakron.edu/akronlawreview/vol7/iss3/3