Dealing with Terrorism: What Social Workers Should and Can Do

Tsui, Ming-sum; Cheung, Fernando C. H.
October 2003
Social Work;Oct2003, Vol. 48 Issue 4, p556
Academic Journal
The article discusses the actions that should be taken by social workers to deal with the grief resulted from terrorism. Terrorist is the last resort of a radical and extremely harmful act done by a marginal group usually with its own religious or political beliefs. Its aim is to achieve the maximum unpredictable damage with minimum resources, to create widespread fear and to gain recognition. However, whenever groups perform terrorist acts, they are also destroying their own ideals, because their means supersedes their ends. In suicidal attacks, terrorists not only destroy their physical lives but also betray their spiritual ideals. The most powerful weapons of terrorism are its secrecy and unpredictability. The damage is tremendous because its effects have ramifications in various media. The acts of terrorists are acts of self-destruction. Use of military force will only create future violence. It is simply another form of self-destruction. At the same time, to limit the civil rights and individual freedom of people to cope with terrorism jeopardizes our liberty. The greatest harm inflicted by terrorism is not death itself but the fear of death and its indirect impact on limiting individual freedom and human rights.


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