Combating Terrorism with Economic Means

Theoretical Framework and Challenges to the OSCE EED

Research Paper (undergraduate), 2006

10 Pages, Grade: A



Part I: Possible Ways of Combating Terrorism With Economic Means and their Effectiveness

Part II: Expected Effectiveness of the OSCE EED in Combating Terrorism with Economic Means



Although there is still no universally accepted definition of terrorism, almost the whole world is currently engaged in fight against this evil. The OSCE became heavily involved in combating and preventing terrorism only after the tragic events in the USA on September 11, 2001, yet the participating states still have not provided the world with an exact definition of terrorism, reflecting common position of all 55 states. There is a great number of various definitions of terrorism, however, the researches of NATO Defense College identify “…four essential elements specific to terrorism…: premeditated violent acts, the political nature of the demands, civilian victims, and the trans-national character of the terrorist groups.”[1] Taking into account the complexity of ‘terrorism’ issue , it is obvious that combating and preventing terrorism requires development of a multidimensional approach, which would not be reduced to elimination of key terrorist leaders and to policy of ‘no talking to terrorists’.

Certainly, short-term measures pay back faster but leaving root causes of terrorism unaddressed might lead to irreversible consequences in the future. To define root causes is another complicated task, as each terrorist act must be given a close consideration in order to explain it and to find a remedy for it. However, there are certain measures developed by various organizations on how to combat and prevent terrorism. One of the measures is of economic nature, i.e. the ways of how to fight terrorism with economic means.

This particular paper consists of two parts containing two major questions for consideration. Firstly, while exploring and analyzing possible ways of combating terrorism with economic means in general it is important to consider what is the effectiveness of this method in accomplishing the task. Secondly, while taking into account the OSCE decisions related to the issue, it is aimed to reflect upon expected effectiveness of the OSCE EED in combating terrorism with economic means.

Methods of research are limited to text-based analyses of analytical documents and the OSCE decisions related to the topic.

The hypothesis of the author is the following. Terrorism can be combated with such economic means as disrupting the funding of terrorist groups, introduction of sanctions against states, which are allegedly sponsors of terrorist groups, and by providing economic assistance to the countries in order to bring more economic and social justice to the people, thus, diminishing opportunity for active terrorists to recruit their supporters among desperate people. These short, medium, and long-term measures are expected to be quite effective. As to the OSCE Economic and Environmental Dimension, its effectiveness in accomplishing the task is quite difficult to measure because, firstly, its aim is not to solve the issue, i.e. to combat terrorism with, inter alia, economic means, but to raise awareness, to provide a platform for discussions, to organize workshops and trainings etc; and, secondly, because the OSCE’s related decisions are of a declaratory character, which only encourage the participating states to take measures against identified problems; the OSCE has no legal instruments to make states comply with the adopted decision.

Part I: Possible Ways of Combating Terrorism With Economic Means and their Effectiveness

There are probably many different means of combating terrorism, which can be classified as economic. However, given the limitation of this research only the following three are analyzed: disrupting funding of terrorists, economic sanctions against state-sponsors of terrorist groups, and providing economic assistance to the states in order to improve economic and social justice in the societies.

Disrupting funding of terrorist groups is a complicated task because terrorist organizations can use a variety of sources, which can be obtained through many illegal as well as legal ways. As Barbara Haering notes in her report to the General Committee on Economic Affairs, Science, Technology and Environment, “Funds from legal sources are often hard to separate from illegal proceeds as some groups have developed considerable social activities in favour of the needy population while their militant arm continued to perform terrorist acts.”[2] However, financial channels of terrorists also include drug and arms trafficking, money laundering, organized crime, sponsorship provided by certain states, and many others. Some of these channels can be efficiently blocked through introduction and efficient implementation of the effective laws.

Thus, in its Progress Report on War against Terrorism issued after two years since 9/11 attacks, the US government states, “…173 countries have issued orders to freeze the assets of terrorists; terror networks have lost access to nearly $200 million, which have been frozen or seized in more than 1,400 terrorist-related accounts around the world… Over 100 countries have introduced new terrorist-related legislation, and 84 countries have established Financial Intelligence Units.”[3]


[1] Balzaretti, p.8.

[2] Haering, p.9.

[3], p.8.

Excerpt out of 10 pages


Combating Terrorism with Economic Means
Theoretical Framework and Challenges to the OSCE EED
OSCE Academy
Sustainable Development: economic, social, and environmental aspects
Catalog Number
ISBN (eBook)
ISBN (Book)
File size
478 KB
Combating, Terrorism, Economic, Means, Theoretical, Framework, Challenges, OSCE
Quote paper
Irina Wolf (Author), 2006, Combating Terrorism with Economic Means, Munich, GRIN Verlag,


  • No comments yet.
Read the ebook
Title: Combating Terrorism with Economic Means

Upload papers

Your term paper / thesis:

- Publication as eBook and book
- High royalties for the sales
- Completely free - with ISBN
- It only takes five minutes
- Every paper finds readers

Publish now - it's free