Terrorism is one of the most important issues to resolve in the modern world since it usually involves a high number of victims. It could be said that its central goal is to evoke chaos, misbalance, and panic in the society. In this instance, terrorism violates the rights of the individuals while this violent act is unjustified and entirely immoral in any situation (Wellman, 2013). Thus, the authorities still have to consider ethics when determining the punishments and responses to these adverse events. In general, responses to terrorism are highly dependent on the situation, as in some causes armory intervention and shootings are required. For example, currently, the U.S. government deems appropriate to follow and kill terrorists outside the country to diminish international threats (Johnson & Patterson, 2016). In the case of the violent terrorist attacks, rapid response and elimination of terrorists may seem appropriate, as, otherwise, it would lead to more victims.
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Nevertheless, the government of the U.S. has to mostly rely on ethical principles, basic human rights, rule of law, and concepts of democracy, as the existent counterterrorism solutions seem to be ineffective and do not comply with the ethical codes such as liberty, virtue, and justice (Braswell, McCarthy, & McCarthy, 2017; Johnson & Patterson, 2016). In turn, according to the theory of utilitarianism, in some cases, chasing terrorists and eliminating them can be justified because it is done for the common good. Nevertheless, this concept seems to contradict the ideas of rights, liberties, justice, and virtue, as the actions of the government could not be considered as ethical and might even trigger the rise of terrorism. To summarize, eliminating terrorists could be viewed as a suitable action only in critical situations while in other cases, it would be more peaceful and moral to chase terrorists and punish them according to the law, as revenge might evoke violence instead of resolving the problem.
Braswell, M., McCarthy, B., & McCarthy, B. (2017). Justice, crime, and ethics. New York, NY: Routledge.
Johnson, J., & Patterson, E. (2016). The Ashgate research companion to military ethics. New York, NY: Routledge.
Wellman, C. (2013). An approach to rights: Studies in the philosophy for law in morals. New York, NY: Springer.