Ch. 7, Political Violence (204-233)

Discussion Questions

  1. If a state's "monopoly of violence is never perfect or complete" (207), how do we know when it's threatened or has broken down? How might knowing this help us prevent political violence?
  2. Do you find the presented explanations for why political violence occurs adequate (or convincing)? Explain your answer.
  3. Are revolutions a good thing? Why or why not? Under what circumstances, if any, could you imagine yourself participating in one?
  4. Which of the discussed causes of terrorism makes the most sense to you, and why?
  5. Connect today's chapter to your previously held understandings and opinions about terrorism. How did the chapter reinforce or contradict what you previously thought? Be specific.
  6. How can liberal democracies best respond to political violence? Frame your answer with respect to O'Neil's comments on page 229.
  7. When, if ever, is it okay to engage in political violence? Support your position.