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Antiterrorism and Counterterrorism

Terrorism refers to the application of ferocity against the civilian goal to generate or threaten general inescapable fear for the determination to achieve the political goal (González et al., 2021). This undoubtedly shows that terrorism is based on politics. It sometimes starts that intimidation and violence are the effective means of attaining the many aims that individuals or a group of people deliberately achieve within a specific duration. The criminal act can be controlled or prevented by the government’s actions, which are undertaken to oppose terrorism during the entire menace spectrum. As discussed below, the actions include antiterrorism and counterterrorism, which have distinct differences.

Begin with antiterrorism is an alternative defensive approach to terrorist attacks which demands understanding the drivers and causes of terrorism as well as measures that should be put into place to reduce the susceptibility to a criminal act (Wilner, A. S., & Dubouloz, C. J. 2020). The defensive approach has military measures that make it dissimilar from counterterrorism. These include maintaining a unified and robust defensive posture to prevent criminal acts and protecting the members of a nation, both government and private infrastructure, military assets, and helping discourage threats from terrorists. WATCH army is also another measure practiced during antiterrorism. It is a modern version of neighborhood watch focused on the threat of criminal or terrorist activity. The watch empowers and encourages the army community for antiterrorism to identify and report the critical behaviors significantly related to terrorist activity.

On the other hand, counterterrorism refers to the offensive pursuit to deter, prevent and respond to the criminal counteract to neutralize it or reduce its force, followed by Negation and prosecution of criminal activity (Crone, M., & Harrow, M. 2021). The tactics and strategies in counterterrorism that differentiate it from antiterrorism include the implementation of an international framework that works against terrorism and promotes international legal concerns in criminal matters associated with terrorism. Also, unlike antiterrorism, it is responsible for countering criminal, violent radicalization, and extremism that results in terrorism, following a multidimensional approach. The act also promotes coordination and a cooperative approach to contradicting terrorism at all stages, including cooperation among different states, coordination among national authorities, and co-operating with the relevant regional and international organizations.

The unique programs present in the antiterrorism include the antiterrorism assistant program (ATA). The program serves as the basic benefactor of military antiterrorism equipment and training for international law execution interventions of companion states (Wilner, A. S., & Dubouloz, C. J. 2020). Again, the program helps the military of different nations build critical abilities for war across a broad spectrum of antiterrorism knowledge and skills. ATA provides the base for consultations, mentorship, equipment related to investigations, and training of military members in preparing them for influential acts against any criminal or terrorist activity. As criminals and terrorists continue to regulate their network system, ATA also advances to refine and adapt its equipment and training initiatives to meet the developing threats from the terrorists or marginal rebellious.

On counterterrorism, the special programs include refuting the finance provider to the terrorists. Counterterrorism applies a range of programs as well as tools to weaken and isolate Terrorists’ organizations and their sustenance network (Hinkkainen, K. 2018). The act of counterterrorism leads departments of state efforts to designate terrorists’ individuals and organizations, including obstructing their financial supply, limiting other individuals or organizations from supplying them with war tools and equipment, and freezing their financial assets. Terrorist designations isolate and expose individuals and organizations, enables coordinated movements among the government military, and impose severe authorizations for criminals. Likewise, there is the presence of a counterterrorism partnership finance, which is intended to develop a link of partners in provisions of effective partnership in sections where terrorists’ are highly based. The program pursues public funding to construct a building or a section for the criminal fairness segment actors who can investigate, report, and prosecute, among other military functions related to terrorism, following the rule of law.

The question “what is the difference between antiterrorism and counterterrorism may signify that the two are unrelated.” However, a closer look demonstrates that they are related. Terrorism, as a philosophical strategy of psychological safety by political criminal acts, falls under the guidance of antiterrorism, a situation of political violence directed in contradiction of the government moves by the insubordinate minority (González et al., 2019). The counterterrorism approach falls within four models in the case of criminal activity. These include war, justice, reconciliation, and defense. The difference between counterterrorism and antiterrorism is simple: counterterrorism focuses more on combating the strategies and the tactics of terrorism and those involved in it, while antiterrorism is a broader category of response to political violence coursed by the marginal group of rebellions that are terroristic.


Crone, M., & Harrow, M. (2021). Homegrown terrorism in the West. Terrorism and Political Violence23(4), 521–536.

González, A. L., Freilich, J. D., & Chermak, S. M. (2019). How women engage homegrown terrorism. Feminist Criminology9(4), 344-366.

Hinkkainen, K. (2018). Homegrown terrorism: The known unknown. Peace economics, peace science, and public policy19(2), 157-182.

Wilner, A. S., & Dubouloz, C. J. (2020). Homegrown terrorism and transformative learning: an interdisciplinary approach to understanding radicalization. Global Change, Peace & Security22(1), 33-51.


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