http://www.cnn.com/2010/WORLD/europe/02/28/italy.kidnap/index.html

If this is an act of terrorism, wherein there is a “use or threatened use of force designed to bring about political change” (Barnett & Reynolds 15), then it is important to note how unique this act is in the realm of terrorism. Al-Qaeda gave Italy 25 days to comply with demands, demands that weren’t clear, and ransomed an Italian couple to get its point across. The media plays a large role here, with pictures released of the civilian couple along with the vague demands. Without the media, relaying this “if, then” message would be virtually impossible. This technique is unique to terrorism because, first of all, it differs greatly from the supposed terrorist norm of committing unexpected mass acts of violence and later expressing demands and, second of all, it makes clearer than ever a terrorist’s awareness of the media as a tool in spreading a message. We talked in class about whether or not we believe a terrorist deliberately uses the media as a tool and plans accordingly. Do you think this kidnapping story, that without the media would have little political impact, helps us answer our questions about a terrorist’s supposed exploitation of worldwide media? Does simply exposing this story to the world aid these motives?