Were the Mongol armies guilty of Terrorism?
The US Department of Defense defines terrorism, "the unlawful use of -- or threatened use of -- force or violence against individuals or property to coerce or intimidate governments or societies, often to achieve political, religious, or ideological objectives." When addressing the Mongolian expeditions, one can associate terrorism as a primary method of manipulation. The Mongol Empire was established by Genghis Khan in 1206, and at its height, it encompassed the majority of the territories from East Asia to Central Europe. It started out as a Mongol Nation of unified Central Asian confederations under Genghis Khan, but got territorially expanded after numerous outward conquests such as against China, Middle East and European regions.
The Mongol army was one of the most feared armies of the 12th and 13th century because of their superior strategy, brutality and their incomparable mobility. Khagans, instituted various innovations that significantly helped their forces conquer large areas of territory. To the Mongols, victory seemed to matter most, and they couldn't afford to lose battles nor men because they were poor in logistics and had few spare troops. The Mongol style of engaging in warfare seemed to be natural to their nomadic way of life, as they were comfortable with traveling long distances. Mongolian military philosophy was to defeat opponents with the least risk and cost to the Mongols, relying on loyalty and soldiers.
Mongols utilized political terror thoroughly as a psychological weapon. Before attacking a settlement, the Mongol generals demanded submission to the Khan, and threatened the initial villages with complete destruction if they refuse to surrender. After winning the battle, the Mongol general "kept their promise" and performed massacres. When refused, they would sack the city, execute the entire population (save a handful of skilled workers), and burn the city and the surrounding fields to...