JM offered the following definition:
" Terrorism: Those acts engaging in or supporting political action by violent means of which the defining entity disapproves."
This would include the American Revolutionary War and many acts leading up to it, since it was violence supporting political ends and the British government disapproved. A definition of terrorism ought to distinguish between guerrilla activity targeting military forces in military (if irregular) engagements, and actions targeting ordinary civilians. Making political goals a necessary part of the definition is problematic to the extent that some violent acts (e.g. bombing a church simply because it is used by members of another religion) may have weak or nonexistent political underpinnings.
Causes of Middle Eastern terrorism, even taking appearances at face value, also have varying character. Most victims of terrorism in the Middle East and Asia are not American or European governments or persons, but members of rival religious sects (e.g. Sunni and Shia) or different religions (Muslims and Buddhists or Christians) or different ethnic groups, tribes, or national allegiances (Pakistan and India).
In the case of the Sunni and Shia conflicts that underpin most Middle Eastern terrorism, albeit sometimes camouflaged by nationalist and secessionist coloring and exacerbated by historical violence between groups, its difficult to see how the primary grievance can be addressed, unless it is converting to the religious sect which defines you as apostate and considers death an appropriate penalty for apostasy.
We see this essentially religious (not political) death struggle in Syria (Alawite Shia vs. Sunni), in Iraq (Sunni vs. Shia), in Yemen (Shia vs. Sunni) and elsewhere; and we see it in the regional allies that support these groups (Shia Iran vs. Wahabi Sunni Saudi Arabia, , both bankrolling and otherwise supporting guerrillas and militants of their own sect in these countries and others (e.g. Lebanon)).
While its true that the rift between rival sects in places like Iraq has political dimensions, the religious rivalry precedes the political rivalry. Sunni tribesmen find empowerment under ISIS preferable to disempowerment under the majority Shia controlled government, hence their passive and active support for an essentially secessionist movement there. Sectarian Saddam Hussein used this preexisting religious rivalry to keep the Shia majority under control using a Sunni dominated government. In 1920 the British colonial government used Sunni antipathy toward Shias to put down a Shia anti-colonial revolt, with the result that Sunnis from the center and north of the country became the political and officer corps elite for the next 38 years.
When ISIS or Al Qaeda in Iraq (during the Iraq War) committed horrible atrocities against Shia civilians via car bombs at mosques and marketplaces, it wss trying to provoke the Shia militias supporting the government of Iraq to commit similarly horrible atrocities against Sunnis (which they did then and do now every time they retake a village); this radicalized ordinary Sunnis or at least made them more supportive to a strong group of Sunni militants as the only practical alternative to Shia abuses.