Off shot from another thread on serial killing, everyone was debating the nature of terror, the working definition that was emerging was that it involved the deliberate targetting of civilians. What does everyone think?
It can relate to your definition of war, Clausewitz's study of total war during the Napoleonic campaigns indicated that total war involved the mobilisation of complete populations, everyone was participating in the campaign and it was about more than territory or satisfaction, much more, so could even involved what he described as a possible situation of anarchy called lawful, that of arming the entire population.
The contrast to that is the definition of war provided by Sun Tzu, that of limited warfare, in which opponents conduct war within acknowledged limits, for instance a division between legitimate targets and others such as farmers or servants.
The Geneva Conventions and other international law and guidelines have been created to recognise that there ought to be limitations on the conduct of war, parameters within which it is conducted, these likewise attempt to recognise that annihilation, genocide and atrocity can not be legitimate means of struggle and warfare.
Personally I think when it comes to defining terrorism the clue is in the title, the goal is terror, not simply soldiers, guerillas, "volunteers" or irregulars but also governments, criminals or gangsters can act as terrorists, there can even be people who attempt to relate to others in this manner, the psychopaths and sociopaths who arent clever enough to learn a good enough false persona to deploy as their public self.