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Table of Contents
Annual Editions: Violence and Terrorism 12/13, Thirteenth Edition
Unit 1: What Is Terrorism?
1. How to Define Terrorism, Joshua Sinai, Perspectives on Terrorism, April 2008
Joshua Sinai argues that defining terrorism is "the most ambiguous component in terrorism studies." He proposes a `new definition' that addresses existing ambiguities.
2. Analyzing and Defining Terrorist Acts: What Types of Attacks Should Be Considered Terrorism?, Fred Burton, Police One News, February 2011
Fred Burton attempts to answer the question: "What types of acts should be defined as terrorism?" He cautions that dismissing certain acts due to a lack of foreign involvement may lead authorities to overlook important information useful in preventing the next attack.
3. A Critical View of Critical Terrorism Studies, James M. Lutz, Perspectives on Terrorism, December 2010
James Lutz argues that "terror" and "terrorism" should not be used interchangeably, and that all criminal activities are not necessarily terrorism. He believes that the concept of state terrorism has not received sufficient attention from those engaged in Critical Terrorism Studies.
Unit 2: Terrorist Tactics
4. Suicide Attacks on the Rise, Captain Billy J. Huntsman, Military Police, 2010
Captain Huntsman argues that suicide attacks "should not be viewed merely as an operational tactic, but as a means to a strategic goal." He argues that understanding suicide attacks is critical in developing effective countermeasures.
5. The Al Qaeda Weapons Race Continues, Ed Blanche, The Middle East, May 2008
Ed Blanche provides an overview of Al Qaeda's efforts to produce weapons of mass destruction. Blanche argues that Al Qaeda's ability to produce these weapons has been largely underestimated.
6. Rifling through the Terrorists' Arsenal: Exploring Groups' Weapon Choices and Technology Strategies, Brian A. Jackson and David R. Frelinger, Studies in Conflict & Terrorism, 2008
This study provides a comprehensive analysis of the use of weapons, technologies and the variation in technologies used by terrorist groups. It identifies significant differences in the use of weapons, technologies, and related strategies by terrorist organizations.
Unit 3: State-Supported Terrorism
7. Rogue Operators, Daniel Byman, The National Interest, July/August 2008
Byman examines the changing dynamics of state-sponsored terrorism. He concludes that the biggest challenge the United States faces is preventing "passive sponsorship" of terrorist organizations by states like Saudi Arabia, Iran, Pakistan, and Lebanon.
8. No State Sponsors, No Terror, William F. Jasper, The New American, August 2009
Jasper argues that for decades Iran has been the leading sponsor of global terror, followed closely by the KGB and its successor the Russian FSB. He concludes that any genuine effort aimed at eradicating terrorism must ultimately confront its state sponsors.
9. Nightmares of Nuclear Terrorism, Rolf Mowatt-Larssen, Bulletin of Atomic Scientists, March/April 2010
Mowatt-Larssen outlines various means by which terrorist organizations might acquire nuclear weapons. He explores the potential role of states such as Pakistan and North Korea in the transfer of weapons or weapons technology.
Unit 4: International Terrorism
10. A State of Terror, Michael Petrou, Maclean's, July 2009
Michael Petrou examines the role of al-Shabab in Somalia. He argues that while "Somalis are dying from starvation and war, or suffocating under al-Shabab's interpretation of Islam," Somalia is becoming the next terrorist stronghold.
11. Greece Will Be a War Zone, Sect of Revolutionaries Warns Tourists, Helena Smith, The Observer, August 2010
Helena Smith examines the recent rise of anarchist organizations in Greece in the wake of a government austerity program. The Sect of Revolutionaries has threatened to turn Greece "into a war zone of revolutionary activity with arson, sabotage, violent demonstrations, bombings and assassinations. . ."
12. FARC, ELN: Colombia's Left-Wing Guerrillas, Stephanie Hanson, Council on Foreign Relations, August 2009
Hanson provides a systematic overview of the two main left-wing guerilla groups operating in Colombia. She offers a brief summary of the ongoing peace negotiations between these groups and the Colombian government.
13. How al Qaeda Works: What the Organization's Subsidiaries Say about Its Strength, Leah Farrall, Foreign Affairs, March/April 2011
Leah Farrall provides an in-depth analysis of the origins, growth, and structure of al Qaeda. She argues that al Qaeda has the potential for continued growth and remains a major threat.
Unit 5: Terrorism in America
14. Militant Extremists in the United States, Jonathan Masters, Council on Foreign Relations, February 2011
Militant extremists pose a unique threat for America and domestic terrorism. Jonathan Masters offers an overview of four basic categories of militant extremists and the domestic intelligence infrastructure developed to address this threat.
15. New Yorkistan?: Initial Lessons from the Latest Homegrown Terror Plot, Judith Miller, City Journal, June 2010
Judith Miller examines a failed terror plot by two New Jersey natives to illustrate the rising threat of homegrown terror. She argues that New York is not only the number one target, but also becoming the number one source of these terrorists.
16. Escalating Violence from the Animal Liberation Front, Scott Stewart, Security Weekly, July 29, 2010
Scott Stewart uses the case of a self-described "ALF Lone Wolf" arsonist to examine the increasing use of "leaderless resistance" by left-wing activists in the United States. He argues that ELF/ALF lone wolves "have been more successful in conducting attacks than jihadist lone wolves."
17. The Year in Hate and Extremism, 2010, Mark Potok, Intelligence Report, Issue Number 141, Spring 2011
Mark Potok, of the Southern Poverty Law Center, argues that there has been an explosive growth of right-wing extremist groups in the United States. He suggests that in an environment of increasing political polarization, President Obama has served as a lightning rod for radical right anger.
Unit 6: Terrorism and the Media
18. Communicating Politics Online: The Rhetoric of "Terrorism" and "Resistance", Amani Ismail, The Global Media Journal: Mediterranean Edition, Fall 2009
This article argues that the Hezbollah and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad are using the Internet to counteract negative mainstream media images by emphasizing, fostering, and celebrating a culture of resistance.
19. Paramilitary Groups in Northern Ireland, the Media War and the State: Semantics and Symbiosis—A Comparative Case Study of the PIRA and UDA, Mark Hayes and Paul Norris, International Conference on Conflict, Terrorism and Society, Kadir Has University, Istanbul, 2010
Hayes and Norris cast doubt on the often hypothesized symbiotic relationship between terrorists and the media. They argue rather than relaying the desired terrorist narrative, that media coverage of the conflict between the Provisional Irish Republican Army and Ulster Defense Army "reflected the over-riding policy priorities and political preferences of the state."
20. Jihad with a Hip-Hop Pose Is an Easier Sell with Youth, Andrew Potter, Maclean's, July 2008
In order to recruit members among urban youths and to capitalize on cultural alienation among young Blacks, terrorist organizations are using hip-hop music to recruit a new generation of "gangsta jihadis."
21. Online De-Radicalization? Countering Violent Extremist Narratives: Message, Messenger and Media Strategy, Omar Ashour, Perspectives on Terrorism, December 2010
This article outlines the framework of a UN-sponsored research project to counter extremist narratives on the internet. By focusing on the message, the messengers and the media, states may be able to develop a comprehensive strategy for online de-radicalization.
Unit 7: Terrorism and Religion
22. Cracks in the Jihad, Thomas Rid, The Wilson Quarterly, Winter 2010
Thomas Rid examines the increasing divide between local and global jihadis. He argues that despite the `cracks' in the jihad and the lack of a centralized leadership, self-recruited global jihadis continue to pose a significant threat to U.S. interests.
23. In Search of Moderate Muslims, Joshua Muravchik and Charles Szrom, Commentary, February 2008
Muravchik and Szrom discuss the difficulty of identifying moderate Muslim groups which may serve as an antidote to radical Islam. They offer a six question litmus test to identify groups that "merit support and consideration."
24. India Must Face up to Hindu Terrorism, Kapil Komireddi, The Guardian, January 19, 2011
Komireddi asserts that the Indian government has largely ignored political violence perpetrated by Hindu extremists. He argues that India "has failed appallingly in its obligations" to its 150 million Muslim citizens.
25. Sociological Understanding of the Relationship between Terrorism and Religion, Hüseyin Cinoğlu, International Journal of Human Sciences, Volume 7, Issue: 2, 2010
Cinoğlu argues that religion has been used by terrorist organizations to legitimize violence, to cure alienation, to eliminate the need to appeal to larger groups, and is also used in target selection.
Unit 8: Women and Terrorism
26. Female Suicide Bombers: A Global Trend, Mia Bloom, Daedalus, Winter 2007
Bloom examines the motives of women who choose to become suicide bombers. She discusses potential reasons for recruitment of women by terrorist organizations and concludes that these women are not likely to become "portents of gender equality."
27. Picked Last: Women and Terrorism, Alisa Stack-O'Connor, Joint Force Quarterly, Issue 44, 1st Quarter 2007
Alisa Stack-O'Connor examines how and why terrorist organizations use women in their attacks. Focusing on their propaganda value, the obstacles they face and the tactical advantage they provide, she emphasizes the importance of women to terrorist organizations.
28. Terrorism in Africa: The Role of Women in Terrorist Groups, Claudia Forster-Towne, Consultancy Africa Intelligence, August 2010
Claudia Forster-Towne argues that "the role of women within terrorist organizations depends largely on the organization's conception of gender." She examines the differing roles of women in terrorist groups in Uganda, Sierra Leone, and Mozambique.
29. The Moscow Bombing: An Inevitable Victory for Moscow, but a Hard Struggle Ahead, Yossef Bodansky, Defense and Foreign Affairs: Strategy Policy, April 2010
The March 29, 2010 bombings of two Moscow Metro stations were revealed to be the work of the female terrorist group the "Black Widows." Bodansky explores the Black Widows involvement in the escalating jihadist surge into Russia and the North Caucasus.
Unit 9: Government Response
30. The Jihad against the Jihadis: How Moderate Muslim Leaders Waged War on Extremists And Won, Fareed Zakaria, Newsweek, February 22, 2010
Fareed Zakaria examines how some Muslim leaders and intellectuals have waged a successful war against extremism by delegitimizing the violent jihad. As a result there has been a significant decline in the number of people who support violence against civilians.
31. Detainee Deradicalization: A Challenge for Psychological Science, Arie W. Kruglanski, Michele W. Gelfand, and Rohan Gunaratna, APS Observer, January 2010
This article argues that social psychology can make an important contribution in deradicalizing terrorist detainees. Pointing to the relative success of deradicalization programs in Saudi Arabia, Indonesia and Iraq, the authors advocate the use of cognitive and affective/motivational tests to investigate the role of variables, such as the detainee's embeddedness, as moderators for deradicalization.
32. Enemies, Not Defendants: Let the Law of War Meet the War on Terror, Andrew C. McCarthy, The National Review, January 2010
Focusing on the case of the underwear bomber, McCarthy argues that it is "insane" to look at counterterrorism as law enforcement instead of a national security problem. He argues that by treating prisoners as enemy combatants rather than defendants the U.S. can more effectively interrogate them and prevent future terrorist attacks.
Unit 10: Future Threats
33. The Shifting Face of Violence, Theodor H. Winkler, World Policy Journal, Fall 2008
Winkler provides a broad overview of the challenges posed by the changing face of violence. He argues that states need "integrated strategies that address conflict prevention, conflict management, conflict resolution, and post conflict reconstruction."
34. Al Qaeda at 20 Dead or Alive?, Peter Bergen, The Washington Post, August 17, 2008
Peter Bergen predicts that al Qaeda is unlikely to attack the United States in the next five years and that while al Qaeda's media war for the hearts and minds continues, "Muslims around the world are increasingly taking a dim view of this group."
35. The Future of Terrorism, John T. Picarelli, National Institute of Justice Journal, Issue No. 264, November 2009
John Picarelli identifies important differences in how Bruce Hoffman and Marc Sageman, two of the foremost experts on terrorism in the United States, interpret the nature of the terrorist threat. He argues that law enforcement agencies can offer valuable insights as key contributors to this debate.
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