In , Bin Laden stated this belief clearly to John Miller. Bin Laden believes that the United States, which was so heavily involved in supporting the Afghan rebels, misses the profound point of that exercise: Through sheer will, even superpowers can be defeated. The war changed Bin Laden. The Taliban soon took power in Afghanistan and gestated an eponymous movement that threatens Pakistan. The fourth wave, which began in , will transcend the generation which gave it birth. Moreover, with the foundation of the Islamic State, the fourth wave has entered a new phase in which, rather than trying to gain control of established states a la Al Qaeda and its numerous offshoots, seeks to establish a millennial state in the heart of the Islamic world.
Wave theory has come to be widely accepted in the field as a useful historical model.
The insights it provides into both the international character of terrorism and its transnational commonalities and modalities are undeniable. That said, every theory must be a constant work in progress if it is to have continuing utility in a rapidly evolving field. Some of the difficulties with wave theory we have already pointed out. Problems of classification, as with the PLO, are not of great import. The generational nature of wave theory is a major strength, although the religious wave seems to defy the single generation life span allotted to each wave. Therefore, it would be useful to conclude with a look at some of the difficulties and objections that have been expressed about wave theory.
We will begin with a reexamination of the second wave and a consideration of what might be termed ethnonationalist violence. This will be followed with a consideration of the literature of the four waves. Both are well disposed to wave theory. Rapoport and commentary from Charles Townsend and Jeffrey Kaplan. The second wave focuses on anticolonialist violence.
As we have seen, the explosion of newly independent and newly established nations by the early s is a testament to the global triumph of nationalism. Where nationalist aspirations were repressed in Northern Ireland, the Turkish zone in Cyprus, former Yugoslavia, and throughout the Soviet empire, terrorist groups survived and flourished when most second wave groups were matters of historic debate.
Ethnic terror marked the Yugoslavian wars in the s, with Serbia and Croatia leading the way in the application and historic importance of ethnically based terror.
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Rapoport was certainly aware of the importance of ethnic violence and the emergence of ethnonationalist terrorism. He wrote important articles on the topic, both in historical and contemporary perspective. It may be safely assumed that, as the articles give way to a future monograph, greater emphasis will be given to a trend that is becoming increasingly apparent in the 21st century. There are numerous examples of ethno-terrorism to consider, but it is clear that there are some questions about the efficacy of wave theory to be derived from the topic.
Rather than delve into so vast a corpus, it would be useful to rethink the problem in another way. If, as Rapoport suggests, the fourth wave will recede by , will the fifth wave focus on ethno-nationalist terror?
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The African scene would seem to suggest that this could be so. Two publications suggest the possibility that the fourth wave will end as scheduled. What can be suggested is that some evidence indicates the Fourth Wave of modern terrorism may be on a downward trajectory … The Egyptian groups Jihad and al-Gamma al-Islamyya, responsible for major terrorist attacks, have declared their abandonment of violence. Next, domestic and international authorities have strengthened their ability to monitor, detect, and prevent terrorist attacks.
There is evidence that Al Qaeda and its affiliates have induced disaffection among the very people they want to take up the cause of jihad.
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Public opinion in the Muslim world may be shifting, a result of terrorists staging indiscriminate or insufficiently discriminating attacks on fellow Muslims. The rise of the Islamic State, the resultant flood of refugees into Western Europe, and the numbing series of high casualty terrorist attacks from to the present makes this appear to be rather overly optimistic. It was clearly written in support of the generational aspect of wave theory, but it only muddles the case.
The first phase of the Ku Klux Klan for example began during the American Reconstruction period after the Civil War in the s, yet it was religious in concept and symbolism, and that religiosity would characterize the group throughout its history. Even its sacred book—ironic, given the current Islamophobic climate—is called The Kloran!
Rapoport is aware of the difficulty of classifying the radical right and other forms of popular violence in the context of wave theory. In , he published a fascinating article a that sweeps through American history and finds a history of mob violence. Leonard Weinberg would examine the problem of what might follow the fourth wave in The End of Terrorism?
senrei-exorcism.com/images/prey/mobile-phone-facebook-tracker-galaxy-note-7.php After suggesting and dismissing a number of fifth wave suspects, he again expresses admirable if possibly misplaced optimism in stating that perhaps terrorism will disappear altogether, or less grandly, that it will return to the margins of political violence from whence it came in the 20th century. They well described unique aspects of contemporary ethnic and ethno-national terrorism, 71 but as we have seen these instances of terror were present from the second wave to this day, and they will continue into the indefinite future.
The fifth wave material led, however, to the New Tribalism, an intricate model that, through Colonel Christopher Costa, has made its way into the American national security and military command structure as a route to a deeper understanding of global terrorist movements, as well as into the process of radicalization and mobilization. Rapoport and commentary from Charles Townshend and Jeffrey Kaplan. Parker and Sitter begin badly for most terrorism scholars by proposing a disease model, viewing terrorism as an infection whose unfortunate sufferers are caught up in a disease vector or strain.
They are ultimately the victims of an infection that can be traced to a putative patient zero, making terrorism a particularly virulent malady much akin to a putative zombie outbreak aka The Walking Dead. He is currently working on a book examining human rights-compliant counter-terrorism strategies, entitled Why Right Is Might , for the World Scientific Press. The title of the piece reflects an effort throughout the article to use the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse as a metaphor for global terrorism. They state:. The four strains we have identified all date from the same period, and although they have mostly developed separately since, they do occasionally combine and mutate.
These four strains—these four horsemen of terrorism—are Nationalism, Socialism, Religious Extremism, and Social Exclusion. The Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood Ikkwan , for example, was born in in the second or nationalist wave. Yet the Ikkwan was not primarily nationalist in orientation. Waves or strains, the theory of terrorist violence does not address anything but terrorism and thus need to focus primarily on terrorism rather than deviant politics.
Is it unfair to suspect that they stick to four categories to tally with the apocalyptic metaphor? Both make sense.
In the end, it may not really be an issue of choosing between waves and strains; the analytical frames of Rapoport and Parker and Sitter possess convincing explanatory and ordering power. The kinetic effect of the wave and the continuity of the strain, both correspond to a useful degree with messy reality. Maybe there is here a case for defying Fowler and deliberately mixing metaphors—producing a wavy strain, perhaps?
What we do not need is to add a third metaphor: the horsemen would be better riding off into the sunset. For good reason, David C. Where terrorism in the ancient world was religious in nature and focused on specific locales, the emergence of modern communications technology, from the printed page to the encrypted Internet message, has made terrorism transnational in scope. It was no longer centered on a particular people, a narrow localistic set of religio-political circumstances, or even a particular language. No academic theory is able to capture the full scope of any issue in the social sciences.
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There remain cases where a terrorist group defies easy classification, where groups outlive their wave and are able to adapt to the changed circumstances of the world around them. These, however, are the exceptions, and they serve to prove the rule. It will be a cornerstone in the academic study of terrorism for some time to come. New York: Palgrave Macmillan. Find this resource:. Allen, T. Anderson, J.
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