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March 30, 2016

Analysts: Islamist Terror Deaths up 774 percent

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Current al-Qaeda head Dr. Ayman al-Zawahiri (right) and his predecessor Osama bin Laden (left)


A March 28, 2016 analysis by the Investigative Project on Terrorism (IPT), a Washington D.C.-based organization that monitors extremist groups, found a “stunning increase in deaths caused by radical Islamic terror.” IPT says the threat from Islamic-rooted terrorism continues to grow.

IPT calculated that an average of 3,284 people were murdered in terror attacks from 2007 to 2011. The next year, 2012-2013, that figure jumped to 9,537. From 2014 to 2015, 28,708 people died in Islamist terror attacks—a 774 percent increase from the 2007-2011 statistics.

IPT’s report was compiled using research from a variety of sources, including the University of Maryland Global Terrorism Database. The Investigative Project notes:

“The growth in terrorist victims corresponds to a wider theater of operations for terror groups. From 2001-2006, the threat was dispersed in area and occurring primarily in 10 countries, including the U.S. and Russia. By 2014-2015, significant Islamist terrorist activity could be found in 18 countries, with most concentrated in Africa and the Middle East.”

Not surprisingly, terrorist attacks have also seen a marked increase.

IPT’s analysis detailed 493 terror attacks from 2007-2011, increasing to 1,440 assaults between 2012 and 2013. By 2014 to 2015, there had been 2,930 recorded onslaughts by Islamic fundamentalists.

The report identified the rise of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) as an “obvious cause” for the spike, but noted that the data also showed “the problem of Islamist terror is worsening beyond the reach of ISIS.”

The skyrocketing number of terrorist attacks and resultant fatalities is one of several trends identified in the report. IPT noted that Africa has become a “primary growth target,” with an increase that has been “led primarily by three Islamist organizations”: ISIS affiliate Boko Haram in Nigeria and nearby countries, al-Qaeda affiliate al-Shabaab, primarily in Somalia and Kenya and al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), which refers to north Africa.

The increase in terrorism also has extended across the Atlantic Ocean.

Noting a report by George Washington University’s Program on Extremism, CAMERA wrote on Dec. 7, 2015 that “Islamic terror in the United States is at a height not seen since the Sept. 11, 2001 al-Qaeda terror attacks that murdered 2,977 people” (“Washington Times Notes Record Terror Levels”). GWU reported that “fifty-six individuals have been arrested” in the United States “on suspicion of plotting or helping support” ISIS in 2015.

Identifying what it considered to be another trend, IPT said that Western interventions, such as U.S. and NATO operations in Libya in 2011 that helped lead to the ouster of dictator Muammar Qaddafi and his government, have inflamed instability. Failed states, or countries in which the reach of governments does not fully extend to its geographical borders, such as Nigeria and Pakistan, also were highlighted as being contributing factors to the growth of Islamist terror.

In addition to noting increasing terror threats in Africa, the report predicts that Thailand, the Philippines, India and Bangladesh will “become more susceptible to an increase in attacks due to their perception as soft targets.”

IPT also sees Europe’s security systems as being unable to respond to the “rising challenges associated with the mass migration of refugees. Violence in Europe will increase in size and scope as Islamists exploit its nearly unregulated immigration system and Muslim enclaves such as Molenbeek in Brussels become more widespread.”

Yet, Europe may be able to learn counterterrorist lessons from Israel.

A March 30, 2016 policy paper by an Israeli think-tank, the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies, stated that Israel can advise Europe on “strategies like effective intelligence collection, disruption of enemy money supply and interference with enemy access to the internet.” The report, “Israel and Europe After Brussels: What Insights Can We Share?” by former Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) Col. Dr. Eran Lerman, recommended extensive intelligence collection and data-mining as a foremost step in countering jihadi terror. Close cross-national cooperation and a “strong and dedicated” group of intelligence analysts also are emphasized. The analysts, Lerman noted, must be “people who are not afraid to speak truth to power.”

That truth begins with an acknowledgement that Islamist terror is increasing, claiming more victims even as the fight against it expands.


Posted by SD at March 30, 2016 03:34 PM

Comments

"The religion of peace".

Posted by: Al Neuman at April 7, 2016 04:49 PM

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