Bin Laden’s Henchmen: Al Qa’ida’s Commanding Officers who are Leading the Global Jihad

Sarah Catanzaro Professor Martha Crenshaw, Advisor Interschool Honors Program in International Security Studies Center for International Security and Cooperation Stanford University


Abstract…………………………………………………………………………………...4 Acknowledgements……………………………………………………………………....5 Chapter 1: Building a Complex Organization………………………………………....6 I. II. III. IV. Evolution of Al Qa’ida’s Organizational Structure…………………………………..7 A Description of Complex Organizations………………………………...…………..12 The Role of “Mergers and Acquisitions”………………………..…………………...13 Initial Thoughts on Policy Implications……………………………………………….15

Chapter 2: Literature Review………………………………………………………….17 I. II. Literature on Al Qa’ida’s Foreign Affiliates…………………………………………17 Literature on Joining Radical Movements……………………………………………20 A. Ideological motivations………………………………………………20 B. Psychosocial motivations…………………………………………….22 C. Strategic/opportunistic motivations………………………………….23 Literature on Terrorist Leadership…………………………………………………….25 A. The personality of terrorist leaders…………………………………..25 B. Targeting leadership………………………………………………….26


Chapter 3: Methodology………………………………………………………………..28 I. II. III. IV. V. VI. VII. VIII. Background……………………………………………………………………………….28 Assessing Q1……………………………………………………………………………...30 Assessing Q2……………………………………………………………………………...38 Developing the Universe of Cases……………………………………………………..40 Selection of Study Subjects……………………………………………………………...42 Problems Regarding Information Gathering…………………………………………43 Case Study………………………………………………………………………………...44 Relevance………………………………………………………………………………….44

Chapter 4: Universe of Cases…………………………………………………………..46 I. II. III. IV. Al Qa’ida’s Affiliates: An Evolving Network…………………………………………46 Al Qa’ida’s Affiliates: The Geographic Distribution………………………………..53 Al Qa’ida’s Affiliates: Mergers? Partnerships? Or Collaborations?...................57 Summary of Findings…………………………………………………………………….59

Chapter 5: Results of Statistical Hypothesis Testing…………………………………60 I. II. Data Analysis and Results for Q1: What motivates local jihadist leaders to affiliate with Al Qa’ida’s and its pan-Islamic agenda?.......................................................60 Data Analysis and Results for Q2: What type of role do local jihadist leaders play within Al Qa’ida’s network when the organization for which they are responsible affiliates with Al Qa’ida……………………………………………………………….. 61


Chapter 6: Al Qa’ida in the Maghreb and Abdelmalek Droukdal – A Well Executed Merger…………………………………………………………………………………64 I. II. III. IV. V. VI. VII. VIII. IX. X. The Origins of Islamic Violence in Algeria after the War of Independence……...64 The Birth of the Salvation Islamic Front……………………………………………...65 The Beginnings of the GIA and the Onset of an Epoch of Violence……………….66 An Alternative Emerges: The Origins of the GSPC…………………………………67 Fissions Form Within the GSPC……………………………………………………….67 The Rise of Droukdal…………………………………………………………………….71 Droukdal’s Program: Toward Global Jihad……………………………...………….73 The Announcement of Al Qa’ida in the Islamic Maghreb………………..………...77 A New Organization……………………………………………………………………..78 Final Observations………………………………………………………………………80

Chapter 7: Al-Gama’a al-Islamiyya: The Unrealized Merger………………………83 I. II. III. IV. V. VI. VII. VIII. The Emergence of the GAI from the Ashes of the Muslim Brotherhood………….83 The Sadat Assassination………………………………………………………………...84 Crackdown under Mubarak…………………………………………………………….84 Campaign of Terror……………………………………………..………………………85 Collapse of an Armed Group…………………………………………………………...86 Reconciliation…………………………………………………………………………….88 Explaining the Decision not to Affiliate with Al Qa’ida…………………………….89 Final Observations………………………………………………………………………91

Chapter 8: Conclusion and Discussion – Al Qa’ida’s Commanding Officers: A Skilled Management Team……………………………………………………………………..93 Bibliography…………………………………………………………………………...107 Appendix I: List of Terrorist Groups………………………………………………..115 Appendix II: Sources by Terrorist Group…………………………………………...116 Appendix III: Commanding Officer Attribute Codebook……………………….....135 Appendix IV: Commanding Officer Attributes……………………………………..136 Appendix V: Data on Universe of Cases……………………………………………..138 Appendix VI: Data on Q1…………………………………………………………….139 Appendix VII: Data on Q2……………………………………………………………140


Based on this analysis. shared visions become essential. 4 . The conclusion of this paper finds that while opportunistic. has Osama Bin Laden increasingly relied upon these franchises to prosecute his panIslamic struggle. This paper examines first the motivations of local jihadist groups who associate with Al Qa’ida to understand the transformation that Al Qa’ida has achieved. However. only in recent years. after these affiliations occur. The local jihadist leaders who become Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers ensure ideological alignment with Al Qa’ida. this paper offers some broad recommendations regarding the future conduct of the Global War on Terror (GWOT). It then focuses on the role that local jihadist leaders play in the aftermath of the affiliation to shed further light on Al Qa’ida’s current strategy and operations. rather than ideological concerns are the primary motivating factors for joining Al Qa’ida.Abstract: Al Qa’ida has allied with indigenous terrorist groups for over a decade.

Professor Crenshaw helped answer my questions promptly. Thus. I distinctly remember the sense of dissociation and unreality as we struggled to understand how our beloved Twin Towers were destroyed. I would like to thank Colonel Joseph Felter and Jarrett Brachman who introduced me to several primary and secondary documents. 2001 terrorist attack on the Twin Towers. and more recently into the making of this thesis. Their constant support. These sources proved to be a treasure-chest indeed. Port Washington. Finally. he continues to inspire me every day with his thoughtfulness and intelligence. how friends and neighbors had disappeared and presumably perished during this devastating attack on America’s soil. both personal and intellectual is more important than can adequately be acknowledge in such a brief note. I am also grateful to Dara Kay Cohen. Moreover. I want to recognize my community. I have been so fortunate to benefit from their generosity and acumen. In addition. Moreover. This solidarity and resiliency consolidated my faith in humanity and sparked my interest in homeland security studies. Despite his youth. I would also like to thank my brother. Professors Stockton and May helped me clarify and expand my views about this project on numerous occasions. Professor Crenshaw lives as a role model for the next generation of female investigators researching international security. I would be remiss not to acknowledge my parents. but most importantly for serving as an incredible mentor. I hope that a general acknowledgement here of the wisdom and understanding may be counted to me for righteousness. the members of my community began to dig themselves literally and metaphorically from the ruins of the 9/11 disaster.Acknowledgements: The ideas of more people than I can possibly mention have affected my thinking about terrorist organizations and Al Qa’ida over the years. Thank you so much for your patience. who is currently a junior in high school. a traditionally male-dominated discipline. this project would have been poorer without her invaluable comments. at length. Yet despite a pervasive sense of insecurity. who listened to my presentations with great attention and offered so many thoughtful suggestions and useful comments. not given. for whom I would also like to show gratitude. It gives me great pleasure to thank Professors Paul Stockton and Michael May for the opportunity to participate in the CISAC Interschool Honors Program. I have had the opportunity to try out some of my ideas and receive valuable criticism from my peers. objectivity. Admiration should be earned. 5 . she has offered me practical and affectionate support. I was so fortunate to have had Dara around as an academic example and important mentor. Acts of kindness and heroism became increasingly visible in my community as people mobilized to help one another. I dedicate my thesis to the population of Port Washington. Through the CISAC seminars. I would have been hardpressed to get this project done in anything like a timely fashion had it not been for this program. Without a doubt. and with enthusiasm. and coaching. I have benefited particularly from communications with Professor Martha Crenshaw. and Professor Crenshaw most certainly earned mine through her impressive career. New York which was tragically impacted by the September 11. She also put at my disposal her insights on numerous topics. There were cars parked at our train station that were never recovered and fathers and mothers who never returned from work. Since my sophomore year at Stanford.

In contrast.Stern 2003). all oversimplify the command configuration utilized by Al Qa’ida. Dishman 2005). While each perspective has its merits. One can 6 . they fail to acknowledge that this combination of loose and tight coupling has enabled Al Qa’ida to become a modern hydra that readily adapts to changes in its environment. Thus. The first maintains that Al Qa’ida Central Command retains ideological and operational control over the organization and preserves a certain degree of tactical influence. Some scholars even contend that the main threat no longer emanates from Al Qa’ida but from unassociated radicalized individuals and groups who meet and plot in their neighborhoods and on the Internet (Sageman 2008. an organization characterized by “tight coupling” includes cells that associate intimately. Al Qa’ida utilizes a mix of both loose and tight coupling to attain a remarkable degree of adaptability. However. Al Qa’ida has transformed into a more ambiguous entity that scholars cannot easily define. A few dominant camps have emerged within this scholarly debate.Chapter 1: Building a Complex Organization Prior to the September 11. to plan attacks. Al Qa’ida’s structure and degree of centralization may fluctuate within a period of months or weeks. and depend upon each other. An organization characterized by “loose coupling” has cells that are relatively autonomous and independent. Gunaratna 2004). since the onset of the Global War on Terror (GWOT). communicate often. Ronfeldt 2005. Currently. most fail to assess the exchange relationships that distinguish Al Qa’ida. Al Qa’ida was a relatively centralized organization that used Afghanistan as a base from which to strategize. Although most scholars perceive Al Qa’ida as an organization in stasis. and to dispatch operatives worldwide. Others suggest that Al Qa’ida has become a decentralized network of individualized and local cells bound together exclusively by common beliefs (Diebert and Stein 2003. 2001 attacks. Moreover.

This study will draw upon open source and primary source information to understand why and how Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers promote the pan-Islamic agenda. these external relationships enabled Al Qa’ida to transform into a complex organization. Al Qa’ida has affiliated with indigenous terrorist groups for almost twenty years. the conclusions drawn from this analysis may present policymakers with new and novel ways of targeting Al Qa’ida and its partners. Ayman Zawahiri and the core of Al Qa’ida. distinguishing the groups with which Al Qa’ida is strongly associated. characterized by an efficient blend of both tight and loose coupling. Evolution of Al Qa’ida’s Organizational Structure: 7 . recently. 2001. Al Qa’ida has begun to depend on these affiliates to obtain organizational flexibility to a considerable extent. this study may affect the allocation of resources in Washington for counterterrorism efforts. since the onset of the Global War on Terror. I. This study will examine the incentives and role of former local jihadist group leaders who now serve as Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers. Although Al Qa’ida has cooperated with local jihadist groups for years. One method whereby Al Qa’ida achieves such adaptability is by merging or partnering with local jihadist groups. each led by a commanding officer). It is important to analyze these individuals because they have assumed more authority since September 11. and identifying and assessing the role of the commanders who interact with Osama Bin Laden. By defining the new structure of Al Qa’ida (characterized by loosely integrated and operationally attached subunits. However.therefore classify Al Qa’ida as a complex organization a concept that will be elaborated in this chapter (Marion and Uhl-Bien 2003). Moreover.

Pakistan to serve as a hostel for Arabs coming to fight the Soviets and as a press agency to produce propaganda to promote jihad. At the conclusion of the Soviet-Afghan war. coordinated targets. The religious committee justified Al 8 . training. The Services Bureau (“Maktab al Khadamat”) provided travel funds and guesthouses in Pakistan for recruits and volunteers to facilitate the struggle against the Soviet forces. Bin Laden expanded the Al Qa’ida organization. most of whom he knew since his formative days in Afghanistan. a large number of jihadists from the Middle East traveled to Afghanistan to combat the Soviet Union. developing a membership roster and establishing a hierarchical arrangement to guide and oversee its functions (Riedel 2008). However. Osama bin Laden. that Bin Laden began calling his cadre al Qaeda al Askariya (“the military base”) and developing a greater organizational structure (Riedel 2008).e. The finance committee oversaw and developed financial resources. an Islamic scholar and founding member of the Kashmiri jihadist group Lashkar-e-Taiba. procuring. The organization was centered upon the “shura” (i. Bin Laden was disenchanted with his native Saudi Arabia. This council promoted common goals. Bin Laden returned to Saudi Arabia as a hero of jihad. advisory council) consisting of Bin Laden’s closest associates. and launching support and military operations. a multimillionaire from a wealthy Saudi family. In the Sudan.In the 1980s. He relocated to the Sudan at the invitation of the government of Hassan Turabi and the National Islamic Front. it was not until the summer of 1988. established an office in Peshawar. However. which had rebuffed his offer to defend the kingdom. The shura majilis (consultative assembly) received information from four subordinate committees designed to direct specific segments of planning and operations. and authorized asset sharing for terrorist operations. in 1991. and Abdullah Azzam. The military committee was responsible for recruiting. after the liberation of Kuwait from Saddam Hussein by the American-led multinational army.

Al Qa’ida’s former propaganda chief. Bin Laden left the Sudan to return to Afghanistan as a result of combined pressure from the United States. other western governments. Bin Laden personally recruited the plot’s 9 . Thus. the media committee produced propaganda intended to generate Muslim support for the organization and its objectives (Harmony Database Released Documents: Al Qa'ida Goals and Structure 2006). Egypt. Bin Laden cemented his ties to Ayman Zawahiri. the Pentagon. thereby strengthening Al Qa’ida Central Command and forming a close-knit group of jihadists uniquely capable of executing terror operations like the September 11. it would be assigned to a carefully selected cell headed by a senior Al Qa’ida operative who reported personally to Bin Laden (Wright 2007). Saudi Arabia.Qa’ida’s actions and operations within the theological parameters of Al Qa’ida model of Islam. Moreover. 2001 attacks reveal the former nature of Al Qa’ida’s decision-making apparatus. and Libya. The September 11. all three of which faced indigenous terrorist groups supported by Bin Laden. 2001 attacks against the United States (Bergen 2002). in its earlier incarnation. Bin Laden and Khalid Sheikh Mohammad. The plot to attack the United State began in 1999 after Al Qa’ida executed the simultaneous bombings of the American embassies in Kenya and Tanzania. although Al Qa’ida also assisted two other Salafi terrorist groups during this formative period in the Sudan. In May 1997. Once a specific operation was decided upon. and the Capitol Building. the last emir of the Egyptian Islamic Jihad. Bin Laden was able to forge his closest alliance yet with the Taliban by providing it with significant financial and human resources to support the ongoing war against other factions in northern Afghanistan. hatched the plan to target the Twin Towers. Finally. In May 1996. Afghanistan’s lack of central government provided Bin Laden with greater leeway to pursue his agenda and centralize his operations. Al Qa’ida could be classified as a centralized organization.

the attacks precipitated the Global War on Terror (GWOT). While they operated in support of centralized directives. Al Qa’ida allegedly convened a strategic summit in northern Iran at which the shura recognized that Al Qa’ida could no longer function as a hierarchy. he personally handled other elements of the conspiracy. it becomes particularly difficult to maintain 10 . 2006). After the first year of the GWOT and the ouster of the Taliban from Afghanistan. detached from Al Qa’ida Central Command and other cells. for instance. In November 2002. Nevertheless. When operations are so decentralized. individual cells. Al Qa’ida was a centralized organization. networked terrorist organizations would be less vulnerable to traditional counterterrorism measures used by hierarchically organized security forces. Al Qa’ida soon learned that there are limitations to a strictly decentralized structure. From this point forward. which used Afghanistan as a base from which to carry out major operations against American targets and did not significantly depend upon its affiliates to support its operations in the Middle East. Prior to 9/11. he engaged the Taliban and its leader. many Al Qa’ida leaders were imprisoned. These arrests led to subsequent arrests of other senior officers. they established their own individual plans (Felter et al. Although Bin Laden and Al Qa’ida considered 9/11 an astonishing success. The shura concluded that a decentralized. Mohammed Atta as well as the fifteen operatives who would intimidate the passengers during the airline hijackings.tactical leader. Mullah Omar in the preparation (Riedel 2008). were instructed to develop their own organizational structures. Captives revealed the names of their commanders and associates thereby highlighting the need for loose coupling between local operatives and Al Qa’ida’s executive leadership in order to evade government interference and limit the consequences of any further compromises. Additionally. composed of less than ten operatives.

Invading Iraq diverted troops from the mission of finding Al Qa’ida’s leadership. thereby provoking Pakistan to divert to the east troops that were needed in the west. these low-level operatives sought more violence than was useful due to the cognitive dynamics of an underground organization. As the result of restoration of central control. Al Qa’ida can rely upon closer relations with its commanding officers (the former leaders of indigenous terrorist groups). In 2002 and 2003. Moreover. nor could it punish renegade agents (Felter. Like most other organizations. Perkins. However. after five Kashmiri terrorists attacked Lok Sabha. and their own talent at conducting aggressive attacks (Shapiro 2007). Thus. Within a decentralized framework. Brachman. rather than consolidating its victory in Afghanistan. the U. the US allowed Al Qa’ida to reconstitute itself in the tribal areas of Pakistan. Al Qa’ida was able to reestablish some of its pre-9/11 operational capabilities by exploiting Pakistan’s Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Riedel 2008). competition for prominence within the movement. and Fishman 2006).situational awareness and control the use of violence to achieve specific political ends. complex organization. prior to the invasion of Iraq. the lower house of India’s parliament in New Delhi.S. Often. These commanding officers ensure that preference divergence does not result in the loss of 11 . decision to go to war with Iraq and the Pakistani decision to provoke a crisis with India allowed Al Qa’ida to survive by regaining a degree of centralization. Al Qa’ida faced challenges when Central Command was forced to delegate certain duties to low level operatives. India began to mobilize along the border. Al Qa’ida could not effectively monitor its agents’ activities. who are the most important link in the formation of a resilient. who espoused different personal preferences. Bramlett. Al Qa’ida leadership found itself cornered along the border between Pakistan and Afghanistan and unable to coordinate its low-level operatives.

qualified by loosely coupled systems. By contrast. today. the relationship between Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers and central authorities are moderately coupled (thus. Before Al Qa’ida Central Command reorganized itself in the tribal areas of Pakistan. complex organizations can exploit a diversity of systems (Marion and Uhl-Bien 2001). Unlike strictly centralized organizations. Complex organizations are composed of a diversity of agents. intricate nature of resource gathering and allocation. highly visible organizational personnel. Al Qa’ida’s demand for operational secrecy. A Description of Complex Organizations: As this history indicates. II. Al Qa’ida now relies heavily upon semiautonomous cells found in operational territories that are horizontally and vertically integrated into the centralized command structure. Al Qa’ida is a true “complex organization”). the relationship between its commanding officers and central authorities were also loosely coupled (thus. While the relationships within the cells are tightly coupled. Al Qa’ida was effectively a decentralized network). Al Qa’ida continues to morph into a complexly structure organization (Marion and Uhl-Bien 2006). the relationships between cells and between operatives and Al Qa’ida Central Command are loosely coupled. This flexible structure allows the Central Command to maintain control over specifically identified strategic operations through its commanding officers while enabling cells to maintain their autonomy in local and regional operations (Marion and Uhl-Bien 2006). and large size dictated its organizational decisions. Although a decentralized organization form was more appropriate and prudent after 9/11. it was not very efficient. While it is difficult to 12 . qualified by tightly coupled systems or exclusively decentralized organizations. Empowered by the establishment of its safe haven in Pakistan and increased reliance upon its commanding officers. who interact with and mutually affect one another.operational success or security.

Bramlett. now when Al Qa’ida merges. Perkins. Bin Laden did not seek to exert strategic or operational control over the leaders of its regionally based affiliates. they can build differentiated relationships with their rapports rather than espousing an “average” leadership style. Brachman. interactive communication 13 . the extensive negotiations that continue to occur between Al Qa’ida and its affiliates suggest that Al Qa’ida has consciously utilized these arrangements to remain resilient. Moreover. Communication frequency. Since they are already closely coupled to their agents. it employs the groups’ leaders as its commanding officers and integrates them into Al Qa’ida Central Command by establishing communication channels and by offering financial and technological resources to these leaders for their local outlets with stipulations. The Role of “Mergers and Acquisitions:” By affiliating with local jihadist movements.determine if Al Qa’ida assumed this structure by conscious design or coincidence. and Fishman 2006). partners. or collaborates with a local jihadist groups. Al Qa’ida theorist Abu Musab al-Suri noted the importance of a highly trained cadre of senior commanding officers. Al Qa’ida has achieved an optimal combination of coupling. He observed that a dearth of such leaders reduces the maximum level of control Al Qa’ida could exert thereby undermining the potential for political impact (Felter. These relationships are characterized by a high degree of leader-member exchange and commitment that was impossible to achieve between Al Qa’ida Central Command executives and operatives due to their lack of physical proximity. III. These commanding officers can serve a crucial role since they are better able to monitor the behavior of their agents and can punish and reward them for their performance. these commanding officers are effective because they can develop mature relationships with their operatives. However. Previously.

decision influence. There is a positive correlation between the level of ideological indoctrination of cell members and the degree of control a leader exerts. subordinate loyalty. and their overall unit performance improves (Graen and Uhl-Bien 1995). these new. their performance. Moreover. and Fishman 2006). relying on lower-level operatives (who are often less committed.patterns. Providing funds on a need-to-have basis to smaller groups of operatives is a risky strategy because each additional transfer entails communications and financial transactions. Local leaders can also effectively monitor operative’s personal and social network. Moreover. Jarrett Brachman. The moderate coupling between Al Qa’ida Central Command and local leaders is essential to the performance of the organization. since the most devoted operatives are obliged to engage in riskier or inherently fatal assignments) is a more hazardous strategy (Felter. Al Qa’ida can ensure that strategic and tactical differences between it and its commanding officers are reconciled. 14 . Because affiliations are often preceded by several months of bargaining and negotiations. Bramlett. Al Qa’ida Central Command can rely upon its commanding officers to handle finance and logistic tasks and to engage in auditing strategies. Studies from the corporate world as well as observations by Al Qa’ida theorists reveal that when agents develop high quality relationships with their leaders. leader-member value agreement. Commanding officers now serve an important role as interlocutors with Al Qa’ida Central Command. Perkins. cohesive units can innovate and adapt to the demands of the environment because they do not need to conform to a strict set of guidelines passed down from Central Command. which can be tracked by counterterrorist forces. ensuring that relationships that could dilute commitment are avoided and those that enhance commitment are strengthened(Brachman and McCants 2006). Thus. and member affect are all key in this dyadic relationship (Graen and Uhl-Bien 1995).

efficiency. transmitting new. and competence of local cells. Currently. up-to-date. Drawing upon documents and transcripts of legal proceedings involving global Salafi mujahedin and their organizations. and Internet articles. thereby allowing Al Qa’ida to maintain ideological and operational control over the organization and by closely interacting with local operatives. This is the first study that pinpoints the organizations with which Al Qa’ida has affiliated and identifies their leaders (who subsequently become Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers). thereby ensuring the unity. they act as a hub of communication. Moreover. the use of force.By allowing its commanding officers to retain significant freedom to interact with other local leaders and with resource providers. Moreover. accountability for operation effectiveness. they are given latitude to exploit their specific environment. Thus. these commanding officers can ensure the dissemination of innovation and information by acting as an intermediary between their cell members and Al Qa’ida Central Command. IV. this study compiles the biographies of over forty Al Qa’ida commanding officers. scrutinizing their stories for patterns to determine their motivation. duty of care to their agents. local leaders-cum-commanding officers perform a crucial function by liaising with Al Qa’ida Central Command. press and scholarly articles. information between operatives and Al Qa’ida authorities (McAllister 2004). Initial Thoughts on Policy Implications: 15 . government documents. at present. obligations to Al Qa’ida Central Command. Although these commanding officers have significant responsibilities (for example. this study provides valuable insight into the transformation that these leaders undergo when they become Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers by looking at their responsibilities before and after they affiliate with Al Qa’ida. finances. and powers including discipline and punishment of their agents) no researcher has analyzed their role or background. and equipment.

Government efforts to degrade Al Qa’ida’s capacity should focus on undermining its security environment, minimizing the degree to which it can control operations, and abort its ability to fund its activities. By identifying the crucial role played by commanding officers in sustaining Al Qa’ida, this study will suggest additional means of undermining Al Qa’ida. The government should increase dissension between local leaders and Al Qa’ida Central Command. The US government should publicly recognize and highlight the differences between the acquired groups, who originally espouse ambitions such as regime overthrow and Al Qa’ida, which is committed to a pan-Islamic program. Moreover, the government can disrupt communications channels between local leaders and Al Qa’ida central command by utilizing misinformation and flooding information channels, thereby forcing the commanding officers to communicate more frequently with Al Qa’ida Central Command, possibly revealing crucial information. There may be “psychological” tactics that can be employed to generate dissension, to exploit certain aspects of human or group dynamics that would lead to competition, or rebellion. Moreover, there may be certain personality characteristics of the types of individuals employed at each level of organization that can be manipulated. Finally, government efforts should deny jihadist groups the benefit of security vacuum in vulnerable areas; thereby barring the emergence of potential Al Qa’ida partners. Through troop deployment, the US government can deny terrorists the use of vulnerable countries as staging grounds for the attacks in the West.


Chapter 2: Literature Review
Recently, counterterrorist agents and military officers have mounted efforts to combat Al Qa’ida and Bin Laden supporters. However, there is considerable controversy among scholars regarding the structure of Al Qa’ida and therefore, how best to target this formidable foe. The debate regarding the nature of Al Qa’ida’s threat will inevitably impact upon the allocation of influence and resource by the U.S. federal government in the Global War on Terror (GWOT) embarked upon following the September 11, 2001 attacks. The outcome of the bureaucratic turf wars over funding for programs under the new Obama administration will surely define future directions and strategies to confront Al Qa’ida specifically and global terrorism in general. In the introductory chapter, I highlighted the newfound importance of Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers, which lead the groups with which Al Qa’ida has recently merged or with whom it remains associated. Although Al Qa’ida retains its core group and a well-trained terrorist cadre, it has become increasingly engaged with regional affiliates in Egypt, the Sinai Peninsula, Indonesia, and other sites in franchise operations. I. Literature on Al Qa’ida’s Foreign Affiliates Several scholars have investigated the process whereby Al Qa’ida has achieved a broader geographic and operational reach by employing local jihadist groups. These researchers confirm my commentary that such partnerships can provide Al Qa’ida with increased flexibility and offer advantages in stimulating tactical level innovation within particular environments when they are astutely directed by Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers. In a report prepared for the Combat Studies Institute, Kalic describes Al Qa’ida as a “modern hydra.” He observes that before the onset of the GWOT, Al Qa’ida functioned as a regional indoctrination and training center for Islamic terrorist organizations. However, he


corroborates my observation that because of the loss of support and training centers in Afghanistan due to Operation Enduring Freedom, Bin Laden was obliged to rely upon outside groups in order to perpetuate Al Qa’ida’s agenda. Kalic suggests that Al Qa’ida’s alliances with Abu Sayyaf, Egyptian Islamic Jihad, Tunisian Combatant Group, and Libyan Islamic Fighting Group have enabled Al Qa’ida to expand its geographic influence and diffuse its organizational structure. He describes the process whereby Al Qa’ida supports local “walk in” Islamic groups that pitch their plans to Al Qa’ida for financial support. These radical groups provide additional reach to Al Qa’ida and expand its operational capability for minimal investment because they can develop indigenous plans and operations based on local situations and observations. Moreover, they allow Al Qa’ida to minimize exposure of its central command structure (Kalic 2005) In a similar vein, Takeyh and Gvosdev have observed that after the destruction of its sanctuary in Afghanistan, Al Qa’ida has remained buoyant by forging foreign alliances. Through this strategy, Al Qa’ida has established a presence in failed states where it believes the US will opt not to risk significant losses associated with urban/guerilla warfare. Al Qa’ida no longer needs a strong state for funding and supplies since it can rely on its franchises in countries like Kashmir, Kosovo, Chechnya, and Palestine (Takeyh and Gvosdev 2002). Riedel avows that the US invasion of Iraq and subsequent efforts to quell sectarian unrest have allowed Al Qa’ida to regroup in the tribal areas of Pakistan, where it has established a new base of operations. Now, Al Qa’ida is once again focused on enlarging its network. Consequently, Al Qa’ida has developed a closer relationship with Kashmiri terrorist groups, like Lashkar-e-Taiba and Jaish-e-Muhammad that have a presence there. Moreover, while Al Qa’ida has failed to topple the governments of Egypt, Jordan, and Saudi Arabia, its attacks against these


or Lebanon in the near future (Riedel 2007). thus. The affiliated groups may employ a modus operandi. For instance. with Shia organizations (like Hezbollah). Stern observes that terrorist groups’ objectives have evolved to ensure their survival. In a similar vein. However. and sometimes unlikely alliances with other jihadist groups (like Jemaah Islamiyah). Al Qa’ida finds another organization that can attain its other goals and leaves this former associate to continue the war on its own. foiled in 2006. Africa. which is not identical to Al Qa’ida’s tactics. the plot to destroy ten commercial airliners en route from the United Kingdom to the United States. and revivalist organizations (like Tablighi Jamaat) (Stern 2003). she avows that Bin Laden has adjusted his objectives over time and describes Al Qa’ida as a “flexible group of ruthless warriors ready to fight on behalf of multiple causes. Al Qa’ida remains associated with these groups as long as they cannot operate independently. when they prove that they no longer need Al Qa’ida’s material or normative support to conduct independent maneuvers. with traditional organized crime groups (like Artab Ansari’s [an Indian gangster] network). she suggests that both Egyptian Islamic Jihad and the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan compromised their original mission when they joined forces with Al Qa’ida. 19 .” Due to the adaptability of its mission. obliging both entities to adapt.regimes demonstrate its expanded influence throughout the Middle East. Finally. Al Qa’ida can forge broad. indicates that Al Qa’ida has established connections in Europe. Al Qa’ida need not maintain constant supervision or control over the activities of its old affiliate’s operatives (Mishal and Rosenthal 2005). Riedel suggests that Al Qa’ida may seek a foothold in Gaza. Moreover. Mishal and Rosenthal describe Al Qa’ida as a “dune organization” that employs other loosely affiliated organizations to carry out its missions. She maintains that many organizations will form alliances with groups that have ideologies different from their own.

He avers that Al Qa’ida offers these franchises few benefits. He offers Al Qa’ida in Iraq as an example of a group which compromised Al Qa’ida’s pan-Islamic mission by attacking Muslim civilians and engaging in conflict with other Iraqi insurgent groups (Fishman 2008). equipment. II. They avow that terrorist groups cannot be self-sustaining and must “engage in the fundamentals of established economic practices” to furnish protection from outside threats. Literature on Incentives for Joining Radical Movements A. strategic mistakes and are more susceptible to counterterrorism offensives than their mother organization. or personnel for a specific purpose and duration and “minority equity investments. Desouza and Hengsen provide the most comprehensive analysis of Al Qa’ida’s collaborative activities. and ideology. offering only its name. They contend that these interactions are the most complex form of equity engagements that terrorist groups develop to survive in competitive environments and suggest that mergers/acquisitions allow terrorist groups to consolidate their assets to compete more successfully or exploit resources held by other parties (Desouza and Hengsen 2007). reputation. 20 . Ideological motivations While these studies analyze Al Qa’ida’s strategy and explain why Al Qa’ida has pursued such arrangements. whereby Al Qa’ida combines with or subsumes another organization. Many groups that merge or partner with Al Qa’ida adhere to a program based on the ethnic.Fishman is less worried about Al Qa’ida franchises than other scholars. including “licensing agreements. He contends that Al Qa’ida’s franchises are likely to commit rash.” whereby Al Qa’ida allows other groups to use its facilities. Finally. They analyze several possible arrangements.” whereby Al Qa’ida finances terrorist groups with the intention of influencing their strategic activity. they describe mergers and acquisitions. they do not reveal why local jihadist groups choose to align with Al Qa’ida.

They contend that Al 21 . Consequently. She observes that the attention groups pay to adjusting their ideology to circumstance is revealed when they explain and justify their strategies. Studies regarding why individuals join radical movements may inform our understanding of the motivations of local terrorists leaders who connect with Al Qa’ida’s global enterprise. it is a tool for enlarging the potential supporters of the organization. she proposes that ideology is a strategic choice made by the organization. Based on her interpretation. Consequently. they must forsake their indigenous agendas to support the global pan-Islamic movement. linguistic. and state boundaries in which they arose.sectarian. One could also envisage that Al Qa’ida is promoting its pan-Islamic vision because it is aware of the magnetism of this dream. Della Porta suggests that individuals are persuaded to enlist in underground organizations when they are enticed by its ideology. Upon allying with Al Qa’ida. Al Qa’ida can co-opt local struggles into an evolving network of worldwide jihad by asserting its dedication to an international agenda. Unfortunately. Like Stern. Jones. In fact. She maintains that political organizations often orient their ideology to support recruitment. one might expect that local jihadist leaders subscribe to Al Qa’ida’s global jihad because the idea of establishing an Islamic Caliphate throughout the world is attractive to them. few studies investigate the incentives of the local jihadist leaders who adopt Al Qa’ida’s pan-Islamic program and transform their organization into part of Al Qa’ida’s system. Smith. They observe that although Al Qa’ida was initially devoted to fighting the Soviet forces it now espouses more internationalist objectives. many groups grapple with contradictions between national and supranational aims. and Weeding validate this line of thought. enemies and allies are described in different terms at different times (Della Porta 1995).

they concluded that income and/or educational inequalities do not account for terrorism. B. Similarly. they 22 . Consequently. and Weeding 2003). Gunaratna 2002). Sprinzak. membership in fundamentalist organizations and repeat terrorist acts. Al Qa’ida anti-Western curriculum is increasingly alluring (R. They observed that most had a high school education and some had additional schooling and that most came from respected families that supported their activism. However. He avows that traditionally. Pedahzur. as well as 14 secular terrorists from Fatah al-Islam. They deduced that peer influence and increased social standing were major reasons for joining a terrorist group (Post. Sprinzak.Qa’ida has improved its media wing to appeal to local jihadist groups in their native language and honor regional customs. Post. rather than local jihad. As a consequence of the GWOT and the war in Iraq. and Hezbollah. Moreover. and Denny interviewed 35 incarcerated Middle Eastern extremists from Hamas. Psychosocial motivations Conversely. global events have provided the context for the new generation to gain exposure to significant ideological training and indoctrination. Smith. Gunaratna also supports this argument. As a result. Islamist groups fought secular Muslim governments either to replace them or to form a separate state. Perliger. Islamic Jihad. They offer Jemaah Islamiyah as an example of an organization that was seduced by Al Qa’ida’s discussion of a pan-Islamic caliphate (Jones. and Denny 2003). Al Qa’ida successfully transformed the parochial thinking of these groups through a sophisticated propaganda campaign to orient them towards global. other studies suggest that individuals join terrorist networks for psychosocial reasons. and Weinberg observed 80 Palestinian suicide terrorists from 1973 to 2002. They noticed that these terrorists exhibited a higher rate of religious education.

C. spirituality and concern for their communities. Moreover. Sandler and Enders contend that terrorists must choose between different strategies and modes of attack based on their perception of “prices” associated with alternative operations. Understanding Terror Network is particularly revealing. he found that social bonds were the critical element in the process of joining jihad and he suggested that such connections precede ideological commitment (Sageman 2004). He observed that members of terrorist organizations were generally middle-class. Marc Sageman’s book. Sageman compiled data from public sources on 172 individuals who he identified as members of a global Salafi mujahedeen. Each mode of operation has a per-unit price that 23 . Strategic/opportunistic motivations Alternatively.proposed that the terrorists acted out of altruistic motives (devotion to a religious community) and deduced that recruitment could be based on a network of shared social values(Pedahzur. and Al Qa’ida. These participants in jihad grew up with strong positive values of religion. the GSPC. He sample included expatriate leaders of the Egyptian Islamic Group. Perliger. educated young men from caring and religious families. terrorist leaders may have opportunistic motives for securing a spot under Al Qa’ida’s umbrella. members of the Egyptian Islamic Jihad. Sagemen found no evidence of pathological narcissism or paranoid personality disorder amongst those who he surveyed. which they perceive to be the optimum strategy to accomplish a sociopolitical goal. Jemaah Islamiyah. On the contrary. rational. Although his research was biased towards leaders who have come to the public attention. calculated decision to execute a particular type of action. and Weinberg 2003). Several academics believe that terrorist action derives from a conscious.

these local jihadist leaders may seek concrete benefits such as the provision of financial resources. These affinities may compel local jihadist leaders to liaise with their old compatriots and mutually assist each other in their subsequent struggles. He further notes that local jihadist cells shed their outlaw status within radical Muslim circles when they have Al Qa’ida’s backing. while training together. Hoffman notes that approximately 90 percent of all terrorist groups collapse within a year and only half of the remainder survives another decade. 24 . In joining Al Qa’ida. local jihadist leaders. Finally. local jihadist group leaders may be lured by Al Qa’ida’s ideology. Thus. These local jihadist leaders may have developed relationships with Al Qa’ida officials during the Soviet-Afghan war. embracing global jihad may be perceived as a way to control and recruit new group members (Bruce Hoffman 2004). In this context. access to training facilities. He remarks upon long running government offensives that have nearly crushed several terrorist groups. by extension. Based on these accounts. Finally. It is possible that these groups take the transnational jihadist challenge seriously because the idea of creating a single Islamic state or reviving the united Caliphate of earlier times is captivating. First. etc. while incarcerated together. resources and anticipated outcome. any act executed by a terrorist organization can be perceived as a rational choice (Sandler and Enders 2004). the United States and its allies. who might otherwise be contained or co-opted by local regimes and. may unite with Al Qa’ida to guarantee organizational survival. Alternatively.includes the value of time. he mentions that the Iraq war has sapped local jihadist groups of their most active militants. one can imagine three different rationales why local jihadist group leaders would affiliate with Al Qa’ida. and association with the Al Qa’ida label. local jihadist leaders may confederate with Al Qa’ida due to psychosocial influences. Based on these observations he suggests that several local jihadist outlets need the Al Qa’ida imprimatur to raise money.

III. Literature on Terrorist Leadership A. The personality of terrorist leaders While these studies enlighten the discussion regarding incentives for merging or partnering with Al Qa'ida, very little literature directly addresses the role that local jihadist leaders play before or after a merger. However, some researchers have attempted to identify personality traits that enable leaders to attract and maintain large followings. In the 1920s, German sociologist Max Weber defined charismatic leadership as “resting on devotion to the exceptional sanctity, heroism, or exemplary character of an individual person, and of the normative patterns or order revealed or ordained by him.” He suggested that charisma was a personality trait by virtue of which a leader appeared endowed with exceptional power or superhuman competencies. Charismatic leaders gained authority through qualities unique their own, not through positions that they occupied (Weber 1968). Kostrzebski applied Weber’s theory of charismatic authority to examine leadership in the context of Islamic tradition. He contends that a certain model of charismatic politico-religious leadership, first exemplified by Mohammed, the prophet and founder of Islam, is prominent in Islamic history. He notices that in the Islamic world, religious and political leadership is usually embodied in the persona of a single charismatic individual. He cites Mahdi of Sudan, Ayatollah Khomeini, and Osama bin Laden as examples of this archetype. Furthermore, he predicts that this type of charismatic politico-religious leader will appear with greater frequency in the future (Kostrzebski 2002). Similarly, Bergen contends that Bin Laden’s charisma helped fuel an influx of recruits and attracted aspiring jihadists to Afghanistan from Western countries. Moreover, he avows that Bin Laden’s cult of personality prompted various militant Islamic groups to affiliate with Al


Qa’ida. He notes that Bin Laden left operational planning to trusted lieutenants and stood above the fray. Consequently, few operatives received personal audience with him. However, those who went through the vetting procedures and gained access to Bin Laden describe their encounters with the legendary terrorist leader as “beautiful” (Bergen 2006). B. Targeting leadership While these studies suggest that a leader’s charisma can inspire a devoted following, they do not address the role that such leaders play within an organizational framework. While research addressing this topic has been extremely sparse, some scholars have discussed how the arrest or neutralization of a terrorist leader can affect the group’s performance. In a Joint Special Operations University report, Turbiville perceives that the United States has emphasized targeting and eliminating key terrorist leadership since 9/11. He describes the diverse experience of foreign operations against insurgent and terrorist high value targets. Based on several case studies, he concludes that leadership targeting can be effective, particularly when a group depends heavily on a charismatic leader. However, he cautions that operations which target leadership must be integrated into an overall and effective counterinsurgency and counterterrorist strategy and warns that abuses of national and international law and human rights committed in terrorist leadership targeting programs have a negative impact on larger counterinsurgency goals (Turbiville 2007). Langdon, Sarapu, and Wells examined 35 leadership crises to determine what happens to terrorist movements after the loss of a leader. Although they predicted that the assassination of a leader would cause a dramatic change in ideology leading to increased violence, they found that the assassination of a leader often causes the group to fail or disband. Moreover, they observed that the assassination of a leader is more likely to devastate a terrorist group than an arrest. They


suggest that arrested leaders may continue to play an important ideological role by guiding their group from their prison cell (Langdon, Sarapu, and Wells 2004). These studies suggest that targeting leadership could damage a terrorist group by depriving it of effective direction and demoralizing its rank and file members. However, while these analyses intimate that terrorist leaders play an important role in ensuring organizational survival, they do not expose the particular function that terrorist leaders must execute. Thus, this study is valuable since its looks at both the motivations and specific responsibilities of Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers.


Currently. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the motivations and responsibilities of Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers. Al Qa’ida has expanded its reach through its affiliations so that it is uniquely positioned to target the West through spectacular attacks designed to inflict mass casualties and damage to the global economy. remains an important security threat. Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers have the ultimate authority over their region and are given wide latitude to run their units within the boundaries of Al Qa’ida’s doctrines. In fact. Osama bin Laden. I. moderately coupled network of individuals united by a common need and ultimately aligned behind an emergent leader. As centralized communication nodes within their system.Chapter 3: Methodology Al Qa’ida has clearly transformed and evolved in ways described in the introduction. By depending upon its commanding officers (the former leaders of local jihadist groups). conducted by operatives capable of inflicting maximum civilian and economic damages on both local and distant targets in pursuit of their extremist goals. they have become the main link between Al Qa’ida Central Command and the organization’s operative units. As such. Background: The introductory chapter explained how and why Al Qa’ida relies extensively upon the leaders of regionally focused groups. we must understand the strength that resides in its leaders. Its terrorist activity. Moreover. Al Qa’ida has become a flexible. who serve as Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers. In order to understand why Al Qa’ida is such a forceful and resilient organization. recently. Al Qaida’s ability to mete out devastating destruction worldwide has increased as cells have become progressively armed with modern technology. During negotiations between Al Qa’ida and 28 . Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers are held responsible for its success or failure in their region.

The previous chapter revealed that literature on the role of leadership in terror networks has remained limited in scope. plan ahead. Although these commanding officers play a vital role in expanding the agenda of Al Qa’ida and adding legitimacy to its international campaign. little is known about the characters. I theorized that by examining the demographic characteristics of Al 29 . Unfortunately.the potential affiliate. This study is the first to comprehensively examine Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers. researchers have overlooked them. focusing primarily on principals like Osama bin Laden. commanding officers are influential arbitrators. Commanding officers also ensure that an operative’s incentives to supply effort are not diminished and mediate conflict within their unit when the affiliation begins and as it matures. they help stimulate interdependency and interaction among their units and other branches of Al Qa’ida. or credentials of these officials. communicate often and address everyone involved in the deal. Negotiations are often lengthy processes. Thus. it will contribute to the bank of information and stimulate vital discourse on the composition and function of Al Qa’ida today. The surveys reviewed. Finally. motivations. because academic studies to date have not focused on Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers. which consider categories of influence factors and their effect on an individual’s decision to join an Islamic fundamentalist terrorist organization. Past studies have ignored important hierarchical considerations. Just as managers from the corporate arena trying to integrate newly acquired companies and divisions. do not adequately explain why certain terrorists leaders affiliate with Al Qa’ida and its program of global jihad nor do they reveal the precise role that these officers serve within the Al Qa’ida network once affiliated. so too must the commanding officers that merge their organization with Al Qa’ida prepare accordingly (Marion and Uhl-Bien 2006). involving discussions regarding financial and capital resources and tactics.

Qa’ida’s operatives, such as age, educational background, years of religious training, religious affiliation, and by evaluating these operatives for their military backgrounds (e.g. war experiences/participation in the Afghanistan conflict), incarceration/prison time, migration patterns etc, I would be able to detect recognizable patterns that characterize these terrorist executives. The patterns that I observed would help me answer two critical questions: 1) What motivates local jihadist leaders to affiliate with Al Qa’ida’s and its pan-Islamic agenda? 2) What type of role do local jihadist leaders play within Al Qa’ida’s network when the organization for which they are responsible affiliates with Al Qa’ida?

II. Assessing Q1: The previous chapter outlined three explanations for why individuals join terrorist organizations. Some researchers suggest that terrorists follow a strategic logic and are inspired by opportunism; they perceive armed combat at the most effective way to generate significant governmental concessions (Sandler and Enders 2004, Bruce Hoffman 2004). Others scholars suggest that ideology plays an important role in pushing militants of some militants toward terrorism (Della Porta 1995, Jones, Smith, and Weeding 2003, R. Gunaratna 2002). Finally, some academics claim that individuals join terrorist organizations due to strong solidarity bonds derived from interpersonal relations (Post, Sprinzak, and Denny 2003, Pedahzur, Perliger, and Weinberg 2003, Sageman 2004). Since prior studies have not discussed what incentives provoke local jihadist leaders to affiliate with Al Qa’ida, I assumed that the motivations for local jihadist leaders to join Al Qa’ida’s global jihad were similar to the motivations for individuals to


join terrorist movements. Thus, to address my first question, I developed the following hypotheses: H11. Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers associated with Al Qa’ida due to opportunistic motives H21. Al Qa’ida commanding officers associated with Al Qa’ida due to ideological motives H31. Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers associated with Al Qa’ida due psychosocial motives H11 (Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers aligned with Al Qa’ida due to opportunistic motives) reflects the observation that relatively undersized, less powerful indigenous assemblies of terrorists can invigorate their organization by aligning with Al Qa’ida. In recent years, Al Qa’ida has demonstrated unusual resilience and international reach. It has exhibited a complexity, agility, and global scope that is unrivaled by any previous terrorist organization. Its fluid operational style, based on a common mission statement and shared objectives rather than standard-operating procedures has ensured its success (Stern 2003). Al Qa’ida has a remarkable ability to attract membership by relying upon a web of informal relations with various Islamic groups to gain access to operational collaborators and individuals to execute attacks. Currently, Al Qa’ida’s recruitment process seems to be more a matter of joining than being solicited. Moreover, the Salafi message, which has been disseminated over the Internet by Al Qa’ida’s media division, has attracted numerous members of alienated diasporas (sometimes second and third generation immigrants) who feel isolated from their communities and seek to belong to a group (Bruce Hoffman 2003). By associating with Al Qa’ida, local jihadist groups can shore up popular support and amp up recruitment.


Al Qa’ida’s strength may also lie in its impressive coffers; Al Qa’ida has amassed billions of dollars by building a strong network of financiers and operatives who are frugally minded and business savvy. Moreover, Al Qa’ida’s finances are often hidden in legitimate and illegitimate businesses; Bin Laden is reputed to own approximately eighty companies around the world. Al Qa’ida has learned to effectively leverage the global financial system of capital markets by utilizing small financial transfers, under regulated Islamic banking networks and informal transfer systems throughout the world. Thus, it is difficult to choke off funds destined for Al Qa’ida (Basile 2004). Consequently, Al Qa’ida can grant money to local terrorist groups that present promising plans for attacks that serve Al Qa’ida’s general goals. All terrorist organizations must engage in attacks to maintain support, to buttress their organizational integrity, and to foster their continued existence. Associating with Al Qa’ida ensures that a group has access to the necessary financial resources to conduct attacks. In a sense, Al Qa’ida operates like a large multi-national company and the “product” that it exports is terrorism. One must acknowledge the economic principles that underlie Al Qa’ida’s success, that of supply and demand, limited resources, productivity etc. Finally, Al Qa’ida has successfully exploited the technological tools of globalization to communicate with various audiences. Al Qa’ida has launched an effective advertising campaign worldwide using the latest technology and psychology to reach their desired addressees. Al Qa’ida uses mobile phones, text messaging, instant messaging, websites, email, blogs, and chat rooms for administrative tasks, fund-raising, research, logistical coordination of attacks, and recruitment. When Al Qa’ida’s media division airs its hostage videos and films of terrorist attacks or their aftermath, it provides the organization with the oxygen of publicity necessary to sustain itself. Unless civilian populations are made aware of terrorist acts and cowed into fear by


spectacular attacks.g. Cronin lists seven broad explanations for the decline and ending of terrorist groups: 1) the capture or killing of the leader 2) failure to transition to the next generation 3) achievement of the group’s aims 4) transition to a legitimate political process 5) undermining of popular support 6) repression 7) transition from terrorist to other forms of violence. I searched for evidence of terrorist group decline based on Cronin’s criteria. the Jamestown Foundation. The timelines featured important events in their life cycle (e. and the NEFA foundation. To do so. In considering this hypothesis. etc. Information was gathered from various international security think tanks including the Center for Defense Information. the onset of series of attacks. as a rational actor. I judged that the local jihadist leader. I assumed that opportunism was the primary motivation for merging with Al Qa’ida (coded as 2). I developed timelines for each organization included in this study. the founding. would affiliate with Al Qa’ida if he desperately needed to give his organization a second wind.). If there was 33 . it is important to remember that Al Qa’ida is a unique terrorist organization. More than one dynamic can be responsible for their decline (Cronin 2006). most modern terrorist groups do not last long. if there was strong evidence that the group was in a state of imminent decline immediately prior to its merger with A Qa’ida. the Council of Foreign Relations. the Institute for Conflict Management in New Delhi. Consequently. the beginning of a government offensive. these materials are seen by potential sympathizers who may be brought into the folds of terrorism itself (Blanchard 2006). Moreover. 90% of terrorist organizations have a life span of less than one year. to assess H11. In fact.such assaults. Terrorist groups that align with Al Qa’ida can benefits from Al Qa’ida’s media and propaganda expertise. Al Qa’ida cannot influence the governments that it targets. Consequently.

I considered the assessment of Al Qa’ida’s ideology published by MI5. I determined if the local jihadist leaders who affiliated with Al Qa’ida espoused anti-Western. (Al Qa’ida is a pan-Islamic organization) 3) Al Qa’ida promotes violence against other Muslim denominations as well as nonMuslims. I relied predominantly upon newspaper articles published in both the domestic and international 34 . I considered the leader’s prior involvement in Islamic societies.some data that suggested that the group had experienced minor setbacks. Al Qa’ida strongly opposes Western influences and ideologies that it perceives as “un-Islamic. pan-Islamic. Al Qa’ida would like to replace all existing governments with a supranational caliphate and impose a strict and exclusive government based on their interpretation of Sunni Islam.” most notably Shiite sects. Al Qa’ida’s ideology is centered upon three key points: 1) Al Qa’ida attributes the obstacles encountered by the Islamic world to the JewishChristian apostate Muslim alliance.”(Al Qa’ida is an anti-Western organization) 2) Al Qa’ida aims to establish a caliphate based on an extreme interpretation of Sunni Islam. According to MI5. to evaluate H21. or anti-Shia agendas. To perform this appraisal. (Al Qa’ida is anti-Shia) (Al Qaida's Ideology) Thus. Al Qa’ida’s supports a narrow interpretation of Sunnism. which they had published regarding their ideology. More information on statistical hypothesis testing follows in the chapter on data analysis and results. To execute this assessment. the largest denomination and is violently opposed to other Islamic denominations that it regards as “infidel. the UK’s security intelligence agency. To assess H21 (Al Qa’ida commanding officers were inspired by Al Qa’ida’s ideology). religious education. I determined that opportunism was the secondary motivation for merging with Al Qa’ida (coded as 1). and statements.

pan-Islamic. I concluded that ideological alignment was a secondary motivation (coded as 1). operatives from foreign countries began trickling into Pakistan. yet also expressed anti-Western. and elsewhere 35 . if the leader seemed more committed to local programs. or antiShia sympathies. communiqués. or anti-Shia goals than regional initiatives. I resolved that ideological alignment was the primary motivation for joining Al Qa’ida (coded as 2). eager to put the Afghan jihad in the past. Soon thereafter. speeches and other primary source materials authored by the leaders themselves. pan-Islamic. Finally. Thus countless numbers of mujahedeen veterans who had formed tight bonds with their fellow fighters returned to locations in the Middle East. North Africa. While some arrived to provide money and weapons to support the fight. In December 1979. the Pakistani government ordered the closure of Arab mujahedeen offices in the country and threatened official deportation to any illegal foreign fighters who attempted to remain in Pakistan. Pakistan. where available. to assess H31 (Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers associated with Al Qa’ida due to prior social network affiliations). If I found that the leader placed more emphasis on anti-Western. fearing the collapse of communism in Central Asia. However in January 1993. Osama bin Laden. statements. and. which was organized into several native mujahedeen organizations with headquarters in Peshawar. others enlisted in the growing corps of “holy warriors” under the lead of the legendary Palestinian Sheikh Dr. Countless numbers of Afghanis joined the Islamic resistance. I considered operatives’ involvement in four episodes that served to rally jihadists around Al Qa’ida principals and fostered the development of social bonds between mujahedeen figures. Abdullah Azzam and the Saudi billionaire. the Soviet Union launched a military invasion to restore Soviet control over neighboring Afghanistan.

they may have decided to reunite with Zawahiri and the other jihadists with whom they were imprisoned. In prison. When presented with the opportunity to reunite with their “brethren. more than 700 people were rounded up. where the new regime had raised an Islamic banner. he convinced several Saudi businessmen to invest in Sudan and several of his brothers and Jeddah merchants did invest in Sudanese real estate. The second trial consisted of 302 defendants charged with conspiracy and being members of the illegal Tanzim al-Jihad. Two trials took place. in subsequent years. Ultimately. Following President Sadat's assassination. these jihadists developed strategies for establishing an Islamist state and established important personal connections. In the Sudan. The first was held in camera and consisted of 24 suspects directly involved in the assassination. despite the prosecution demand of 299 death sentences the judges gave out none. President Sadat of Egypt died after being shot by gunmen who opened fire as he watched an aerial display at a military parade. Most jihadists rallied around Ayman alZawahiri. After the Soviet-Afghan War. Osama bin Laden journeyed to the Sudan. farming. and agriculture (Gunaratna 36 . However. Only 58 sentences were given and most of the defendants were released after three years in prison.” these former combatants may have opted to rejoin Al Qa’ida. he was treated as a special guest. After being released. Moreover. who became a spokesman for the defendants because of his eloquence and knowledge of foreign languages. several former prisoners left Egypt (Wright 2007).(Wright 2007). In 1981. The events that unfolded subsequent to the assassination of Anwar Sadat may have played a similar role in forging social bonds amongst jihadists. who appeased his hosts by mobilizing construction equipment and bankrolling construction projects. Many focused on mobilizing the population to overthrow the government.

Finally. and jailing men whose beards were deemed too short. Thus. a precondition which set the stage for the merger). Bergen 2001). His second presence in Afghanistan attracted many mujahedeen to return there (P. a large part of the Taliban’s support came from Afghanistan's Pashtun community. he could rekindle these ties.e. I assumed that social network affiliation was a permissive factor (i.2002). he established residency in Afghanistan. Kabul. became an Al Qa’ida associate. the Taliban controlled some 90 percent of Afghanistan's territory. while social affiliations may animate a small minority to engage in Al Qa’ida’s program of global jihad. I determined whether the group member was involved in the Soviet-Afghan war. although subject to the same or similar influences. local jihadist leaders may have established social connections with Bin Laden in Afghanistan before the 9/11 attacks and the Global War on Terror. or spent time in the Sudan before 1996 or Afghanistan during the reign of the Taliban. banning television. The Taliban rule was characterized by a strict form of Islamic law. The bonds that these jihadists formed prior to the US invasion may have sparked their cooperation with Al Qa’ida after the onset of the Global War on Terror. By September 1996. Subsequently. L. Before its ouster by U. After Bin Laden fled the Sudan in 1996 as a result of international pressure. During this time he established links to Sudanese Islamists as well as fundamentalists in Somalia and Yemen. As ethnic Pashtuns. In the years after departing from the Sudan. When considering the relevance of social network affiliations. they do not explain why these particular leaders aligned with Al Qa’ida. However. Bin Laden set up numerous training camps in the region.-led forces in 2001. 37 . the Taliban had captured Afghanistan’s capital. participated in the Sadat trial.S. requiring women to wear head-to-toe veils. disillusioned with existing ethnic Tajik and Uzbek leaders. and embarked upon his jihad against America. This treatment was based upon my observation that not every participant in these episodes.

Unless the local jihadist leader was clearly not incentivized by opportunism or ideological concerns. Consequently. or ideological. I considered social network affiliation to be a secondary motivation rather than a primary motivation. Finally. III. or foreign language competencies. I posited that Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers would fall into one of three primary leadership categories after the affiliation occurred: operational. Logistical leaders are accountable for the administrative and financial activities of their units. and running training camps. Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers play an increasingly operational role after affiliating with Al Qa’ida H22. They 38 . Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers play an increasingly logistical role after affiliating with Al Qa’ida H32. Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers play an increasingly ideological role after affiliating with Al Qa’ida. or legal expertise. financial. They direct the group’s bureaucratic development and organize recruitment drives. Assessing Q2: To answer my second question (What type of role do local jihadist leaders play within Al Qa’ida’s network when the organization for which they are responsible merges or partners with Al Qa’ida?). They have military experience or formation and/or expertise in weapons or explosives. logistical. ideological/media leaders are responsible for expressing the organizational culture and philosophy of their group through media activity and possibly fatwa as well as personal interactions with their operatives. developing military tactics. Operational commanders are primarily responsible for conducting operations (including “spectacular attacks”). They have vocational. I developed another three hypothesis: H12.

this estimation would have been biases. If the leader demonstrated at least two of the factors in the operational leadership category. If he demonstrated one of the factors in this category.have granted interviews. Instead. published books or articles. To determine the role played by the commanding officer.and post-merger. I assessed the commanding officer’s operational. I compared leadership performance pre. logistic. I coded him as a strong operational leader (3). and released audio or videotapes. considered the following variables: Type of leader Operational Logistic Ideological Media activity Military/Front line experience Administrative/financial activities Weapons/explosives training Indications Training camp participation Recruitment experience Organizational restructuring Media innovations Involvement in ideological transitions Operational innovations Involvement in major attacks Vocational skills Language skills Fatwa issues Documented political or religious guidance proffered to operatives After analyzing these variables. and ideological leadership abilities before and after the merger. I coded him as an average operational leader 39 . I did not compare leadership performance across categories because different measures were used to evaluate leadership faculty for each category. Thus.

the Council on Foreign Relations.(2). MIPT collaborated with Detica. To perform this evaluation. a business and technology consultancy. From 2004 to 2008 the Department of Justice and Department of Homeland Security funded the creation and maintenance of the Terrorism Knowledge Base. developed by the Memorial Institute for the Prevention of Terrorism (MIPT). which is now available to the public through an agreement between MIPT. IV. I conducted further analyses to determine its accuracy by confirming with at least two separate. However. and START (About START). If the leader was not involved with the organization at the time. including reports available through the Jamestown Foundation. I eliminated several from my study based on the following criteria using open source materials. The International Herald Tribune. I also used these sources to determine the date that the affiliation commenced. DHS. to collect information on terrorist groups and key leaders of terrorist groups. If he exhibited none of these factors. I used the same secondary and primary source materials listed earlier in this chapter. 40 . I coded him as such (0). The New York Times. since START has not evaluated this data and cannot assure the reliability of the information provided. the Library of Congress. Although the TOPs database listed thirty-six Al Qa’ida allies. and The Washington Post. I coded him as a weak operational leader (1). A discussion of the comparison of leadership performance pre-and post-merger follows in Chapter 5. non-partisan sources. I used the same criteria to assess logistic and ideological leadership. the Federation of American Scientists. I considered two questions: 1) With whom has Al Qa’ida affiliated? 2) Who led these organizations? To answer the first question. Developing the Universe of Cases To develop my universe of cases. I used the Terrorist Organization Profiles (TOPs) Database included on the website of the National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terror (START).

3) While not grounds for immediate disqualification. the group must have formally announced that this arrangement existed through a communiqué broadcast to a wide audience. for example by contributing to its recruitment efforts or operations in Afghanistan or Iraq. To qualify as a merger. or opportunities for training. Those groups that I coded as weak affiliates received financing or training from Al Qa’ida.1) The group must have been engaged in operations independently of Al Qa’ida (the group must not be a front for Al Qa’ida My study considers the deliberate decision to affiliate with Al Qa’ida. perhaps by providing access to operatives. I determined that twenty-one groups conformed to these the above standards. an official denial of connections with Al Qa’ida should induce caution (and invoke more thorough analysis of the relationship) Based on my evaluation. Leaders who head front organizations for Al Qa’ida do not make a pre-meditated choice to cooperate with Al Qa’ida. assets. I coded each affiliation as a merger. thereby potentially compromising their local agenda. informants. I separately examined al-Gama’a al-Islamiyya 41 . 2) The group must not have renounced violence I did not include political movements that supported Al Qa’ida’s aims because armed groups operate differently than other clandestine non-violent organizations. or logisticians. In return. contact with its network of financiers. To qualify as a strong affiliation. the organization must have developed a symbiotic relationship with Al Qa’ida. After performing this assessment. and media specialists. or a weak affiliation (collaboration). Finally. a strong affiliation (partnership). Al Qa’ida aided the local organization. intelligence. but did not actively conduct operations outside their region nor did they contribute to Al Qa’ida’s other initiatives in any meaningful way. whereby they supported Al Qa’ida.

Asbat al-Ansar). and activities. it is equally important to comprehend what deters other groups from associating with Al Qa’ida. operations. I did not consider Al Qa’ida’s regional staff officers. In order to understand what motivates certain groups to align with Al Qa’ida. Selection of Study Subjects My prior discussion focused on terrorist organizations that are overtly in pursuit of Salafi objectives. Jemaah Islamiya. Some organizations had more than one nominal chief at times. Based on this data. Selection of my study subjects/study 42 . others experienced numerous leadership transitions (ex. In performing this assessment. I used open source materials including reports by non-partisan research institutions and newspaper articles. I considered all of the commanding officers of each group from the onset of their relationship with Al Qa’ida to the present. While some groups did not experience any leadership transitions after they partnered with Al Qa’ida (ex. I made this distinction because I was interested in investigating the motivations and role of those leaders who came from outside Al Qa’ida’s orbit but became involved in its program later in their career. I identified the leaders (past and present) of each of these 21 groups. Thus. I included a leader who was had not actively cooperated with Al Qa’ida if this leader had communicated with Al Qa’ida Central Command and if his successors vigorously pursued relations after his term. the Taliban. V. namely the establishment of an Islamic state. in which case I treated both as leaders. who coordinate and supervise the execution of plans. both past and present. Next. In a few instances. but who never had a vested interest in a particular local jihadist group. I included a detailed investigation of the GAI in Chapter 7. I generated a list of 41 Al Qa’ida field commanders as study subjects. a group that did not affiliate with Al Qa’ida as a control group.(GAI). Al Qa’ida in Iraq).

I did not include the amorphous social movement. Moreover. In contrast. I did include many groups that were deeply invested in domestic uprising and urban warfare against their own governments. VI. who are fighting a jihad that involves complex social. bias was introduced by the actual leader interviews and communications that can be considered well-orchestrated propaganda 43 . Problems Regarding Information Gathering To conduct this assessment. Often. which exists in Morocco. I used sources from the public domain. Because clandestine organizations are often very secretive about their members and operations. This grouping is just an assemblage of small illegal clusters centered around charismatic preachers. there may have been ascertainment bias introduced by the difficulties accurately assessing leaders’ competence in organizing and conducting important attacks. I chose to limit my sample to in order to reveal certain patterns that might not have otherwise emerged with less stringent exclusion criteria. Moreover. less magnetized by Al Qa’ida pan-Islamic agenda. Although I eliminated all non-Muslim terrorists from the study sample. For instance. I included Muslims fighting for the liberation of Kashmir and those fighting an internal insurgency in Central Asia. In addition. terrorist organizations will not take credit for successful operations for fear of provoking the government to conduct a counterterrorism response. economic. and political grievances and who may be less committed to the principles of Salafism and thus. the data from this study is inevitably biased towards information about those organizations and individuals who are regarded as more visible and who appear publicly with greater frequency.sample was based on demonstrated and documented overt commitment to the principles of Salafism and all of the organizations that I studied were well defined with leadership that supported terrorist operations. I did not include Palestinian groups. Salafia Jihadia.

who merged his organization with Al Qa’ida despite the objections of the GSPC’s former leader Hassan AlBanna (Guidère 2007). I considered Droukdal’s prior experiences and the history of the GSPC to determine why he embraced Al Qa’ida’s internationalist agenda rather than remaining committed strictly to jihad in Algeria. When assessing the data. press and scholarly articles. As a result. My observations regarding 44 . Next. I arrived at a better understanding of how to recognize and predict who may become Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers and how to anticipate and counter their efforts. VIII. VII. a comparison of leadership performance across categories was impossible. I completed one comprehensive case study (in addition to my detailed discussion of the GAI). These sources included: government documents. and how they aligned their own local jihadist group with Al Qa’ida’s pan-Islamic program. leader of Al Qa’ida in the Islamic Maghreb.exercises that may not appropriately reflect the leader’s true motivations and ideology. empirical data about Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers was collected and analyzed. Relevance By seeking to understand who Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers are. what motivates them. and Internet articles. With the aforementioned limitations in mind. as mentioned earlier. I considered the source of information and its degree of reliability. I used the materials available to me to try to best collect information about and understand the leaders and organizations that I profiled. I investigated Abdelmalek Droukdal. Case Study Finally. formerly the Groupe Salafist pour la Prédication et le Combat (GSPC). I assessed the role he played before and after aligning with Al Qa’ida. These concerns withstanding.

has strong implications for US foreign policy in the post 9/11 era and greater attention should be paid to identifying such settings.motivations will serve two purposes. First. Finally. if proven. we can better allocate resources to address this threat.g. we can better understand Al Qa’ida’s overall strategy (e. This realization. they will help develop a model to identify local jihadist leaders who may merge or partner with Al Qa’ida in the future. my analyses may suggest that our battles in the Middle East and our policies regarding imprisonment are creating gathering places for global Salafi jihadists. 45 . Based on our knowledge of Al Qa’ida’s strategy. The fundamentalists who form interpersonal bonds through these venues may be persuaded by Al Qa’ida’s pan-Islamic partisans to become the next-generation of Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers in locations scattered across the globe. Secondly. by understanding the role that Al Qa’ida commanding officers play. are they focused on promoting their message through propaganda or are they intent on conducting more attacks?).

and failed to overthrow the governments in Egypt. To address this concern. I determined the year that the group first received or conveyed assistance to Al Qa’ida. To assess the date of the affiliation.Chapter 4: Universe of Cases I. they argue. as well as name recognition 46 . I also observed noticeable patterns while developing my universe of cases. Jordan. Since 2001. Most of researchers who I discussed in my literature review perceive Al Qa’ida’s strategy of franchising as a new development. In many instances. surprising. Al Qa’ida has transformed into an international enterprise with like-minded local representatives loosely connected to a central ideological base (Riedel 2007). I have classified the affiliation according to its current state. I considered the development of Al Qa’ida’s affiliation over a period of time from 1991 until 2005 (Table 1). 2001. this relationship has perpetuated to the present day. in every case. the relationship between Al Qa’ida and its affiliate has strengthened or weakened (such is the case with the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group. therefore. It is important to keep in mind. They contend that after September 11. Al Qa’ida’s Affiliates: An Evolving Network Although the purpose of my study was to investigate Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers. Although I have recorded the first year in which the group cooperated with Al Qa’ida. since a group does not merely affiliate with Al Qa’ida and then sever all relations. the evidence indicates that Al Qa’ida’s strategy is not new: it has operated like an international franchise by providing financial and logistical support. Despite the popularity of this argument. and Abu Sayyaf. First. The investigation of Al Qa’ida’s patterns of affiliation with respect to time is very interesting and indeed. who consolidated relations with Al Qa’ida. that a cumulative effect occurs. who diluted relations with Al Qa’ida). and Saudi Arabia. lost several of its top officials. Al Qa’ida was deprived of a “state within a state” in Afghanistan.

to terrorist groups operating in such diverse places as the Philippines. where he was warmly welcomed by Hassan al-Turabi. After the Saudi government. These operatives also offered advice to their Somali counterparts on how to set up social services for the local population. Al Qa’ida first seriously affiliated with other terrorist organizations in 1991. 47 . he departed for the Sudan. Al Qa’ida linked up with Al-Ittihaad al-Islami (AIAI) and Abu Sayyaf. Tajikistan. Yemen. during his time in the Sudan. In this year. Somalia. oil rich state of Kuwait on August 1. This relationship strengthened throughout the nineties. On August 7. While Bin Laden was situated in the Sudan. Bin Laden organized training camps at which hundred of his followers were tutored in paramilitary tactics as revealed in the previous chapter. However. Bin Laden could operate freely in the Sudan and in return he would invest millions of dollars in the desperately poor country. Bin Laden perceived this intrusion as part of a larger Western design to dominate the whole Arab and Muslim world. effectively put him under house arrest. this observation is not nearly as stunning. the first US troops were dispatched to Saudi Arabia as part of Operation Desert Shield. Afghanistan. tired of Bin Laden’s critiques. For Bin Laden. 1990. He was able to send Al Qa’ida operatives to Somalia in 1991-1992 to liaise with their leaders and then help AIAI organize itself militarily. Turabi and Bin Laden engaged in a convenient symbiotic relationship. Kashmir and Iraq. Bin Laden had the opportunity to interact with other terrorist units to expand Al Qa’ida’s reach. Consequently. Eritrea. Bin Laden had immediately volunteered his services and those of his holy volunteers but the Saudis did not take this offer seriously (Gunaratna 2002). After Hussein’s forces invaded the small. when one considers the historical context. the leader of the National Islamic Front. As a result of the Sudanese government’s hospitality and support. for years. 1990. Algeria. this was as perturbing and foreboding an event as the Russian invasion of Afghanistan that had occurred a decade earlier. Chechnya. thereby threatening the security of Saudi Arabia.

he attempted to centralize the core of Al Qa’ida’s operations and develop its human resources as discussed in Chapter 1. From 1991 to 1996. to invest in the country’s moribund financial institutions.Bin Laden ramped up his assistance to the Somali terrorists after the Bush administration sent US peacekeeping troops to Somalia in 2002. he broadcast a fatwa in which he avowed that having already taken over the Persian Gulf area and now encroaching upon Somalia. Thus. would next march into Southern Sudan and then into other Islamic countries(Gunaratna 2002). which sought to pursue a more fundamentalist battle against the Philippine authorities than the Moro National Liberation Front. Bin Laden convinced several Saudi businessmen. Al Qa’ida was preoccupied with other pursuits and could not devote energy towards developing such high-maintenance relations. Concurrently. Bin Laden focused his efforts on other missions like determining how best to attack US forces in Somalia. while residing in the Sudan. between a thousand and two thousand 48 . he persuaded his brother in law. While occupied with these financial negotiations. their parent organization. where their transactions would go unnoticed and in its infrastructure projects. which would elicit support from the Sudanese population. Bin Laden probably saw the struggle in the Philippines as an opportunity to open a second front for his organization without becoming embroiled in the conflicts in the Middle East. Instead. including some of his brothers. By 1991. After associating with these groups. my data indicates that Al Qa’ida did not engage another affiliate until 1996. Muhammad Jamal Khalifah to support the Abu Sayyaf Group. Moreover a number of ASG members had fought in Afghanistan in the 1980s (Rogers 2004). Soon thereafter. Moreover. Bin Laden exploited a cache of trustworthy warriors who he could rely upon to cultivate his vision of global jihad. if successful. many of whom would be employed by these Arabic executives. the US military.

Given this stable and secure environment. who left the Sudan to return to his familiar stamping grounds in Afghanistan. hundreds of Afghan Arabs engaged in fighting in Bosnia (P. By 1996. Upon Bin Laden’s arrival. Bin Laden had set up a number of military camps in the north. As a result of this multitude of tasks. From Afghanistan. Bin Laden and his cadre were engrossed by other concerns and did not focus on developing external relations with other jihadist groups. He also sought to acquire weapons for these militants. no affiliations were observed between 1991 and 1996. Bin Laden issued a slew of radical pronouncements beginning with a call to arms against the continued American military presence in Arabia on August 23. Al Qa’ida engaged 15 of its 21 affiliates. which became the modern world’s first jihadist state. Bergen 2001). During this time. 1996. Having obtained sanctuary. Bin Laden was able to function unimpeded. He turned his attention to exotic weaponry and weapons of mass destruction. These communiqués served to attract the attention of various local jihadist leaders. a multi-volume series detailing everything the Afghan Arabs had learned in the jihad against the Soviets. once again. L. it is not surprising that between 1996 and 2001. on widening his movement. Bin Laden began to focus. attracting Muslim militants to a country. Mullah Muhammad Omar sent a delegation to assure Bin Laden that the Taliban would be honored to protect him because of his role in the jihad against the Soviets (Gunaratna 2002). To 49 . intense pressure had been placed on the Sudanese government by the United States and Egypt to expel Bin Laden.members of Al Qa’ida converged upon the Sudan and within three years. Bin Laden knew Afghanistan well and greatly admired the Taliban religious warriors who had taken control over much of the country. Finally. Simultaneously some members of the group undertook the massive task of writing the Encyclopedia of the Afghan Jihad. Thus.

this is due to the fact that in 1998 Bin Laden created the International Islamic Front for Jihad against the Jews and Crusaders (IIF). “in order to obey the Almighty. Thus. Bin Laden’s organization nurtured ties with a variety of other armed jihadist groups. one observes a surge of new Al Qa’ida affiliates. In part. he needed the backing of religious scholars and the clerical cover to call for a real global jihad. According to this Word Islamic Front manifesto. in the years before the September 11. Laden convened conferences of several Afghan ulema. an anti-Shia sectarian party (Carafano 2005). we hereby give all Muslims the following judgment: the judgment to kill and fight Americans and their allies. These sequential steps were part of Bin Laden’s plan to expand his multi-national terrorist campaign. whether civilians or military. and Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan. However. in 1998. members included the head of the violent faction of Egypt’s Gama’a al Islamiyya.supplement this strategy. 2001 attacks. The clerics who Bin Laden summoned also had acquaintances with jihadists beyond Afghanistan who they could introduce to Bin Laden (Bergen 2001). he probably did not rely extensively upon the leaders of these organizations. In addition to its formal alliances through the IIF. Amidst this background. the establishment of the IIF can clearly be interpreted as an effort by Al Qa’ida to expand its battle against Western influence. and the head of Bangladesh’s Jihad Movement. Harkat-ul-Mujahideen. Later the IIF was expanded to include the Pakistani jihadist organizations Lashkar-eTaiba. In addition to Bin Laden and EIJ’s Ayman al-Zawahiri. the secretary general of the Pakistani religious party known as the Jamiat-ul-Ulema-e-Islam. 50 . is an obligation for every Muslim who is able to do so in any country. While Bin Laden was well read in the Koran. he was not a religious scholar. before 2001.” Based on this quotation.

Whereas before Al Qa’ida had a distinct center of gravity. and command-and-control nucleus in Afghanistan were destroyed and uprooted. from an actual center to a virtual network) (Bruce Hoffman 2004). operational bases. 51 . Al Qa’ida aims to establish itself as a complex organization with a flexible structure in order to preserve control over specifically identified strategic operations while offering cells a degree of autonomy in local and regional operations. Firstly. after 9/11. Osama Bin Laden was compelled to makeover his organization. infrastructure. Aggressive US and allied efforts impeded Al Qa’ida’s ability to do anything.Contrary to popular belief. after 2001 and the onset of the Global War on Terror. To more easily engineer this metamorphosis. few can deny the United States and its allies achieved progress in the first phase of the Global War on Terror. Bin Laden had to engineer a colossal transformation of his organization from a more or less unitary. near bureaucratic entity to a fluid movement tenuously bound by a loosely networked transnational constituency (i. partnerships. As stated in the introduction. There are two explanations for this observation. Bin Laden elected to strengthen existing affiliations rather than pursue new ones. Groups such as the Groupe Salafist pour la Prédication et le Combat and Jama'at al-Tawhid wal-Jihad were brought further into Al Qa’ida’s folds. and collaborations (Marion and Uhl-Bien 2006). the dearth of new Al Qa’ida affiliates seems puzzling given what scholars perceive to be Al Qa’ida’s organizational strategy.e. Thus. As elaborated upon in Chapter 1. temporarily crippling it. Al Qa’ida has not enlisted many new affiliates. Al Qa’ida’s training camps. characterized by semiautonomous cells that are horizontally and vertically integrated into the centralized command structure. complex organizations. are built up through mergers. be it to plan attacks or to align with other jihadist groups. After 2001.

the Uzbek fighters associated with the Islamic Jihad Union have supported fighting in South Waziristan against the Pakistani government and US forces hunting Al Qa’ida fugitives (Steinberg 2008). beheading of hostages. Al Qa’ida has exploited the Iraqi occupation for rousing propaganda and as a recruitment tool for the global jihadist cause. For instance. prior to 2005. Moreover. Lebanon. and lack of concern for public support. Bruce Hoffman has suggested that for Al Qa’ida. Al Qa’ida and its affiliates can conduct attacks in countries that are venerable sources of Bin Laden’s antagonism or where an opportunity has presented itself. Bin Laden and Al Qa’ida Central Command relied more heavily and interacted more frequently with the leaders of these groups. began to instruct Zarqawi regarding tactics and specific theater-of-war concerns.Moreover. who had become his commanding officers. Nowadays. Al Qa’ida now teams up with terrorist groups who can send foreign jihadists to Iraq where they conduct guerilla warfare against the America and British troops. in 2004. Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. and for maintaining the momentum of an Islamist victory by expanding operations into Syria. Ayman Zawahiri. Zawahiri reprimanded al-Zarqawi for indiscriminate attacks on Shias. he urged Zarqawi to prepare for a precipitous American military withdrawal from Iraq. in a letter dated July 9. Jordan. For instance. Another observable and notable trend is that the number of affiliates that Al Qa’ida enrolled has increased since the onset of the war in Iraq in 2003. 2005. Israel. terror attacks 52 . However. and Egypt (Michael 2007). “Iraq’s preeminent utility has been a useful side show” – an effective means to sidetrack American military forces and divert US attention while Al Qa’ida and its affiliates make inroads and strike elsewhere. was responsible for developing his own strategy and operations. the leader of Tawhid. including Shias. for establishing a post-US Islamist emirate governed by a coalition of Islamic groups. For example. Additionally. who had become Bin Laden’s second-in command. In fact.

Al Qa’ida Affiliates: The Geographic Distribution Having assessed the development of Al Qa’ida’s affiliations over time. and Yemen). One can anticipate that the majority of affiliates would hail from the Core Arab states and Maghreb Arab states. Later. Arab nationalism and then Islamic fundamentalism strongly manifested. The smaller clusters come from Southeast Asia and Northeast Africa. Considering the sample as a whole. The other large clusters come from the Maghreb (Morocco. the American forces went into Lebanon. the 2005 bombings against London’s public transport system. it is interesting to consider the geographic distribution of Al Qa’ida’s affiliates (Figure 2). Lebanon. Pakistan). Afghanistan. and the 2007 terrorist attacks in Algiers (Bruce Hoffman 2004). These regions have a history of conflict with the West. France fought a war in Algeria and British and French forces invaded Egypt. over forty percent of the 21 affiliates are based in the Core Arab states (Iraq. II. include the 2004 bombings against Madrid’s commuter trains. conflicts along the fault line between western and Arab Islamic civilizations frequently erupted. Samuel Huntington observed that after World War II. according to statistics released by the US government’s National Counterterrorism Center.around the world tripled in 2004. For instance. Libya. Tunisia) and Southern Asia (namely. In the aftermath of this transition. Algeria. the 2006 transatlantic aircraft plot to detonated liquid explosive carried on board from the United Kingdom to the US and Canada. when colonial empires began to retreat. The warfare between Arabs and the West culminated in 1990 when the United States sent a massive army to the Persian Gulf to defend some Arab countries against aggression by Saddam Hussein The Gulf War left some Arabs feeling humiliated and resentful of the West’s military presence in the Persian Gulf (Huntington 1992). Notable incidents conducted by or with the assistance of Al Qa’ida’s affiliates since the beginning of the Iraq war. Egypt Uzbekistan. 53 .

Furthermore. Tahir Yuldashev. for years. the Taliban controlled the Afghan territory bordering Uzbekistan. Tajikistan. just a few miles from the border (Luong and Weinthal 2002). Ayubi suggests that the general Islamic resurgence that one observes today represents a reaction to alienation and a quest for authenticity by disaffected Muslims who resent Western participation in their lands. For those countries resisting foreign dominance. at the present time operatives from these organizations can assist the Al Qa’ida- 54 . all of which are in immediate proximity to Afghanistan. Since 1996. fled to Afghanistan where he set up a military training camp. Secular prescriptions (whether nationalist or leftist) are regarded as unsuccessful European importations introduced by intellectuals exposed to French and Italian cultures. Turkmenistan. For instance. one of the masterminds behind the assassination attempt against Uzbek President Islam A. Moreover. they could permit leaders of these jihadist groups to establish training camps without fear of government intervention. Islam can provide a medium of cultural nationalism that is defiant and self-assuring. weak security apparatuses and crisis-torn economies. These states have porous borders. Karimov. Additionally. and leader of the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan. Turkmenistan and Tajikistan. and Uzbekistan. Kyrgystan. Al Qa’ida and the Taliban could facilitate the transportation of militants moving back and forth across the borders. whereas the religious-framed prescriptions of Arabia Islam have a thirteen century-old legacy (Ayubi 1980). He maintains that most Islamic revolutions evolve from movements for indigenous self-assertion. Al Qa’ida has appealed to militants in the four neighboring former Soviet Central Asian republics. Thus.These struggles had a profound effect on the development of jihadist outlets. There is also a simpler explanation to account for the plethora of Al Qa’ida affiliates hailing from the Core Arab states.

under strong US diplomatic pressure. Similarly. offered to President Bush Pakistan’s unqualified cooperation in the fight against terrorism. Consequently. terrorist operatives in the Maghreb move easily across international borders. after the September 2001 attacks. Pakistan has allowed the US military to use bases within the country. these militants can stage local campaigns due to their recently acquired front line experience (Boudali 2007). fighters transit through Syria. where Islamabad exercises limited authority. 55 . Conservative estimates suggest that at least several hundred North African volunteers have traveled to Iraq. In addition. eager to regroup in Pakistani cities where police control was more negligible. However. and has helped to tighten the border between Pakistan and Afghanistan. The conflict between Muslims and Hindus in the subcontinent manifests itself in the rivalry between Pakistan and India. these groups help Al Qa’ida attack coalition troops in Afghanistan and then escape across the Pakistani frontier (Fair 2004). thousands of Muslim extremists were detained. affiliates from these nations are particularly desirable. President Musharraf. Osama Bin Laden and Ayman al-Zawahiri are now believed to be in Pakistan’s rugged tribal areas. In the wake of these changes. Al Qa’ida. quickly granted this concession in return for safe haven. has helped to identify and detain extremists. This too. Upon returning to the Maghreb.supported insurgency in Afghanistan. should be expected. I also observed that a large percentage of the groups that merged with Al Qa’ida hailed from Pakistan (20%). Separatist violence in India’s Muslim majority Jammu and Kashmir state has continued unabated since 1989. several Kashmiri separatist terrorist groups turned to Al Qa’ida for support. With the assistant of Al Qa’ida’s Algerian affiliates. thus.

it has not emerged as such. and the Philippines.Within my sample. There are almost no legitimate terrorist targets and terrorists themselves can be subject to extortion in largely lawless settings. in general Muslims are a minority in East Africa. a central government with even rudimentary influence has yet to emerge. in East Africa. the nation's continuing economic crisis. this can be easily explained. Although Muslims represent a majority in countries like Somalia and Eritrea. hostility from indigenous religious authorities may also impede the growth of Wahabism (Dickson 2005). Again. Muslims are a minority. Malaysia and Brunei. and two other mostly Muslim states. the depth of its involvement with terrorists is constrained by the very disorder seen as a classical setting for terrorism. Political organizations representing modernist Muslims were 56 . where the other major Abrahamic faiths dominate. such as the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF). the rise of political Islam can be linked principally to the collapse of Suharto's regime. Unlike Eastern European countries. In Indonesia. many Islamic organizations in Southeast Asia genuinely oppose Al Qa’ida and most are nonviolent. while Somalia has served as a transit route for terrorists. there were fewer groups from the Eastern African region and from the Southeast Asian region. Despite the fact that Southeast Asia seems like a good candidate for the second front in the US campaign since it is home to the world’s most populous Muslim-majority country. Thailand. Moreover. while Buddhism and Roman Catholicism are dominant respectively. The largest and most influential are either political parties or revivalist organizations. in which there is just enough government control and economic security to provide an adequate target for terrorist groups. In Singapore. and the fragility of local democracy. Additionally. Indonesia. In fact. most visibly Al Qa’ida. the profound ethnic and religious diversity (including in the practice of Islam) that characterizes the area militates against the establishment of a fundamentalist hegemony by any one group. Also.

Through partnership and collaborations. more extremist forms of Islamism still remain at the fringes (Gershman 2002). Al Qaida can provide financial or logistic support to other terrorist groups with the intention of influencing their strategic activities. were much less common. mergers. they forfeit a degree of control. III. Mergers were much less common (approximately 17%). the relationships between cells and between operatives in Al Qa’ida central command are loosely coupled. Although this type of arrangement allows Al Qa’ida and the merged group to consolidate their assets so that they can compete more successfully. Although such groups have since become a major political force in recent years. causes havoc.banned from the 1950s to the 1980s. and many of their leaders were imprisoned. The preponderance of affiliations (over 70%) could be classified as partnerships or collaborations. Through partnerships and collaborations. Both partnerships and collaborations permit Al Qa’ida to structure itself as a complex organization. While Al 57 . Al Qa’ida achieves the ideal mix of tightly and loosely coupled systems. Supporting local terrorist groups in this manner makes noise. Additionally. This sort of arrangement is convenient when Al Qa’ida wants to spread its radical ideas and has financial resources but does not necessarily care for the local politics in the region. the group that Al Qa’ida subsumes must be capable of completely integrating Al Qa’ida’s methods and approaches into their repertoire. the highest order form of equity-based engagement. Al Qa’ida’s Affiliates: Mergers? Partnerships? Or Collaborations? Finally it is important to consider distribution by type of affiliation (Figure 3). described in the first chapter. When a group merges with Al Qa’ida. and distracts the enemy while Central Command plans for more detailed attacks elsewhere. By contrast. it is difficult to cut off centralized funding due to the complex nature of Al Qa’ida’s financial network. While the relationships within the cells are tightly coupled.

to designated terrorists and terrorist organizations. mergers often end up splintering as a result of differences of ideologies. supporters of terrorism are publicly identified thereby providing warning to other entities that they are prohibited from doing business with the Al Qa’ida affiliate (Uruena 2008). requiring them to take steps to prevent designated individuals and entities from continuing to fund or otherwise support terrorism. financial or otherwise.Qa’ida Central Command does not usually plan operations. Moreover. 58 . Finally. Oftentimes. goals. the United States. There are other practical difficulties. and strategies. when groups officially merge with Al Qa’ida. but are more interested in deposing their current government. Under this order. groups that merge officially with Al Qa’ida may risk alienating the local population. as observed with the Zarqawi-Zawahiri letter referenced earlier. Such blocking actions are a critical tool in combating the financing of terrorism (Mayer and Price 2002). operatives are estranged when Al Qa’ida takes credit for the operation and they are forced to assume a more “behind-the-scenes” role (Desouza and Hengsen 2007). they often become the targets of counterterrorist offensives by foreign governments. they may split their own ranks and upset surrounding communities. the United States government may block the assets of individuals and entities providing support. most prominently. In addition. Executive Order 13224 provides the means to disrupt the support network that funds terrorism. who have no interest in establishing a global Islamic caliphate. For instance. When a group commits to jihad against the far enemy. they can “offer” tactical advice. which the merged group must obey. which should be addressed when discussing mergers. designation under the UN Security Council’s 1267 Committee’s consolidated list will trigger international obligations on all member countries. Through this measure.

while Al Qa’ida’s affiliates are concentrated in the Core Arab and Maghreb states. Al Qa’ida may be seeking to expand into other Muslim-dominated territories. such as Western Africa. evidence suggests that Al Qa’ida will continue to pursue such relations and will rely upon them more heavily. the data demonstrates that Al Qa’ida may be more likely to pursue lower-order affiliations. IV. While in recent years. Al Qa’ida may have several mergers in the works that have not yet been publicly announced. mergers only occur when terrorist groups have developed a close relationship and realize the mutual value of working together. Thus. since they offer increased organizational flexibility and operational reach. 59 .Given these considerations. organizations must have the patience and resolve to work through issues. it is also important to acknowledge that organizational issues must be addressed up front when a merger is negotiated since this type of affiliation is a longterm contract. As the example of Al Qa’ida in the Islamic Maghreb. Like corporations settling a merger. Moreover. several groups have announced a formal merger with Al Qa’ida. Summary of Findings Although Al Qa’ida’s policy of pursuing affiliations with local jihadist groups is not a new development. provided in Chapter 6 proves.

thus. although the smaller values of p for “opportunistic motives” and for “social network affiliation” suggest that these incentives are more robust.146E-09.Chapter 5: Results of Statistical Hypothesis Testing I. Statistically significant differences among subjects were evaluated using a chi-squared test statistic for variation within each scale. All three statistics are significant with a p-value less than 0. and social network affiliation all motivate local jihadist leaders to an extent. This analysis yielded the results contained in Table 1.e.” Each subject was rated 0-2 for each scale. known or suspected terrorists).606E-06 for “opportunistic motives.05. Based on this analysis. each subject was rated on one of three scales: "opportunist motives. when three scales were used. ideological alignment. the null hypothesis was rejected. 1= secondary motivation.” “ideological alignment.” and “social network affiliation” respectively. The chi-squared test yielded pvalues of 1. The null hypothesis tested for each scale was that there was no difference in the frequency of incidence of each level of motational factor. one can conclude that opportunistic motives. By comparison.” "ideological alignment. To assess the effects of motivational factors contributing to individual terrorist's decision to affiliate with Al Qa’ida. in each case.0188. Data Analysis and Results for Q1: What motivates local jihadist leaders to affiliate with Al Qa’ida’s and its pan-Islamic agenda? Data were collected on 41 individual subjects (i. and 1.” and "social network affiliations. 2 = primary motivation (for a more detailed explanation regarding coding. 60 . corresponding to 0= not a motivation. 0. please refer to Chapter 3 on Methodology). ideological alignment appears to be of less powerful significance as a motivating factor for local jihadist leaders.

It is of note that the statistical significance for social network affiliation is far less impressive than that for opportunistic motives. The p-value for opportunistic motives permits us to reject the null hypothesis of no effect.639. The p-values associated with the chi-squared test statistic were 1.” The null hypothesis. the data suggests that psychosocial motive(i.289E-06.” “ideological alignment.” while score 2 was considered as "motivation. H11 (Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers associated with Al Qa’ida due to opportunistic motives) is proven. II. H31 ( Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers associated with Al Qa’ida due psychosocial motives) requires further investigation. social affiliations) have some influence on the decision to associate with Al Qa’ida. Data Analysis and Results for Q2: What type of role do local jihadist leaders play within Al Qa’ida’s network when the organization for which they are responsible affiliates with Al Qa’ida? 61 .” and “social network affiliation” respectively. and 0.e. This implies that opportunism is the primary motivation among the variables considered in this study for affiliating with Al Qa’ida. Based on this analysis. However. thereby suggesting that this particular factor is not a significant motivating variable for local jihadist leaders in this sample. was that there was no difference in the frequency of incidence of each level of motivational factor.To supplement this analysis and clarify the relative impact of each incentive. This analysis produced the results recorded in Table 2. 0. In contrast. tested for both scales. The p-value associated with social network affiliation also allows us to reject the null hypothesis.042 for “opportunistic motives. scores 0 and 1 were combined into a single scale "not a motivation. the effect of ideological alignment does not even reach statistical significance. H21 (Al Qa’ida commanding officers associated with Al Qa’ida due to ideological motives) is rejected.

The chi-squared test statistic was used to evaluate the overall difference in performance in each of the three categories post-versus pre-merger. The null hypothesis tested in this analysis is that there is no difference in each category post-merger. 62 .and postmerger. the p-value for overall leadership performance was borderline (p=0.Subjects were evaluated on their performance in each of three categories: “Operational. Accordingto this test. thus based on this statistical test.and post-merger score for any category. Additionally. However. which considers only the direction of change. Paired statistics were then applied to compare the scores for each individual terrorist. across all terrorists considered individually. The null hypothesis tested in this analysis is that there is no difference in each category post-merger. the paired signed test rejected the null hypothesis for ideology (p=0. pre and post merger. Results are presented in Table 3.there was no statistic difference between the pre. as well as the simpler paired sign test (Table 5). compared to premerger. across all terrorists considered as a group.0501). These included the Wilcoxon statistic (Table 4). which suggests that leadership performance may generally improve as well. compared to pre-merger. we could not reject the null hypothesis for any category. which utilizes both the direction and magnitude of the change.” and “Logisitic” on a scale of 0-3. pre.” “Ideological. The Wilcoxon statistic was negative for all groups. This suggests that ideological leadership performance does actually improve after a merger.015).

Moreover. ideological performance improved.The results obtained through the paired sign test suggest that the direction of the change for ideological performance was significant. demonstrates that each group had a similar number of “no change” results (i. Most frequently. Figure 6. for the ideological performance. shared ideological views become important. the variability among subjects in the magnitude of the changes may have affected the results. whether they were categorized as only positive or positive plus no change. Figures 4-5 demonstrate that for ideological performance. however. there was a tendency to improve scores post-merger. there were the fewest number of negative changes post-merger. however. most changes were positive. 63 . after mergers with Al Qa’ida occur. a pre-post score of 0). However.e. it lets us to reject both H12 (Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers play an increasingly operational role after affiliating with Al Qa’ida) and H22 (Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers play an increasingly logistical role after affiliating with Al Qa’ida). a plot of the distribution of scores. this was clearly most prevalent and only statistically significant for the ideology category. Generally. Effectively what we are observing from this study’s data analysis is that while ideological concerns do not appear to be primary motivating factors for joining Al Qa’ida. thereby hindering us from rejecting the null hypothesis using the Wilcoxon statistic. and these swamped the overall effect. for all three categories. there were a few changes in the opposite direction in particular subjects that were large. The operational category had the largest number of “-3” results and “+3” results. Moreover. This analysis allows us to accept H32 (Al Qa’ida’s commanding officer play an increasingly ideological role after affiliating with Al Qa’ida).

While the first official communiqué of the GSPC appeared in September 1998. After the merger of the GSPC with Al Qa’ida. this metamorphosis of a relatively smaller. whereupon Ahmed Ben Bella was elected the first president of Algeria. The Origins of Islamic Violence in Algeria after the War of Independence The GSPC was founded with a regional focus: it sought to establish an Islamic state in Algeria and rejected the legitimacy of secular democratic governance. 2006. the new organization radically changed its tactics: the series of suicide bombings and violent attacks executed in 2007 by Al Qa’ida in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) operatives demonstrated this strategic evolution. to Al Qa’ida. the Islamic movement in Algeria originated in the 1960s. Abdelmalek Droukdal served as the commanding officer of Al Qa’ida in the Maghreb region and directed the internationalization of the former GSPC's war in order to revitalize a movement that was slowly dying in Algeria. Al Qa’ida in the Islamic Maghreb was born. Algeria achieved independence from France in 1962. He then adopted an 64 . I. However. the leader of Al Qa’ida in Iraq announced the allegiance of the Groupe Salafist pour la Prédication et le Combat (Salafist Group for Call and Combat or GSPC). Three months later. However. less powerful Algerian indigenous assembly of terrorists would not have been possible without the leadership of Abdelmalek Droukdal.Chapter 6: Al Qa’ida in the Maghreb and Abdelmalek Droukdal – A Well Executed Merger On September 11. Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. the only remaining armed terrorist group in Algeria. He accomplished this revitalization and expansion of goals and activities by providing compelling ideological leadership and by organizing sophisticated public relations and media campaign both locally and globally. Defense Minister Houari Boumedienne staged a bloodless coup to remove Ben Bella from power. in 1965.

The MAIA sought to resolve the social and economic injustices that had emerged in Algeria by forcible means if necessary (Johnson 2006). Mustapha Bouyali. one-party. The Birth of the Salvation Islamic Front In 1989. directed by Abdallah Djaballah. disgruntled by the failure of Socialist economic policies. The FIS became popular amongst the Algerian population who supported the group financially and politically. Thus. the weak alliance between the secular and religious groups (the Ulama and the academic elite who led the liberation movement against the French) collapsed. In 1991. This political platform resonated with the Algerians. during the 1970s. socialist political system. the Algerian Islamic movement was centrist. Before the independence. under Boumedienne’s chosen successor Colonel Chadli Benjedid the right to establish political parties was accorded in Algeria and with this decision. and maintained an affirmative orientation towards Western learning and culture. II. the fundamentalist Islamic movement became increasingly radicalized in response to President Boudemedienne’s abortive leftward shift in economic and cultural policies. Unlike the MAIA. This socialist government's repressive secularism and one party rule were oppressive for many people in Algeria and helped fuel a fundamentalist backlash when Islamic leaders branded the government as “a band of atheists” and called for a return to an Islamic government (Johnson 2006). nationalist. However. 65 . which he codified in the Algerian constitution in 1976. in response to the dictatorial and exclusionary policies proffered by the Socialist party. Islamic religious law. the Salvation Islamic Front (FIS) was formed.authoritarian. a fundamental Islamic preacher established the Armed Islamic Algeria Movement (MAIA) in 1982 to establish an Islamic state. the FIS was a political organization. not an armed group that sought to reverse the economic decline in Algeria by implementing Sharia.

In an effort to racially purify the country. III. He repelled most members of the GIA when he issued a fatwa condemning the entire Muslim population of 66 . and suspended parliament. which lasted until his violent death in February 2002. GIA supreme commander Saifullah Ajffar ordered the assassination of over 90 innocent civilians and eventually forced a mass European exodus from Algeria. the secular and military elite forced Benjedid's resignation. halted the electoral process. The Beginnings of the GIA and the Onset of an Epoch of Violence As the new regime predicted. it dissolved the FIS (Celso 2008). After subsequent leadership transitions. the GIA quickly alienated itself from other Algerian Islamic activities by adopting stringent interpretations of Islamic law. However.the FIS achieved a victory in national elections. He was an illiterate criminal and his reign. The new regime calculated that the repression of the FIS would ignite a wave of extremist fundamentalist violence. was marked by barbaric methods and attacks against entire civilian communities. less militant Muslim clerics and political leaders whom it designated heretics. Many Islamists became increasingly interested in radical approaches. Thus. A High Committee was established with Mohammed Boudiaf named as president. Antar Zouabri became the head of the GIA on July 18. However. The GIA was responsible for the murder of over 2000 schoolteachers guilty of “taming the youth” and more than 100 other competing. after the cancellation of the 1992 general elections in Algeria. with the prospect of the FIS in control of the parliament. which would divide and alienate the FIS’s many Algerian supporters. The GIA was formed from a collection of Algerian militant groups who had been executing a series of significant military operations against government targets in an attempt to overthrow the secular government in Algeria. several Islamists became disenchanted with the political process and defected from the FIS to form armed splinter groups. 1996.

However.Algeria as “kuffar. who were left without an ideological umbrella. While he preferred not to engage in force-on-force confrontations with the Algerian military to avoid depleting his cadre. V. The first prominent leader of the GSPC. Fissions Form Within the GSPC 67 . and Martínez 2007). bombings. He depicted the Algerian government as a postcolonial lackey at war with Islam. the GSPC denounced the massacres that the GIA had committed and entered the international arena with the goal of restoring the credibility of armed groups in Algeria and attracting embittered Algerian youths for whom the ideology of Islamic guerilla war had lost its appeal. In 1998. a former GIA commander. clearly articulated the narrow agenda of the GSPC. apostates. he rejected the policy of terror executed by the GIA under Zouabri and enforced symbiosis with the local population. and gendarmerie through the use of false roadblocks. and hypocrites” for “not supporting them in their struggle against the government” (Blom. police. Zouabri’s attacks on innocent Muslims estranged many former GIA military commanders. However. he encouraged operatives to target Algerian government officials. and incursions on towns to steal saleable goods (Guidère 2007). ambushes. Hassan Hattab. An Alternative Emerges: The Origins of the GSPC The GSPC was not set up as a pan-Islamic movement. the decision to establish the GPSC was the direct result of the GIA’s strategic impasse. military. IV. the GSPC was able to amass hundred of defectors from the FIS and the GIA (Guidère 2007). He asserted that the GSPC sought to overthrow the government in Algiers and to install an Islamic regime in Algeria. these officers founded the GSPC as a military organization dedicated to the Salafist creed and the battle against the Algerian regime to restore the Caliphate and implement Sharia. Bucaille. Consequently.

or sexual crimes would be placed under probation for a period ranging from 3 to 5 years. the Algerian government implemented a law that offered amnesty to the combatants who capitulated. the organization was plagued by internal rivalry. Although as supreme emir. A study conducted at the Naval Postgraduate School determined that although the probability of defection by GSPC members was less than 10 68 . By the end of the twentieth century. These fault-lines were exacerbated by external events that occurred soon after the founding of the GSPC. In July 1999. Nevertheless. Several GSPC cadres were killed or captured by Algerian security services following leads provided by rival GSPC elements (Celso 2008).The GSPC was originally organized as a loose confederation of regional divisions under a supreme emir who supervised the organization. controlled a territory that roughly aligned with the governments’ own military districts. and could even participate in the fight against the remaining active terrorist groups. Each of the regional groups. The law set a deadline of January 13. Algerians had become less tolerant to the violence of the GSPC. 2000 for members and supporters of armed groups to surrender to the authorities (Black 2007). the Civil Harmony Law was adopted and overwhelmingly endorsed in a national referendum the following September 2000. bombing of public places. Thus. Consequently. This law declared that citizens not involved in massive killings. The issue of whether or not to accept the terms of the Civil Harmony Law created considerable dissension within the GSPC. it was difficult for the local leadership to coordinate or control the activity of its fighters since attempts to communicate could result in discovery or interception by security services. death penalty and life imprisonment were commuted to a maximum of eight years imprisonment for individuals under probation. Imprisonment sentences were reduced. katibats. the katibats were responsible for supplying and funding their own operations. Hattab provided religious guidance.

the probability of defection reached a high of 60 percent during the Civil Concord period (Gyves and Wyckloff 2006). certain members of the GSPC dissented. The pan-Islamists encouraged solidarity with their “brothers in Islam” (Al Qa’ida agents) while the Islamo-nationalists were preoccupied with Algerian politics and the installation of an Islamic state there. Fifteen days after the attacks. This became a point of friction between Hattab and the younger members of the GSPC and two dominant camps emerged within the organization. Due to this amnesty program. on September 26.” This 69 . 2001. the GSPC’s operational reach diminished. They were devoted to regime change and preferred not to actively support the “Muslim brothers. believing that it would be better to take credit for the attack and thereby imply GSPC’s collusion with Al Qa’ida. and 9 were injured in a massacre that occurred in the Algerian town of Al-Abri. Members of this organization realized that a merger with Al Qa’ida could have both political and financial benefits to GSPC (Guidère 2007). However. They suggested that courting Al Qa’ida would enable the organization to maintain its relevancy and shore up declining recruitment. The GSPC denied involvement. They accused the Algerian secret service of executing the attack to isolate the GSPC from its popular base amongst the Algerian people and of attempting to align the existing Algerian governmental agency with the intelligence services of the United States in the Global War on Terror. 23 people were killed. 2001 attacks were another defining moment for the GSPC. which resulted in the demobilization of hundreds of militants from both the GIA and the GSPC. It was thus effectively limited in scope by the Algerian government. The September 11.percent before the implementation of the law. reasserting their dedication to avoiding civilian atrocities.

Chad. The United States also provided support for the war on terrorism in North and West Africa and in the Sahara desert through the Pan Sahel Initiative (PSI). Niger. Moreover. Hattab refused to send Algerian combatants to Iraq to battle the Americans because he predicted that doing so would deprive the GSPC of its best combatants when they joined the insurgency. implemented in November 2003. its next iteration was expanded to include Algeria. Although the GSPC was able to recover from the infighting provoked after 9/11 and aggressive counter-terror measures. which stated that the objectives of armed conflict should be to fight the Algerian regime and not other governments. the many GSPC fighters sought to engage in the struggle in Iraq. Moreover. in July 2003. The PSI was judged to be a success by US officials and local participants. Observing the images of Iraqi soldiers and citizens humiliated by the American invaders. Mali. Chad. the GSPC was forced to retreat from urban areas (Ellis 2004). the war in Iraq further exacerbated the debates that were occurring within the GSPC concerning the strategies to adopt with regards to Al Qa’ida. Although Hattab invoked the original Charter of the GSPC. However. thereby joining both sides of the Sahara in a complex map of security arrangements. and Mauritania in an effort to improve border security and counterterrorism capacity. the Pan Sahel Initiative consisted of training regional military units by soldiers from the US Special Forces in Niger. Funded by the United States State Department. Algeria. thus. and Nigeria signed a co-operation agreement on counterterrorism. his efforts were in vain. Thus. independently operated company that could focus on their own regional national agenda (Guidère 2007).minority faction opposed such a merger and preferred to remain like a small. the majority of the local emirs seated on the GSPC’s shura believed that the war in Algeria was lost. others within the GSPC did not share this perspective. As a result of hard-hitting endeavors by these transnational partnerships. the organization should 70 .

VI. However. Finally. he fostered pan-Islamic solidarity and internationalism in order to reestablish a sense of unity amongst GSPC operatives. Soon thereafter. who succeeded Hattab in 2003. On September 2003. Abou Ibrahim Mustapha. his career was cut short when he was killed in a skirmish with the Algerian army in the Béjaïa region in June 2004 (Antil 2006). Nevertheless. the old guard members who espoused a nationalist orientation were expelled from the GSPC (Guidère 2007). but who would. This was the first strong sign of official will to establish a relationship between the GSPC and Al Qa’ida and the beginning of three years of efforts to prove the GSPC’s will and commitment to Al Qa’ida. in fact be absorbed into the GSPC’s domestic campaign.focus on preserving the honor of the Iraqis. for instance. he did not yet possess an adequate network of fighters. He continued to make entreaties to Al Qa’ida. When the shura of the GSPC voted to actively support the “Iraqi brothers. sought to actively support the Iraqi insurgents in order to gain credibility for the GSPC.” Hassan was obliged to resign. They also believed that participation in the war in Iraq would enable the GSPC to establish connections with other jihadist groups in North Africa and introduce them to new strategies and tactics. they could use the war in Iraq to attract new recruits who believed that they would be sent to Iraq after basic training in Algeria. Although he wanted to eventually establish his group as some sort of training authority. asserting his will to establish a community of Muslims dedicated to the creation of a Caliphate and calling upon GSPC members to attack all foreigners who supported the war in Iraq. he issued a communiqué of support for Al Qa'ida in which he criticized Hattab’s position and extolled bin Laden. the 2nd anniversary of September 11. The Rise of Droukdal 71 .

he went underground at the age of 23 (Guidère 2007). Droukdal was recognized as an exceptional student. he hoped to study engineering. by supporting a cause that was seen to benefit the global community of Muslims. 1970 in the small village of Zayan. who easily obtained his baccalaureate in 1989 in mathematics. Thus. he was attracted to the FIS and actively sought to get close to its leaders. Droukdal sought to provide a new focal point for his members by participating in the global jihad. like the majority of young Muslim students. the GSPC could more easily recruit operatives. he pursued a degree in technology from the University of Blida. situated near Mifan in the Blida region. As a youth. informants. recruited him. he officially joined the organization and in December 1993. he was enthused when an officer of the FIS and a former member of the Algerian army. Additionally. By affiliating with Al Qa’ida. the GSPC needed to achieve a certain number of visible successes to appear active and successful. Droukdal realized that in order to maintain support. Nevertheless. Said Makhloufi. One year later. and logisticians. and media specialists who could reinforce the group’s capabilities and help it lead operations. he was assigned the mission of fabricating explosives due to his scientific background and knowledge of chemical bases and mechanical processes. he was promoted to chief bomb maker for one of the most important GIA 72 . from 1990 to 1993. Born on April 20. After losing combatants due to the amnesty program announced by the Bouteflika regime. He continued to hold this role when he enlisted with the GIA from 1993 to 1996. Thus. In 1992. As a member of the clandestine ranks of the FIS. the GSPC was struggling to fill its ranks with recruits. the GSPC would gain access to a network of financiers.Upon Mustapha’s death. intelligence. In 1996. Abdelmalek Droukdal immediately assumed control of the GSPC. a merger with Al Qa’ida was particularly appealing to Droukdal (Johnson 2006). assets.

he commenced a policy of internationalization. he was promoted to the position of supreme emir of the GSPC after Mustapha’s death. Droukdal sought to inscribe the actions of the GSPC in an international context by publicizing the GSPC’s activities in Afghanistan. which had been created in 1998. In 2001. Thus. one year later. Soon thereafter. with his inauguration. Chechnya. VII. Droukdal. sought to align with other jihadist groups. he frequently issued communiqués 73 . he allegedly opposed the massacres conducted by the organization in the late 1990s. In order to accomplish this feat. Upon his appointment as emir of the GSPC. Finally. Libya. He occupied this position until 2003. and the Sudan. he served the GSPC as an ideological figurehead. when Hassan Hattab was forced to resign. Somalia. he had not yet had any contact with Al Qa’ida (Guidère 2007). incentivized by his opportunistic desire to revive the demoralized GSPC. he was selected to command the Al-Quds Brigade (Abu Bakr alSiddiq Brigade) at the behest of the leader of the GIA (Guidère 2007). Although he served the GIA in a military capacity. he seized to opportunity to serve as chief military sergeant for the GSPC.battalions. Thus. His aspiration was to link his organization to the wider Islamist campaign as represented by Al Qa’ida in order to reinvigorate the group after government crackdowns and legislation had reduced its numbers. Instead of concentrating media attention on local attacks. Droukdal’s Program: Toward Global Jihad Upon assuming power. instructing his followers in the ways of global jihad. While he was involved in planning a limited number of attacks. Hattab selected Droukdal as a member of his consultative council and made him a regional commander for the GSPC. After Mustapha assumed power. he nominated Droukdal as the director of the consultative council. he conducted a nuanced public relations campaign and comprehensive media reform.

was a reprisal of themes elucidated by Al Qa'ida. which was broadcast to a large audience of operatives and supporters. in Chechnya. The communiqués included messages with international themes. Droukdal’s media strategy became clear after the Summit of the Arab League in Algiers. The communiqués published in conjunction with the operation in Mauritania demonstrated Droukdal’s commitment to a pan-Islamic program and desire to indoctrinate his operatives in the ways of global jihad. Droukdal sought to align the GSPC theoretically with Al Qa’ida and express his obeisance to Bin Laden and Zarqawi (Guidère 2007). a more “global” goal. In publishing this document. 2005. This communiqué. He derided these leaders as puppets of the American government. which took place from March 22-24. the crisis in Iraq. he circulated a communiqué congratulating the Chechen mujahedeen for the assassination of Ahmed Kadirov. he urged jihad as a way to defend Muslim honor. which was inspired by that of Al Qa’ida in Iraq.S. It included articles on Salafism. In response to this event. in Morocco. He criticized the Arab leaders who allegedly embraced communism and capitalism and were becoming increasingly sensitive to the JudeoChristian coalition. and other international themes (Guidère 2007). Finally. Later.regarding international politics and events affecting the Middle East and the Maghreb. These initiatives allowed him to transmit his message to operatives across the Maghreb region. Droukdal launched a magazine for the GSPC. the President of the Chechen Republic in May 2004. which were still committed to local initiatives.-led military exercises in northern Africa dubbed 74 . For instance. thereby promulgating Al Qa’ida’s anti-Western program. a GSPC statement posted by Droukdal on the Internet defending the raid indicated that the attack was in response to U. he issued a communiqué addressed to the leaders meeting in Algiers. For instance. The first operation undertaken by the GSPC outside its borders occurred in Mauritania in June 2005.

This operation provoked the first official reaction of Al Qa'ida to the GSPC..the “Flintlock Plan” by military officials. Droukdal began filming all operations conducted by the GSPC and distributing these clips online in the same manner as Zarqawi (Guidère 2007). leaders from Al Qa’ida and the GSPC signed a pact of fraternity (Jebnoun 2007). Malian. in 2005. Droukdal realized that he could encourage internationalization by amending his membership roster. The communiqué ended by urging the Islamic youth throughout North Africa to join the Algerian cause (Lecocq and Schrijver 2007).S. the director of the media division of Al Qa’ida in Iraq issued a communiqué congratulating the GSPC. Droukdal sought to encourage Maghreb jihadists to join the Algerians in their struggle. Using this video. Shortly thereafter. This recognition was particularly meaningful for the Algerian operatives because it made them feel more “secure” in their ventures. The statement also denounced the recent arrests and trials by Mauritanian authorities of dozens of Islamic extremists accused of having links to the GSPC. This was the first time that Droukdal actively sought to recruit from outside the Algerian ranks. These exercises were part of a broader U. including Algerian. He began to recruit several operatives from abroad and encouraged his agents to train abroad and engage in jihadist activities in other nations in an effort to expand the GSPC’s global profile. this was the first time Al Qa’ida had congratulated another group not affiliated with their organization. Mauritanian and Chadian troops. Furthermore. 75 . One week after the attack. a long video filming the combatants who had participated in the operation was broadcast over the Internet in jihadist forums. knowing that they had Al Qa’ida’s support. Moreover. In fact. counterterrorism campaign in Africa.

he sought to centralize the GSPC’s communications. Zarqawi signaled his complicity with the GSPC by seizing two Algerian diplomats. as evidenced by the frequency of his declarations and interchanges and his efforts to improve the 76 . This system enabled the GSPC to elucidate several ambiguous arguments and clarify dubious information(Gray and Stockham 2008). Droukdal launched a systematic communications reform to improve the image of the GSPC amongst Algerians and the international Islamic community and to enable him to preach pan-Islamic sermons to his operatives. each GSPC katibat possessed its own media bureau and published its own communications regarding its operations and successes within its territory. First of all. he murdered the hostages. Algerian security services contributed to this information overflow by distributing false reports on the GSPC’s channels. the GSPC’s communications were characterized by a general cacophony and ataxia. there were numerous GSPC media outlets transmitting information simultaneously. Consequently. Moreover. During the summer of 2005. he sought to bracket the Algerian operations. Thus. As a result. including the attack in Mauritania and the execution of the Algerian diplomats with other attacks that occurred during the same time period (including the coordinated suicide bomb attacks on London’s public transport system that occurred on July 7. When the Algerian government failed to respond.. Those communiqués not approved by this committee could be regarded as unauthentic. Prior to this effort. 2005).In July 2005. Droukdal’s leadership during this time period was primarily ideological in nature. Upon taking these hostages he promised to execute them unless the Algerian government withdrew its support for the war in Iraq. Droukdal responded by issuing a communiqué in which he thanked Zarqawi and extolled Al Qa’ida in Iraq (Guidère 2007). Droukdal proposed a system of transmitting information whereby a central media committee would transmit all communiqués.

could positively contribute to Al Qa’ida’s ideological appeals and combat operations. Therefore. The attack involved immaculate planning: the GSPC had surveyed the location for weeks and the day before.” He spoke of the need to suppress national borders in order to establish an Islamic caliphate and urged the immediate union of the nations of North Africa under Islamic law. This was the first time that the GSPC had led an attack against a maritime target. 2006.GSPC’s reception nationally and internationally. The Announcement of Al Qa’ida in the Islamic Maghreb Finally. on the fifth anniversary of the World Trade Center and Pentagon attacks. intent on ensuring that the GSPC’s membership. overall his leadership performance improved during this time period. one cannot ignore the fact that prior to the official announcement of the merger of Al Qa’ida and the GSPC. thereby crystallizing the relationship. he published a communiqué affirming the GSPC’s allegiance to Al Qa’ida and bin Laden. 2005. His discourse supported pan-Islamic notions and highlighted the necessity of creating an “Islamic United States. His communiqué was particularly revelatory because it reflected the alleged changes in the official ideology of the GSPC. the deputy leader of Al Qa’ida. VIII. he expressed the 77 . Droukdal’s role as an ideological leader steering the GSPC’s internationalization through an assertive public relations drive continued after this announcement. on September 11. It is important to note that this announcement came one year after Droukdal had made his first forays to Al Qa’ida. under Droukdal. However. a group of combatants had penetrated the highly protected port. Two days later. Al Qa’ida Central Command had stalled the merger for one year. Droukdal personally supervised all the preparations (Moss 2008). Ayman al-Zawahiri. announced the merger of Al Qa’ida and the GSPC. Droukdal also directed several tactical changes to prepare his organization for international jihad. Moreover. On December 22. two bombs exploded in the port de Delis.

A New Organization In the months after the name change. The bomb attack killed an Algerian driver in a convoy transporting the workers. thereby easing the qualms of his subordinates (Guidère 2007). and France). Spain. Droukdal and his operatives began to target foreigners who continued to support secular regimes and proselytize their culture (specifically the United States. he wanted to highlight its role in global jihad. Moreover. IX. Sonatrach. AQIM conducted an attack against a bus transporting employees from Brown & Root-Condor. He expressed confidence in the specific competencies and ideological underpinning of Al Qa’ida’s leadership. KBR. in an elaborate roadside bombing. nine of whom were wounded. however. in December 2006. Some scholars have suggested that AQIM remains sharply focused on its Kabylia strongholds despite Droukdals’s global rhetoric (Filiu 2009). it was now time for him to change the name of his organization. Al Qa’ida in the Maghreb (AQIM).sentiment that Al Qa’ida was the only group that could unite all Islamic combatants and steer the battle against the Coalition forces. Approximately six months later. Droukdal issued another claim in which he suggested that after pledging allegiance to Islam and demonstrating his faith in Bin Laden. Droukdal expressed concern about projecting a certain image of his organization to his base as well as the international community. This change would demonstrate the solidarity of Al Qa’ida and the GSPC. In changing the name of the GSPC to Al Qa’ida in the Islamic Maghreb. a joint venture between a Halliburton subsidiary. Zawahiri himself refused to allow the group to call itself “Al Qa’ida in Algeria” since this name seemed too “local” and did not reflect the transnational and pan-Islamic agenda of Al Qa’ida (Guidère 2007). and the Algerian stateowned oil company. including 78 . a few recent attacks indicate otherwise. For instance.

Always attentive to public reaction. three cars driven by suicide bombers blew up in Algiers. killing at least 33 people and injuring others. Two other cars were detonated beside a police station in the east of the Algerian capital (one at the seat of Interpol and the other at the 79 . Chechnya. On this day. recruit. detailing the fabrication of the bombs. However. and train potential terrorists. He encouraged his operatives to executed attacks inspired by the Iraqi model. in which AQIM admitted to the attack. As a result of Droukdal’s press campaign. attention should be paid to the tactical changes that he implemented. Afghanistan. Originally. indoctrinate. Droukdal encouraged the evolution from guerilla-oriented operations such as armed assaults to terror-oriented operations such as bombings. Droukdal disclosed a communiqué. the surveillance and lookout. in online jihadist forums about one month later.four Britons and one American. Recent reports express fear that AQIM will be able to increased recruitment in Mauritania or Nigeria. AQIM was able to establish communities in Europe to provide money. intended to galvanize combatants and attract recruits. the GSPC was engaged in a war of attrition whereby combatants would descend from the mountains and attack the armed forces. Under his leadership. A lengthy film of the operation. The attacks that occurred on April 11. This video. One bomber drove into the guard post at the government building housing the offices of the prime minister and the Interior Ministry. emulated the propaganda materials of Al Qa’ida in Iraq (Jebnoun 2007). Some specialists fear that AQIM could severely damage the energy sector in the Niger delta (Moss 2008). These recruits were then dispatched to Kashmir. 2007 demonstrated Droukdal’s new tactics. Iraq and training camps in the Sahel to pursue international jihad. the use of firearms plummeted while the use of explosives augmented (Gyves and Wyckloff 2006). While Droukdal’s role was primarily ideological. and the explosions was also transmitted.

In doing so. This also permitted AQIM officers to move from the periphery of Algeria back into its urban centers. Finally. Such spectacular attacks could also appeal to younger sympathizers (Algeria: Violence Returns 2007). which could allow the Western power to use petroleum in Algeria for 100 years. this method consisted of engaging in spectacular attacks with a symbolic dimension that could destabilize the regime. Final Observations 80 . X. The second justification for the attacks was the Algerian government’s military cooperation with the American forces. Moreover. remote detonation. Droukdal suggested that this was the beginning of a foreign occupation and deemed it necessary to combat the Western presence in Algeria. Through this rhetoric. of the special forces of the police in Bab Ezzouar). These attacks utilized remote explosives and were thus less costly in human lives. an effective propaganda and selective recruitment were employed to make AQIM a formidable. As always. His communiqué suggested that the April 11 attacks were executed in response to a concession agreement with the United States. To capitalize upon his operatives’ anti-colonialist concerns. he expressed a message frequently articulated by Al Qa’ida. simultaneous explosions. thereby cementing the link between the two organizations (Guidère 2007). They also demonstrated the professionalization of AQIM’s services. Droukdal was compelled to publish a communiqué to outline his intentions and defuse criticism. Droukdal criticized the adoption of an anti-Islamic policy allegedly championed by the Americans in their war against terrorism. Droukdal positioned his group as the defender of the riches of Muslim countries faced with avarice and imperialism of the West. rigged vehicles. kamikaze fighters. and sustainable fighting force.

By uniting radical Islamists to attack Americana and French targets in northwestern Africa. He incited the organization to expand by attacking foreign targets. Moreover. he directed an ideological shift – from a philosophy based on regional preoccupations to a more internationally oriented perspective. he reflected AQIM’s international focus and the growing ratio of attacks against foreign targets into an emphasis on international issues and threats against Western countries in AQIM’s statements. Droukdal advanced the goal of undermining the secular Algerian regime while damaging the interests of Western nations (Black 2007). and its success. The most powerful French AQIM cell to date was dismantled in September 2005. the GSPC could render itself capable of operating in the context of global jihad.To this day. attacks. Droukdal sought to effectively straddle the divide between local and international Islamic terrorism. The merger. most particularly French interests. each accompanied by a revealing and incantatory communiqué. he effectively brought the Algerians insurgents out of isolation so they could work more closely with international Islamic networks to promote Islam. can only be explained by highlighting Droukdal’s ideological leadership and the major shifts that he pioneered on the propaganda front. The US invasion of Iraq and media coverage of American detention and interrogation policies lent credence to the Qa’ida narrative that 81 . rather than confining itself to local activity. Thus. Droukdal recognized that by aligning itself with Al Qa’ida. which had dramatically expanded since the September 11. Through his communications. Droukdal recognized the global appeal of Al Qa’ida message. when French police thwarted a series of bombings set to occur in Paris as Algerians voted on the National Charter for Peace and Reconciliation. After the ranks of his organization had been depleted at the turn of the twenty-first century. AQIM continues to conducted several suicide attacks and roadside bombings.

82 . A current of cultural Islamization was created that has increased Al Qa’ida’s attraction. Thus.portrayed isolated American actions as a coordinated war against Islam. Al Qa’ida’s global ideology intersected with local anger directed at the undemocratic regime would encourage jihadists’ activity in the Maghreb. he was able to tap into local grievances and tie them to the global jihad against the west. ready-made networks that could be internationalized. Droukdal capitalized upon these trends by highlighting the importance of solidarity among the mujahedeen in face of Western aggression against Islam. Having formulated an appropriate ideological stance. he successfully aligned with Al Qa’ida to co-opt and exploit local. He saw clearly an opportunity for synergy.

and financial crackdowns during much of the 1990s. and denounced Al Qa’ida. In contrast.Chapter 7: Al-Gama’a al-Islamiyya: The Unrealized Merger In the early 1970s. Why did GAI repudiate terrorism rather than affiliate with Al Qa’ida to continue its brutal campaign? I. Both broke with the Muslim Brotherhood over the latter’s commitment to nonviolence. and Sohaj. mass arrests. and instead based their ideology on the principles articulated by Sayyid Qutb. in the late 1990s. Moreover. Egyptian President Anwar Sadat gave the group’s members free reign. The Emergence of the GAI from the Ashes of the Muslim Brotherhood Al-Gama’a al-Islamiyya (GAI) was formally organized as an offshoot of the Muslim Brotherhood in 1973 in the Upper Nile regions of Al-Minya. members of Al-Gama’a al-Islamiyya apologized for the group’s involvement in the Sadat assassination. renounced violence. uneducated individuals from 83 . However. covertly supplying them with arms with which to defend themselves against potential attacks by Marxists or Nasserites. GAI quickly gained strong support among the university students in both Cairo and Alexandria by recruiting mid-level leaders from the ranks of the unemployed university students who were disillusioned by Egypt’s lack of economic opportunities. two prominent Salafi jihadist groups operated in Egypt: Al-Gama’a alIslamiyya (GAI) and Egyptian Islamic Jihad. the Egyptian Islamic Jihad members joined forced with Al Qa’ida. his rivals. In addition. Asyu’. the GAI rejected the Muslim Brotherhood’s gradualist approach to change. However. Upon its birth. Both campaigned to overthrow the secular Egyptian government and to replace it with an Islamic regime. an Egyptian fundamentalist writer and educator. Qina. GAI recruited more indigent. Both collaborated on the assassination of Egyptian President Anwar Sadat in 1981 and both fell victims to the bitter campaign of state violence.

AlRahman served six months in an Egyptian prison. including Saudi Arabia. Al-Rahman fled Egypt and toured the neighboring Arab countries. As a result of his role in the assassination.the southern rural regions of Assiuet and Minya to further populate their rank and file (Keats 2002). clashes between Egyptian security forces and Islamic movements in the universities increased. Sadat changed his political strategies to combat internal unrest in the mid 1970s. During Al-Rahman’s time abroad. “A need [had] arisen for a military force for us to defend [themselves]” (Carmon. Sheikh Omar Abdel Al–Rahman assumed the mantle as spiritual leader for the group during its infancy. they established a branch devoted to jihad and began to execute increasingly violent operations. The Sadat Assassination Upon returning to Egypt in 1980. Feldner. avoiding a sterner sentence on a technicality (Keats 2002). II. The GAI and Egyptian Islamic Jihad allegedly cooperated in this conspiracy. Perturbed by the rapid development and mobilization of the Salafi organizations in Egypt. He began rounding up several Islamic militants and placing them in jail. III. Fearing harsh repression (like that which the Muslim brotherhood has experienced under former Egyptian president Gamal Abdel Nasser). Consequently. He provided the moral justifications for the group’s moneymaking attacks on Christian shopkeepers and small-business owners by his issuing fatwa – religious rulings that justify actions normally outlawed by the Koran (Abdel Maguid 2003). where he found and developed financial supporters. and Lav 2006). Crackdown under Mubarak 84 . As a result of his policies. Al-Rahman issued a fatwa that provided the religious justification for the assassination of President Sadat in 1981. GAI leaders decided.

IV. even worked for businesses owned by Osama bin Laden in Somalia (Carmon. During the 1990s. Al-Rahman. who continued to struggle under high unemployment(Gerges 2000). Several were implicated in numerous plots directed against American diplomatic and military targets in the Balkans and other parts of Europe. 85 . who had immigrated to the United States by this time. many GAI members continued or commenced their training in Al Qa’ida facilities in the Sudan and Afghanistan. and spread diseases such as AIDS (Stacher 2002). following the Soviet withdrawal. Although fairly successful at curbing the number of violent attacks. In Afghanistan. they trained and fought alongside al-Zawahiri’s Egyptian Islamic Jihad and other Afghan Arabs. During these years. some GAI members returned to Egypt where they initiated a campaign against the influences of Western culture. and Lav 2006).Sadat’s successor. this crackdown further radicalized the university-educated population. Some. like Mustafa Hamza. again provided the religious justification for these attacks by arguing that tourism in Egypt fostered poor morals. Between 1992 and 1993. His methods included false arrests. they carried out a number of attacks on tourists that killed dozens of people. and executions. many GAI members and leaders fled to Afghanistan. Campaign of Terror After the Soviet-Afghan war. torture. Hosni Mubarak began a brutal campaign against Egypt’s militant groups that lasted throughout the 1980s. a leading member of the GAI. Feldner. such as Osama Bin Laden. Moreover. many fighters moved on to combat the Serbian forces that were decimating Bosnian Muslims in Yugoslavia. where they were active in the jihad against the Soviet Union.

In 1996. Yet despite his arrest. the group allegedly collaborated with the Egyptian Islamic Jihad in a failed assassination attempt on President Hosni Mubarak in Addis Ababa. Al-Rahman was arrested in the United States in connection with the first World Trade Center bombing. including the Lincoln and Holland Tunnels. a GAI member read aloud a communiqué. Cairo clamped down on both the GAI and Egyptian Islamic Jihad even more. he and nine other operatives were convicted for conspiring to destroy New York City landmarks. the group killed 63 people at a tourist site in Luxor (including four Egyptians and 59 foreign tourists.In 1993. In 1996. Ethiopia. In 1993. and a stop to agitation to commit attacks. Thus. bookstores. In September 1997. Collapse of an Armed Group As a result of GAI’s campaign in the late 1990s. which declared a halt to all armed operations within and outside Egypt. GAI announced a unilateral initiative of conciliation with the Egyptian regime. including the Lincoln and Holland Tunnels. On July 5. several GAI leaders immediately conveyed their disgust. During a court hearing. signed by six of the organization's leaders. 36 of whom were Swiss) (Keats 2002). 1997. when the Luxor attack occurred. and banks. militants killed nine German tourists and their driver in front of the Egyptian Museum in Cairo. The group bombed theaters. 86 . Two months later. Al-Rahman was arrested in the United States in connection with the first World Trade Center bombing. In 1995. V. he and nine other operatives were convicting for conspiring to destroy New York City landmarks. This prompted some influential militants to reconsider their strategy and tactics and some GAI leaders renounced violence. arresting thousands of suspected terrorists and executing or killing others during police raids. GAI continued to attack tourists throughout the 1990s and began targeting Egyptian business establishments as well.

the larger. wanted to seize power in the GAI. but rather by a breakaway faction (Ghadbian 2000). supported non-violence and the ceasefire.” thereby becoming a signatory to the International Islamic Front. It is unclear whether Taha actually agreed with bin Laden’s views. Rifai Ahmad Taha courted bin Laden by making trips to Afghanistan and even appeared sitting next to him and Egyptian Islamic Jihad leader Ayman al-Zawahiri in a videotape released in September 2000 that threatened US interests. a Netherlands resident announced his resignation (Cohen 2003). or simply saw the financial and organizational advantages that Al Zawahiri had reaped from making the decision to join Al Qa’ida. Consequently. Taha signed Bin Laden’s 1998 Declaration of War against the “Jews and Crusaders. Moreover. while the smaller. Therefore. organized by Mustafa Hamza. Yet despite his efforts. the GAI spokesman Osama Rushdie. it needed a publicity boost if it was to continue functioning as a viable terrorist organization. For instance. The GAI had witnessed how the Egyptian Islamic Jihad had suffered significant setbacks because of its decision to join Al Qa’ida. led by Rifai Ahmad Taha deplored the ceasefire as cowardly and called for a return to armed operations. more radical faction. he was unable to recruit many of his cadres to support Bin Laden and a minimal number joined the global jihad (Botha 2006).insisting that the operation was not executed by the GAI. the group split into two factions. After the schism. The Luxor attack and the reports of mutilation of the victims’ bodies had sparked public repulsion at GAI. Moreover. moderate one. as a result of increased governmental scrutiny. Zawahiri's organization experienced a major upset when in 1998 Albania agreed to extradite 12 members of EIJ to Egypt 87 . In 1997. the GAI was weakened both operationally and financially by the aftermath effects of the attack.

known as the “Concept Correction Series” in which they renounce indiscriminate violence and extremist interpretations of Islam. Since this time. In doing so. Dr. the group’s historic leadership declared a unilateral ceasefire. We are even thinking of paying blood money to the victims” (Halawi 2002). In 2002. Nageh Ibrahim. in August 2006. most members of GAI preferred to go underground until the group regained its strength and influence rather than align with Al Qa’ida and risk further setbacks. agreed to this measure. the historic leadership of the GAI has published a series of books. He asserted that Al Qa’ida’s aggressive tactics have failed Muslims. stressed that significant differences in philosophy exist between the GAI and Al Qa’ the case known as the “Returnees from Albania” (Aboul-Enein 2004) Consequently. the leadership issued a statement reaffirming its commitment to end violence. Ayman al-Zawahiri. Even Al-Rahman. During his interview with Asharq al-Awsat. by then the closest associate of Osama bin Laden. even said the GAI owes the Egyptian people "an apology for the crimes which [the group] has committed against Egypt. Since this time. despite their proclamations in favor of non-violence. who remained the group’s spiritual leader. The GAI has not conducted a terrorist attack either inside or outside Egypt since August 1998. Karam Zuhdi." he maintained. announced that the GAI had merged with Al Qa’ida. a self-proclaimed leader of the underground group. GAI leadership in Egypt quickly rejected this claim. Reconciliation In 1999. despite widespread skepticism in Egypt and abroad about the nature of its true 88 . “Their aim is jihad. VI. Ibrahim challenged Al Qa’ida’s Islamic credentials by emphasizing its dependence on violent struggle as a means to further its goals and suggested that Al Qa’ida was propagating a false definition of jihad. and our aim is Islam. a senior leader and chief ideological theorist for the GAI. Nevertheless.

and the economy 89 . GAI was well established and active prior to Al Qa’ida’s emergence in the international arena. Consequently. which gave precedence to doctrinal correctness above all other issues. the GAI has concentrated its efforts on revising its former extremist worldview and distinguishing itself from Qa’ida (Zambelis 2006). its leaders were convinced that they could accomplish in Egypt what the mujahedeen had achieved in Afghanistan. politicians. and exhibited strong anti-Western proclivities. however. primarily to the establishment of an Islamic state in Egypt (Rabasa et al. 2006). they perceived their struggle as regionally confined to the Egyptian territory. banks. GAI’s theoretical and operational priorities were the product of a literal reading of the Quranic and prophetic texts. They attacked Coptic Christians. police. tourists. and the media with the goal of undermining Egyptian state power. Explaining the Decision not to Affiliate with Al Qa’ida The leadership of the GAI had longstanding connections with Al Qa’ida. While this decision may seem counterintuitive. When GAI reemerged in the early 1990s with a renewed sense of purpose after the return of its members from the Afghan jihad. Moreover. they decided to renounce violent activity rather than appeal for Al Qa’ida for assistance to continue their existence as a terrorist group. GAI interpreted their jihad much more narrowly than groups affiliated or associated with Al Qa’ida. evidence suggests that this choice was strategic. VII.intentions. While they attacked Western targets. who were not already entrenched in Salafi jihadist circles. GAI members were less receptive to Al Qa’ida’s ideology of global jihad than other groups that have emerged since that time. when their group was in a state of imminent decline. secular institutions. They believed that their main foe was the Egyptian state and that the near enemy was more worthy of fighting than the distant enemy. the ouster of the “illegitimate” governing power.

GAI were compelled to shift strategies as a political tactic. wider reading and understanding is evident in the sources on which the leadership relied to compose the revisionist books that they published (Halawi 2002). when several leaders of GAI announced its cease-fire initiative. In fact.” Between arrests. deaths in armed clashes. Reflecting on the seven years of GAI violence between 1992 and 1997. the effect of their new. reunite the groups’ ranks. and prepare for a new offensive. He attempted to rationalize this earlier aggression by suggesting that adopting violence in 1992 " was mainly a reaction to what we saw as the suppression and killing of our brothers” (Carmon. by the turn of the century the group realized that it was useless to try to topple a powerful regime by force. the security establishment facilitated meetings between the group’s leader and members in Egyptian prisons to ensure that the group honored this commitment. and severe treatment in prisons and detention facilities. stiff sentences that included dozens of executions. in the late 1990s. This exceedingly severe security strategy disrupted the ranks and cohesion of GAI prompting the group’s leaders to reconsider its acts and concepts. even with Al Qa’ida’s backing. However. after its initiative to end the violence. Osama Rushdie. admitted that the group was in a stronger position before it started attacking the government. the ranks of the leadership and general membership were decimated. a former leader of GAI. the relative success of the government’s security policy obligated the group to concede to what its leaders called “military defeat. Thus. and Lav 2006) It is possible that in mid-1997. this may have been a maneuver to buy time. 90 . the groups’ leaders acquainted themselves with other schools of Islamic thought. Feldner. Nevertheless. Additionally. During their time in prison.and creating the perception that the Egyptian government could not protect its citizens (Keats 2002).

the costs of attempting violent attacks and of these attacks failing. Terrorist organizations engage in a process of constant adaptation to the strategic environment and are apt to respond to policy-induced changes to their constraints since. nor did GAI members have any interest in targeting the “far enemy. Crenshaw’s description of the instrumental approach to assessing terrorist violence is useful for understanding GAI’s rationale. A constant failure to achieve its stated goals led to internal strife and its ultimate collapse as a terrorist group. the group abandoned its violent 91 . they lack resources. Acts of terror induce psychological effects.VIII. one must note that terrorism depends on the ability to generate the appropriate level of terror and anxiety. terrorism was a means to a political end. it was meant to produce a change in the Egyptian government’s political position. The costs of executing attacks became too high and the consequences of adopting a nonviolent position seemed promising (Crenshaw 1987). they changed their strategic tactics. Thus. not to destroy the government’s military potential. GAI acted on the basis of its calculation of the benefit to be gained from violent action. the bulk of which may be able to make a reasonable calculation that they are not a risk. However. by definition. the consequences of adopting a nonviolent position and the probability of achieving its political goals through terrorist undertakings. Accordingly. Final Observations For GAI. which must fan out among a possibly substantial population.” When GAI was unable to achieve its political goal through terrorism. terrorists groups must conduct a sequence of directed attacks that creates a sufficient sense of threat for it to be understood that the campaign will continue unless and until there is a change in state policy (Freedman 2007). GAI would not have been able to defeat the Egyptian government. GAI used terrorism to influence political behavior by devaluing the state in the eyes of its citizens. Even with some assistance from Al Qa’ida.

92 . For GAI.strategy. GAI now appears to be concerned with carving out some political space to operate in Egypt. terrorism was merely a means to an end and substitutes were available.

his loosely affiliated. the analysis of Al Qa’ida in the Islamic Maghreb provides an example of an intelligent and shrewd local jihadist leader. the commanding officers that direct Al Qa’ida’s affiliates. Recent studies indicate that strategies aimed at enabling stringent police techniques and punitive military action will not succeed in deterring the Al Qa’ida suicide bombers(Atran 2003). while social bonds facilitated the process of affiliating (i. 93 . interventions may need to be focused at understanding and disrupting Al Qa’ida’s mid-level management. broad-based Al Qa’ida network augmented by affiliations with various groups has durability that will surpass his mortality. or social bonds could motivate local jihadist leaders to enroll in Al Qa’ida’s pan-Islamic program. like Osama bin Laden or Ayman Zawahiri or to concentrate on the suicide bombers who conduct operations. social bonds served as a “permissive factor”). While Osama bin Laden’s capture or death would be an important psychological blow to those vested in his invincibility. it is necessary to examine the staff that operates at each level of the hierarchy within the system. In the first chapters. The data collected in this survey and analysis of Al Qa’ida’s leadership has significantly demonstrated that leaders were strongly incentivized by opportunism. Consequently. It is naïve to focus on chief executives. Moreover. Abdelmalek Droukdal whose desire to revive his group inspired him to associate with Al Qa’ida while the examination of Al Gama’a al-Islamiyya demonstrates why strategic calculations can rouse other organizations to eschew violence and rebuff Al Qa’ida’s forays.Chapter 8: Conclusion and Discussion – Al Qa’ida’s Commanding Officers: A Skilled Management Team To understand terrorist organizations. I posed the question: what motivates local jihadist leaders to affiliate with Al Qa’ida? I hypothesized that opportunism.e. ideology.

Moreover. competition against other rebel groups. or both. there may be a divergence of opinion on precisely what objectives should be 94 .Previous studies depict terrorists as rational actors seeking to maximize political goals (Lake 2003). popular support. Conciliation programs can be a successful counter-terrorism strategy when amnesty is offered to operatives who renounce violence. Within the larger understanding of a terrorist group’s political aims. when the costs of other forms of violence increase. One should consider terrorism as “one of a set of rebel tactics that is consciously selected in response to changes in funding. But what are these motives? In fact. the fundamental purpose of any political organization is to maintain itself. in particular. Counterterrorism efforts aimed at winning battles and capturing terrorist actors deplete the ranks of terrorist organizations by physically eliminating combatants. as was the case with the GSPC (Sederberg 1995). insurgent groups should also be perceived as rational entities that are more likely to adopt terrorist tactics when the benefits of other forms of violence decrease. groups may lose members to other terrorist groups when a competing group can put together a package of purposive goals and selective incentives that is more appealing than that of the first organization. Leaders. and counterinsurgency tactics” (Laitin and Jacob Shapiro 2008) Like individual terrorists. Factionalism is also common amongst terrorist organizations. it is not surprising that local jihadist group leaders have opportunistic motives for joining Al Qa’ida. Psychological surveys indicate that terrorists are not psychologically deviant or ideologically blinded(Sageman 2004). My data analysis and case studies support these conclusions. In order to survive. wish to enhance and promote the organizations that they direct since their personal ambitions are tied to the organization’s viability (Cronin and Ludes 2004). the type of regime against which they are fighting. Since they are rational actors. organizations must attract and retain members.

This divergence compels operatives to defect. many groups may choose to align with Al Qa’ida to remain salient. 95 . Thus. However. when they occupy a “moral high ground”). Al Qa’ida’s recruitment has picked up in 30-40 countries. Finally. some groups may find it beneficial to renounce violence and enter the political arena. Al Qa’ida can easily dispatch a few combatants to assist local groups in desperate need of increased membership and expertise. groups may alienate the communities in which they operate by conducting particularly violent or poorly executed operations (Crenshaw 1991). Groups only enjoy popular support when the population believes their actions are justified under the political conditions of the country (i. Al Qa’ida trained over 5. Since the 1980s. Thus.pursued. When loss of membership occurs. Recruiters for Al Qa’ida reportedly told researchers that volunteers were “beating down their doors” to join (Atran 2004). Bin Laden and Al Qa’ida’s elite cadre have convinced many volunteers to fulfill the duty of jihad and to thus respond to “the call of Allah. In recent years. Al Qa’ida can transfer operatives to help support the local jihadist group since Al Qa’ida’s own recruitment is accelerating.” While it is impossible to know precisely the size of Al Qa’ida due to the decentralized structure of its organization. For example. and those with inside knowledge of the military and police(Gray and Stockham 2008). security sources in Algeria said that the Al Qa’ida in the Islamic Maghreb offensive in August 2008 reflected the recruitment of scores of operatives. combatants. including suicide bombers. especially in less democratic nations.e. their public image shifts from well-intentioned revolutionaries to common delinquents. making recruitment amongst these communities increasingly difficult. When this occurs. like the GAI. transforming from an armed group into a political party is no easy feat.000 militants in camps in Afghanistan. Al Qa’ida probably has several thousand members and associates.

In fact.Additionally. Al Qa’ida has substantially promoted and publicized its image throughout the globe. many terrorist groups are compared to criminal gangs. striving for global jihad. Al Qa’ida encourages potential operatives to follow in the footsteps of their pious predecessors (i. the Muslim warriors of the crusader period) by establishing a territorial base for Islam and by protecting those who are oppressed by foreign domination(Henzel 2005). primarily by means of the Qatari television station al-Jazeera. Al Qa’ida uses propaganda to foster its positive public image as the defender of Islam. which produces the professional tapes and promotional film clips disseminated throughout the Arab and Western world. However. By aligning with Al Qa’ida. Before joining forces with Al Qa’ida. or of occupation forces stepping with their boots on the backs of Arabic men that have just been bound 96 . upon aligning with Al Qa’ida. Recognizing the powerful potential of the media. Bin Laden has created a company called al-Sahab. To complement this strategy. Therefore. Al Qa’ida established a communications committee to promote this representation through a well-executed publicity campaign. Al Qa’ida raises awareness amongst Muslims of the grievances that gave rise to its birth. recruits are shown provocative photos of Iraqi women and children killed or bloodied by Western bombardment. as discussed in Chapter 3. their social status is enhanced. Al Qa’ida also selects sympathetic journalists to whom it grants interviews (Schweitzer 2008). Al Qa’ida is a high-value global brand that is esteemed amongst the Salafi community. For instance. These journalists present Al Qa’ida to the outside world in a supportive manner.” To supplement recruitment. Through a program of propaganda and indoctrination. groups gain credibility and respect that can be effectively leveraged to increase recruitment. they are perceived as legitimate actors. In doing so.e. depicting its operatives as “freedom fighters. of coalition soldiers shooting wounded insurgents inside a mosque.

and weapons. For instance. helped Jemaah Islamiyah plan and execute the 2002 Bali bombing that killed more than 2000 people (Abuza 2003). Finally. Riduan Isamuddin. nature of the military and intelligence services.and forced to the ground with black sacks over their faces. both alumni of the Afghan jihad. Al Qa’ida can help groups conduct attacks. Al Qa’ida’s affiliates learn from Al Qa’ida how to conduct comparable propaganda campaigns in their home countries to attract and enhance their own recruitment efforts. 97 . physical environment. it effectively encourages redemption through faith and sacrifice. It can also offer groups information on the government. Al Qa’ida established numerous local military training facilities in Mindanao and Indonesia in the last two decades. and mentored.000 of Al Qa’ida seed money (Ward 2005). Thus. indoctrinated. Abdelmalek Droukdal certainly modeled his publicity efforts on that of Al Qa’ida and benefited from advice from Al Qa’ida’s media branch. etc.000 to $600. Al Qa’ida’s veterans can offer groups tactical and strategic advice. For example. Moreover. Such emotional narratives highlight the theme of humiliation at the hand of callous and arrogant Western powers(Hafez 2007). Because of that. due to its exceptional intelligence-gathering skills. Al Qa’ida is infamous for providing terrorist training and for establishing sites and camps where recruits are educated. known as Muklhas. Al Qa’ida can offer groups financial resources. financial services. even death. known as Hambali and Ali Gufron. According to several reports. Ansar al-Islam was started with $300. tyrants gained dominance over the Muslims in every aspect and every land”(Calvert 2004). equipment. Al Qa’ida also attributes Muslim societies’ “greatest misfortune and decadence to their abandonment of jihad due to the love of this world and abhorrence of death.

strategies should be developed to isolate these groups from Al Qa’ida. Also. but also create and promote “heroes” that represent the organization. in particular. rather than abandon their mission. While not a precipitant cause for an affiliation. martyrdom operations not only produce spectacular incidents of large-scale destruction. Such missions create publicity events that effectively advertise the organization and psychologically appeal to individual needs to feel important and meaningful through membership in a “higher” movement (Atran 2003). local jihadist leaders are presented with appealing and cost effective opportunities to bolster their own recruitment and ensure organizational survival and their ability to achieve their political aims without abandoning arms and investigating political avenues. thereby making such affiliations more problematic and risky. Due to these associations. Efforts should ensure that the necessary resources (both human and 98 .Conducting attacks connotes a high degree of devotion and strength to potential recruits. the results of this study suggest that most local jihadist group leaders have already established significant social bonding and networking with members of Al Qa’ida Central Command. Instead. Since Al Qa’ida provides local jihadist group leaders with numerous opportunities to stimulate and expand their organizations. local jihadist group leaders are positioned to seek assistance from their colleagues when decline within their own organizations seems imminent. Moreover. just as a conventional military organization might glamorize its heroes to inspire others to volunteer for field military actions. demonstrate that the organization has a loyal and impassioned following. it may be futile for counterterrorist forces to discourage local jihadist group leaders from soliciting Al Qa’ida. Suicide attacks. social networks can be thought of as a stipulation that pre-structures and facilitates the merger process. and because such affiliations are not difficult to initiate due to the existence of prior social connections. By joining Al Qa’ida.

A model system is that which is utilized in the European Union. For instance. third-country nationals refused entry to the EU and individuals 99 . state borders were opened to international trade flows. weapons of mass destruction. it is necessary to treat carefully because restrictive “fortress” responses and sweeping immigrant surveillance hinder cooperation with key immigrant. which features a common visa policy and region-wide fingerprint or iris photography database. Throughout the 1990s. The new Schengen Information System computer database contains information on criminals on the run. some suggest that AQIM’s globalization process has been impeded by the expulsion of AL Qa’ida in Iraq (AQI) from Baghdad in 2008. they are less likely to survive or recuperate from setbacks. communities. former Secretary of Homeland Security. Unilateral approaches to border control will leave a mismatch of contradictory national policies. and illegal migrants” (Ross 2003). border control measures must be established to prevent the movement of terrorists and terror-related materials. Bin Laden has devoted less attention and resources to AQIM. However. thereby crippling its ability to supersede a regional dimension (Filiu 2009). governments should implement a networked border monitoring and border control system. Tom Ridge. In the age of globalization. Since the Iraqi branch of Al Qa’ida suffered this setback. Thus. In areas like the Core Arab states and the Maghreb. To thwart Al Qa’ida’s connections with local jihadist groups. This system is also used to store and disseminate information on extradition. stolen cars and other stolen property as well as biometric data. previous asylum applications. especially Muslim. If groups are precluded from affiliating with Al Qa’ida. portrayed US borders as “conduits for terrorists. terrorists have learned how to make legal immigration channels and legitimate immigrant communities serve their lethal jihadist cannot be exchanged between Al Qa’ida and its weaker partner.

subject to a European arrest warrant or under surveillance for criminal activity(One Single EU Border 2005) A system for region-wide arrests would also be useful in areas where terrorist activity is high. gave more speeches. These predictive models could be used in order to develop strategies for a pre-emptive counter-response. an understanding might be developed of what government initiatives trigger terrorist organizations to seek partnerships with Al Qa’ida and of the strength of the alliance that materializes as a result. granted more interviews. 100 . Future research will center on the development of predictive models based on emerging patterns among terrorist groups that align with Al Qa’ida. The second question that I sought to answer involved the type of role local jihadist leaders played within Al Qa’ida. it appears that most leaders took on an increasingly ideological role after the merger. One impressive program was the East Africa Counter Terrorism Initiative. After the merger. While there were no significant patterns in the data on the operational and logistic role of the leaders profiled. etc. counterterrorist forces can better undermine these leaders. Future research may also focus on how alliances mature and evolve over time since this article focuses on aspects of maturity among terrorist groups who have engaged in networking with Al Qa’ida. the leaders issued more communiqués. police training. The United States can provide assistance to foreign governments to enhance operational capacity to tighten border controls. By understanding what function local jihadist leaders play. I considered leadership roles before and after the affiliation to uncover trends. and aviation security capacity (Kagwanja 2006). For example. whereby $50 million for security programs administered by the US Department of Defense was offered to East African states to provide for military training for border control and security of the coastline.

As mentioned in earlier chapters. they gained the support of the Somali people through nationalist causes more than through a common affinity for Salafism. Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers are tightly coupled to their operatives. These groups enjoyed popularity in Somalia in the 60s due to their attempts to regain lost Somali land after independence and to their resistance to dictator. ethno-religious struggles. an affiliation will not occur. a high degree of decision influence. al-Ittihad al-Islami was established in the 1980s through the merger of Salafi groups.To understand why this increase in evangelizing and political activity of these leaders occurs. Al Qa’ida conceives its resistance as a single. unified struggle that transcends local. The roots of most of the terrorist networks included in this study can be traced to geographically separate. In contrast. he demands that his commanding officers convince their operatives to adopt and accept Al Qa’ida’s pan-Islamic program. and regional concerns. the worldwide community of believers(Sutton and Vertigans 2006). Siad Barre. effective influence tactics. and subordinate loyalty. Although Bin Laden wants to align with local militant groups with country-specific grievances to increase his global reach and influence. For example. an ideology that was widely unpopular in the country in previous years (West 2006). Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers are uniquely positioned to persuade uncommitted followers that Al Qa’ida has a better ideology. state. The leaders of local jihadist groups develop differentiated relationships with their 101 . The dyadic relationship between these leaders and their followers is characterized by high quality leader-member exchange resulting from frequent communication. one must consider the philosophy and ambitions of local jihadist groups compared to Al Qa’ida. Consequently. leader-member value agreement. interactive communication patterns. as was the case with the GAI. Central to Al Qa’ida’s vision is the awakening of the Muslim ummah. When local jihadist leaders are not interested in promoting this agenda.

the GSPC was encouraged to engage in suicide and arson attacks(Guidère 2007). Due to such high quality leader-member exchange. culture shock is inevitable. followers are encouraged to take personal initiative and exercise personal leadership to make their unit more effective. Because they know their audience well. they subordinate their radical group to Al Qa’ida’s strategic goals and move their localized Islamic resistance beyond sovereign state boundaries to transcend provincial frames of reference. Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers can ground their message in the narrative elements most likely to resonate with this target group. and interviews. For instance. operatives must also integrate new tactics and strategies into their repertoire. Like Al 102 . When a group first affiliates with Al Qa’ida.rapports. rhetoric. they can apply effective message management. In doing so. Valuable insights can be gained by considering the role that managers play when two companies merge in order to understand the role that Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers play in mitigating culture shock and encouraging integration. Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers can convince their operatives to integrate their previous regional ambitions with a wider transnational Islamic agenda. In addition to accepting Al Qa’ida’s pan-Islamic program. through their ideological operations. speeches. Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers correspond with their cohorts through communiqués. Moreover. and spin. Thus. due to their close relationship with operatives. as Droukdal did on numerous occasions. rather than using an average leadership style. When the security situation does not permit direct communications. followers trust their leaders and can be persuaded to engage in activities that they otherwise would not and can be encouraged to move beyond their own self-interest to focus on larger mutual interests(Graen and Uhl-Bien 1995). in which they clarify their vision. Based on these motivational communications.

Employees’ reactions most often pass through four distinct stages. These are identical to Dr. major change and generate a great deal of uncertainty due to the fact that organizational cultures are underpinned by deep assumptions that are constant. the burden of responsibility still rests on the commanding officers to assuage their followers after the affiliation with Al Qa’ida commences. For Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers and corporate transition managers. Soon after the GSPC announced its merger with Al Qa’ida. finally acceptance occurs. This can only be achieved by providing ideological guidance through leadermember exchanges and through public communications and appearances.” For example. one of the most common difficulties that arise during the merger is “cultural differences. transition managers must make the case for integration to large numbers of employees. next emotional bargaining begins. Both transition managers and Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers must be skilled in relinquishing and helping others relinquish past values and practices that are not in tune with the current. patterned. Although some of the groups that Al Qa’ida merges with have less than five hundred operatives. transition mangers assume full-time responsibility and accountability for making integration work. The threat to old corporate values and organizational lifestyle leaves organizational members in a state of defensiveness accentuated by low levels of trust within the institution. They commence with disbelief and denial and pass into anger and then rage and resentment. In addition.Qa’ida’s commanding officers. a corporation may encourage teamwork while the venture it subsumes may be more oriented towards individual initiatives. often accompanied by frustration and depression. and shared. mergers represent sudden. Helen Kubler-Ross’s four stages of bereavement or 103 . When corporate mergers occur. shared vision of future organizational arrangements (Marks and Mirvis 2000). Droukdal issued a communiqué explaining and justifying this repositioning.

successfully promote change by implementing and campaigning for a unique vision of the organization through a publicity campaign. they should clarify critical success factors for the merger. Communication should be their major priority throughout the merger process. they must inspire hope. and a sense that the future will be better than the past through their speeches and other outreach activities. 104 . promote. In this context. and desired end state. When a merger occurs. Finally. and address inconsistencies between the espoused operating principles and actual management of change.grief. they should serve as role models on how to “work together” for the goals of the organization. Finally. A wide range of factors affect organizational change as produced during a merger. Moreover. leadership can be viewed as the art of mobilizing others to want to struggle for shared aspirations (Covin et al. 1997). They must assuage their followers’ fears and convince them of the saliency and relevance of the new program through constant communication. These initiatives can only be achieved by assuming an ideological role (Kavanagh and Ashkanasy 2006). Effective leaders possess powerful persuasive personal characteristics and execute actions designed to change internal organizational culture and substance. anticipate the impact of change. optimism. principles. Leaders. It is their responsibility to define. What the operative grapples with is akin to the “death” of the previous organization and the letting go of this relationship (Cartwright and Cooper 1990). like Droukdal. Leaders hoping to initiative organizational change and general follower acceptance face a daunting task. transition managers (and Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers) must define the new “combination” goals. and support necessary changes in behaviors and culture to successfully realize the post-combination organization.

do opt to renounce violence. In fact. several leaders of GAI and Al-Jihad al-Islami. government communications strategy should build an attractive alternative to the Al Qa’ida worldview by appealing to a sense of deracinated nationalism. This program should expose tension between Al Qa’ida leadership and supporters.Understanding Al Qa’ida’s commanding officer’s role as transition managers during a merger is important when designing initiatives to undermine their efforts. Counterterrorist forces can also harness the power of the “Shayma effect” (which refers to an incident where an Egyptian schoolgirl was killed in a jihadist attack) by broadcasting images off jihadist attacks that have killed Muslim children. The media has become a crucial battlefield in the current conflict against radical Islamic terrorism (Blanchard 2006). have taken steps to promote peaceful co-existence with the government and society(Gunaratna and Ali 2009). Proxies must manage from affair and this sort of counter-terrorism publicity campaign. especially religious ones. Thus. My data indicates that these commanding officers are leading Al Qa’ida’s growing media offensive. Counterterrorism units can use media organizations to launch global propaganda pushes that will taint the Al Qa’ida brand and make it even less attractive to local militants. Moreover. like the GAI. messaging should refute the imputation of malign Western intention in the Muslim world and undermine the notion that terrorism is authentically Islamic. Such propaganda will appeal to communities anxious to retain their cultural heritage and religious integrity. Approaching communications in this manner ensures that the government avoids exacerbating feelings of alienation within Muslim communities. For 105 . It is important to remember that some groups. For example. another principle Islamist militant group in Egypt. For instance. authorities can publicize the rejection of Al Qa’ida by credible local figures. counterterrorist units should channel messages through volunteers in Internet forums(Brachman and McCants 2006).

Our government should also realize this truism.instance. The collapse of Al Qa’ida’s propaganda operations will also cause the Arab media to move towards more coverage of the legitimate Iraqi government. This study indicates that Al Qa’ida’s commanding officers are playing an increasingly ideological role. a struggle for survival. Moreover. Ed Husain and Shiraz Maher were two young British Muslims who became involved with radical Islamist politics with Hizb ut-Tahir before renouncing their affiliation and speaking out publicly about the dangers of intolerant Islamism (MacEoin 2007). the government should continue to capture Al Qa’ida news and production staff. The leaders of the Western world should follow suit. and a war with no truce” (Payne 2009). Salafi and Islamist communities in London have consistently demonstrated skill. Ayman Al Zawahiri acknowledges that the struggle between the secular governments in the West and the militant jihadists of Al Qa’ida is a “battle of ideologies. courage and commitment in countering al-Qaida propaganda and recruitment activity. 106 . along with their PCS and data files.

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” Defense Studies 7(3): 338-357.” Riedel. 2006.” Organizational Dynamics 28(3): 35-47. 2001.” Studies in Conflict & Terrorism 32(2): 109-128. Sprinzak. Russ. Michael. 2000. insurgents gain a lifeline from Al Qaeda . Mishal. Acquisitions. 2006.. One Single EU Border.” Emergence 5(1): 54-76. Perliger.euractiv. “Al Qaeda as a Dune Organization: Toward a Typology of Islamic Terrorist Organizations. 2004. E. and Maoz Rosenthal. Denny.” Studies in Conflict and Terrorism 27(4): 297-319. 2003.. “In Algeria. 2009].com. Available at: http://www. Bruce. 2009]. J. 112 .” Studies in Conflict & Terrorism 28(4): 275-293. “Unilateral presidential powers: Significant executive orders. and L. “Leadership in complex organizations.iht. Available at: http://www. George. “Beyond Al Qaeda: Part 2. and Terror. Kenneth. Rabasa. “The terrorists in their own words: Interviews with 35 incarcerated Middle Eastern terrorists. Post. “The Legend and Legacy of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. M. Marion. Angel et al. “Al Qaeda Strikes Back.” Foreign Affairs 86(3): 24-40. “Managing Mergers.” Presidential Studies Quarterly 32(2): 367-386. A. 2002. and Phillip Mirvis. 1949-99.Emergence. Pedahzur. 2005. 2007. Kenneth. “Complexity Theory and Al-Qaeda: Examining Complex Leadership . and L. 2008. Michael. and Alliances: Creating an Effective Transition Structure. McAllister. Mitchell.php?page=2 [Accessed March 17. Russ. “Altruism and fatalism: The characteristics of Palestinian suicide terrorists. The Outer Rings of the Terrorist Universe.” The Leadership Quarterly 12(4): 389-418. and Mary Uhl-Bien. 2009. “ Al Qaeda and the Innovative Firm: Demythologizing the Network. 2003.” Deviant Behavior 24(4): 405-424. Shaul. A. Payne. M.” Terrorism and Political Violence 15(1): 171-184. Ideology.” International Herald Tribune. 2005. 2007. Moss. Bruce. and Kevin Price. Weinberg. Marks. “Winning the Battle of Ideas: Propaganda. Mayer. and Mary [Accessed May 18.

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Appendix I: List of Terrorist Groups Merger al-Qaeda Organization in the Land of the Two Rivers (formerly Jama'at al-Tawhid walJihad) Egyptian Islamic Jihad al-Qaeda Organization in the Islamic Maghreb (formerly Groupe Salafist pour la Prédication et le Combat) Libyan Islamic Fighting Group Partnership Ansar al-Islam/Jund alIslam/Ansar al-Sunnah Asbat al-Ansar Taliban Islamic Jihad Union Lashkar-e-Jhangvi Lashkar-e-Taiba Tunisian Combatant Group Moroccan Islamic Combatant Group Jemaah Islamiya Abu Sayyaf Harkat ul-Ansar/Harakat ul Mujahidin Jaish-e-Mohammad al-Ittihaad al-Islami Eritrean Islamic Jihad Movement Collaboration Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan Yemen Islamic Jihad Aden Abyan Islamic Army Unaffiliated (Control) Al-Gama’a alIslamiyya 115 .

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Appendix III: Commanding Officer Attribute Codebook Type of merger Formal merger Strong affiliation (partnership) Loose affiliation (collaboration) No affiliation Primary motive Secondary motive Not a motive Primary motive Secondary motive Not a motive Primary motive Secondary motive Not a motive Strong leadership Average leadership Weaker leadership Not applicable (Was not active in the organization at the time) 4 3 2 1 2 1 0 2 1 0 2 1 0 3 2 1 Opportunism Pan-Islamic ideology Social network Operational leadership Ideological leadership Logistic leadership 0 135 .

Appendix IV: Leadership Attributes Organization name Ansar al-Islam/Jund alMullah Krekar Islam/Ansar al-Sunnah Ansar al-Islam/Jund alAbdullah Shafi Islam/Ansar al-Sunnah al-Qaeda Organization in the Land of the Two Rivers (formerly Jama'at Abu Musab al-Zarqawi al-Tawhid wal-Jihad) al-Qaeda Organization in the Land of the Two Rivers (formerly Jama'at Abu Ayub Al-Masri al-Tawhid wal-Jihad) al-Qaeda Organization in the Land of the Two Rivers (formerly Jama'at Abu Khalil al-Souri al-Tawhid wal-Jihad) Abu Muhjin Asbat al-Ansar Mohammed Omar Taliban Ayman Al Zawahiri Egyptian Islamic Jihad Sayyed Imam Al-Sharif Egyptian Islamic Jihad Islamic Movement of Tahir Yuldashev Uzbekistan Islamic Movement of Juma Namangani Uzbekistan Najmiddin Jalolov Islamic Jihad Union Tariq al-Fasdli Yemen Islamic Jihad Zein al-Abideen alAden Abyan Islamic Mehdar Army Aden Abyan Islamic Khalid al-Nabi al-Yazidi Army Maulana Saadatullah Khan Harkat ul-Ansar/Harakat ul Mujahidin Harkat ul-Ansar/Harakat ul Mujahidin Harkat ul-Ansar/Harakat ul Mujahidin Leader name Organization type Core Arab Cluster Core Arab Cluster Organization Date of Ideological country or foundin Date of Type of Opportunistic Alignment Social network origin g affiliation affiliation motives? ? affiliations? Iraq Iraq 2001 2001 2001 2001 3 3 2 2 0 0 1 1 Ideological Logistic Operational leadership leadership leadership preprepre-merger merger? merger? 1 0 3 0 3 0 Operational leadership postmerger? 1 3 Ideological leadership postmerger? 3 2 Logistic leadership postmerger? 2 1 Core Arab Cluster Iraq 1999 2004 4 2 0 1 3 2 3 3 3 2 Core Arab Cluster Iraq 1999 2004 4 2 0 1 0 0 0 3 1 2 Core Core Core Core Core Arab Arab Arab Arab Arab Cluster Cluster Cluster Cluster Cluster Iraq Lebanon Afghanistan Egypt Egypt Uzbekistan Uzbekistan Uzbekistan Yemen Yemen Yemen 1999 1986 1994 1987 1987 1998 1998 2002 1990 1990 1990 2004 2000 1996 1998 1998 1998 1998 2005 1992 1998 1998 4 3 3 4 4 2 2 3 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 1 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 2 0 2 2 0 0 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 0 2 3 3 1 2 3 3 3 2 2 0 2 2 3 3 3 1 1 3 2 3 0 2 2 3 2 3 2 2 2 1 2 2 1 2 2 0 2 3 3 3 3 2 1 1 3 3 0 3 1 2 3 3 3 1 2 2 2 0 2 2 2 3 2 2 Core Arab Cluster Core Arab Cluster Core Arab Cluster Core Arab Cluster Core Arab Cluster Core Arab Cluster Southern Asian cluster Pakistan 1985 1998 2 2 1 0 3 2 1 0 0 0 Fazlur Rehman Khalil Southern Asian cluster Pakistan 1985 1998 2 1 2 1 1 2 3 2 3 3 Farooq Kashmiri Khalil Riaz Basra Akram Lahori Hafiz Mohammad Saeed Maulana Abdul Wahid Kashmiri Maulana Masood Azhar Sheikh Ali Warsame Sheikh Hassan Dahir Aweys Hassan Abdullah Hersi al-Turki Sheikh Khalil Mohammed Amer Lashkar-e-Jhangvi Lashkar-e-Jhangvi Lashkar-e-Taiba Lashkar-e-Taiba Jaish-e-Mohammad al-Ittihaad al-Islami al-Ittihaad al-Islami al-Ittihaad al-Islami Eritrean Islamic Jihad Movement Southern Asian cluster Southern Asian cluster Southern Asian cluster Southern Asian cluster Southern Asian cluster Southern Asian cluster African cluster African cluster African cluster African cluster Pakistan Pakistan Pakistan Pakistan Pakistan Pakistan Somalia Somalia Somalia Eritrea 1985 1996 1996 1990 1990 2000 1984 1984 1984 1988 1998 1999 1999 2001 2001 2000 1991 1991 1991 1998 2 3 3 3 3 2 2 2 2 2 2 0 1 0 2 2 2 2 2 2 0 2 2 2 1 1 1 0 0 1 0 1 0 1 0 1 0 1 0 0 0 3 0 2 0 1 1 3 3 1 0 2 0 3 0 3 3 1 1 2 0 3 0 2 0 3 3 2 1 1 3 2 3 1 3 2 2 3 3 2 1 3 2 3 1 3 3 3 3 2 2 3 2 3 2 2 3 3 3 2 136 .

Hassan Hattab al-Qaeda Organization in the Islamic Maghreb (formerly Groupe Salafist pour la prédication et le combat) Maghreb Arab cluster al-Qaeda Organization in the Islamic Maghreb (formerly Groupe Salafist pour la prédication et le combat) Maghreb Arab cluster al-Qaeda Organization in the Islamic Maghreb (formerly Groupe Salafist pour la prédication et le combat) Libyan Islamic Fighting Group Tunisian Combatant Group Tunisian Combatant Group Moroccan Islamic Combatant Group Moroccan Islamic Combatant Group Jemaah Islamiya Jemaah Islamiya Jemaah Islamiya Abu Sayyaf Abu Sayyaf Abu Sayyaf Algeria 1996 2005 4 2 0 0 3 3 3 0 0 0 Nabil Sahraoui Algeria 1996 2005 4 2 1 1 3 2 1 0 0 0 Abdelmalik Droukdal Anas Sebai Tarek Ben Habib Maaroufi Saifallah Ben Hassine Mohammed Al Karbouzi Taeb Bentizi Abu Bakar Bashir Abu Rusdan Abu Dujana Abdurajak Janjalani Khadaffy Janjalani Yasser Igasan Maghreb Arab cluster Maghreb Arab cluster Maghreb Arab cluster Maghreb Arab cluster Maghreb Arab cluster Maghreb Arab cluster Southeast Asian cluster Southeast Asian cluster Southeast Asian cluster Southeast Asian cluster Southeast Asian cluster Southeast Asian cluster Algeria Libya Tunisia Tunisia Morocco Morocco Indonesia Indonesia Indonesia Philippines Philippines Philippines 1996 1995 2000 2000 1993 1993 1993 1993 1993 1991 1991 1991 2005 1997 2000 2000 2001 2001 1998 1998 1998 1991 1991 1991 4 4 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 2 2 0 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 1 1 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 0 0 1 1 1 0 0 1 1 1 1 1 3 3 3 1 1 2 1 3 1 3 2 3 1 2 1 2 1 3 2 2 2 2 2 3 1 2 3 3 1 3 1 3 3 2 3 3 3 1 1 3 2 3 2 3 3 3 3 3 1 1 1 2 1 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 2 3 1 3 3 3 3 3 3 137 .

Appendix V: Data on Universe of Cases Figure 1: Number of Affiliations by Year Number of Affiliations by Year 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 0 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 Year Figure 2: Distribution by Type of Affiliation Figure 3: Distribution by Region 138 .

67 1.67 13.018767854 27 0 13.67 13.042330234 139 .67 1.5 20.5 0.67 13.5 20.5 1.5 0.67 13.67 13.67 0.14786E-09 11 8 13.639411853 Social Network Affiliation 14 27 20.5 20.67 13.Appendix VI: Data on Q1 What motivates local jihadist leaders to affiliate with Al Qa’ida’s and its pan-Islamic agenda? Table 1: Chi-Squared Test (Three Scales) Opportunistic Motive Total 0 (Not a motivation) Total 1 (Secondary motivation) Total 2 (Primary motivation) Expected Total 0 Expected Total 1 Expected Total 2 P Value 5 Ideological Alignment 22 Social Network Affiliation 14 3 33 13.28936E-06 Ideological Alignment 22 19 20.60648E-06 Table 2: Statistical Significance Testing (Two Scales) Opportunistic Motive Not a motivation Motivation Expected (Not a motivation) Expected (Motivation) P Value 5 36 20.

262682055 P Value 140 .5 5 5.5 17 0.5 10.5 5.5 9.5 18.Appendix VII: Data on Q2 What type of role do local jihadist leaders play within Al Qa’ida’s network when the organization for which they are responsible affiliates with Al Qa’ida? Table 3: Chi-Squared Test (Strength of operational.021962838 5 5.5 18.5 14 16.5 0.5 7. and logistic leadership before and after the merger) Operational Before Total Not active (0) Total Weak (1) Total Average (2) Total Strong (3) Total Expected Not active Expected Weak Expected Average Expected Strong 7 10 After Sum 4 5 11 15 Ideological Before 6 7 After Sum 4 10 10 17 Logistic Before 6 8 After Sum 4 3 10 11 7 17 41 12 20 41 19 37 82 16 12 41 5 22 41 21 34 82 11 16 41 17 17 41 28 33 82 5.256764552 5 8.5 7.5 14 16.5 10. ideological.5 9.5 0.5 17 5 8.

313 10 122 12. ideological.1549 -1.1397 16 231.2 Wilcoxon Signed Rank Test for Ideological Leadership Performance (pre-post) 16 3 -1.898 0.359 0. and logistic leadership before and after the merger) Paired Sign Test for Operational Leadership Performance (pre-post) # Differences >0 # of Differences <0 # Differences =0 P-Value 10 16 15 0.5 16.95 Wilcoxon Signed Rank Test for Overall Leadership Performance (pre-post) 9 5 -1.25 # Ranks <0 # of Ranks >0 Table 5: Paired Sign Test (Strength of operational.477 0.3269 Paired Sign Test for Ideological Leadership Performance (pre-post) 19 6 16 0.0562 22 365.0577 -1.1269 19 217 11.5 11.Table 4: Wilcoxon Signed Rank Test (Strength of operational.421 6 108 18 Wilcoxon Signed Rank Test for Logistic Leadership Performance (pre-post) 15 2 -1.5 14. and logistic leadership before and after the merger) Wilcoxon Signed Rank Test for Operational Leadership Performance (pre-post) # of 0 Differences # of Ties Z-Value P-Value Tied ZValue Tied PValue Count Sum of Ranks Mean Rank Count Sum of Ranks Mean Rank 15 3 -1.5 16.3269 Paired Sign Test for Overall Leadership Performance (prepost) 10 22 9 0.91 0.161 16 229 14.0501 141 .0146 Paired Sign Test for Logistic Leadership Performance (pre-post) 10 16 15 0.1742 -1.1425 -1.382 0.614 10 162. ideological.469 10 119.526 0.466 0.422 0.

Figures 4-6: Paired Sign Test Results 40 35 30 25 20 15 10 5 0 Operational Ideologigcal Logistic Total Score Difference (Post-Pre) Improved or no change Declined 25 20 Score Difference (Post-Pre) 15 Improved Declined 10 5 0 Operational Ideologigcal Logistic Total 142 .

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