Article Details

“An Analytical System Using Internet For Understanding the Terrorism” |

Amit Batra, in International Journal of Information Technology and Management | IT & Management


This brief outlines how the internet is being used byterrorists to more effectively recruit and fund and plan their activities. Thebrief outlines key concepts, current modes of activity and emerging issues. Anannotated bibliography is included as an appendix. The risk of terrorism is of great concern to manycountries and significant resources are spent to counter this threat. A betterunderstanding of the motivation of terrorists and their reasons for selectingcertain modes and targets of attack can help improve the decisions to allocateresources in the fight against terrorism. The fundamental question addressed in this paper is:“What do terrorists want?” We take the view that terrorists preferences foractions are based on their values and beliefs. An important missing piece inour knowledge of terrorists’ preferences is an understanding of their values. Thispaper uses a novel approach to determine these values and state them asobjectives, using principles from decision analysis and value-focused thinking. Instead of interviewing decision makers and stakeholders,as would be normal in decision analysis, we extract the values of terrorists byexamining their own writings and verbal statements. To illustrate the approach,we extract the values of Al- Qaeda and structure them in terms of strategic,fundamental, and means objectives. These objectives are interrelated through ameans-ends network. This information is useful for understanding terrorists’motivations, intent, and likely actions, as well as for developing policies tocounter terrorism at its root causes.