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Suicide Terror: Understanding and Confronting the Threat

Ophir Falk (Editor), Henry Morgenstern (Editor)
ISBN: 978-0-470-44776-5
336 pages
July 2009
Suicide Terror: Understanding and Confronting the Threat (0470447761) cover image
"Ophir Falk and Henry Morgenstern have compiled a book that should be read by anyone who is serious about winning the war on terror. By painstakingly analyzing the empirical data, they help us better understand the nature of our enemies and why they employ these barbaric tactics. Most crucially, they offer important insights on how terrorism can be effectively confronted and ultimately defeated. In so doing, they have performed an invaluable service for all those who are committed to winning this crucial battle."—Benjamin Netanyahu, Prime Minister of Israel

FIRSTHAND ACCOUNTS AND ANALYSES FROM FRONTLINE PERSONNEL AND EXPERTS IN THE WAR AGAINST TERROR

Based on U.S. and Israeli experiences and detailed interviews with frontline personnel, Suicide Terror enables policymakers, first responders, and students of homeland security to understand and deal with the growing threat of suicide terror. It analyzes recent suicide attacks as well as our current vulnerabilities and high-risk scenarios for future attacks. Following the expert authors' advice, readers learn possible measures to prevent an attack. Moreover, they learn how to prepare for and implement an effective and quick response to minimize casualties and losses in the event of an attack.

Following an overview and historical review of suicide terror, the book covers:

  • Global jihad

  • Israel's confrontation with suicide terrorism

  • America's experience with suicide bombings

  • Internationalization of suicide terrorism

  • High-risk scenarios and future trends

  • Methods for confronting suicide terror

  • Medical management of suicide terrorism

Using eyewitness accounts, the text re-creates the look and feel of actual terrorism incidents. Detailed case studies help readers get into the minds of suicide terrorists in order to understand how to best prevent and confront these very dangerous threats.

This book is a definitive study of suicide terror, synthesizing the experience of well-known Israeli and American experts who have dealt with it firsthand. Anyone responsible for understanding, preventing, and confronting this devastating threat should read this book and consider its recommendations with all seriousness.

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Preface.

Acknowledgments.

Contributors.

INTRODUCTION: OVERVIEW AND HISTORICAL ACCOUNT OF THE WEAPON (Ophir Falk).

Background.

Defining the Threat.

Definition Criteria.

Proposed Definitions.

Analyses of Data.

Overview.

Endnotes.

1 THE GLOBAL JIHAD (Henry Morgenstern).

Introduction: Where Is the Jihad Today?

Do We Need to Know Why?

The Meaning of Jihad for the Jihadists (Mujahedeen).

The Origins and Evolution of the Global Jihad.

Osama bin Laden and Dr. Ayman al-Zawahiri—The Al-Qaeda View of the Jihad.

Support for the Global Jihad.

Seminal Ideas and Movements that Have Led to the Global Jihad.

Tauhid—The Oneness of God.

Takfir.

Jihad.

Jahaliyyah.

The Spread of the Jihad Across the World.

Case Study of Jihad Development: Egypt.

The Jihad in the United States.

Toward a Legal Definition of Terrorism in the United States.

Financing and Organization.

The Jihad: Version 2.0.

The Jihad’s Virtual 007.

Real-Time Threat Example.

Understanding Techno-Intelligence Signatures.

Internet Activity and Terrorist Finance—Synergy in Cyberspace.

The Global Jihad Has a New Home Base—The Internet.

Conclusions.

Appendix 1: Internet Sites and the Global Jihad.

Appendix 2: Incidents in the United States since 9/11.

Endnotes.

2 ISRAEL’S CONFRONTATION WITH SUICIDE TERRORISM (Amir Kulick).

Background.

Arab–Israeli Conflict.

The First Circle: The Palestinian Suicide Bomber and His Motives.

The Second Circle: The Organizational Wrapping.

The Third Circle: The Social Wrapping.

How Has Israel Confronted Suicide Terrorism?

The Prevention Circle.

The Delay Circle.

The Consequence Mitigation Circle.

The Intelligence Level.

The Intelligence Challenge in the War on Suicide Terrorism.

Israeli Intelligence.

The Operational Level.

The Evolution of Israel’s Responses to Suicide Terrorism—A Brief Historic Review.

The Israeli Methods of Action.

Targeted Killing.

Passive Measures.

Public Resilience.

Deterring Suicide Bombers.

Relevant Lessons for American Law Enforcement.

Key Lessons Learned—Operative Level.

Specific Lessons—Operational-Tactical Level.

Summary and Conclusions.

Endnotes.

3 THE EAGLE AND THE SNAKE: AMERICA’S EXPERIENCE WITH SUICIDE BOMBINGS (Yaron Schwartz).

The Origins of Suicide Attacks Against the United States.

Suicide Bombings in Iraq.

The Insurgency: Who, Why, When, and How.

The Role of Suicide Bombings.

Assessing the Surge.

The Impact of Iraq and Its Lessons.

Future Threats and Suicide Terrorism.

Endnotes.

Bibliograhy.

4 THE INTERNATIONALIZATION OF SUICIDE TERRORISM (Ophir Falk and Hadas Kroitoru).

Lebanon.

Hezbollah.

Hezbollah’s International Reach.

The Iran–Hezbollah–al-Qaeda Connection.

Hezbollah’s Direct Threat to U.S. Homeland.

Sri Lanka.

A History of Conflict.

The Tamil Tigers and Suicide Terrorism.

Consequences and Counterterrorism Efforts.

Israel.

Historical Background.

A Decade and a Half of Suicide Terrorism.

Misconceptions.

From Deterrence to Prevention and Preemption.

Relevance to U.S. Homeland Security.

Operational Lessons.

India.

History of Conflict.

India’s Experience with Suicide Terrorism.

Turkey.

Civil War and Civil Strife: The PKK’s Answer to the "Kurdish Question".

Turkey’s Experience with Suicide Terror.

Islamic Groups Step Up to the Plate.

Turkish Counterterrorism Tactics.

Lessons from Turkey’s Experience with Suicide Terrorism.

Al-Qaeda.

Establishing the "Base".

Al-Qaeda Organization: Affiliates and Networks.

Al-Qaeda Attacks.

Al-Qaeda in Europe.

Al-Qaeda in Southeast Asia.

Consequences and Counterterrorism.

The Future of al-Qaeda.

Chechnya.

History of Conflict.

Chechen Separatists and Suicide Terrorism.

Consequences and Counterterrorism.

Summary and Conclusions—The Internationalization of Suicide Terrorism.

Endnotes.

5 HIGH-RISK SCENARIOS AND FUTURE TRENDS (Ophir Falk).

Scenario No. 1: Cyber and Physical Attack on Energy Distribution Systems.

Description of Scenario.

Vulnerability.

Consequence.

Means of Mitigation.

Scenario No. 2: Attacks on and by Civilian Aircraft—Back to the Future.

Description of Scenario.

Vulnerability.

Consequence.

Means of Mitigation.

Prosperity or Security in the Maritime Trade.

Scenario No. 3: Dirty Bomb in Maritime Container.

Description of Scenario.

Vulnerability.

Consequence.

Means of Mitigation.

Scenario No. 4: Blocking World Oil Transit by Sea (Ofer Israeli).

Description of Scenario.

Vulnerability.

Consequence.

Means of Mitigation.

Scenario No. 5: PC Doomsday.

Description of Scenario.

Vulnerability.

Consequence.

Means of Mitigation.

Scenario No. 6: Suicide Terrorist Attack on Subway Followed by a Suicide Terrorist Attack on Premises of a Level I Trauma Center (Shmuel C. Shapira).

Description of Scenario.

Vulnerability.

Consequence.

Means of Mitigation.

Future Trends.

Endnotes.

6 METHODS FOR CONFRONTING SUICIDE TERROR (William Cooper).

Detection of Key Terrorist Activities.

The Suicide Bomber.

Detection of Terrorist Recruitment in the Community.

Identifying Safe Houses and Planning Centers.

Terrorist Means of Communication.

Identifying Terrorist Transportation.

Identifying Terrorist Financing.

Identifying Paper Falsification.

Land Attack Characteristics.

Sea Attack Characteristics.

Air Attack Characteristics.

The Public and the Battle Against Terrorism.

Legislation in the Battle Against Terrorism.

Negotiation Tactics to Use in Incidents of Terror.

Rules of Engagement.

Response to Suicide/Homicide Bombers.

Patrol Level Response.

Operational Philosophy.

Endnotes.

7 MEDICAL MANAGEMENT OF SUICIDE TERRORISM (Shmuel C. Shapira and Leonard A. Cole).

Explosives.

Effects and Management of Suicide Terrorism.

Preparing for Suicide Terror Mass Casualty Incidents.

Mass Casualty Incident Management.

Pre-Hospital Management, Short Term.

Pre-Hospital Management, Prolonged Term.

Hospital Management of Suicide Terrorism.

Conclusion.

Endnotes.

Index.

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Ophir Falk is a Partner at the Naveh, Kantor, Even-Har law firm and a Research Fellow at the International Institute for Counter-Terrorism, where he has published numerous articles in the field. Mr. Falk has over a decade of experience in various security capacities and served as a risk consultant for the 2004 Olympic Games, where he took part in risk assessments for Olympic venues and critical national infrastructure.

Henry Morgenstern is the President of Security Solutions International, a company that has trained more than 700 federal, state, and local agencies to effectively confront the threat of terror and regularly takes groups of first responders to Israel to study homeland security. Mr. Morgenstern is a widely published author on the subject of suicide terror. He has offered expert commentary on terror-related issues for NBC, ABC, CBS, Fox, numerous radio stations, and Web broadcasts.

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  • Examines the US and Israeli experience dealing with the weapon of suicide terror

  • Provides the policy maker, first responder, and student of homeland security with a thorough understanding of suicide terrorism

  • Includes detailed case studies to help readers get into the minds of suicide terrorists in order to understand how to best prevent and confront these very dangerous threats

  • Has extensive interviews with US and Israeli personnel, allowing the text to speak in the language of those responsible for understanding, reventing, and confronting terrorism

  • Covers both the history of suicide terrorism to help readers understand and prepare for responding

  • Describes methods for confronting, anticipating, and preventing an attack in addition to detailed coverage of emergency response and management measures in the event of an attack

  • Uses eyewitness accounts to re-create the look and feel of actual terrorism incidents

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