The Globalization of Martyrdom: Al Qaeda, Salafi Jihad, and the Diffusion of Suicide Attacks

The Globalization of Martyrdom: Al Qaeda, Salafi Jihad, and the Diffusion of Suicide Attacks

by Assaf Moghadam
ISBN-10:
1421400588
ISBN-13:
9781421400587
Pub. Date:
04/15/2011
Publisher:
Johns Hopkins University Press
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Overview

The Globalization of Martyrdom: Al Qaeda, Salafi Jihad, and the Diffusion of Suicide Attacks

This groundbreaking volume examines the rise and spread of suicide attacks over the past decade. Sorting through 1,270 terror strikes between 1981 and 2007, Assaf Moghadam attributes their recent proliferation to the mutually related ascendance of al Qaeda and its guiding ideology, Salafi Jihad, an extreme interpretation of Islam that rejects national boundaries and seeks to create a global Muslim community.

In exploring the roots of the extreme radicalization represented by Salafism, Moghadam finds many causes, including Western dominance in the Arab world, the physical diffusion of Salafi institutions and actors, and the element of opportunity created by the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. He uses individual examples from the Middle East, Southwest Asia, and Europe to show how the elite leaders of al Qaeda and affiliated groups and their foot soldiers interact with one another and how they garner support—and a growing number of converts and attackers—from the Muslim community. Based on over a decade of empirical research and a critical examination of existing thought on suicide attacks, Moghadam distinguishes the key characteristics separating globalized suicide strikes from the traditional, localized pattern that previously prevailed.

This unflinching analysis provides new information about the relationship between ideology and suicide attacks and recommends policies focused on containing Salafi Jihadism.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781421400587
Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press
Publication date: 04/15/2011
Pages: 360
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.90(d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix

List of Acronyms xiii

Introduction 1

1 The Global Proliferation of Suicide Missions 38

2 Al Qaeda and the Primacy of Suicide Attacks 62

3 Salafi Jihad and the Veneration of Martyrdom 94

4 From Al Qaeda to Global Jihad 127

5 Suicide Missions from Afghanistan to Uzbekistan 152

6 The United Kingdom and the 7/7 Bombings 193

7 The Rise of Suicide Attacks in Iraq 222

Conclusion 251

Appendix. Ideological Affiliation of Groups That Have Conducted Suicide Attacks from 1981 to 2007 269

Notes 277

Bibliography 311

Index 335

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