Suicide terrorists as rational actors
common people and even seems to be against the human nature. After decades of research Dr. Hofmann (Boston University) comes to the conclusion that suicide terrorism and the suicide terrorists follow rational paths of acting. He is not alone in the claim that terrorists in general are not irrational. Dr. Bakker (Leiden University) proved this assumption as well.If we take historical works e.g. "Der Märtyrer als Waffe" by Jesoeph Croitoru or works like "Die weltweite Gefahr" by Hans Frand and Kai Hirschmann or Professor Mark A.Gabriel (Al Azhar University, Kairo),the opinion of Marcus Tandecki, a retired German military intelligence Colonel,who also supported this point of view during an interview or even my own personal experience and discussions with extremists at the mosque at Al-Azhar University we get a clearer picture that indeed terrorist are rational actors.
It is important to test this assumption,because if terrorist were rational,we could understand the rationality their mindset might need to become a suicide terrorist and the understatement of the choosing of targets might help to secure future potential targets. Testing this assumption may also give practical hints to hinder radicalization, recruitment and training. This will help to provide higher security standarts, which is a clear and strong claim of societies around the globe and may give new points of view for the field social sciences, psychology, philosophy and theology, as well as a clearer picture of the mindset of a suicide terrorist.
In medieval times the "old man in the mountains" Hassan is-Sabbah founded the order of al-Hashishiyya. This "was agroup of strict religious shia muslims believing Islam bounds to kill its enemies and become a martyr....The warriors of this group used Hashish to exhilarate themselve before commiting their suicide assassinations."( Garbriel 2002,p134) These complex missions were planned carefully and the Assassins, were indoctrinated since childhood and were chosen carefully. One could say that they were drugged and therefore not rational but in the end the mission planning, training, targeting and the threat itself were the outcome of rationality. The useage of drugs served only to calm the perpretrators. All in all one has to say that the roots of suicide terrorism are based in rationality.
|Lod 1968 - First modern suicide terrorism threat.|
Here on the first case of modern suicide attacks we learned that the assassins followed a very own path of rationality.
|Prof.Dr. Edwin Bakker|
Prof.Hoffman (Georgetown University), director of security studies: "Terrorism is seen as a form of surrogate warfare"(Hoffman 2014 1:21) and later "They want us to act irrational". The meaning of this quotation is fundamental to this essay: Wars are complex and always rational on the technical base ( without concerning morality here) and so for this underlines Prof. Bakkers statement mentioned earlier.
Marcus Tandecki, a retired German military intelligence Colonel and chairman ASEE council, Hamburg points out at a personal interview that:"suicide attacks differ from rampages. In most cases motives were not only personal but follow an inner rational structure - not always understood by the rationality of common sense."( personal interview 05.10.2014).
One can claim that the death of innocent victims for a so called higher cause is not legitimated by the common sense or morality, but behind the threats there are standing methodes, mechanisms and objectives; therefore a form of rationality which differs from the rationality of the common human mindset.This may be the reason why these threats trigger terror in ourselves. Because of the above stated reasons I label the assumption "suicide terrorists are rational actors" true.