LAW & POLICY
TERRORISM AND TERRORISTS
Advisories | Terrorism | Terrorists | Threat Assessments | Research Centers
Introduced by Prof. Donna Arzt, Syracuse University College of Law:
We are all terrorism specialists now. While it has become an overused clichι that "nothing will ever again be the same" after September 11, it is probably true that almost every academic legal professional will be affected by terrorism in one way or another, whether by increased security measures inside our local institutions, in conversations with students about reoriented career paths, or in new directions in our own scholarship or pro bono work. More...
Terrorists and Terrorist Groups
- 2001 Report on Foreign Terrorist Organizations (U.S. Department of State)
- al Qaida, a.k.a. al Qaeda, "the Base," the Islamic Army, the World Islamic Front for Jihad Against Jews and Crusaders, the Islamic Army for the Liberation of the Holy Places, the Usama Bin Laden Network, the Usama Bin Laden Organization, Islamic Salvation Foundation, The Group for the Preservation of the Holy Sites.
Description: Established by Usama Bin Ladin about 1990 to bring together Arabs who fought in Afghanistan against the Soviet invasion. Helped finance, recruit, transport, and train Sunni Islamic extremists for the Afghan resistance. Current goal is to "reestablish the Muslim State" throughout the world. Works with allied Islamic extremist groups to overthrow regimes it deems "non-Islamic" and remove Westerners from Muslim countries. Issued statement under banner of "The World Islamic Front for Jihad Against The Jews and Crusaders" in February 1998, saying it was the duty of all Muslims to kill US citizens, civilian or military, and their allies everywhere.
Activities: Conducted the bombings of the US Embassies in Nairobi, Kenya and Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania, on 7 August that killed at least 301 persons and injured more than 5,000 others. Claims to have shot down US helicopters and killed US servicemen in Somalia in 1993 and to have conducted three bombings targeted against the US troop presence in Aden, Yemen in December 1992. Linked to plans for attempted terrorist operations, including the assassination of the Pope during his visit to Manila in late1994; simultaneous bombings of the US and Israeli Embassies in Manila and other Asian capitals in late 1994; the midair bombing of a dozen US trans-Pacific flights in 1995; and a plan to kill President Clinton during a visit to the Philippines in early 1995. Continues to train, finance, and provide logistic support to terrorist groups that support these goals.
Strength: May have from several hundred to several thousand members. Also serves as the core of a loose umbrella organization that includes many Sunni Islamic extremist groups, including factions of the Egyptian Islamic Jihad, the Gama'at al-Islamiyya, and the Harakat ul-Mujahidin.
Location/Area of Operation: The Embassy bombings in Nairobi and Dar es Salaam underscore al-Qa'ida's global reach. Bin Ladin and his key lieutenants reside in Afghanistan, and the group maintains terrorist training camps there.
External Aid: Bin Ladin, son of a billionaire Saudi family, is said to have inherited around $300 million that he uses to finance the group. Al-Qa'ida also maintains money-making businesses, collects donations from like-minded supporters, and illicitly siphons funds from donations to Muslim charitable organizations.
- for more on al Qaida, see:
- Al Qaeda and the Global Reach of Terrorism (testimony of Oliver Revell, former FBI Associate Deputy Director for Investigations before the U.S. House Committee on International Relations, October 3, 2001)
- Al Qa'ida (International Policy Institute for Counter-Terrorism)
- Terrorist Group Profiles (Naval Postgraduate School)
- Most Wanted Terrorists (FBI - October 10, 2001)
- Wanted Terrorists (U.S. Department of State - Diplomatic Security Service)
- Usama Bin Laden
- Indictment of Usama Bin Laden for the August 7/98 bombings of the U.S. Embassies in Kenya and Tanzania (November 4, 1998)
- Transcripts from USA v. Usama Bin Laden et al. (U.S. Embassy bombings trial; February 5/01-July 10/01)
- Press release on the conviction of co-conspirators (United States Attorney, Southern District of New York, May 29, 2001)
- Statement on the sentencing of co-conspirators (Attorney General John Ashcroft, October 18, 2001)
- Responsibility for the Terrorist Atrocities in the United States - An Updated Account (UK Prime Minister's Office, November 14, 2001)
- Responsibility for the Terrorist Atrocities in the United States, 11 September 2001 (UK Prime Minister's Office, October 4, 2001)
- Current and Future Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) Proliferation Threats (Senate Governmental Affairs Committee, November 07, 2001)
- Germs, Toxins and Terror: The New Threat to America (Senate Judiciary Committee Subcommittee on Technology, Terrorism and Government Information, November 6, 2001)
- Terrorism: Near East Groups and State Sponsors 2001 (Congressional Research Service, September 10, 2001) [PDF]
- Threat of Terrorism to the United States (FBI Director Louis Freeh, May 10, 2001)
- Patterns of Global Terrorism 2000 (Counterterrorism Office, U.S. Department of State; April 2001)
- Assessment of the Increased Risk of Terrorist or Other Criminal Activity Associated with Posting Off-site Consequence Analysis Information on the Internet (U.S. Department of Justice; April 18, 2000) [PDF]
- Terrorism: The Current Threat (Ambassador Michael A. Sheehan, Coordinator for Counterterrorism, U.S. Department of State; February 10, 2000)
- Threat of Bioterrorism in America: Assessing the Adequacy of Federal Law Relating to Dangerous Biological Agents (House Committee on Commerce, Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, May 20, 1999)
- The Threat to the United States Posed By Terrorists (FBI Director Louis Freeh, February 4, 1999)
- Foreign Terrorists in America: Five Years After the World Trade Center (FBI; February 24, 1998)
- Terrorism in the United States (FBI; 1996-1999)
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