Category Archives: jihad

Suicide Missions as Witnessing: From Self-Immolation to Assassination and Mass Strike

Michael Roberts ….. This article appeared first in Studies in Conflict and Terrorism, 2007, vol. 30:  857-88.with the titleSuicide Missions as Witnessing: Expansions, Contrasts” and is reproduced here with its original American English spelling. The re-working of this article was seen to by Ms Nadeeka Paththuwaarachchi of Battaramulla. The pictorial images are embellishments that were not part of the original essay. I have also added highlighting emphasis in orange as well as a few hyperlinks to other standard sources of information. The bibliographical references are within the End Notes as in the original format.

ABSTRACT: Studies of suicide missions usually focus solely on attacks. They also have highlighted the performative character of suicide missions as acts of witness. By extending surveys to suicidal acts that embrace no-escape attacks, theatrical assassination, defensive suicide, and suicidal protest, one gains further insight into the motivations of individuals and organizations. Illustrative studies, notably the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi and Sadat as well as Tamil Tiger operations, generate a typology that underlines the benefits of such extensions. The Japanese and Tamil contexts reveal the profound differences in readings of sacrificial acts of atonement or punishment by local constituencies. Norman Morrison in Washington in 1965 and Jan Palach in Prague in 1969 did not have such beneficial settings and the immediate ramifications of their protest action were limited. Morrison’s story highlights the significance of a societal context of individuated rationalism as opposed, say, to the “pyramidical corporatism” encouraging martyrdom operations in the Islamic world.

Jan Palach…19 Jan. 1969 Nathuram Godse vs Mahatma Gandhi .. 30 Jan 1948

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An Ode in the Face of The Terrorist Liberation-Fighter

  Jane Russell

“[This poem was presented] a small pamphlet called “Ganga” published in Colombo in 1978: it was aimed at the boasting men of violence everywhere – the Warriors of Terror whom in the guise of Freedom Fighters were inflicting further violence on already violated communities:

To Aloysius-Ludovico (The Terrorist)

I am tired of hearing you sing
the anthems of Freedom and War…
How joyously you crack the whip
and bellow out the tune above the drums!
But the faces of my friends haunt me
in the mornings when I see Death’s Armada
With its pirate’s flag of torture trailing….
what does it matter, your Freedom?
They are dying, my friends and their children…

Nalliah Thayabharan, thank you for reminding me of this poem written in despair in Colombo 30+ years ago. A whole generation has grown up since then but the same (better) poem is probably being written today in Syria by some unknown idealist…..as the song goes “When will we ever learn?”

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Remembering 9/11: Two Australian Tales in 2017

ONE = Mary Lloyd: “The Australian artist who captured the horror of 9/11 on film,” 11 September 2017

Chris Hopewell heard the sound of the first plane collide with the World Trade Centre on September 11, 2001, but it was his cats running in circles that tipped him off that something disastrous had happened. After the Australian artist opened his curtains and went onto the balcony of his Williamsburg apartment, he saw the damage that had been done to the tower, but had no idea what had caused it.

Pic by Reuters- Sara K Schwittek

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Hot Press: Young Nizamdeen of Lanka arrested on Terrorism Charges in Sydney

I = News Item in NewsCom.au, 31 August 2018, entitled “Sydney man charged with terror offences”

A SRI Lankan man working at a Sydney university has been charged over a document that police allege contained plans for terrorist attacks. Mohamed Kamer Nilar Nizamdeen was arrested by counter-terrorism officers at the University of NSW in Kensington on Thursday. It followed a tip-off from a worker at the university, who police said found a notebook that allegedly named several locations and individuals as “potential targets”. “They are symbolic locations within Sydney,” Detective Acting Superintendent Mick Sheehy told reporters on Friday.

Mohamed Nizamdeen was employed by the University of New South Wales.Picture: FacebookSource:Supplied

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Awful Events in July ’83: Will We Ever Learn

Harim Peiris, in Daily News, 23 July 2018, where the title reads “‘Never again’: The enduring lesson of July 1983, after 35 years” …. with highlights being the work of The Editor, Thuppahi

July 23 marked the 35th anniversary of one of post-independent Sri Lanka’s darkest chapters, the July 1983 pogrom against Tamil civilians throughout the country. The pogrom was sparked by an ambush of an Army patrol in Jaffna, by the LTTE, then one of several militant groups operating in the North, in which the entire platoon of 13 soldiers was wiped out.

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Germany: Humanist Fundamentalism saves Al-Qaeda Fundamentalist from Deportation


Soeren Kern, item from The Gatestone Institute , 18 April 2018, …. where the title is Germany’s Dysfunctional Deportation System”

  • Aidoudi’s asylum request was rejected in 2007 after allegations surfaced that he had undergone military training at an al-Qaeda jihadi camp in Afghanistan between 1999 and 2000. During his training, he had allegedly worked as a bodyguard for Osama bin-Laden.
  • The government in North Rhine-Westphalia confirmed that for years Aidoudi had been receiving €1,168 ($1,400) each month in welfare and child support payments.
  • “Salafists such as Sami A. have no business in Germany and should be deported. Germany should not be a retirement retreat for jihadists.” — Alexander Dobrindt, Member of the German Bundestag.
  • Sami Aidoudi (left) lived in Germany since 1997, until he was deported to his homeland of Tunisia on July 13, 2018. He is alleged to have undergone military training at an al-Qaeda jihadi camp in Afghanistan between 1999 and 2000. He had allegedly worked as a bodyguard for Osama bin-Laden (right) during his training. (Image sources: Aidoudi – SpiegelTV video screenshot; Bin Laden – Wikimedia Commons)

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Does Terrorism Work? The Palestinian Story, 1939-47

Bruce Hoffman

ABSTRACT: Does terrorism work? Its targets and victims steadfastly maintain that it does not; its practitioners and apologists that it does. Scholars and analysts are divided. But, if terrorism is as ineffective as many claim, why has it persisted for at least the past two millennia and indeed become an increasingly popular means of violent political expression in the twenty-first century? Using the Jewish terrorist campaign against the British in Palestine during the 1940s, this article attempts to shed light on this question.

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