Accession Number : ADA493753


Title :   CTC Sentinel. Volume 2, Issue 1, January 2009. Al-Qa'ida's Five Aspects of Power


Descriptive Note : Journal


Corporate Author : MILITARY ACADEMY WEST POINT NY COMBATING TERRORISM CENTER


Full Text : https://apps.dtic.mil/dtic/tr/fulltext/u2/a493753.pdf


Report Date : Jan 2009


Pagination or Media Count : 29


Abstract : Seven and a half years after 9/11, the global community faces a resilient and dangerous al-Qa'ida. Despite immense efforts to understand al-Qa'ida, informed analysts disagree widely over its actual strength. Some consider the group a visceral and literal threat to Western civilization. Others proclaim the organization is irrelevant given the isolation of its senior leaders in Pakistan's Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA). Finally, some point to al-Qa'ida's failure to prosecute meaningful attacks in the United States since 9/11, and the absence of successful large attacks in the West since the London bombings in 2005, as evidence of the organization's decline. These metrics are important, but they are incomplete and when assessed in isolation lead to false conclusions. Any assessment of al-Qa'ida must consider al-Qa'ida's goals and a variety of metrics that capture all aspects of the organization's power. This article examines al-Qa'ida across five factors that encompass all aspects of the group's power: (1) the power to destroy; (2) the power to inspire; (3) the power to humiliate; (4) the power to command; and (5) the power to unify. These aspects of power are not unique to al-Qa'ida, but they are particularly relevant for a terrorist organization with global ambitions and reach.


Descriptors :   *TERRORISTS , *THREAT EVALUATION , *TERRORISM , *GLOBAL , ORGANIZATIONS , CASE STUDIES , METRICS , MILITARY PUBLICATIONS , PAKISTAN , PERIODICALS , IRAQ , BOMBING , SINGAPORE


Subject Categories : Unconventional Warfare


Distribution Statement : APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE