The Logic of Terrorism essay

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1.1 Introduction

The involvement of rebellious and extremist individuals in criminal activity is an issue that has been of great concern in the global world for quite a long period of time. In the current years, observations made have claimed that relationship between international terrorists and criminals are increasing at an alarming rate. If this is proven right, extended links between criminal and terrorists system could heighten various countries’ vulnerability to be invaded by terrorist groups with improved criminal abilities and financial resources. An extended range of collective criminal and terrorist activity would also have an impact on the overall global economy, which ruins foreign interaction, deflating licit international trade and promotion of effective governance and the rule of law (Barak, 1998).

Intimidation and threats that are caused by a crime-terrorism may be predominantly challenging, as the degree and nature of their relationship are thought to vary broadly and limited unreliable evidence basically serves as the source for present understanding of the crisis. The global world’s effort to contest the relationship between crime and terrorism are a rift of broader procedural responses to international crime global crime individually.  While the global world has implemented various strategies and programs intended to battle international terrorism and global crime differently, limited efforts accentuates particularly on addressing the convergence of the two (Buijs, 2001). The efforts that are in existence mainly heighten on:

  • Human smuggling and furtive terrorist travel
  • Finance laundering and financing of the terrorists
  • Narco-terrorism relations involving drug traffickers and the terrorists (Barak, 1998).

Countless of these efforts, together with the conception of the Human Smuggling and Trafficking Center, the reformation of the Treasury Department’s Office of  Terrorism and Financial Intelligence, and the prolonged extraterritorial jurisdiction authority to examine and put to trial global Narco-terrorism cases, happened in reaction to the attacks that happened in September 11, 2001 in USA. Immediately the attacks occurred, both the USA and the entire global world assumed an improved interest in preparation to the potential convergence of criminal and terrorist invaders and activities (Clutterbuck, 1986).

The country played a major role in enhancing such efforts, being in hold of about eight hearings especially on some facet of criminal-terrorist connections between the year 2000 and 2005. Statutory laws and regulations regarding the battle against international crime have been elongated and amended depending on the nature and type of crime committed.  In the modern time, some political analysts have discovered a sequence of potentially distressing trends that has accelerated the growth of relationships between terrorists and international crime groups. Primarily, criminal consortium seems to be increasing in size, scope and objective (Clutterbuck, 1995)

 The global world has expanded its international reach while the principal developments in technology, trade and the financial industry have offered them with prospective chances to explore vulnerabilities in rising criminal sectors, such as the cybercrime, fraud on credit cards, and also trades focused on money laundering. On the other hand, the criminal groups have also tailored their own structure and frame-work to a globalised future.  Most of them preserve an international footprint and a flexible and a set-up membership roaster that is capable of acclimatizing to the new market gaps and institute a more flexible link with external individuals. It also appears that the nature and type of activities handled by the terrorist organizations have recently changed. Presently, terrorists that mostly threaten USA security are propagated more by the religion rather than being motivated by ethnicity. Broadly enough, terrorists seems to become more rigid to financial annihilation, and this may be caused by both sustained sponsorship from the state or the support and entrepreneurial growth into criminal actions. If these two are combined, the trends generated may imply an augment in geographical overlapping of operations enhancing an interaction between criminals and terrorists. The trends may also imply expansion in the opportunity for transition from one group to the other.  The key places where the interaction is amplified, includes, prisons, the cyberspace especially on online opportunities assumed to be social networking (Paul & Martin, 2009).

Other circumstances that may propagate terrorism include, ungoverned places, for instance areas that are beset by prevalent corruption, conflict or the post conflict chaos where legal governance has to take charge. Also to be included, are the areas near the border, free market zones and the urban metropolitan cities where all sort of law related cases prevails. An overlap may also be enhanced by the participation of the unfriendly governments and criminal states that may take sponsorship or endorse the evils sustained by terrorists’ activity. Most researchers have also considered that relationship or the overlap in activities amid of terrorists groups and the drug trafficking should be an area that should be accentuated on. As it has been reported by the U.S.A Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), most of the foreign terrorists organizations that have been designated have increased from about 14 groups to 18 groups in 2003 and 2008 respectively (Clutterbuck, 1986). One of the latest drug-terrorism links may be propping up in the transit of hub of West Africa, where suspected   Latin American drug traffickers have joined forces with the Al Qaeda associates to smuggle cocaine to Europe.  Other criminal area of potentially sensitive terrorist’s involvement entails money laundering, human smuggling, extortion, abduction and trivial crimes. As some analysts ascertains, criminal – terrorists’ relations are the consequence of joint opportunities for the financial gain. Such links may be temporal in order to achieve some short term goals of both the terrorists and the criminal organizations. This may however not be established into a fully grown partnership (Rhodes, 2000).

 On the other hand, such relations may be a resultant of a terrorist group’s structural evolution into a criminal group, or either into a terrorist group that relies on the criminal gains for financial support. It has also been discovered the financial support that the terrorists receive from the criminal organizations is very systemic and seems to follow a certain strategy before being advanced to the targeted individuals or group. As we shall see from the later chapters, terrorism and organized crimes is regarded as a business enterprise (Rhodes, 2000). As indicated from the below figure, the arrows shows where the help emerges from to where it’s directed to.

Analysts, on the other hand, question the pervasiveness and degree of illegitimate cooperation amid of criminal bodies and terrorist groups. Whilst, collaboration may be relatively ordinary in certain instances, such as between the terrorists groups and the drug traffickers, analyst tends to differ about whether criminal and terrorist relation occurs in other state of affairs. Due to permutation of incentives and deterrents for criminal and terrorist bodies to partner, many argue that relation is slightly more as compared to a short-term marriage of expediency that, in most instances, will not inflate beyond  near term short-lived business ties. Those in support of this theory also illuminate some light to discrete and autonomous cells of aggressive Islamists as relevant examples of bodies that are deemed to propagate intermittent criminal activity to financially endorse terrorism associated operations (Rhodes, 2000).

From a report that was released by the National Intelligence Council In December 2004, it was largely based on a study released by non-governmental experts from the entire world and its contents endorsed that cooperation amid of terrorists and criminals remains principally as a matter of business. As highlighted from the research proposal, this research provides a primer on the relationship r between organized crime and terrorism and other related activities therein. It evaluates on the potential incentives and deterrents for relation between the terrorists and the criminal organizations, how they vary in the degree of crime and terrorism links, and they type of criminal activities they indulge in and the impacts these creates in the global world. The study also illuminated some light on terrorism and in detail expound criminology’s empirical and theoretical domain (Rhodes, 2000). The entire study therein focused on three research questions;

First, whether there is a direct or an absolute relationship between organized crime and terrorism? Second, which types of organized crime can easily go together with which variants of terrorism? And which types are less compatible? The last but not the least that the study seeks to ascertain is whether all organized crime strictly centered on profit-making or are there exceptions where certain activities serve to acquire political spoils or gains?


International efforts to battle the relationship between crime and terrorism are a rift of broader policy responses to international crime and terrorism individually.  While lots of strategies and programs are designed to battle international crime and terrorism differently, slight efforts focus particularly on concentrating on the convergence of the two. The efforts that do exist mainly focus on human smuggling and furtive terrorist travel, money laundering and terrorist financing , and lastly narcoterrorism links between drug traffickers and the terrorists (Dobbelaar & Haarman, 2005). Various sections explore fundamental rationale for criminal and terrorist group affiliation as well as the aspects that may enhance the evolution or the transition of a criminal or the terrorist group into the other. Organizations intending to survive, aiming to extend their achievement, and looking forward into developing a more substantive skills and tactics, or simply necessitates external assistance for a particular one-time service may reach out to other bodies for their help and expertise, even though such bodies have varied philosophical objectives. Relationship can serve as a force amplifier for both criminal and terrorist groups, reinforcing their potential, intensifying their infrastructure, and escalating their wealth (Mead & George, 1934).

However, such affiliations are also weighed down with immense risk to the two types of bodies. Collaborative arrangements can at some other times guide one into flourishing alliances, but they can also lead one into experiencing some distrust about something, competition and opportunities for prevalence to be exploited. Any information regarding such affiliation may result to a heightened surveillance and analysis from the government agencies that otherwise may not devote resources and any diverted attention to the individual organizations and related activities. General incentives for criminal and terrorist organizations to partner involves financial viability, geographic viability, individual protection, logistical sustainability, maintenance of  jointly exclusive criminal actions and the preface of the third parties to enhance organizations goals, amongst others. At some other times, the criminal activities propagated by terrorists may be perceived to be an extension of a group’s ideological tenets (Mead & George, 1934).

In the recent history of terrorism there has been a stalemate in academia, public discourse and legal policy to define terrorism. Due to this aspect of stalemate in crafting a widely acknowledged definition of terrorism, it is fundamental to start with a sound theoretical and conceptual basis of the construct. An essential task in accomplishing this is to separate or differentiate terrorism from other (related) forms of domestic insecurities. This will be chief purpose of this study. By deconstructing terrorism and contrasting   it to linked phenomena, a broader base is enhanced to further define terrorism and eventually generate a more just normative structure to thwart unwanted harm and enhance a more pronounceable security from terrorist activity. The initial step in this ‘process of isolation’ will be to look at the normative framing of terrorism. The question herein is whether terrorism itself can be classified as a form of crime? After this has been examined the focus will again shift to relate terrorism and consequently isolate terrorism from equivalent concepts (Mead & George, 1934).

Most of analysts have ascertained that terrorism is by nature equivalent to the concepts of organized crime and political violence since most of them have a historical background of being organized and politically driven by terrorism (Muncie and McLaughlin, 2002). Regardless of the apparent overlaps, there are also significant conceptual dissimilarities. The intention is, thus, to explore these disparities and commonalities in order to segregate terrorism from organized crime and political violence. In order to have a better understanding, we will start first of all by giving an analysis on the normative standing of terrorism as a concept, before making a move to the to the core of the research in the chapters thereafter. Thereafter, the study unraveled the affiliated link between terrorism and organized crime, by deconstructing the two concepts and comparing the different aspects that both concepts comprise of.

Terrorism: a form of crime?

It is very important to first of all address the question: is terrorism itself a form of crime? After which now we can discuss on the relation and the disparities amid of terrorism, political violence and (organized) crime. In general terms, crime may be perceived as a synonym to   ‘breaking the law’, and this applies to terrorism. Most of us perceive terrorism as an act that entails causing instinctive and illegal psychological and bodily harm. Defining the term   terrorism thus as a form of crime possibly seems palpable to the point of triviality, but some extra concept should be added to this proclamation to appreciate the complexity adjoining it. In order to comprehensively understand this complexity, it’s essential to first define what crime entails. The is a global explanation or definition of the term ‘crime’, and in the ordinary context the ideology on what people and the society considers to be a crime is varied depending on the media perception and  the religious conviction (Muncie and McLaughlin, 2002).

Thus, in the modern-day criminological literature, the conceptualization of an act is perceived to be dependent on the acts itself, the resultant end of the act, and the society/person(s) defining the concept. The definition is mostly carried out by first codifying particular behaviors or acts, and their impacts into laws. Simply, criminologists affirm that crime is an act that is socially built. In having a better clarification on the subjective scope of the construct of crime, we shall use an example:

ü    Rape in marriage – raping someone’s wife is an act that was never classified under the criminal act for a very long of time. Even though in the modern times, it is not convincing to be classified as a crime in most of the countries and in this regard, on global perspective the act is still goes unpunished. Other forms of acts related to rape in marriage are adultery and homosexuality. The two are strictly prosecuted in some countries and may even attracted a death penalty to the convicted, while as the same acts are perceived normal and have not yet been put under the bracket of  criminology (Muncie and McLaughlin, 2002).

Therefore, there are two varied ways in which crime can be viewed. The first being any act that has been forbidden by the statute can fall under a crime (black letter law) (Muncie and McLaughlin, 2002). The definitions as mentioned earlier may vary depending on the resources used and the scope, nature and type of crime committed.  For instance, from the Encyclopedia Britannica, a crime: ‘intentional commission of an act usually deemed socially harmful and or dangerous and specifically defined, prohibited and punishable under the criminal law’. This definition is very narrow as it only entails acts that have been codified, or only those that are defined by the statutory laws and does not include acts as stipulated under the common law.  The second way through which crime has been conceptualized takes a deeper approach and entails having a view at socially (Un) acceptable conduct (Muncie and McLaughlin, 2002).

 The acts that have been stipulated under this bracket involve acts that are codified or those defined by the statutory laws. This also entails the prohibited acts that are rarely ever punished at all due to the influence of the public judgment. In an international level, there is a good example of a crime that is codified, and it is agreed upon by the entire society that is it should not at any time be subjected to any form of punishment, for instance public drunkenness.  According to the second approach on definition of crime, it gives room for bargain on the law and criminologists rarely apply the approach. However, it should be noted that, this form of approach seems to be a more valid in determining what crime is and what it entails, since it assumes all the necessary aspects of construction as opposed to the first approach (Schmid and Jongman, 1988)

 The above described complexity also relates to terrorism, and the question that was earlier posed still holds: is terrorism a form of crime? When we talk of terrorist acts, as Schmid (2004) asserts that a constricted definition of terrorism that focuses on the mala per se crimes is enviable, since there is a prevalent international consent about the latter. Terrorism can be perceived as an extensive concept involving a diversity of facts ranging from the conscription of followers to ‘core’ acts such as, bombings. In a manipulative evaluation, Schmid and Jongman (1988) they discovered a variety of definitions of the term terrorism which even entails very many different acts that are linked to terrorism. In this study, the opinion brought forward by schmid has been on the forefront in this study- highlighting mainly on the mala per se crimes.

Based on the fact that this study aimed at providing a rational take on terrorism as an international crime, relays to the fact that most of the international institutions accentuates on the crimes linked with terrorism. Thus, in this study terrorism is well thought-out to lay criminal aspect because of the rule of law within the global world and the codification of particular acts and organizations as terrorism (Schmid and Jongman, 1988).

Considering the above that have been discussed at length, it can therefore be established that terrorist can be classified as criminal. Having mentioned this, we can then turn our focus in what sense does terrorism relate to political violence and organized crime. As mentioned from the introductory part, terrorism can be considered to be closely related to or can be contrasted to varied types of crimes or even subcategories of them (Makarenko, 2003; Deflem, 2004; Munice, 2002; Crenshaw, 1998). In the event of criminological research, crimes can be classified into various groups and types of crimes. The reason as to why this has to be done is to give crime more analysis since there are very many types of crimes that need to be differentiated from each other. Distinction can be arrived at by cross examining criminal law, where according to the legislation; crimes are differentiated on the bases of the nature of crime committed (Ruller et al, 2001). 


(Ibrahim’s D- Company)

Interaction between terrorists groups and the transnational criminal entities shares no single model of interaction. However, Detection conceptual model for terrorist activities can be presented as below:

Detection conceptual model for terrorist activities was developed by Alex P. Schmid.

 Relationship between these two comparables can take several forms, based on the different actors’, varying incentives, objectives and challenges. Numerous organizational variables factors in decisions to partner, involving the urge for sustainability and the growth of the organization, measured along with long-term strategic contemplations. At certain times, a terrorist group’s leaders may overlook and direct their lower-level members to look out and expand criminal relations and activities (Makarenko, 2003; Deflem, 2004; Munice, 2002; Crenshaw, 1998).

In circumstances where the lower-level members are not under any supervision and are not philosophically associated with the core leadership ideology, criminal-terrorist alignments may develop that are not necessarily condoned by the entire terrorist group. On the same note, quality decision making may also occur in criminal organizations. Analyst extensively agrees on one accord that links amid of the terrorist groups and the international crime groups, including the use of general tactics, are very difficult to discover and or to confirm. The scale and nature of their cooperation also differs extensively. Inadequate anecdotal evidence extensively dependent on the present understanding of criminal –terrorist connections, while several cases may be widely narrated, it has been proven that crime-terrorism relation really exists. It becomes vividly unclear, whether the known cases are indicative of a larger problem, an emerging trend, or even an isolated observation (Makarenko, 2003).

Full Convergence/Fusion of Crime and Terrorist Organizations:

          (Dawood Ibrahim’s D-Company)

Over a given period of time, a solely criminal group may change, assuming political goals and new operational objectives. The said organizations can make alliances with subsisting terrorist organizations or with the foreign governments to help attain their strategic objectives.  The organizations can also implement and propagate terrorist attacks without any help from the external forces, resulting in the group being labeled as a terrorist organization. The criminal consortiums frequently are in possession of   required expertise that is required in engaging to terrorists acts. If the target seems difficult for them to strike, they may opt to employ specialists who will be involved in conducting surveillance, transferring money, purchase of weapons, making bombs and also elimination of their immediate rivals. A criminal organization has a capability of transferring its apparatus towards politically incentive ends. The resulting end of this is a really evolved criminal- turned –terrorist group, or a criminal –terrorist organization that can be described as being ‘fused’.  The ‘fused’ organization seeks out to come up with ties that have similar ideological   movements (Morrison, 2006).

Utilization of criminal skills for terrorist’s acts heightens concerns amid of some experts that terrorists may employ criminals as they have a believe that they posses higher skills than those that are non-criminals. A criminal’s involvement in any terrorists operation, however, raises eye brows from the law enforcement agencies and also from the politicians. Moreover, a high concentration on terrorist attacks could take away a lot of resources from the criminal accomplishments, fabricating out some disappointment and absconding among the members who had purposely joined for financial reasons. Dawood Ibrahim’s D-Company, comprising of 5,000 member criminal consortium is established in Pakistan, India and the United Arab Emirates. The company gives a better example of a criminal –terrorism “fusion” model (Morrison, 2006).

The U.S Department of Treasury allocated Ibrahim as a specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT), and the designation was carried out under Executive Order 13224 in the month of October 2003. After a couple of three years, that is, in year 2006, the same person was also delegated by President George W. Bush together with his D-company organization. He was given a significant position to oversee the foreign Narcotics trafficker, under the Foreign Narcotics Kingpin Designation Act (hereafter “Kingpin Act”). After being given the said task, reports have been made concerning the success of the company in solving criminal activities.  The criminal acts involves but not limited to; extortion, smuggling, traffic of narcotics and contract killing. Moreover, the organization has also been involved in infiltrating the Indian Film making industry, extorting producers, massacring directors, disseminating movies and pirating films. Ibrahim began working as a criminal specialist in Bombay, India. He first worked as a low-level smuggler in the early 1970’s and he later graduated to being a leader of a poly-crime syndicate. He succeeded in forming a going concern criminal entity all throughout the 1980’s and became a radical in the 1990’s, falsifying relationships with the Islamists. His allies included Lashkar-e-Tayyiba and Al Qaeda. D- Company was fully fledged into being a criminal-terrorist group after Babri Mosque in Uttar, Pradesh, India was destroyed, in December 1992, where consequent riots led to mass killing of Muslims. Agitated by the merciless killing of the Muslim community and believing that Indian government had contributed towards the killing, Ibrahim decided to avenge. In response to the retaliation of Ibrahim towards the Indian government and through a heretofore secular organization with a good number of Hindu members, the organization intervened in order to protect the voiceless Indians (Fernández-Montalvo, Echeburúa   & Amor 2005).

The D-company headed by Ibrahim had to seek out for some help from Pakistan government’s intelligence branch, the Inter-Services Intelligence agency (ISI), and it succeeded in launching a sequence of bomb attacks on March 12, 1993, where, 257 people lost their lives.  The attacks led to the D-company headquarters being moved to Karachi, Pakistan. It was in Pakistan that D-Company is believed to have strengthened its strategic alliance with the ISI and it also formed links to Lashkar-e-Tayyiba (LeT).  The later had been delegated by the USA to function as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) during the year, 2001. Developing new links with LeT meant a new course of action by the D- Company.  It financed the company’s activities and it also used in enticing recruits into joining LeT training camps, and in turn LeT operatives were given an opportunity to use smuggling routes and contacts. According to press accounts, they reported that Ibrahim’s could be the one that had provided a boat to the 10 terrorists who massacred 173 people in Mumbai around the month of November 2008. The USA government also contends that the D- Company shares a common basis with the Al Qaeda and also shares the smuggling routes together with the terrorists group. In this case, Ibrahim’s name appears under a list of individuals that are associated with the Al Qaeda. D-Company seeming to shift from being a profit- criminal syndicate into a fusion of crime –terror organization had changed its structural framework under which it had been established for. Many of the Hindu Membership deserted the group after the bombing that took place in the year, 1993 and some of them formed a more competitive gang (Fernández-Montalvo, Echeburúa   & Amor 2005).

Analysts believe that, as much as the company has been reported to be collaborating with the LeT and the Al Qaeda, the more it becomes secular oriented and at the end of it all it might converge with the terrorist groups. Regardless of all the allegations made against the D- Company, its own interest still endeavors, its strong financial base is still sustained, and its reported link with LeT and Al Qaeda, offers a potential threat to  US  welfares  in South Asia. This is an idea that has been forward by the security expert evaluators. If Abraham lends his criminal skills and networks to such terrorists groups, then he has the ability of smuggling terrorists even at international level, illegal trading in weapons and drugs, regulating extortion and safeguarding rackets and legalizing the illegally acquired proceeds, without leaving the abuse of the traditional value transfer methods, like the hawala. Providing the terrorist groups with financial support, contacts and network, logical support will only heighten their potential and their stay in terrorism actions (Fernández-Montalvo, Echeburúa   & Amor 2005).  


It is evident that not much has been previously done in regard to the interest of this paper. Issues of terrorism and organized crime not been broadly researched and therefore most of the information available is only found with the legal agents that have the authority and capacity to undertake investigations in terrorism and organized crimes. Researchers have deemed investigations into this topic dangerous and one that is accompanied by limited information. Those with the information at many times do not release it owing to matters of national security while others do not have the authority to do. The context that this paper is based upon is provided by the introduction as well as the review of the required and necessary literature to facilitate understanding what the researcher is working on. This research sets its aspects on the daily undertakings characteristic to the concerns of terrorism and organized crimes.

Secondary data provided the better part of information that constituted the analysis and findings in this paper. However, aspects of primary data are also evident. This was meant to complement the loop holes and voids that were characteristic of the secondary data. Some of the data that could not be captured by the use of secondary means called for the utilization of primary data, so as to lead to the compilation of necessary data that would treat best the interest of the paper. The data collected, compiled and analyzed was subjected to the subject matter of this paper in order to draw the required relationships as earlier identified. In the use of primary data, samples were drawn and subjected to a process that would lead to the collection of the required data (Dobbelaar & Haarman, 2005).  


In the light that this paper addresses terrorism and organized crime, a qualitative approach of data gathering technique was used in the areas of interest to the researcher. As earlier pointed out, both secondary data complemented by primary data was collected to facilitate the realization of the goal of the paper. Secondary data was obtained from secondary sources that the researcher considered relevant to the topic of study. These included and not limited to previously done research, publicized journals of crime and terrorism, Departments of Defense reports, Foreign Affairs reports, Studies of conflict and acts of terrorism Political papers as well as books and other materials that provided relevant information (Dobbelaar & Haarman, 2005).

Primary data was obtained through various ways. Among them, semi-structured data collection methods, scenario observation and interviews. Interviews and scenario observation constituted the better part of the primary data gathering procedures due to the simplicity associated with it in administering. The interviews were randomly administered to different individuals and groups across the agents of interest in regard to terrorism and organized crime issues as earlier mentioned.  These primary data collection methods targeted the security forces that are in one way or another charged with duties and responsibilities that pertain to terrorism and organized crime. The methods of collecting primary data were applied across the each of the agents that were willing and able to provide information that this paper deemed crucial to its interests, given the purpose of the researcher to undertake this kind of research. The criteria of choosing who to interview was simple, thus avoiding further complications in line to the interests of the paper. The aim here was for the researcher to obtain necessary information that properly treats the topic of study and the variables identified therein (Dobbelaar & Haarman, 2005).

The researcher sought to gather information from all sectors of the country that are linked to dealing with terrorism and organized crimes. Individuals, groups, business enterprises, Government departments among all the agents and primary sources formed the fundamental component of where primary data would emerge from. Among the areas that the researcher visited included and not limited to households, business enterprises, Government offices, Security  departments and libraries. Respondents (in gathering primary data) were randomly selected regardless of their ethnicity, background or state. The minimum qualifying age for the respondents was 15 to 80 years but the sex did not matter (Dobbelaar & Haarman, 2005).

Drawing of the Study Sample

Selection of the study area - Terrorism and organized crimes provided the baseline of the study area. This acts as the representation of the larger network of such activities since the topic cannot be explored outside boundaries out of reach of the researcher in line with what the topic of study seeks to assert. This is therefore confined to a given boundary

Selecting the sample – All the earlier identified players in this paper were considered potential sample for the purposes of this dissertation. However, not all agents or categories were considered because of time and resources constraints. The sample therefore constituted of the players that the researcher deemed crucial and as well were available, willing and able to part in the research process. It is from this population that all the data required was sought from. This sample was made up of the above identified groups from all the mentioned areas of interest. Uniformity was aimed at acquiring valid results, not only for the data gathered but also for valid findings of the study.

Sampling terrorism and organized crime – Interviews were administered to the various departments and agents that are directly or indirectly linked to acts of terrorism as well as those of organized crime. In this case, the respondents were the representatives of the different arms that deal with these acts as recognized by law and the constitution (Barak, 1998).

Responses and narrations were recorded for ease in taking in correct information. The data gathering procedure brought together the various and different departments of the security that constitute curbing terrorism and organized crime. Respondents expressed variant views and opinions over this matter. Secondary data related to this was obtained from the following sources where a rating of 1 to 5 was applied for each source in determining its relevance (Barak, 1998).




Previously done research


Publicized journals of crime and terrorism


Departments of Defense reports


Foreign Affairs reports


Studies of conflict and acts of terrorism


Political papers as well as books and other materials that provided relevant information.


Interviews on the other hand brought forward responses that were diverse, dynamic and unique to each respondent. Presented below is an interview-response primary data presentation. It is important to that the data therein has been harmonized from all the responses gathered in favor of the topic of study. These responses were also characteristic of the various respondents that took part in the research rather than from one respondent. This was done in order to present more valid data that would consequently lead to the assertion of valid results. From there, valid inferences could be made. This relationship is presented below:


Interview Questions

Harmonized Responses

What pushes through terrorism and organized crimes?

  • Efficiency of players
  • Insecurity
  • Sources of funding
  • Simplicity of players and service
  • Stability of service resulting from the united organized groups

What is terrorism and organized crimes meant for?

The two activities have had their history and they have taken deep roots over time. Their purpose is varied from mere personal interests to political desires, while in greater perspective they are undertaken in order to accumulate power and authority over given people, regions or countries. They have been fully integrated into the economical context of many countries although counter-measures have been put in place to account for that.

What is the future of terrorism and organized crimes?

World War III

How is terrorism and organized crimes financed?


  • Sending and Receiving money
  • Meeting  bills for the players
  • Purchasing goods from terrorism and organized crimes related parties
  • Payment of illegal fees
  • Received loans
  • Hard cash
  • Savings

What are the major activities that constitute terrorism and organized crimes?

Kidnappings, Bank robberies, Murders, Money extortions, Bombings, Assassinations

Is there a direct or absolute relationship between organized crime and terrorism?


Absolutely. Terrorism is the actual use or threat to use violence for political or criminal motives (Gilbert 2006). Before this is achieved prior plans must be made. Since terrorism in itself is an organized crime, a link between the two is absolutely evident.

Which types of organized crime can easily go together with which variants of terrorism? And which types are less compatible?

Kidnappings, Bank robberies, Murders, Money extortions, Bombings, Assassinations. There is a strong relationship between terrorism and organized crime and the process to refute that is really minute, thus most of terrorism activities are actually compatible to organized crimes.

Is all organized crime strictly centered on profit-making or are there exceptions where certain activities serve to acquire political spoils or gains?


No. The motive behind crime may not always be aimed at profit making. Politics may actually play a big role in the direction that terrorism and organized crimes take. As earlier mentioned, their purpose is varied from mere personal interests to political desires, while in greater perspective they are undertaken in order to accumulate power and authority over given people, regions or countries. They have been fully integrated into the economical context of many countries although counter-measures have been put in place to account for that.

Under what legal aspects does terrorism and organized crimes occur?


The top regulating arm of terrorism and organized crime is the constitution or the supreme law of a country. Over and above that, different agents and departments to deal with this menace are put in place but under the supreme law. The process however has great risks involved, given the fact that such activities are deep rooted and financed by the “mighty” in the society.

Any challenges and recommendations in addressing terrorism and organized crimes?


The cost of dealing with emerging groups and scenarios of terrorism and crime remains relatively beyond the affordability of many countries. Variances in international laws allows for this, thereby creating the challenge of fully alleviating such groups or persons Security issues are also a challenge due to such activities. The amount of money required for the purposes of strengthening the service needs to be revised. Security measures should be tightened and citizens are required to co-operate, while utilizing the full potential of forces that have been put in place.



The study employed the use of a longitudinal research design. This is because the survey targeted aspects of terrorism and organized crimes over certain duration, depending on the primary and secondary data. Longitudinal research design also enabled bringing out a clear picture of the trend of these activities and the actions taken by the responsible firms, thus secure data analysis. It also shows the policies be put in place if they are indeed viable and working (Dobbelaar & Haarman, 2005).


Terrorist and organized crimes have led to the deaths of many as well as leaving many others injured. These activities have no respect for human life. In this regard, firm decision making on such activities as well the use of effective and crucial statistics provided a necessary basis for the evaluation of these aspects prior to the variables that this dissertation treats. This crime and terrorism issue can only be understood following evaluation of information and thereby disregarding generalizations that are hasty when it comes to individual cases. This paper assesses the trends of crime and terrorism and further provides an analyzed comparison on the data available, obtained from dynamic and diverse sources, both secondary and primary.

The subject matter of this paper revolves around the need to maintain valid data bases. The data base in this case can take the following forms:

  • Analysts’ extended memory
  • Terrorism and crime patterns
  • Trends in crime and terrorism
  • Terrorism campaigns over a given duration
  • Estimates derived from probability on expected future threats
  • Statistical correlations in crime, terrorism and other phenomena
  • Policies that counter terrorist activities and crime participants

The above data puts forth descriptive statistics for use in the subject matter and analysis of the variables of the paper. Inferential analysis is also part and parcel of this paper. The data analyzed in this chapter draw its base line in secondary data, with primary data playing a role of back up or complement of the available data for analysis. The statistical analysis in this chapter relies  on the trends emerging from other researches previously done about this topic. For instance, the table below represents the utilization of statistical analysis in this kind of research between the year 2005 and 2009. Figures are given in percentage.


Inferential statistics

Descriptive statistics


Forensic psychology












Source: Andrew Silke, “The devil you know: continuing problems with research on terrorism”, Terrorism and Political Violence.

Data bases that have been put in place revolve around chronologies and many at times focusing on international terrorism and crimes. However, this does not rule out the fact each country or state is responsible to keep its own data base on such important issues as those of national security. The trends evident in crimes and acts of terrorism are hard to depict especially based on the fact that are numerous challenges when it comes to measuring and asserting these trends. The table below is a representation of data that relates to terrorist databases and incident reports up to the year 2002. The data is obtained from the different authors presented in the table.

Source: Authors in the first column

The specific constituents of organized crimes and terrorism can be depicted through the definition of the elements that actually constitute the two. This integrates the diversity and dynamism in activities that are associated with the two activities, their magnitude and effects. The variables considered in this treatment has led to the emergence of the following comparative definition of elements in the events of terrorism and organized crimes.


RAND: definitions provided by Kim Cragin, RAND Corporation, Washington, D.C., United States of America.

RAND-National Memorial Institute for the Prevention of Terrorism: definitions available at

International Terrorism: Attributes of Terrorist Events (ITERATE): Edward F. Mickolus, Todd Sandler and Jean M. Murdock, eds., International Terrorism in the 1980s: A Chronology of Events, Vol. II: 1984-1987 (Ames, Iowa, United States of America, Iowa State University Press.

United States Department of State: Patterns of Global Terrorism, 2001. The definition employed is from Title 22 of the United States Code, section 2656f (d).

Communication Technology: Basic Research and Applications (COBRA): Frank Shanty and Ray Picquet, International Terrorism 1998: An Annual “Events Data” Report (Collingdale, Pennsylvania, United States of America, DIANE Publishing.

The relationship between national and international crimes and acts of terrorism can be evaluated on the basis of the incidents of terrorism from one region to another. The relationship(s) here however vary from region to region due to the applicability of different laws across borders. For instance, the incident depicting such a relationship between the year 2001 and 2002 can be presented as shown in the figure studying the critical changes that are likely to occur over time, the present series of such relationship can be stated, in regard to the below figure where variables are given in percentage.

Source: RAND-National Memorial Institute for the Prevention of Terrorism.

The data analyzed above is a descriptive, one that assesses the variables of the paper. Based on the data provided above, it is possible to draw further analysis and consequently outline the relationship and the link between terrorism and organized crime. This becomes the inferential; part of the paper’s data analysis. The causes of terrorism and the composition of organized crime in the context of terrorism can be therefore be evaluated. The organizations of crime groups that are based on religion are also evident; over and above the fact poverty has been cited to contribute to the rising and escalating terrorism around the world. However, poverty is not the only contributing factor to crime and terrorism as already pointed out. When indicators of these causes are evaluated in the context of indicators of crime and terrorism, the correlation between the causes and the actual acts of crime and terrorism can be obtained. The terrorism indicator used in this case is based on the different indices, namely, frequency, scope and severity of such crimes (Deflem, 2004). Considering the above data and the indices identified the correlation is presented below through prior analysis of variables:

It is evident that state observance of human rights is correlated with terrorism levels in a given state. Human rights violation in the context of terrorism and organized crime can be analyzed by the correlation between such activities and state observance of human rights, and this is given by the below diagram:


The process of data analysis was aimed at leading to a crucial stage of presenting the findings of the paper. The results of the research are solely based on the relationship drawn between and among variables that are treated by the focus of this work. All the previous sections of the paper were developed to attempt to present the link that exists between terrorism and organized crimes. In the light of doing so, these questions sought to be answered:

  • Is there a direct or absolute relationship between organized crimes and terrorism?
  • Which types of organized crime can easily go together with which variants of terrorism? And which types are less compatible?
  • Is all organized crime strictly centered on profit-making or are there exceptions where certain activities serve to acquire political spoils or gains?

The undertaking of this secondary research has depicted that the topic of study has not been so much explored. When it comes to collection of primary data, the sources did not prove that reliable. Agents that possess the information were not on a position to offer the information that freely. This phenomenon is understandable simply because this topic is characteristic of matters of national security that touches ion the entire country or region in question rather than individual or given groups in society. This aspect therefore, made some information confidential and one that cannot be released even in the event of a research. Most of the information that could be released for use by the researcher proved to be narrow and the same time back-dated, thus making it technical to pursue this course. However, this study was not without it results. This study got its findings based on the research findings.

Despite the fact that previous researches were lacking and that enormous challenges of primary data gathering were experienced, the study proved that in the event of inadequate and robust data, useful insights can be arrived at with the use of the available data and information as well applying critical and creative thinking in the evaluation of the subject matter in order to treat the variables as the research itself requires. The observations and the consequent findings in this regard came into focus, in an attempt to answer the aforementioned research questions. These findings are discussed below:

Relationship between organized crime and terrorism

Organized crime and terrorism as evidenced through data analysis are put forward as two distinct types of crime. As the pointed out, organized crime is directly associated with economic gains that constitute profit making at one point or the other in the process under which it is planned, actualized and realized or even in the event that it is not noticed at all. It is mostly associated with the operations of black markets in the economic considerations. This form of crime aims at maximizing the illegal market share as much as possible for the benefit of all those who take part in it. In this case therefore, the aftermath is not expected to be brutal to the victims, but rather is accompanied by loss making in the event that the organized crime succeeds. It is important to note however, that the crime must succeed in order for damages to be realized. Many at times the aftermath of such a process have been fatal even before the entire process pulls through. The success of such crime processes only proves “beneficial” to the participants, although many parties incur damages of whatsoever form.

Terrorism on the other hand has been found to be a chief motive that is backed aspects of ideology aims. Another aspect that this paper finds directly linked to terrorism is the political change desires by individuals, groups of people or even a given state. Few if no research integrates organized crime with terrorism. Terrorism unlike organized crime in this context constitutes material gains or personal gains for that matter, which results to the use of terror activities and procedures to lead to such realizations. In fact researches done on both terrorism and organized crime are run differently and financed independently. This just shows much valley is characteristic of them both. Data, information as well as insights into these researches is kept secret and hard to access. This paper thus depicts this relationship from step by step analysis of probes into these areas. The study therefore shows that the two are different forms of crime, with varied characteristics and pursued for different motives. Links and metamorphosis

Politics have played a great deal in crisscrossing terrorism and organized crime into each other. However, the political desire is not the only player in such events. Economic developments have also been highlighted in this study as a potential aspect that seems to link the two. Over and above this, metamorphosis has been integrated into that process, although it not clear which one leads to the other. The first aspect to point at is the consistent globalization. The world is everyday being converted into a global village. Global interactions have taken up peak speed in the current trends and so have the organized crimes and terrorism activities. The opening up of the globe and the fading away of boundaries have contributed to this. In some regions as a matter of fact, political unions have been introduced. This unites chunks of countries together, bringing different people together while maintaining their culture, diversity and dynamism.

Participants of organized crime and terrorism have portrayed similar characteristics. Both view states as enemies, not forgetting that they always want their way out of the agents that enforce laws as well security agents that keep chasing after them. Similar tactics are employed in the undertakings of the two crimes and one of them is that both are highly secretive. Methods of perpetration may be the same too. This paper therefore depicts a close relationship between the two and even further concludes that one of them may necessarily lead to the other. The only complication in this case arises in stating which one of the two would come before the other. One of them therefore undergoes metamorphosis to become the other but it is hard to state which given the analysis earlier presented on data available. In this regard, this study finds a loophole in that point and can provide a recommendation that pertains to this issue. Financing crime

Criminal activities pull together resources that aid organization and establishment of the different structures and network that these activities take. Money laundering has taken the centre stage in this in spite of numerous laws and regulations to alleviate it. Investigation into money laundering faces enormous challenges due to the technicalities involved in carrying out such transactions. Money channeled to these activities may have been earned through legal processes, passed through money launderers and then got back to the legal use. In this regard, tracing all the steps through which the money passed through is hard to do. Another limiting factor is the influence of prominent in the society who get involved in such activities. The system of finance that crimes take is one that is so complex and simplifying this in order to get to the root cause would prove more expensive than leaving the portions of money into the banking system, because eve in the investigations, biasness cannot be avoided due to one reason or the other. The source of finances that this paper proves evident in such activities is highlighted below: Sponsorship by state(s)

  • World-wide fund-raising
  •  Legal business enterprises
  • Drug trafficking
  • Domestic fund-raising
  • criminal activity (robbery, money laundering, swindles etc)
  • ransoms
  • illegal flight capital

The cost to state(s)

Terrorist activity across the world causes havoc among victims, thus the need to combat such activities. Many states incur economic costs in taking measures and putting policies, structures and mechanisms to deal with such threats. The pulling of resources for this purpose has proven not to be easy at all. In these eventualities, the economic measure is only a one dimension measure of the cost of crime to the society. Other costs take the form of emotional and psychological tolls which are actually difficult to quantify. On the same note, there is no available concept or model that can be used to evaluate the effects of crime and terrorism on political stability of one or more states.

Cost of crime to the society seems to affect countries or states that are not directly hit by these crimes, as the asserted from the analysis of data and the drawn inferences from this paper. Such costs do not relate to whether a country is developed or not. Individual acts of these crimes cannot by any chance stipulate the cost of terrorism. Rather, the costs can be analyzed based on cumulative effects that cut across all sectors of the society, from cultural, social and economical to political considerations. Combating terrorism and organized crime is dependent all countries and states, since it almost impossible for a single state or country to put in place counter-terrorism measures and succeed by its own.


The international organizations have through their policies enhanced a clear advancement on matters of international crime and terrorism. Unfortunately, their recommendations have proved complex. This is because to combat terrorism is quite challenging as pointed by a complex sway of these organized crimes. In fact, to put right crime -terrorism comprises a wide range of prohibited activities, perpetrators and place that spark a range number of countries and precincts that overlook the political boundaries. These organized crimes are now challenges to the international communities. In the quest to face these challenges that have proved a global threat, policy makers’ duties are to come up with solutions that will help cab this phenomenon. The possible recommendations have sprung up through policy recommendations, the private sector player, international finance and support, global trade and foreign aid and support. There lies within this proposed measure challenges that will hinder the effective implementation of the outward and well-intended policies.

For that matter, the international organization has also been in the fore front to address these perceived and impending challenges. Now, as a result of a wide range of actors involved, there still remains an indispensable pave-way for intermediaries a player sector. These sectors are particularly pertinent in selecting matters of priority and action with strategy. The proposed policy issues and in the order of priority that highlights possible action of strategy. These policies will go a long way in helping the international organizations combat this threatened peace in the world. These policy recommendations include one, bureaucratic incentives to downplay or exaggerate criminal-terrorist connections.

The inte

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