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World News /29 Jul 2016
07.29.16

The Frequency of Terrorist Attacks Worldwide

As a follow-up to the article discussing the link between Nazi asymmetric warfare developed at the end of World War II and Islamic Jihad, I was referred to a Wikipedia link that summarizes all the terrorist attacks that have happened since the beginning of the year. The list is impressive as to the frequency and widespread geographic range of occurrences.

The frequency of these attacks are much more prevalent than what we have been exposed to in the mainstream media. I was surprised there were hundreds of incidents since the first of the year, which I was unaware of in my initial research.

Terrorist incidents have occurred on an average of at least once a day, sometimes more, somewhere on almost every continent. Since January 1st of this year, incidents have occurred in the following countries (this list if far from exhaustive): Afghanistan, Armenia, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Belgium, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Egypt, France, Georgia, Germany, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Iraq, Ivory Coast, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Laos, Lebanon, Libya, Niger, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, Russia, Rwanda, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, South Africa, Sudan, Turkey, United States and Yemen.

The list of incidents range from stabbings, landmines, car bombings, assassinations, and mass shootings to rocket and mortar attacks. Some attacks reflect more primitive tactics including machete attacks, crucifying, and stoning of victims.

A vast majority of the incidents are attributed to some sort of Islamic terrorism. The latest? A French priest whose throat was slit inside the church at its altar.

A list of designated terrorist groups and where they are active can be found here. This list is not all inclusive, but provides a broad insight as to what is happening around the world and what group is initiating the attack.

Most activities can be considered as Small Scale Conflicts (SSC). Terrorist groups are conducting many Small-Scale Conflicts that are not the same as waging a full-scale war.

When it comes to developing a remedy or a response to global terrorism and SSCs, the first step is to identify that it is a problem. The next step is to determine how to best identify potential attacks on a city or region and then take the appropriate action. A new way of detecting explosives comes in the form of a cyborg locust. This is an emerging solution.

A current study is researching a special kind of “altered” locust which has a sensor built into its body that may replace, or at least, augment bomb-sniffing dogs as deterrents to guerilla attacks on buildings, facilities, and critical infrastructure.

The study is being done at Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri. Research on locusts is being conducted to add a sensor and other material to their body that will alert those monitoring them for any signals of readings for explosives.

This new type of “bomb-sniffing” drone could be used in a variety of applications, once they perfect it. It will provide a new tool in the area of countermeasures.

The need for new and creative countermeasures goes hand-in-hand with the need to become more pro-active and effective against Asymmetrical Warfare and unconventional attacks by rogue nations and terrorist groups.

Traditional defenses are not as effective or efficient as deterrents to disasters. The skill sets needed to defend against physical and virtual (electronic) terrorist attacks include flexibility, adaptability, creativity, and the application of new technologies.

As terrorist organizations and their tactics evolve, our responses to those attacks and counterattacks need to be swift, decisive, and effective. The speed of a response is also critical as the focus of accelerating the rhythm of war is intensified. 21st century solutions are not going to provide a full resolution to 21st challenges.

Editor’s note: The author will be speaking at the upcoming International Drone Expo in Los Angeles in December.

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