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¿Cómo reducir la probabilidad de que se desarrolle el terrorismo en una sociedad democrática?
Corresponding Author(s) : Mikhail Zelenkov
Vol. 26 Núm. 39 (2021): Enero-Julio
El objetivo del artículo consiste en identificar y construir un sistema de necesidades que favorezcan a la inmersión de individuos en actividades terroristas, así mismo en establecer la mecánica del proceso teniendo en cuenta las influencias destructivas del entorno externo e interno. La metodología del estudio empleada partió de un análisis retrospectivo de las necesidades del individuo mediante la caracterización socio-psicológica de los militantes de las organizaciones terroristas. El enfoque holístico sistémico y complejo permitió justificar el contenido de los subsistemas económicos, políticos, sociales y espirituales del sistema de equilibrio integral de las necesidades. La imagen sistemática del objeto y el análisis de la realidad objetiva del terrorismo moderno permitieron revelar las relaciones entre las necesidades identificadas sobre la base de los resultados obtenidos, lo anterior permitió la creación de un sistema piramidal de necesidades del individuo que sirven para identificar a la persona que decide incursionar en la actividad asocial del terrorismo. Los principales resultados del estudio arrojaron subsistemas estructurados del sistema general de necesidades, el contenido de las necesidades, los componentes que contribuyen a la radicalización del individuo en actividades terroristas, la construcción de un modelo matemático que describe el funcionamiento del sistema de necesidades del individuo, y la identificación de los valores cuantitativos de las necesidades que llevan al individuo a una organización terrorista.
Terrorism is an ancient inhumane practice that has been around for more than two thousand years. Its behaviorism is based on the needs of an individual or social group which uses violence to satisfy their needs. No matter what terrorist group an individual belongs to, what country they were born in, what religion they profess, what social, political, or economic views they hold, and what social environment they belong to, there is a certain system of needs that is inherent in each member of this radical group. Terrorism is both an internal national and a global civilizational phenomenon characterized by violent, degrading, and intimidating actions. Terrorism is implemented without any reservations or observance of moral and ethical principles. Today, this is no longer an isolated, recent, or unorganized practice, but a highly structured network activity (for example, the al-Qaeda terrorist organization is represented by its branches in the Arabian Peninsula, the Indian subcontinent, the Maghreb countries, and the al-Shabaab branch in Somalia). In the 21st century, the manifestation of terrorism has become universal.
It is not an easy task to determine what drives people to terrorism. Academic research explaining the reasons for getting individuals on the path of terrorist activity has expanded significantly in recent years. This is based on the problem of ensuring the national security of the state, in particular, and international security in general. Unfortunately, despite a fairly broad range of research and effective government efforts to implement their results into practice, the number of terrorists in the world is not decreasing exponentially.
Wojciechowski S. (2017) notes that the literature on this issue reveals significant differences when specifying the main causes of terrorism. Wilkinson P. (1974) refers to a wide range of determinants from various categories of political, social, economic, cultural, and psychological nature. Such factors are also pointed out by H. Hall (2002), who sees the sources of terrorism in the political, religious, and ideological spheres or the response to violence. Another list was compiled by K. Sterling (1981), who indicated the following reasons for joining a terrorist organization: taking an initiative on one's behalf or behalf of a particular group; wishing to attract attention to himself or public attention to certain issues; demonstrating rejection and disrespect for the existing rule of law, the principles of social coexistence, or the principles of a particular political or religious group; attempting to undermine the power and its political role; taking an attempt to force the government to behave in a certain way; revenging for certain activities of the government or its representatives; justifying a terrorist attack by a certain ideology. For such a wide range of reasons, as well as in the context of the present research, the results of a study by M. Crenshaw (1985) look quite adequate. Crenshaw M. considers that there are four main motives for terrorist activity: the hope to change the status quo, the need to belong to a certain group, an attempt to improve social status, and the desire to receive material rewards.
Analyzing the above-mentioned motives of terrorist activity, it should be noted that each science, as it should be, has its approach to this phenomenon. Thus, according to Calleja (2016) from the University of Carlos III (Spain), based on the functionalist paradigm, sociologists try to explain terrorism as an alternative to protest against dysfunctions and structural imbalances in various social subsystems, namely, economic (inequalities are aggravated at intermediate stages of material growth); social (social divisions arising as a result of accelerated modernization processes); political (inefficiency of the redistributive and coercive institutional power); and cultural (hounding out traditions of violent confrontation with rapid changes in the value system). According to the authors, Griffin (2012) has identified very qualitatively two main categories of the terrorist that are quite easily adapted to his profile: a regressive fanatic, who seeks to preserve from internal and external enemies a traditional community, mythically conceived as a sacred and unchangeable cosmological and social order or nomos; and a modernist, who wants to aesthetically, socially and politically understand the meaning and purpose of existence, to create a utopian society that will form a new culture at the edge or beyond the principles of Western modernity. At that, Griffin also notes that there may be hybrid models of both categories.
All the above-mentioned approaches, as can be seen, are based on the satisfaction of certain needs of the individual. However, the individual is not a "black box", but a living system that is subject to a wide range of influences that can only be indirectly related to the individual’s stated areas of satisfying his needs. They may not understand the concept of self-actualization, yet all people strive to reach their full potential and meet their needs, no matter how low this level of achievement is and whether they understand it or not. For example, if an individual feels that he needs to change something to meet his needs, and this cannot be achieved within the framework of the law, he will certainly take the path of satisfaction beyond the framework of current legislation. To be fair, it should be noted that, according to scientists (March, 1994), this is preceded by their search for answers to four questions: What alternative options are available? What are the expected effects of each of these alternatives? How can these expected effects affect an individual's goals? What decision rule will be used to choose among the alternatives? As a result, an individual can become a terrorist because he expects selective incentives, such as personal gain, including loot, smuggling, drugs, rape, etc. (Tullock, 1971).
And here one should agree with J. McCormick (2003), who believes that the decision-making processes for getting on the path of terrorist activity are very different. At one end of the spectrum, an individual can be considered an adaptive recruit. From this standpoint, terrorism is a means to meet a need. In this case, the path to a terrorist organization is based, on the one hand, on an accurate and informed worldview, while on the other hand - it assumes that this process is rational, but the individual works with incomplete information and, consequently, with a conditional or limited idea about the possibility of meeting his need. At the other end of the spectrum, an individual's behaviorism obeys an internal logic that is separated from the external goals of a terrorist organization. From this standpoint, terrorism is not an instrumental activity, but the product of a wide range of possible factors that contribute to the satisfaction of a need. An individual's worldview and belief system may have little or nothing to do with reality. It is also obvious that the individual often inherits or adopts an existing scenario for meeting needs, rather than develops a new program adapted to specific needs.
A system-integrated approach to existing scientific developments has revealed several important characteristics.
First, a significant number of studies are based on a review of the literature and theories revealed in other works. This is because, as a rule, scientists do not have access to arrested terrorists, thus they cannot study terrorist organizations from the inside. Terrorists are unlikely to volunteer as test subjects while studying their actions from afar can lead to erroneous subjective conclusions. Moreover, a terrorist of one group may be a freedom fighter of another group, such as the millions of Arabs who support Palestinian suicide bombers (De Angelis, 2009). In this regard, scientists are limited to collecting post-factum data presented in the bulletins of security services, or informational, sociological, or statistical agencies. At the same time, as rightly noted by S. Holmes (2007), "personal motives cannot always be drawn from public justifications." Sometimes people do what they do for reasons they profess, sometimes they don't, because what they do is motivated by reasons that are too gloomy, shameful, or strange to be openly acknowledged. Sometimes people do things that cause such moral disputes that when they are brought to justice, they are forced to apologize or justify themselves, rather than explain their actions. Terrorists certainly fall into this category (Cottee, 2015). The Director of the Center for Terrorism and Security Studies at the University of Massachusetts-Lowell, J. Horgan (2014), also supports these findings: "The most valuable interviews I have conducted (with former terrorists) were those in which the interviewees honestly admitted that they really did not know the reason of doing the terrorist act". He writes: "Motivation is a very complex issue. Explaining why one of us is doing something is not an easy task." This problem is further compounded by the fact that some actions are based on multiple motives, and even if they can be reliably identified, it is often difficult to separate them and assess the corresponding causal weight. Besides, while recognizing certain needs as the root cause of joining a terrorist organization, individual theories often fail to operationalize and explain the transition from "absolute" conditions in society to actual provoking factors. This has led to the development of a very limited range of analysis of the needs that are motivating terrorism.
Secondly, many studies consider the particular reasons that lead an individual to join a terrorist organization, completely forgetting that a human is an integral being. At that, both external and internal factors are analyzed but not within a common core. Traditional research on terrorism has largely focused on the Western state-oriented approach to problem-solving, which has severely limited the scope of research and academic interests in this area (Gunning, 2007). Such an approach to problem-solving is directly related to another blind spot of conventional terrorism analysts, proximity to state power, and the associated state-oriented approach (Raphael, 2009). At the same time, feminist, Marxist, or political economy-based postcolonial views significantly extend the traditional approach. For example, postcolonial theorists emphasize the pivotal role of race and imperial power in shaping the normative understanding and meaning of terrorist acts and actions (Stump and Dixit, 2013). However, it is worth noting that among the variety of needs there is always a leading need that serves the foundation of the individual's behaviorism, as well as driven needs that strengthen the position of the leading need. Besides, it should be noted that, even though the status of the needs changes depending on the situation, the individual’s nature includes a certain system of needs, whose hierarchy remains unchanged despite the varied conditions. Based on this, the hypothesis of the present research can be worded as a postulate that under the influence of external and internal factors, an integral, balanced system of individual’s needs is subjected to reengineering and built in a certain hierarchy that motivates individual to take the path of terrorist activity to meet their needs.
The compiled database of sources was framed on a retrospective approach that allowed tracing the evolution of the influence of individual’s needs on their participation in terrorist activities since the middle of the 20th century, as well as identify the main variables related to the research subject. The methodological basis of the study included analyzed works of J. Tullock (1971), P. Wilkinson (1974), K. Sterling (1981), M. Crenshaw (1985), J. Snyder and C. Ballentine (1996), H. Hall (2002), A. Abadie (2006), B. Burgoon (2006), R. Griffin (2012), M. Helbing (2013), E. Calleja (2016), S. Wojciechowski (2017), F. Schleiermacher (2018), and other scientists and specialists who have studied the process of meeting the needs of an individual as a motive for getting on the path of terrorist activity. Particular attention was paid to identifying special characteristics in the generated database of sources that indicated certain problems and adapting the results obtained to the current reality.
Using the synthesis method to systematize the results obtained in the course of the study allowed the authors to identify their own approach to the problem, while the application of the identification principle revealed the relationship between the theory and practice of contemporary terrorism. The authors also paid attention to the works of M. Crenshaw (1985), R. Griffin, and G. McCormick (2003), since the results of their research correlated to some extent with the stated research hypothesis. In formulating the purpose and objectives of the present research, the authors took as a basis the postulate of Calleja (2016) on individual approaches to the analysis of certain phenomena in society and the vectors of their study. Identifying and classifying the needs of the individual, the authors turned to the works of famous scientists, such as P. Collier (2000), J. Post (1993), M. Sageman (2008), R. Sole (1978), E. Bakker (2006), M. Helbing (2013), J. Snyder and K. Ballentine (1996), and others. Appeal to the theory of T. Parsons (1991) on social systems, as well as to Maslow’s theory of motivation (2014) made it possible to build a complete balanced system of needs of an individual as a potentially recruited to a terrorist organization, consisting of four subsystems, namely, economic, political, social, and spiritual, as well as describe the process of its functioning using a mathematical model.
Studies conducted by the United Nations (2015-2017), Pew Research Center (2016), RAND Corporation (2016), Forbes Magazine (2017), Eurostat (2015), as well as German, American, Russian and other scientists, the Council of American Islamic Relations (CAIR), and other organizations were selected to analyze and synthesize the epistemological potential of statistical and sociological research results. The synthesis of their results made it possible to substantiate the role of an individual's needs in their getting on the path of terrorist activity and to identify quantitative median indicators of needs that led an individual to join a terrorist organization.
The authors selected a systematic comprehensive holistic approach as a research method, that was caused by the fact that a systematic approach strived for a synthesis resulting from the study of scientific knowledge while remaining within the framework of a single scientific discipline (authors primarily were interested in issues of political science), while integrated approach implemented the focus on the synthetic representation of reality through the mobilization of cognitive tools inherent to various disciplines (the authors turned to the tools used in disciplines, such as history, political science, sociology, and psychology). Using the integration of these approaches allowed the authors to identify and substantiate the content of the economic, political, social, and spiritual subsystems of an individual’s needs. Focusing on systematic display of the research object and subject in the situation of analysis of the objective reality of contemporary terrorism made it possible to reveal the relationships among the identified needs and, based on the results obtained, to uncover the process of reengineering the system of individual’s needs into a hierarchy of needs that promoted to getting on the path of terrorism. Building a balanced system of an individual’s needs was based on a holistic approach which called for understanding that needs were the driving force of an individual’s behaviorism affecting the decision-making process in a unified complex.
Based on Parsons’s theory (1991) about social systems, and A. Maslow’s motivation theory (2014) stating that the individual is an integrated organized whole, the authors consider from the perspective of systematic approach the needs of the individual, which are the source of his getting on the path of terrorism, and believe that these needs represent a system that has the following characteristics: it is composed of many interconnected needs that ensures the system’s integrity, balance, and unity; it exists within the framework of the external environment and internal worldview; it has clearly defined boundaries of the individual's substance and determinism with respect to the external environment; it is open and subject to external influences; it is characterized by properties, such as striving for satisfaction serving the interests of maintaining stability, balance, sustainability, adaptation, and integration.
Based on the above, the authors divided the needs of an individual as a potentially recruited to a terrorist organization into four subsystems: economic, political, social, and spiritual (Figure. 1, stage 1). Each of these subsystems, in the absence of destructive factors, performs certain functions, responds to demands coming from inside or outside, and adapts in the interests of maintaining stability, sustainability, and balance. Together, they provide the motivational orientation of the individual’s (MOI) terrorist activity in general, which can be expressed by a mathematical model:
МOI = f (E, So, P, Sp) (1)
The structure and content of each of these subsystems are discussed below.
The economic subsystem is responsible for the implementation of the individual's needs in the sphere of satisfaction, first of all, of physiological needs, as well as creates the foundation for the functioning of other subsystems. Economic needs are the internal motives of an individual's activity. Their satisfaction ensures a person’s individual and social existence. Besides, they are taken into account when making decisions on consumption standards (food, clothing, shoes, housing, leisure, etc.). The authors believe that it is economic needs that are the internal motivator of an individual's terrorist activities. The core of this conclusion is the postulate that when an individual's economic need for a certain good turns out to be zero, he sets out to find ways to meet it. At that, these ways can be both legal and beyond the legal framework.
Economic needs, certainly, make related all terrorists on Earth, because they are a single foundation for meeting the needs of each member of a terrorist organization. However, the authors note that these needs have a dichotomy (Zelenkov M, Boykova G., Boykov S., Bikov M., Rezakov 2020). Thus, in the context of the financial and economic crisis, the constant increase in prices, inflation, and unemployment, terrorism is becoming sometimes the only way for a person living in low socio-economic conditions to meet their economic needs and earn a decent living. The decline in economic activity in the country tends to support terrorism. Thus, E. Uzuegbu-Wilson in the article "The impact of poverty on terrorism in North-Eastern Nigeria" (holds 158th position in terms of human development index (HDI) as of 2019) writes that poverty has positive impact on the growth of terrorism in the North-Eastern region of Nigeria since it is known that the long-term conflict in this zone is "caused by poverty and contributes to its development". Therefore, poverty remains the main socio-economic factor causing terrorism (Uzuegbu-Wilson, 2019). The authors believe that if participation in terrorist activities can meet the economic needs of an individual, and if the necessary income cannot be obtained legally in the real life of an individual, then the probability that he joins a terrorist organization increases significantly. This is especially true for the Middle East, Africa, and South-East Asia.
But there is another side of the coin - terrorism is a business that can bring both its participants and organizers a considerable income, which can be compared with the income from the drug and oil business. Statistics are relentless and unbiased, and they show that many terrorists come from educated and wealthy families. Osama bin Laden, for example, came from a family with exceptional wealth in Saudi Arabia, the terrorist Mohammed Atta came from the middle class. The Aum Shinrikyo sect (Japan) consisted mainly of professional specialists, scientists, and engineers. Dozens of terrorists from the Baader-Meinhof terrorist organization (Germany) belonged to the middle class. Pape R. (2005) analyzed 130 suicide bombers and found that "many of them came from privileged social strata". Therefore, terrorism is a "market" with the supply of future terrorists and demand for them among terrorist organizations, created to meet the economic needs of social media. According to Forbes, at the end of 2017, the top five terrorist organizations in terms of total annual revenue were as follows: Hezbollah - $ 1.1 billion; Taliban - $ 800 million; Hamas - $ 700 million; al-Qaeda - $ 300 million; Islamic State (ISIL) - $ 200 million (Zehorai, 2018).
The social subsystem ensures the implementation of the needs of an established lifestyle that meets the norms, rules, and values which become important factors in motivating an individual’s behavior. A human is a social being, and therefore social needs ensure the interaction of an individual with other representatives of society. As noted by Maslow (2014), a person more than ever begins to feel the lack of friends, the absence of a loved one, a wife, or children. He craves a warm, friendly relationship; he needs a social group that would provide him with such relationships, a family that would accept him as their own. In the case of finding solitude, he begins to painfully experience his rejection, looks for his roots, kindred spirit, friend, and, as practice shows, finds them in the criminal and terrorist environment.
According to the authors, the social needs that lead an individual to the camp of terrorists include the following: belonging to a biosocial related group of people (ethnic group, nationality, nation); communicating with other members of the group and determining their place in the hierarchy of relationships within the group and their social status; creating a family (especially for recruited females); mastering the basics of behavior, inherent in society; acquiring skills that determine the nature of the individual's activity and position in the system of the social division of labor, etc. Thus, an analysis of the results of the liquidation of illegal armed groups in the North Caucasus of the Russian Federation has shown that the special cohesion of members of an illegal armed group was ensured precisely by the actualization of the need of its members to adhere to the radical direction in Islam, the desire to achieve the set goal of creating an independent Islamic state by any means, and a disdainful, cynical attitude to the life and health of citizens, regardless of their social and religious affiliation (Zelenkov, 2020).
The political subsystem implements the ideological and power needs of the individual. Man, as noted by Aristotle, is a political being. Therefore, human political needs are related to the need to implement the corresponding political interests in state or public activities, as well as in the activities of individual social groups, classes, nations, and states. Political needs are the internal conscious source of an individual's behavior, which encourages him to set certain political goals and take concrete actions to achieve them. Taken together, political needs are a complex of determinants aimed at seizing and retaining power, as well as meeting the need for political influence on the governing bodies of society in the interests of promoting the professed ideology. It is the importance of political beliefs that plays the most important role in behaviorism (Kruglanski et al., 2014), and commitment to the main goal often includes a willingness to make personal sacrifices in the service of one's ideology, even if this assumes harming members of an external group (Ginges et al., 2010). It is to realize the need for a sense of pride in one's own identity that a heroic myth is created, where the hero is a terrorist who leads an "unequal" battle (because the conflict is asymmetric) with public institutions (which can be personified - the police chief, mayor, or president, but in any case, the goal is to influence public order and the identity of society in general). A sense of pride is expressed in a sense of belonging to the "salvation" of a society that has been ostracized, isolated, and humiliated. This feeling plays a big role in shaping the individual's self-understanding within society. This is especially clearly expressed in patriarchal societies. "You are what others make you think of yourself" (De Zulueta, 2006).
The spiritual subsystem fulfills the needs of the individual in the sphere of complete picture, symbols, beliefs, and ideas of beliefs. Spiritual needs are a necessary part of an individual's life, which is expressed in the immutable desire to create and master spiritual values. Spiritual needs were the first and most important thing that had set humans apart from the animal world. They are not set biologically, are not present in nature, and are not given to the individual from birth. They are born, formed, and developed in the course of his socialization. Their peculiarity is that they do not have vertical borders, because there are no limits to growth and decline for them, and the only limits are the amount of spiritual values already mastered and accumulated by the individual, and the desire to participate in their multiplication. The authors draw attention to the fact that in the society of the 21st century, this subsystem most clearly shows the needs, whose satisfaction lies in the religious sphere of the individual.
Figure. 1 Algorithm for forming a hierarchy of needs of a potential terrorist recruited by the terrorist organization
As already noted, the revealed structure of an individual’s needs represents an integral balanced system that functions in certain conditions of the external and internal environment. In the case where the impact on the functioning of this system does not exceed the destructive threshold of stability and sustainability of the system, the behaviorism of the individual occurs within the legal framework and does not seek criminal ways to meet their needs. In case, if the destructive impact exceeds the established criteria, and the created conditions do not allow the individual to meet his needs within the framework established by society, he sees no other way than to get on the path of terrorist activity (Fig. 1, stage II). In this case, the system of an individual’s needs transforms from a balanced state to a hierarchical (Fig. 1, stage III), in which economic needs are its foundation, while spiritual needs are promoted to the top of the hierarchy. At that, political and social needs of the middle class in various conditions can play the role of a catalyst and strengthen the process of desocialization of potential terrorists.
Applying the synthesis to the results of numerous sociological studies, the authors derived the median quantitative indicators of needs that led an individual to a terrorist organization. They consist of economic needs (35%), spiritual needs (13%), political needs (18%), and social needs (14%) (Fig. 2).
Figure 2 Median needs that lead an individual to join a terrorist organization, % (Source: compiled by the authors)
In the cohort of scientists, who study the terrorist phenomenon, one can distinguish a large group of specialists who believe that these "angels of death" do not suffer from any natural or hereditary pathologies of consciousness, and thus they can rightly be called mentally healthy and adequate, however having certain needs that, if they are not satisfied, can cause deviation in behavior and encourage an individual to join a terrorist organization, and later to commit a terrorist act. Analysis of the genesis of the preparation, commission, or prevention of a terrorist act suggests that its perpetrators usually experience an internal motivational conflict. On the one hand, their "I-want" alone requires immediate implementation of the need, and the only way to do this is to join a terrorist organization. On the other hand, "I-want" calls to make every effort and try to realize the need within the legal framework according to the instinct of self-preservation. Researchers from the University of Georgia (USA) analyzed 143 organizations that were involved in terrorist attacks in the USA since 1970 to investigate the "moral motives" underlying their actions. They revealed that the motives differed from one organization to another. However, 93.71% of organizations were associated with at least one of the moral justifications. Thus, the ethical justification for a "loyalty to terrorist group" was persecuted by 62.5% of organizations, "justice and fairness" - by 34.26%, "fighting against harm to society" - by 13,98%, "respect for authority and tradition" - by 9.79%, and "reaching purity and integrity" - by 7,69% (Hahn et al., 2019).
The individual's needs for terrorist activities cannot be examined in a vacuum. Its attractiveness depends in part on the effectiveness of alternative forms of dissent, as well as on other criteria and methods used by radical leaders (DeNardo, 1985, p. 242). This also depends on the circumstances or environmental conditions in which the decision is made to enter upon the path of terrorist activity. Some early attempts to study the contextual sources of terrorism have made a useful distinction between the prerequisites that provide the basis for terrorist activity and the provoking factors that help to justify an actual outbreak of violence (for example, Eckstein, 1965; Johnson, 1966).
In general, the authors share the standpoint and conclusions of X. Olmos, Spain (2015), who believes that the causes of contemporary terrorism lie in the context of conflicts in the Middle East (Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, and Palestine), instability in North Africa, the Sahel, the Gulf of Guinea, and the Horn of Africa, the failure of Islamists in the so-called Arab Spring, as well as structural factors, such as poverty, inequality, unemployment and institutional weakness, problems of integration into Western societies of some Muslims who experience alienation, racism, and xenophobia.
Research by M. Abdile of the Institute for Security Studies (ISS), conducted in Somalia on why people joined the Al-Shabaab religious terrorist organization has shown the following results: 27% of respondents joined for economic reasons, 15% mentioned religious reasons, while 13% noted that they were forced to join. The reasons for staying in this organization were equally diverse: 21% - because of a sense of belonging, and 11% - due to a sense of responsibility (EIP, 2015). At the same time, a study conducted by A. Botha from the same Institute has shown that 87% of respondents cited religion as the reason they joined Al-Shabab (Zehorai, 2018).
The reality is that the terrorist always refers to the fact that terrorism is the only and last available means of responding to the injustice to which he is subjected, and that he finds no way out of this except by violating the rules of social organization and violently responding to a society that has not provided him with the means of subsistence, the desired freedom, or anything else. In this context, terrorism is an alternative to meeting the needs of the individual. However, how, why, and in what form this choice will ultimately be made remains a matter of debate.
The economic subsystem of an individual’s needs
Economic needs are the fundamental basis for an individual to join a terrorist organization. The inability to meet their economic needs can harm the structure of the society in which they live, generating hostile behavior towards society. One of the most noticeable of these problems is backwardness resulting from economic policies that do not correspond to the social reality of the state, leading to the increase of the gap between the poor and the rich. Besides, the ruling authorities often try to expand and stabilize their positions at the expense of the economic situation of weak members of society. The tools for this are a low investment in the life of the individuals, refusal, or unequal distribution of capital and land, which often leads to a drop in living standards and a high level of unemployment in the society. This results in an imbalance of social justice and injustice towards the general population, which causes indignation and anger both on the part of the individual in particular and on the part of entire social fairness, which can be accompanied by a response in the form of a specific terrorist act. Former Belgian Prime Minister G. Verhofstadt believes that poverty and despair are not universal causes of terrorism, but fertile ground for recruiters. Poverty in developing countries (according to the UN data for 2016, the proportion of undernourished people in the world has reached 12.9% (Zelenin, 2015) contributes to the fact that it is there that people fall into the networks of recruiters of international terrorism. As Verhovstadt mentioned, "they have nothing to value their own lives for, and they begin to see terrorism as the only possible way out of their desperate situation" (Plastun, 2003).
The al-Azhar Center report (2018) "On poverty, terrorism and sinful relations between them" states that there are 820 million people in the world facing poverty, food shortages, and the threat of hunger, who live in 39 countries, namely, 31 African countries, seven Asian countries, and one Caribbean country. These statistics are also supported by the 1966-1968 report of the President of the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, which states that there were 164 violent incidents involving the use of force, most of which occurred in poor countries, except for one that occurred in a rich country (Medhat, 2019). As one can see, African countries bear the lion's share of poverty, and at the same time, they also have a large proportion of terrorist organizations and manifestations of their actions, which undoubtedly confirms the fundamental role of economic needs in involving an individual in terrorist activities. At the same time, the Director of the Development Research Group at the World Bank P. Collier (2000) argues that most insurgent organizations are more of a form of organized crime. The real driving force of military participants is the greed of their leaders, and their real goal is unrestrained material enrichment. The supposed struggle against injustice and oppression is nothing more than propaganda and an ideological superstructure. They serve only to mobilize followers and unite their forces, legitimize acts of violence, and mask real intentions. Larger terrorist organizations even attract professional advertising agencies for these purposes.
The social subsystem of an individual’s needs
The development of an individual in a stably developing society generates obsessive social needs in his mind, but society can usually give him everything it can to meet them. However, when this society, in turn, is facing crises itself that at present is especially pertinent, as is happening in Western countries today, it is not surprising that some individuals are committed to ideas and actions, of which terrorism is the most extreme. According to F. Khosrokhavar, a CNRS researcher working at the School of Advanced Studies in Social Sciences in Paris, social factors can contribute to such frustrations. Almost all European extremists and terrorists are second- and third-generation immigrants, who, according to Khosrokhavar, are often "stigmatized, rejected, and treated as second-class citizens" (Butler, 2015). In such circumstances, the main motive for joining a terrorist group, according to J. Posta (1993), is much more personal in nature and rooted in the consciousness of the individual. It is implemented in an effort to strengthen personal identity and, most importantly, in belonging to a particular terrorist organization. Sageman M. (2008), in the course of his research, came to conclusion that "very often terrorist groups arise based on a certain community of people. These can be friendly or kinship relationships, a close personal relationship, an apprenticeship, etc."
According to O. Roy, the characteristic features of extremists are resentment directed at society, and a narcissistic need for recognition, which leaves them open to telling stories of terrorist glory (Butler, 2015). Sole R. (1978), who believes that the incentive for a future terrorist is his need to assert himself through violence, argues in a similar vein. Terrorists around the world have a strong group dependency (Wilson, 1973; Zawodny, 1983; Post, 1987; Crenshaw, 2000; McCauly and Segal, 1987). This dependency may become even stronger over time because of the dangers and responsibilities of being beyond the law (Becker, 1960; Wasmund, 1983). The importance of group solidarity increases as the organization gradually moves away from mainstream society. Among other things, this results in the suppression of internal discord and the homogenization of relationships (Bion, 1961; Cartwright and Zander, 1968; Keniston, 1968; Rioch, 1978). For example, in the period from 2009 to 2010, residents of the Grozny District of the Chechen Republic T., S., Z., and Kh. created a stable armed group (gang) to commit attacks on citizens and organizations, and to carry out acts of terrorism. The stability of the gang was achieved through the stability of its structure, the close relationships among the participants, unity of criminal intent, a strict distribution of roles between them in the commitment of crimes, consistent joint actions, as well as relationships of kinship and long-standing acquaintance.
An important role is played by meeting the needs of the individual in the family environment. The family is the core of society and the basic pillar on which the structure of society and social life is based. If this building is healthy, the structure is strong and complete, but if it is weak, suffers from ignorance and backwardness, and lives in decay, then this definitely leads to the emergence of losers who are easily seduced by the promise of a sweet life. A family can make a child a legitimate citizen of society, but if he loses the elements of a healthy upbringing in the family, then he becomes ready to commit a crime in the future. The disjointed family, which is dominated by ignorance and family problems, leads to poor children's care and harms them, thus contributing to their rejection and further exploitation by some terrorist groups. The weak role of the school in education and proper upbringing, as well as the lack of dialogue and understanding, also contribute to this.
Sageman S. (2004) concluded that 73% of the jihadists had studied, were married, and most of them had children. They came from upper- and middle-class families, but only a small percentage (27%) came from working-class and poor families. Besides, in the course of his research, he found a certain connection within jihadist marriages: "the wives of most jihadists shared their deep ideological beliefs, and protected the supporters of jihadism". For example, A. Nagayeva, who staged a terrorist attack onboard a Tu-134 plane in 2004, took revenge for the deceased brother. In 2012, suicide bomber A. Kurbanova organized two terrorist attacks at once in Dagestan. On May 3, 2012, the brothers Rizvan and Muslimat Aliyevs, recruited by their sister, blew up the Alaska-30 police post in Makhachkala, taking the lives of 14 people. And on August 28 of the same year, Kurbanova blew herself up in the house of the spiritual leader of the Muslims of Dagestan Sheikh Afandi Chirkeyi in the village of Chirkeyi. Then, along with the Sheikh, six people died, and another one was hospitalized. According to the international press, Kurbanova’s maiden name was A.A. Saprykina. In 2012, she was only 30 years old, while already had four marriages with militants. Three of her ex-husbands were killed, and another one, who was involved in arson attacks on stores, went through a Commission to adapt militants to civilian life and received a suspended sentence (Omelyanchuk, 2015). Consequently, the family is, in fact, the supporting basis for jihadists, rather than a deterrent factor. Bakker E. (2006) also notes "a relatively high level of marriages among jihadists. The important conclusion here is that family responsibilities do not prevent an individual from preaching Jihad." Investigative practice shows that in the East, often, members of outcast families in which someone was defamed by some act, and lost his face, become suicide attackers. In this case, the terrorist act is an attempt to protect against losing one's reputation.
Information analysis shows that countries with large geographically concentrated minorities, as well as societies consisting of large minority communities with links to members of their ethnic group in other countries, are more likely to be associated with the emergence of terrorist organizations (Abadie, 2006; Burgoon, 2006). The reason for this is the satisfaction of a social need such as national identity. A special national identity, as noted by J. Hutchinson of the London School of Economics, combines culture, history, and faith in the Holy Fatherland (Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung, 2018). Any individual can have his own sense of identity, based on language and culture, which is defined through material symbols and values (flags, anthems, passports, territory, etc.). For example, the Eurobarometer (2018) noted that 70% of Europeans called themselves EU citizens. This result is the highest since the first survey conducted in 2010. At that, 61% believe that they have a dual European and national identity, with young people expressing a stronger attachment to the EU (European Commission, 2018). These results allow agreeing with the opinion of J. Delanty (1996) of the University of Liverpool (Great Britain), who believes that contemporary nationalism is based not on the need for unity of the nation and the state, but on the need to preserve cultural and social identity in opposition to the state, and adversarial relationships with immigration and supranational entities.
Research shows that today one of the reasons for the rise of terrorism in European countries is the growing cultural diversity due to the growth of the population of foreign origin, which introduces a certain imbalance in meeting the social needs of the titular population. Van Stekelenburg (2017), for example, describes radicalization as the process of accepting the need for increased violence, which explains extremist behavior and exclusion of other groups (Doosje et all., 2016; Moghaddam, 2005). In this process, radical groups may begin to rethink situations that provoke anger and re-evaluate them from the perspective of moral superiority. They then view the alien group as morally inferior, and hence it needs to be eliminated based on a reassessment fueled by the emotion of contempt (Van Stekelenburg, 2017).
A survey conducted by Pew Research Center (2016) of ten EU countries has revealed that the average proportion of immigrants in their population was 12.2% (from 18.3% in Sweden to 1.6% in Poland). Between 3.9 and 4.8 million unauthorized immigrants lived in Europe in 2017, and about half of them resided in the UK and Germany. According to the International Organization for Migration, the total number of illegal migrants and asylum seekers who arrived in Europe in 2019 amounted to 123,920 people. Between 2016 and 2019, the number of migrant arrivals has steadily declined (Bierbach, 2019). However, the events at the beginning of 2020, caused by the actions of Turkey, triggered another migrant invasion of Europe. According to Eurostat, the most negative attitude towards migrants in 2015 was observed in Italy. Next up in the hierarchy were Greece, Hungary, France, Germany, Poland, the United Kingdom, and the Netherlands (VOXEUROP, 2015) (Fig. 3).
In almost no European country, the majority of the titular population believes that growing social diversity is a positive factor for them to meet their social needs. Only Sweden (36%), the United Kingdom (33%), and Spain (31%) describe increasing racial, ethnic, and national diversity in favorable tones. On the contrary, more than half of the population of Greece (63%) and Italy (53%) believe that this trend makes their country worse for life, and for the population of France, Germany, and the Netherlands, the results showed fifty-fifty.
Figure 3 The negative attitude of Europeans to migrants in 2015, %
The current trend leads to the growth of terrorist groups and, according to I. Uznorodov (2015), reflects the discontent of the part of the population that hardly fits into the processes of transformation of society and acts from the standpoint of nationalism, criticizing the existing political order, condemning integration and liberal immigration policy, cultural unification, and homogenization. At the same time, Uznorodov emphasizes the need to preserve existing things, namely, culture and traditions. This approach is also shared by M. Helbing (2013), J. Snyder, and K. Ballentine (1996) who note that political competition today is imperfect, while nationalism provides an easy and ready-made ideology that can compete in the "market of ideas". In such conditions, the process of satisfying social needs tries to dominate over the ruling power, generates discrimination against various groups of society, which ultimately leads to violence and terror.
Thus, the results of research conducted in Germany show the presence of the following external signs of social interaction, most relevant in the 21st century, that today do not allow an individual to implement his social needs. These are social isolation, termination of contacts with "infidels", involvement in polemics or agitation against religious and political opponents or (alleged) "enemies"; statements about exclusivity in the field of religion, politics, and beliefs, and zero tolerance for alternative standpoints and opinions in these areas; strict observance of religious beliefs, commandments and rituals promoted as "the only right", and the aggression towards representatives of other faiths (Goertz, 2016).
In most cases, the satisfaction of an individual's political needs is aimed at drawing the attention of the target party to this action, and often political motives arise for the following reasons: the authorities make decisions ignoring the demands of their citizens, impose unfair policies, marginalize citizens and violate their rights and freedoms in such a way that they experience political repression, oppression, and ignoration. Besides, the desire for the right to self-determination for the occupied ethnic group may encourage people to commit some terrorist acts to rid the country of a foreign occupier who practices social oppression. Russian researchers V. Vityuk and S. Efirov note that "terrorists are distinguished from the general mass by extreme intolerance of dissent and fanaticism generated by maximalist idealistic utopianism, hatred of the existing system or a heightened sense of alienation. They have a firm belief in the possession of the absolute, unique, and final truth, a belief in the Messianic destiny, in the highest and unique mission for the salvation or happiness of mankind" (Matchanova, 2010). At that, terrorists, in their efforts to make society's life ideal, do not stop at destroying representatives of the same social medium, going beyond the limits of the human in choosing methods and means to achieve their goal.
The need to kill others to achieve a political goal can be interpreted as completely rational (Abrahms, 2008; Findlay and Young, 2012; Lake, 2002). As noted by V. Pirozhkov, "At the time of the terrorist attack, the terrorist seems to himself as being a courageous, noble, cruel, uncompromising fighter for justice" (N.d., 1995). As noted by T. Sandler and W. Enders (1993, 1999, 2000, 2003), terrorism is seen as a special way of political expression within a broader whole. Assuming that the benefits of terrorism are uncertain, terrorists will seek to maximize the expected value of a terrorist action according to the probability of its failure. If successful, net wealth is the sum of the net assets of terrorists, income from both legitimate political activities and terrorism.
Thus, in particular, to achieve the separation of the Chechen Republic from the Russian Federation, the terrorist Sh. Basayev and his gang penetrated the town of Budennovsk, Stavropol Territory, on June 14, 1995, where they attacked citizens and organizations. During the attack, gang members took hostages on the town streets, as well as breaking into apartments and private homes of civilians, and threatening to kill, causing bodily harm, have forced to compel the state to refrain from actions against the gang members. Then, on the town square, they subjected citizens to bullying: they forced them to lie down on the asphalt, shot over their heads, and when helicopters appeared in the air, forced citizens to seat around a fuel tanker and threatened to blow it up. After an additional 650 patients and 450 medical personnel of the Budyonnovsky Central District Hospital were taken hostage, the hostages taken in town were escorted to the hospital building, where they were held in conditions dangerous to life and health during June 14-19, 1995. (Case no/ref., Archive of the Stavropol Regional Court, 2002).
Intolerance of ideological principles propagated by the authorities can also lead to the violence and terrorist activities on the part of an individual, who tries to impose principles he believes in on the society in which he lives, and this individual may try to gain the power to promote the dissemination and application of these principles. The world experience of anti-terrorist activities teaches that terrorists from various groups are blindly committed to their cause and ready to go to the end, even to sacrifice their lives for this cause, i.e. the ideology of the group which is of great importance. Lebon G. (1984) wrote about this: "The old idea, even when it is no more than a word, a sound, a mirage, has a magical power that can still bend us to its influence."
Paradoxically, the unconscious fear of death may underlie much of the motivation for terrorism and the response to terrorism, as noted by T. DeAngelis (2009). Referring to the works of T. Pischinsky and his colleagues, he notes that people use culture and religion to protect themselves against the fear of death, which lies on the periphery of awareness. Studies have proved that the subconscious urge requires people to protect themselves psychologically against death in ways that have little to do with the problem of death. These include a commitment to one's cultural identity, working hard to live up to the values of one's culture, and doing everything possible to protect those values. Schleiermacher F. (2018) notes that religion comes from within. Just as the existence of God cannot be proved by science, there is no convincing intellectual explanation for why people are religious. Attempts to give religion an insignificant place in the realm of reason were made in Enlightenment philosophy. However, this was realized at the expense of spirituality. On this basis, religion should be considered as a tangible need, as a natural expression of human activity free from passions, prejudices, and habits. Sundermeier T. (2007) stated the purpose of religion quite briefly but precisely: "Religion is a collective response of a human to the experience of transcendence, which is formed in rite and ethics". Religious beliefs allow believers to understand the nature of phenomena and things, their relationships with each other.
Religion can provide cohesion, but now only for specific subgroups of society. This is most noticeable in the once religious United States. When in 1952, the Gallup Research Center first asked Americans to rate the importance of religion in their lives, 75% noted it was important, and 20% mentioned that it was very important. These proportions were about the same when this question was asked in 1965, however, percentages had dropped by 1978, when 52% noted religion to be very important, while 32% mentioned that it was quite important. In 2018, only 72% noted that religion was important in their lives, including 51% who mentioned that it was very important (Brenan, 2018).
Religious need plays the role of an identity marker, closely intertwined with ethnic affiliation, which is the most common factor or background in internal and internationalized conflicts. For example, the Indian society has absorbed some of the socio-cultural aspects, which eventually became the basis of its civilization. According to P. Rajeswari, the social structure of India has become a unique combination of different religions, cultures, and ethnic groups. Historically, India has been a hospitable land for numerous immigrants and invaders from remote parts of Europe and Asia. The cultural patterns of these newcomers have been intertwined with the local culture for centuries, creating a magnificent cultural heritage of the society (Rajeswari, 2012).
Religious needs affect the functional state and nature of relationships and interactions both within one religion and among different religions and are strongly linked to society, politics, culture, government, nation, etc. Therefore, depending on the conditions, religious need can be either a driving force or a destructive reason for the formation and expansion of terrorist activities. At the same time, various surveys and analyses of recent decades show that over the years the role of exactly religious factors increases, which also inspires terrorism.
Research by the International Center for the Study of Radicalization and Political Violence, which studies the motives for joining ISIL, shows that for many radicalized young people and foreign gunmen who went to join the Caliphate in Syria and Iraq, the search for redemption in extremist religious beliefs and terrorist religious groups was an important motive (International Center for the Study of Radicalization and Political Violence on Criminal Pasts, 2016). According to the RAND Corporation (2016), in the 1980s, only a small percentage of terrorist attacks in the world were caused by religious motives. However, this proportion is currently particularly high worldwide (RAND, 2016). At the same time, the level of threats of religious terrorism depends, in particular, on the geographical region of its origin and distribution. Thus, in particular, being high in the Middle East or Asia, it is relatively low in Latin America.
In this aspect, interesting are the results of a study conducted under the auspices of the United Nations in the period from 2015 to 2017 in terms of reasons that encourage people to join terrorist activities. The study was conducted in African countries (Somalia, Nigeria, Kenya, Sudan, Niger, and Cameroon) and covered 718 respondents who in the past belonged to the religious terrorist organizations, namely Somali Youth Movement, Boko Haram, ISIL, al-Qaeda, al-Murabitun, Tawhid, and Jihad. The reasons for joining a religious terrorist organization were distributed as follows: religious ideas - 40%; a person's desire to be something within a broader system - 16%; job search - 13%; faith in the words of their religious mentor - 13%; friendship and kinship factors - 10%; ethnic reasons - 5%; group political ideas - 4%; adventures and services provided by a terrorist organization - 3% each; support for a spiritual master - 2%; social isolation and political marginalization - 1% each, as well as the other reasons - 3% (Figure. 4) (Khaled, & Buthaina, 2017).
Figure. 4 Reasons for joining a religious terrorist organization, % (Khaled, & Buthaina, 2017)
Another study conducted in Germany based on a statistical analysis of the country's available data on the history of radicalization of 784 people who left for Syria and Iraq before the end of June 2016 or who actively tried to do so, has shown that in more than 60% of cases, agitation carried out in mosques, played a pivotal role, as well as the influence of family and friends - 54%; Islamist proposals on the Internet - 44%; so-called seminars on Islam - 27%; fundraisers - 6%; contacts at school - 3%; and contacts in prisons - 2%. Very rarely, a "revolutionary intention" (8%), a desire to get married (6%), or a subsequent trip or accompanying a spouse or family member (5%) were the motives for leaving for Syria or Iraq (BKA/BfV, 2016; Goertz, 2017). Besides, it should be noted that half of the study participants have shown that it was the religion that served as the reason for joining terrorist groups. However, 57% of them admitted that they had little or almost no understanding of religious texts, or that they had not read them at all. The study also concluded that terrorist organizations used religion to justify domestic violence and that a person's correct understanding of their religion could increase their resistance against recruiters' attempts. Thus, the probability of joining a terrorist organization by an individual having six years of religious education can be reduced by 32%. A human is designed so that he needs to be sure of his rightness and have faith, hope, and love, which is why religion is so firm and needful.
No less dramatic is the situation where an individual, without claiming to flout the norms of legislation, cannot fully implement his need to perform religious rites or traditions. This is especially evident among young people whose representatives of various religions are under pressure and bullying from adherents of the titular religions. For example, in the USA, according to a report by the CAIR, Muslim youth are increasingly experiencing religious bullying. A 2017 survey of Muslim teenagers in California found that 53% of Muslim schoolchildren experienced religious bullying at school that was almost double the national average. Other studies show that Muslim youth reports an increase in depression, anxiety, and problematic behavior (such as smoking, alcohol ingestion), as well as a decrease in academic activity, resulting from bullying (CAIR, 2017).
As one can see, the influence of the need satisfaction process on the motives for joining a terrorist organization is explained by factors that act individually or in concert with each other. These factors are dominated by pragmatism, which includes both the search for protection from the prejudice, abuse, and violence, and the desire to obtain material and social, political or spiritual benefits resulting from inclusion in a limited protected community; the desire to have a feeling of identity, the fulfillment of a holy mission, high self-esteem, and strength or superiority. The motives for recruitment are numerous and partially coincide with any terrorist movement. They vary from individual to individual and even change in the same individual over time. It is known that there is no clear profile of terrorists, that it takes time to turn a conscious law-abiding individual into a terrorist, and that the process of desocialization is gradual. In this regard, the present study can contribute to the creation of a general approach for theoretical studies of the phenomenon of terrorism from the perspective of implementing the needs of the individual. Maslow (2014) noted: "A human is a willing being. A human is very rarely completely satisfied, and if it happens, it is very short. As soon as he satisfies one desire, another immediately takes its place, then a third, a fourth, and so on ad infinitum. The desire that is incessant and indelible is a characteristic feature of a human, and it accompanies him throughout his life."
The appeal of an individual to terrorist activities tells that the state and society have not been able to fully meet the needs of the individual within the limits of the norms and rules applicable in a particular society. First of all, these needs are economic and spiritual.
The research was conducted based on a relevant database. Many needs of individuals belonging to terrorist groups were identified, as well as a comparative analysis of statistical and sociological reports and research results was conducted, starting from the second half of the 20th century to the present day. To determine the individual’s needs that most provoke their decision to join terrorist organizations, the authors used both existing scientific results in this area and their professional experience in organizing anti-terrorist activities. However, the results of this study should be taken with caution and not generalized too broadly, because the source data, selected by the authoring team, have some subjective assessment and cover just regions of the world such as EU, Middle East, North Africa, Russia, and the USA.
The results obtained allow stating that those who do not see a legitimate opportunity to meet their economic, social, political, and spiritual needs are most susceptible to getting on the path of criminal terrorist activity. Thus, it can be stated that the hypothesis, initially put forward by the authors, has a right to exist.
Research limitations and prospects
According to the authors, the results obtained in the course of the study will provide significant assistance to state authorities, security services, and law enforcement agencies in organizing anti-terrorist activities in today’s world, and will allow building a system to meet the needs of the individual, adequate to contemporary democratic society. The results of this research can be also used in the course of studying the socio-psychological, political, and spiritual characteristics of active and potential terrorists.
At the same time, the authors understand that their research represents just one of the vector approaches to such an urgent problem as the analysis of the motivational processes of today’s terrorism. The authors believe that it is impossible to focus only on the identification and disclosure of four subsystems of an integral, balanced system of an individual’s needs. It is necessary to further substantiate their hierarchical structure both in a holistic version and taking into account the regional characteristics of the spread of terrorism.
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