Need help wrapping up a class while moving. its essentially combining the included red cell paper with the organization anaylsis. Using the Organizational Profile you prepared in your Midterm Assignment due in week 3 and the Progress Assignment -Draft of the Red Cell Analysis you prepared in week 6, combine the two and make any necessary changes based on instructor feedback. The Final Assignment/ Completed Red Cell Analysis should be one seamless document. Include at least three recommendations you would provide to a policy maker on your selected organization. When the Organizational Profile and the Draft of Red Cell Analysis are combined and you add the recommendations, your Final Assignment/ Completed Red Cell Analysis should be at least 11-16 pages total in length. The Final Assignment/ Completed Red Cell Analysis is due Sunday of Week 8. The Completed Red Cell Analysis must follow Turabian or APA guidelines(parenthetical citation format) and be free of typographical, spelling and grammatical errors. Redcell.docxxxxxxMidterm.docxxxxxxx
AL-QAEDA
SEPT 10 2015
zxxx
SEPT 10 2015
Red cell analysis is also known as red team analysis. A red team is a group of experts
dedicated to intelligence investigations and provision of warnings where necessary dealing with
national and international security. The organization brings the future to the present as far as national and international security is concerned. (Matesk 2009).
The idea of the red team analysis was born from the red team military activities or red
teaming which was used by the US military to simulate the plans of the enemy so that they get
prepared in case of any attack. In general, the red team analysis forecasts happenings of the future through historical data, and psychology. This means that if one desires to know the enemy,
he/she will be required to think like them from a psychological point of view. One also needs to
rely on forensic science to get to the enemy. It is also used in superpowers like Russia, all be it a
few small differences. For example in the Soviet Union days, the undercover technique was referred to as green or blue team analysis. This varies according to the cultures of specific countries. (Matesk 2009).
Origins and Ideology
Al Qaeda is considered one of the most dangerous terrorist organizations in the world.
The group is known for its execution of well planned, devastating attacks against a wide variety
of targets. Al Qaeda has a network all around the globe and is known to finance other smaller
terrorist groups like ISIS in Syria and Libya and Al-shabaab in the horn of Africa region. Al
Qaeda (AQ) is known as the largest terror organization in the world because of the networks and
the magnitude of attacks it can execute single handedly. (Bevy, 2006).
AQ is a global Islamic movement founded in the early 1980’s by Osama bin laden and
other extremists in the Arabic world. It is believed that Osama and the other founders of AQ participated in the volunteer program during the soviet invasion of Afghanistan. They ironically
zxxx
SEPT 10 2015
were trained and funded by the US at the time to fight against the soviets. It is a jihadist, Islamic
extremist group that targets all those who don’t share religious opinions with them, and in this
case non Muslims and even those Muslims who attempt to stand in their way. Since its founding,
Al Qaeda has carried out major terror attacks around the world including the 9/11 attacks on the
world trade center and pentagon in the US. Just like all other terror organizations, Al-Qaeda
thrives on instability in a given area. For example in countries which have no proper standing
governments or those countries plagued by war. Examples of such countries are: Somalia, Syria,
Afghanistan, and most recently Yemen. (Bevy, 2006).
Al Qaeda’s top agenda is to see the western influence on the Arab world and other non
Arab Muslims cease to exist. They believe that the west should not be involved in the Arab and
Muslim world completely. Therefore anyone who gets involved in Muslim countries potentially
attracts the wrath of these extremist groups. The US has been historically targeted because of its
involvement in peace keeping in countries like Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya and others. (Silber,
2012). AQ has enhanced its media output significantly in recent times to stay relevant and to
continue to recruit and raise funds at a time when the ultra violent ISIL is gaining in notoriety.
(Gray, J. 2015).
Data Collection Programs
Data collection programs are the methods that are used to collect the much needed information from the terrorist organization for use in the strategic fore view of a given nation or
League of Nations. (Patton, M. Q. 1990). In this case, data collection programs that will be used
to collect data from the Al Qaeda bases around the world will include:
Human intelligence (HUMINT)
zxxx
SEPT 10 2015
Human intelligence is considered the most dangerous method to gather information from
an established organization like Al Qaeda. The danger obviously stemming from attempting to
infiltrate or flip a member of the organization could easily result in the persons death or in the
delivery of intentionally misleading information and or/ direct physical harm to the intelligence
officer. On the other hand, it is the most effective way to get access to secret information in organizations like Al Qaeda that rely heavily on human couriers to transport messages and data by
hand, a common tactic to foil technological information collection programs.(Guilford, J. P.
1967).
Signal intelligence (SIGINT)
This method will rely more on technology, since Al Qaeda is located in countries far
away from the US, and also countries considered dangerous for collection personnel to move in,
this kind of program will be most effective because it involves the use of sophisticated assets like
unmanned drones and the use of satellite to locate and monitor possible bases belonging to AQ
for training and or operations. (Lewin, R. 1981).
Open source intelligence (OSINT)
Using this program, most of the data is gathered from the sources that are publicly available to the data collectors. Such sources include: the media, web based communities, public data
e.g. government reports, observation and reporting, professional and academic sources, and
many others. With the increased media and propaganda output on the world wide web there are
increased opportunities to track and exploit terrorist personnel online. (Steele, R. 2007).
The Relevant Members of the Intelligence Community
The FBI
zxxx
SEPT 10 2015
Due to the known infiltration of Al Qaeda into the US, there is need for the Federal Bureau of Investigation to conduct a huge amount of surveillance on persons of interest residing
here in the U.S. or traveling to and from our country. The nation wide structure of the FBI and
the wide variety of collections programs employed make them very effective not only the timely
collection and analysis of information but also in the actual law enforcement executions of safely
arresting and removing these individuals before they can conduct an attack.
The involvement of the CIA
The CIA is known for its ability to move anywhere in the world to gather information.
Therefore the CIA is tasked heavily with pursuing AQ’s activities worldwide. Using all of the
available data collection programs to deny AQ the freedom to move, recruit, finance and train its
operatives abroad, while passing collected information to other members of the IC to ensure the
safety of citizens at home and other allied countries.
The Department of Defense
The various Special Forces units from the DOD are very effective in combating Al Qaeda
through high risk missions to gather information and apprehend the Al Qaeda sympathizers outside the US borders.
Effective Intelligence Analysis Strategies for this course
The Analysis of Competing Hypothesis strategy
AQ has such a varied history of attacks, with many methodologies and targets, utilizing a
strategy such as ACH allows an analyst to apply scientific method to highlight the most probable
future method of attack (Coleman and Fararo 1992) While at the same time clearly identifying
and disconfirming each alternate possibility to allow for a confident analysis.
The red team analysis
zxxx
SEPT 10 2015
This is where we as analyst put ourselves into the shoes of Al Qaeda and ask ourselves: if
Al Qaeda can attack the US, What can they do to succeed? What are likely targets and what sort
of attack is most advantageous for them to conduct. How will they avoid law enforcement and
data collection programs? How will they supply themselves? With these questions answered
members of the IC can better position themselves to anticipate and intercept future terrorist operations (Dunlap, et al 1998).
What if?
In this case, using likely scenarios generated by Red cell efforts, We should try to simulate real events they would likely execute against our own national infrastructure. If it succeeds
then we should look for ways to seal the loopholes in our system. The above strategies would be
successful because analyzing data from an n enemy’s point of view gives us an edge in terms of
what he/she is thinking. (Mackey, Alan 2009).
Recommendations
From the above red cell analysis paper, I recommend the following:
The US government should introduce intelligence incentives in colleges to make students and the
general populace more informed on the dangers facing our nation. Continued integration of the
international IC and national law enforcement to ensure timely diffusion of intelligence. Utilization of current popular media to conduct counter propaganda programs to detract potential recruits and “deglamorize” warrior image projected by groups like AQ using internationally accredited non western news sources.
zxxx
SEPT 10 2015
zxxx
SEPT 10 2015
References
Bevy, L. (2006). Al-Qaeda. New York: novinka Books.
Coleman JS & Fararo TJ. (1992). Nueva York: Sage, – ppsw.rug.n
Dunlap, Charles J.,& Jr. (2010). Joint vision. A red team Assessment. ADA356277
Eilenberger, D. (2009). GEOINT serves NATO. Pathfinder, The National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, 7(2), 3.
Gray, J. (2015). Al Qaeda and what it means to be modern. Faber & Faber.
Guilford, J. P. (1967). The nature of human intelligence.
Lewin, R. (1981). A signal-intelligence war. Journal of Contemporary History, 501-512.
Mackey & Alan R. (2009).Think like the enemy. Journal article.ADA562892
Patton, M. Q. (1990). Qualitative evaluation and research methods . SAGE Publications, inc.
Steele, R. (2007). Open source intelligence. Handbook of intelligence studies, 129-147.
xxxxxx
AL-QAEDA
SEPT 10 2015
zxxx
SEPT 10 2015
Red cell analysis is also known as red team analysis. A red team is a group of experts
dedicated to intelligence investigations and provision of warnings where necessary dealing with
national and international security. The organization brings the future to the present as far as national and international security is concerned. (Matesk 2009).
The idea of the red team analysis was born from the red team military activities or red
teaming which was used by the US military to simulate the plans of the enemy so that they get
prepared in case of any attack. In general, the red team analysis forecasts happenings of the future through historical data, and psychology. This means that if one desires to know the enemy,
he/she will be required to think like them from a psychological point of view. One also needs to
rely on forensic science to get to the enemy. It is also used in superpowers like Russia, all be it a
few small differences. For example in the Soviet Union days, the undercover technique was referred to as green or blue team analysis. This varies according to the cultures of specific countries. (Matesk 2009).
Origins and Ideology
Al Qaeda is considered one of the most dangerous terrorist organizations in the world.
The group is known for its execution of well planned, devastating attacks against a wide variety
of targets. Al Qaeda has a network all around the globe and is known to finance other smaller
terrorist groups like ISIS in Syria and Libya and Al-shabaab in the horn of Africa region. Al
Qaeda (AQ) is known as the largest terror organization in the world because of the networks and
the magnitude of attacks it can execute single handedly. (Bevy, 2006).
AQ is a global Islamic movement founded in the early 1980’s by Osama bin laden and
other extremists in the Arabic world. It is believed that Osama and the other founders of AQ participated in the volunteer program during the soviet invasion of Afghanistan. They ironically
zxxx
SEPT 10 2015
were trained and funded by the US at the time to fight against the soviets. It is a jihadist, Islamic
extremist group that targets all those who don’t share religious opinions with them, and in this
case non Muslims and even those Muslims who attempt to stand in their way. Since its founding,
Al Qaeda has carried out major terror attacks around the world including the 9/11 attacks on the
world trade center and pentagon in the US. Just like all other terror organizations, Al-Qaeda
thrives on instability in a given area. For example in countries which have no proper standing
governments or those countries plagued by war. Examples of such countries are: Somalia, Syria,
Afghanistan, and most recently Yemen. (Bevy, 2006).
Al Qaeda’s top agenda is to see the western influence on the Arab world and other non
Arab Muslims cease to exist. They believe that the west should not be involved in the Arab and
Muslim world completely. Therefore anyone who gets involved in Muslim countries potentially
attracts the wrath of these extremist groups. The US has been historically targeted because of its
involvement in peace keeping in countries like Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya and others. (Silber,
2012). AQ has enhanced its media output significantly in recent times to stay relevant and to
continue to recruit and raise funds at a time when the ultra violent ISIL is gaining in notoriety.
(Gray, J. 2015).
Data Collection Programs
Data collection programs are the methods that are used to collect the much needed information from the terrorist organization for use in the strategic fore view of a given nation or
League of Nations. (Patton, M. Q. 1990). In this case, data collection programs that will be used
to collect data from the Al Qaeda bases around the world will include:
Human intelligence (HUMINT)
zxxx
SEPT 10 2015
Human intelligence is considered the most dangerous method to gather information from
an established organization like Al Qaeda. The danger obviously stemming from attempting to
infiltrate or flip a member of the organization could easily result in the persons death or in the
delivery of intentionally misleading information and or/ direct physical harm to the intelligence
officer. On the other hand, it is the most effective way to get access to secret information in organizations like Al Qaeda that rely heavily on human couriers to transport messages and data by
hand, a common tactic to foil technological information collection programs.(Guilford, J. P.
1967).
Signal intelligence (SIGINT)
This method will rely more on technology, since Al Qaeda is located in countries far
away from the US, and also countries considered dangerous for collection personnel to move in,
this kind of program will be most effective because it involves the use of sophisticated assets like
unmanned drones and the use of satellite to locate and monitor possible bases belonging to AQ
for training and or operations. (Lewin, R. 1981).
Open source intelligence (OSINT)
Using this program, most of the data is gathered from the sources that are publicly available to the data collectors. Such sources include: the media, web based communities, public data
e.g. government reports, observation and reporting, professional and academic sources, and
many others. With the increased media and propaganda output on the world wide web there are
increased opportunities to track and exploit terrorist personnel online. (Steele, R. 2007).
The Relevant Members of the Intelligence Community
The FBI
zxxx
SEPT 10 2015
Due to the known infiltration of Al Qaeda into the US, there is need for the Federal Bureau of Investigation to conduct a huge amount of surveillance on persons of interest residing
here in the U.S. or traveling to and from our country. The nation wide structure of the FBI and
the wide variety of collections programs employed make them very effective not only the timely
collection and analysis of information but also in the actual law enforcement executions of safely
arresting and removing these individuals before they can conduct an attack.
The involvement of the CIA
The CIA is known for its ability to move anywhere in the world to gather information.
Therefore the CIA is tasked heavily with pursuing AQ’s activities worldwide. Using all of the
available data collection programs to deny AQ the freedom to move, recruit, finance and train its
operatives abroad, while passing collected information to other members of the IC to ensure the
safety of citizens at home and other allied countries.
The Department of Defense
The various Special Forces units from the DOD are very effective in combating Al Qaeda
through high risk missions to gather information and apprehend the Al Qaeda sympathizers outside the US borders.
Effective Intelligence Analysis Strategies for this course
The Analysis of Competing Hypothesis strategy
AQ has such a varied history of attacks, with many methodologies and targets, utilizing a
strategy such as ACH allows an analyst to apply scientific method to highlight the most probable
future method of attack (Coleman and Fararo 1992) While at the same time clearly identifying
and disconfirming each alternate possibility to allow for a confident analysis.
The red team analysis
zxxx
SEPT 10 2015
This is where we as analyst put ourselves into the shoes of Al Qaeda and ask ourselves: if
Al Qaeda can attack the US, What can they do to succeed? What are likely targets and what sort
of attack is most advantageous for them to conduct. How will they avoid law enforcement and
data collection programs? How will they supply themselves? With these questions answered
members of the IC can better position themselves to anticipate and intercept future terrorist operations (Dunlap, et al 1998).
What if?
In this case, using likely scenarios generated by Red cell efforts, We should try to simulate real events they would likely execute against our own national infrastructure. If it succeeds
then we should look for ways to seal the loopholes in our system. The above strategies would be
successful because analyzing data from an n enemy’s point of view gives us an edge in terms of
what he/she is thinking. (Mackey, Alan 2009).
Recommendations
From the above red cell analysis paper, I recommend the following:
The US government should introduce intelligence incentives in colleges to make students and the
general populace more informed on the dangers facing our nation. Continued integration of the
international IC and national law enforcement to ensure timely diffusion of intelligence. Utilization of current popular media to conduct counter propaganda programs to detract potential recruits and “deglamorize” warrior image projected by groups like AQ using internationally accredited non western news sources.
zxxx
SEPT 10 2015
zxxx
SEPT 10 2015
References
Bevy, L. (2006). Al-Qaeda. New York: novinka Books.
Coleman JS & Fararo TJ. (1992). Nueva York: Sage, – ppsw.rug.n
Dunlap, Charles J.,& Jr. (2010). Joint vision. A red team Assessment. ADA356277
Eilenberger, D. (2009). GEOINT serves NATO. Pathfinder, The National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, 7(2), 3.
Gray, J. (2015). Al Qaeda and what it means to be modern. Faber & Faber.
Guilford, J. P. (1967). The nature of human intelligence.
Lewin, R. (1981). A signal-intelligence war. Journal of Contemporary History, 501-512.
Mackey & Alan R. (2009).Think like the enemy. Journal article.ADA562892
Patton, M. Q. (1990). Qualitative evaluation and research methods . SAGE Publications, inc.
Steele, R. (2007). Open source intelligence. Handbook of intelligence studies, 129-147.
xxxxxx
AL-QAEDA
SEPT 10 2015
zxxx
SEPT 10 2015
Red cell analysis is also known as red team analysis. A red team is a group of experts
dedicated to intelligence investigations and provision of warnings where necessary dealing with
national and international security. The organization brings the future to the present as far as national and international security is concerned. (Matesk 2009).
The idea of the red team analysis was born from the red team military activities or red
teaming which was used by the US military to simulate the plans of the enemy so that they get
prepared in case of any attack. In general, the red team analysis forecasts happenings of the future through historical data, and psychology. This means that if one desires to know the enemy,
he/she will be required to think like them from a psychological point of view. One also needs to
rely on forensic science to get to the enemy. It is also used in superpowers like Russia, all be it a
few small differences. For example in the Soviet Union days, the undercover technique was referred to as green or blue team analysis. This varies according to the cultures of specific countries. (Matesk 2009).
Origins and Ideology
Al Qaeda is considered one of the most dangerous terrorist organizations in the world.
The group is known for its execution of well planned, devastating attacks against a wide variety
of targets. Al Qaeda has a network all around the globe and is known to finance other smaller
terrorist groups like ISIS in Syria and Libya and Al-shabaab in the horn of Africa region. Al
Qaeda (AQ) is known as the largest terror organization in the world because of the networks and
the magnitude of attacks it can execute single handedly. (Bevy, 2006).
AQ is a global Islamic movement founded in the early 1980’s by Osama bin laden and
other extremists in the Arabic world. It is believed that Osama and the other founders of AQ participated in the volunteer program during the soviet invasion of Afghanistan. They ironically
zxxx
SEPT 10 2015
were trained and funded by the US at the time to fight against the soviets. It is a jihadist, Islamic
extremist group that targets all those who don’t share religious opinions with them, and in this
case non Muslims and even those Muslims who attempt to stand in their way. Since its founding,
Al Qaeda has carried out major terror attacks around the world including the 9/11 attacks on the
world trade center and pentagon in the US. Just like all other terror organizations, Al-Qaeda
thrives on instability in a given area. For example in countries which have no proper standing
governments or those countries plagued by war. Examples of such countries are: Somalia, Syria,
Afghanistan, and most recently Yemen. (Bevy, 2006).
Al Qaeda’s top agenda is to see the western influence on the Arab world and other non
Arab Muslims cease to exist. They believe that the west should not be involved in the Arab and
Muslim world completely. Therefore anyone who gets involved in Muslim countries potentially
attracts the wrath of these extremist groups. The US has been historically targeted because of its
involvement in peace keeping in countries like Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya and others. (Silber,
2012). AQ has enhanced its media output significantly in recent times to stay relevant and to
continue to recruit and raise funds at a time when the ultra violent ISIL is gaining in notoriety.
(Gray, J. 2015).
Data Collection Programs
Data collection programs are the methods that are used to collect the much needed information from the terrorist organization for use in the strategic fore view of a given nation or
League of Nations. (Patton, M. Q. 1990). In this case, data collection programs that will be used
to collect data from the Al Qaeda bases around the world will include:
Human intelligence (HUMINT)
zxxx
SEPT 10 2015
Human intelligence is considered the most dangerous method to gather information from
an established organization like Al Qaeda. The danger obviously stemming from attempting to
infiltrate or flip a member of the organization could easily result in the persons death or in the
delivery of intentionally misleading information and or/ direct physical harm to the intelligence
officer. On the other hand, it is the most effective way to get access to secret information in organizations like Al Qaeda that rely heavily on human couriers to transport messages and data by
hand, a common tactic to foil technological information collection programs.(Guilford, J. P.
1967).
Signal intelligence (SIGINT)
This method will rely more on technology, since Al Qaeda is located in countries far
away from the US, and also countries considered dangerous for collection personnel to move in,
this kind of program will be most effective because it involves the use of sophisticated assets like
unmanned drones and the use of satellite to locate and monitor possible bases belonging to AQ
for training and or operations. (Lewin, R. 1981).
Open source intelligence (OSINT)
Using this program, most of the data is gathered from the sources that are publicly available to the data collectors. Such sources include: the media, web based communities, public data
e.g. government reports, observation and reporting, professional and academic sources, and
many others. With the increased media and propaganda output on the world wide web there are
increased opportunities to track and exploit terrorist personnel online. (Steele, R. 2007).
The Relevant Members of the Intelligence Community
The FBI
zxxx
SEPT 10 2015
Due to the known infiltration of Al Qaeda into the US, there is need for the Federal Bureau of Investigation to conduct a huge amount of surveillance on persons of interest residing
here in the U.S. or traveling to and from our country. The nation wide structure of the FBI and
the wide variety of collections programs employed make them very effective not only the timely
collection and analysis of information but also in the actual law enforcement executions of safely
arresting and removing these individuals before they can conduct an attack.
The involvement of the CIA
The CIA is known for its ability to move anywhere in the world to gather information.
Therefore the CIA is tasked heavily with pursuing AQ’s activities worldwide. Using all of the
available data collection programs to deny AQ the freedom to move, recruit, finance and train its
operatives abroad, while passing collected information to other members of the IC to ensure the
safety of citizens at home and other allied countries.
The Department of Defense
The various Special Forces units from the DOD are very effective in combating Al Qaeda
through high risk missions to gather information and apprehend the Al Qaeda sympathizers outside the US borders.
Effective Intelligence Analysis Strategies for this course
The Analysis of Competing Hypothesis strategy
AQ has such a varied history of attacks, with many methodologies and targets, utilizing a
strategy such as ACH allows an analyst to apply scientific method to highlight the most probable
future method of attack (Coleman and Fararo 1992) While at the same time clearly identifying
and disconfirming each alternate possibility to allow for a confident analysis.
The red team analysis
zxxx
SEPT 10 2015
This is where we as analyst put ourselves into the shoes of Al Qaeda and ask ourselves: if
Al Qaeda can attack the US, What can they do to succeed? What are likely targets and what sort
of attack is most advantageous for them to conduct. How will they avoid law enforcement and
data collection programs? How will they supply themselves? With these questions answered
members of the IC can better position themselves to anticipate and intercept future terrorist operations (Dunlap, et al 1998).
What if?
In this case, using likely scenarios generated by Red cell efforts, We should try to simulate real events they would likely execute against our own national infrastructure. If it succeeds
then we should look for ways to seal the loopholes in our system. The above strategies would be
successful because analyzing data from an n enemy’s point of view gives us an edge in terms of
what he/she is thinking. (Mackey, Alan 2009).
Recommendations
From the above red cell analysis paper, I recommend the following:
The US government should introduce intelligence incentives in colleges to make students and the
general populace more informed on the dangers facing our nation. Continued integration of the
international IC and national law enforcement to ensure timely diffusion of intelligence. Utilization of current popular media to conduct counter propaganda programs to detract potential recruits and “deglamorize” warrior image projected by groups like AQ using internationally accredited non western news sources.
zxxx
SEPT 10 2015
zxxx
SEPT 10 2015
References
Bevy, L. (2006). Al-Qaeda. New York: novinka Books.
Coleman JS & Fararo TJ. (1992). Nueva York: Sage, – ppsw.rug.n
Dunlap, Charles J.,& Jr. (2010). Joint vision. A red team Assessment. ADA356277
Eilenberger, D. (2009). GEOINT serves NATO. Pathfinder, The National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, 7(2), 3.
Gray, J. (2015). Al Qaeda and what it means to be modern. Faber & Faber.
Guilford, J. P. (1967). The nature of human intelligence.
Lewin, R. (1981). A signal-intelligence war. Journal of Contemporary History, 501-512.
Mackey & Alan R. (2009).Think like the enemy. Journal article.ADA562892
Patton, M. Q. (1990). Qualitative evaluation and research methods . SAGE Publications, inc.
Steele, R. (2007). Open source intelligence. Handbook of intelligence studies, 129-147.
Running head: AL-QAEDA
1
AL-QAEDA
xxxxxxxx
American Military University
HLSS320
Sunday, May 5, 19
AL-QAEDA
2
Al-Qaeda
Al-Qaeda is one of the major terrorist groups in the world that has previously attacked the
US and has a high likelihood of targeting it again. The Al-Qaeda terrorist group is linked to other
terrorist groups around the world and is known to finance and offer training to other infamous
terrorist groups such as ISIS and Al-shabab. It is often times overshadowed by its ultra violent
offshoots but Al-Qaeda is the largest terrorist organization in the world and is more then capable
of conducting large scale, high casualty producing attacks. (Bevy, 2006).
Origins
Al-Qaeda is an Arabic word that when translated mean “The base” or “The Foundation”.
It is global Islamic movement that was founded by Osama bin Laden, Abdullah Azzam and other
extremists in the late 1980s. The group is linked to the Arab volunteers who were involved in the
Soviet invasion of Afghanistan who were trained and armed by the US government. It is a jihadist,
Islamist, and extremist group. The group targets non-Muslims whom they consider as infidels since
they do not share their religious opinions and values. Since its inception Al-Qaeda has carried out
attacks against military and civilian populations around the world such as the attack on the US in
September 2001 as well as the attacks on the Kenyan embassy in Nairobi in 1998 (Bevy, 2006).
Al-Qaeda is widespread and has existed in most Muslim countries under various names and operations especially in countries that lack stability such as Syria, Somalia, Afghanistan, and others.
The group has also instigated sectarian violence against other Muslims. Al-Qaeda leadership sees
Shias, Sufis and liberal Muslims as a threat to Islam and has attacked their mosques as well as
other gatherings such as the Sadr City Bombings and Yazidi Community Bombings.
AL-QAEDA
3
Ideology
The ideologies of Al-Qaeda are that they envision a complete break of all western influences in the Muslim countries and the creation of new worldwide Islamic caliphate. The group
believes that foreign influences in the Muslim countries are the cause of all their misfortunes and
that the west should leave Muslim countries alone. The group holds a particular grudge against the
US for being involved in the affairs of the Islamic states such as Iraq, Afghanistan, Iran and others
(Silber, 2012). The group believes that non-Muslims cannot live in Muslim countries and that
killing of infidels or non-believers is religiously sanctioned by the Koran.
Leadership
The philosophy of the management of Al-Qaeda is that decisions are centralized while
execution of duties is decentralized. The leadership of the group comprised of Osama bin Laden
before his death and other group members. There are regional groups using the brand name AlQaeda which handle executing attacks in their areas but still have strong ties with overall leadership. Osama bin Laden before his death was the commander and senior operations chief the group.
Ayman al-Zawahiri was the deputy operations chief and assumed the role of the commander after
the death of Bin Laden. He replaced the interim commander Saif al-Adel. Bin Laden was advised
by approximately 20 to 30 Shura council members who were senior officials in the Al-Qaeda ranks
(Silber, 2012). The group consists of decentralized regional leaders who were called to serve as an
integral part of the organization when the need arose. Al-Qaeda consists of a military committee
that is responsible for training, acquisition of weapons and planning attacks. It also includes a
business committee that is responsible for training operatives to get finances. The law committee
is in charge of reviewing Sharia laws and deciding which attacks conform to it.
Funding
AL-QAEDA
4
The major source of funding for the Al-Qaeda is from ransoms they demand from the victims they kidnap with an estimate of 120 million US dollars from those that they have kidnaped
between 2004 and 2012. Another source of funding for the group in the 1990s was from Osama
bin Laden personal wealth (Schanzer & Ross, 2005). The group was also involved in the heroin
trade and donations from jihadists and others extremist groups. Al-Qaeda also gets revenue from
the businesses people in their area of operations. The illegal activities that the group is involved in
also help to raise funds such as the sale of weapons to other terrorist groups and criminal organizations around the world.
Physical bases
Al-Qaeda has physical bases of operations in countries such as Sudan, Somalia, Pakistan
and regions of Afghanistan and Iraq. These regions that have been destabilized by war offer the
best opportunity for operations to the Al-Qaeda group. It allows the group to continue its activities
without being detected and offer a large group of recruits who can be convinced to join the AlQaeda cause. The headquarters of Al-Qaeda are currently unknown (Schanzer & Ross, 2005).
Personnel strength
The number of personnel under the Al-Qaeda is difficult to ascertain because of the decentralized nature of the organization. However, it is estimated that the number of operatives in a
single area can range from 100 to 500. Al-Qaeda has also forged ties with other militant groups
and, therefore, the number of operatives who are under the Al-Qaeda control may be more than
expected (Sanger & Mazzetti, 2010). The group may have thousands of operatives around the
world.
Training programs
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For recruits entering the Al-Qaeda training is mandatory. Al-Qaeda has various training
bases in countries such as Afghanistan and Somali were recruits are trained before being sent out
to missions. The recruits receive training on how to use weapons such as guns, knives and bombs
and how to resist torture when captured (Schanzer & Ross, 2005). The recruits receive target practice and training on how to infiltrate borders and countries and how to carry out their attacks. After
training, the recruits are sent on missions to test their resolve and commitment to the organization.
Communication methods
The communication methods used by Al-Qaeda are aimed at preventing detection and,
therefore, prefer traditional forms of communication that cannot be easily detected such as using
courier services to convey messages and send items. Face to face conversations are maintained as
well as gathering of members to discuss bout the actions of the organization Most of the members
prefer this method as it is difficult to track or know what they are talking about. The Al-Qaeda also
use mass media to convey their messages, especially after terrorist attacks. Video recordings are
sent to media houses to help broadcast and communicate their demands or resolutions (Bogart,
2013). Local members may use email conversation, but the management and leadership never use
such methods to send messages. The mass media platforms offer an opportunity for the group to
broadcast its propaganda to many people.
Known and suspected weapons
The most common weapons being used by the Al-Qaeda are small arms such as AK-47
and other former soviet bloc tools that are the weapons of choice for the majority of the organization members. The Al-Qaeda has also acquired ground to air missiles that are capable of targeting
aircrafts and drones. Al-Qaeda also used improvised explosive devices (IED) and is suspected to
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have nerve gas weapons (Bevy, 2006). Other suspected weapons the group is rumored to have
include anti-tank weapons acquired during the uprisings in Syria and Libya. The group is also well
known for wanting to acquire weapons of mass destruction.
Procedures used in prior attacks
Some of the procedures used by the Al-Qaeda to attack include suicide tracks where individuals blow themselves up while killing others. The group also uses bombs such as the ones used
in the 2002 Bali bombings (Bevy, 2006). Bombs and grenades have been thrown at people as well.
Hijacking and commandeering airplanes to cause destruction and death have also been one of their
most famous strategies for fighting. The 2001 attacks on the world trade center were caused by the
Al-Qaeda when they hijacked two planes and caused them to collide with the Twin Tower building
causing loss of lives and destruction to the American people.
Propaganda
Al-Qaeda issues its propaganda to gain favor with Muslims to follow their jihadist methods
through the use of videos of their leaders such as Osama bin Laden which point out the evils of
the western countries and the call for the Muslim brothers to rise up in arms to defeat the infidels
(Silber, 2012). The propaganda is issued to news centers or put on the internet to get support and
push their jihadist and extremist agenda.
Surveillance methods
Al-Qaeda uses local citizens or people with positions in various organizations such as the
police force or foreign officials to get information about possible targets or how close the law
enforcement agencies may be to them. The group conducts reconnaissance techniques to help determine their target and the viability of the attack they will use (Silber, 2012). The Al-Qaeda group
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has operatives around the world who record information on possible targets, sources of revenue
and other important details to the organization.
Significant events used in attack planning
Al-Qaeda specializes in impacting the greatest damage and loss to their target. The group
makes targets that may have many people and, therefore, translate to many casualties. National
celebrations such as the 4th of July celebrations where many people may be gathered at one place
may offer an opportunity for the group to attack knowing that there will be many casualties. Graduation ceremonies in various institutions also offer an opportunity for Al-Qaeda to strike. Large
buildings housing many people also provide a good opportunity for them to act (Silber, 2012).
References
Bevy, L. (2006). Al-Qaeda. New York: Novinka Books.
Bogart, N. (2013). Terrorist organizations use variety of techniques to communicate with overseas cohorts. Retrieved from http://globalnews.ca/news/504972/terrorist-organizationsuse-variety-of-techniques-to-communicate-with-overseas-cohorts/
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Sanger, D. & Mazzetti, M. (2010). New Estimate of Strength of Al Qaeda Is Offered. Retrieved
from http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/01/world/asia/01qaeda.html
Schanzer, J., & Ross, D. (2005). Al-Qaeda’s armies. New York: Specialist Press International.
Silber, M. (2012). The Al Qaeda factor. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press.
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