Why Terrorism Does Not Work

@article{Abrahms2006WhyTD,
  title={Why Terrorism Does Not Work},
  author={Max Abrahms},
  journal={International Security},
  year={2006},
  volume={31},
  pages={42-78}
}
  • Max Abrahms
  • Published 2006
  • Political Science
  • International Security
This is the first article to analyze a large sample of terrorist groups in terms of their policy effectiveness. It includes every foreign terrorist organization (FTO) designated by the U.S. Department of State since 2001. The key variable for FTO success is a tactical one: target selection. Terrorist groups whose attacks on civilian targets outnumber attacks on military targets do not tend to achieve their policy objectives, regardless of their nature. Contrary to the prevailing view that… Expand
The Domestic Politics of Coercive Terrorism
Despite a growing interest in terrorism’s effectiveness in shaping government policy, four obstacles have hindered empirical research from arriving at satisfactory conclusions: definitional ambiguityExpand
Do Terrorists Win? Rebels' Use of Terrorism and Civil War Outcomes
Abstract How effective is terrorism? This question has generated lively scholarly debate and is of obvious importance to policy-makers. However, most existing studies of terrorism are not wellExpand
The Importance of Territory: Probing the Nature and Effectiveness of Terrorism
Is terrorism an effective method for achieving political goals? And why do scholars provide such different answers to this question? This article shows that the current debate on the effectiveness ofExpand
The Political Effectiveness of Terrorism Revisited
Terrorists attack civilians to coerce their governments into making political concessions. Does this strategy work? To empirically assess the effectiveness of terrorism, the author exploits variationExpand
Comparative Political Studies
Terrorists attack civilians to coerce their governments into making political concessions. Does this strategy work? To empirically assess the effectiveness of terrorism, the author exploits variationExpand
Terrorism, Dynamic Commitment Problems, and Military Conflict
Since 9/11, several states have initiated military conflicts in the name of fighting terrorism. However, studies indicate that the costs of terrorism are insignificant compared to the damage createdExpand
International Terrorism and the Political Survival of Leaders
This study examines whether transnational terrorist attacks impact the political survival of leaders. We argue that external security threats, such as those from transnational terrorist incidents,Expand
Great expectations: the use of armed force to combat terrorism
This article looks at the use of armed force in order to stop terrorist activity. There is little agreement among experts about the importance of the use of force in past counter-terrorism campaigns.Expand
Choosing Terror: Rebels' Use of Terrorism in Internal Armed Conflict 1970-2010 Defining Terrorism the Causes of Terrorism Literature the Efficacy and Legitimacy Costs of Terrorism
Why do some rebel groups use terrorism as a tactic while others do not? Why some opposition groups engage in terrorism while others do not is of obvious importance both to the study of terrorism moreExpand
Does Terrorism Ever Work? The 2004 Madrid Train Bombings
Max Abrahms's argument that terrorism rarely works is compelling.1 He is not correct, however, that terrorist groups that primarily attack civilians never achieve their political objectives. TheExpand
...
1
2
3
4
5
...

References

SHOWING 1-10 OF 117 REFERENCES
The Causes of Terrorism
Terrorism occurs both in the context of violent resistance to the state as well as in the service of state interests. If we focus on terrorism directed against governments for purposes of politicalExpand
The Terrorist Calculus behind 9-11: A Model for Future Terrorism?
Terrorists commit lethal acts of violence in order to realize their goals and advance their causes. They have a mixed record of success. This article explores the question whether the terroristExpand
The Strategies of Terrorism
Terrorism is designed to change minds by destroying bodies; it is a form of costly signaling. Terrorists employ five primary strategies of costly signaling: attrition, intimidation, provocation,Expand
Rational Extremism: Understanding Terrorism in the Twenty-first Century
In the last decade, the field of international relations has undergone a revolution in conflict studies. Where earlier approaches attempted to identify the attributes of individuals, states, andExpand
Rethinking Terrorism and Counterterrorism Since 9/11
This article examines what has been learned since 11 September 2001 about the nature of twenty-first-century terrorism, the challenges that it poses, and how it must be countered. It attempts toExpand
The Balance of Terror: War by Other Means in the Contemporary Middle East
This article analyzes how both state and nonstate actors in the Middle East have used terrorism as a policy instrument to attain specific political objectives. The author presents a formula forExpand
Al Qaeda's Miscommunication War: The Terrorism Paradox
The Bush administration's response to the September 11 attacks has rendered more urgent Al Qaeda's stated objective to eject the United States from the Middle East. The aim here is not to evaluateExpand
The Strategic Logic of Suicide Terrorism
  • R. Pape
  • Sociology
  • American Political Science Review
  • 2003
Suicide terrorism is rising around the world, but the most common explanations do not help us understand why. Religious fanaticism does not explain why the world leader in suicide terrorism is theExpand
Are Voters Sensitive to Terrorism? Direct Evidence from the Israeli Electorate
This paper relies on the variation of terror attacks across time and space as an instrument to identify the causal effects of terrorism on the preferences of the Israeli electorate. The authors findExpand
Terrorism, Signaling, and Suicide Attack
This article examines the strategic utility of suicide terrorism. Suicide terrorism, we suggest, can be thought of as a form of strategic "signaling." We define terrorism as a signaling game in whichExpand
...
1
2
3
4
5
...