Study: Number of Jihadist Fighters Has Doubled Since 2010
In the wake of the
The study by the RAND Corporation reported the number of jihadist groups around the world has increased 58%. More troubling was the doubling of jihadist fighters, a drastic increase. Finally, the report notes a tripling of jihadist-related attacks worldwide.
The study also reveals a four-tiered, decentralized structure of terrorist groups:
“Control is diffused among four tiers: (1) core al Qa'ida in Pakistan, led by Ayman al-Zawahiri; (2) formal affiliates that have sworn allegiance to core al Qa'ida, located in Syria, Somalia, Yemen, and North Africa; (3) a panoply of Salafi-jihadist groups that have not sworn allegiance to al Qa'ida but are committed to establishing an extremist Islamic emirate; and (4) inspired individuals and networks.”
The interest in western terror targets varies from group to group, depending on a particular organization’s local interests versus global worldview, the report explains. The vast uptick in jihadist groups is mainly emanating from nations like