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Counterterrorism Efforts Assignment Paper

It Is a 3-page double-space paper on "Boko Haram" I will upload the instruction file that will that what you have to mention. Please use authentic sources and cite them in MLA Format. This paper had 3 parts the 1st and 2nd part is already then you have to do the 3rd part. I will attach the file of 1 and 2 parts which you can skim through to have an idea. 


Assignment 3

Counterterrorism Efforts Assignment Paper

Counterterrorism measures are taken to reduce the vulnerability of forces, individuals and

property to terrorist attacks. Counterterrorism includes counter-force activities and

containment by military force, intelligence and civil agencies. Effective counter-terrorism

strategies must be risk-based, intelligence-driven and comprehensive, employing all

elements and aspects of national and international security functions, measures and

operations. These strategies combine both hard and soft power elements such as civilian

oversight, military support, policy changes, multilateral diplomacy and an adaptive-response

model supported by security and intelligence reports. Because terrorism knows no

boundaries, counter-terrorism requires partnerships with those who share a commitment to


Issues for Consideration

a) What roles do international and regional organizations play in facilitating the building of

military and national security capacities?

b) What can multilateral organizations do to assist counter-terrorism efforts?

c) How do international and regional organizations empower traditional capacities for peace

and security?

b) What are the potential costs and/or benefits of disrupting the leadership structure of a

terrorist organization?

d) Why are low-level operatives generally the most radical in terrorist organizations and how

can this divergence be exploited to disrupt the organization?

e) What methods can be employed to decrease trust within a terrorist organization?

f) Does the splintering of terrorist groups lead to more manageable threats or heightened

violence from increased competition?

g) What are some critical vulnerabilities faced by all terrorist groups that may be exploited?

h) How do terrorists deal with the organizational trade-offs between security and efficacy?

This assignment is an analysis of the efforts “success” and “failures”, and what is currently

being done to prevent and or counter terrorism.

The paper should reflect the following points:

1) A survey of the Literature on counterterrorism.

2) A discussion of the tactics, techniques, and strategies that local, national and

international governments, military, law enforcement, businesses, development

agencies, intelligence agencies, and the global community are using to combat or

prevent members of the group you are researching from engaging in acts of terrorism.

3) Provide new insights into how some communities in the case you are researching have

managed to push back against terrorism

4) Highlight some of the innovative programs that state and non-state actors have taken

to prevent terrorism

5) Conclude with what you agree/disagree and suggestions on best practices.


Saleem 2

Aden Saleen

CONF 324 DL1

Spring 2024

Social Structural Condition Assignment

Boko Haram

Boko Haram, a Nigerian extremist group, is believed to have started in Borno, Nigeria, around 2002, led by Sheik Mohammed Yusuf. Known for violence, it has caused widespread terror through its brutal actions. Before getting into the details about Boko Haram it is important to know the reason this organization was formed.

Nigeria is an African nation whose cultural, religious, and socioeconomic contexts all have an impact on the country's complex and multifaceted social standards about violence. Several factors, including socioeconomic inequality and disparities, may be responsible for the high rate of violence in Nigerian society. With high rates of unemployment, illiteracy, child mortality, and poverty, Borno State is among the poorest states in the nation. Because of its long history of political unrest and conflict, Nigerian society has a distorted perception of violence. However, the most important factor is religious discrimination and violence because that is what provoked Boko Haram to form. Nigeria is a diverse country with multiple religions, but the dominant religions are Islam 53.5% and Christianity 35.3% (CIA, 2023).

Nigeria's Boko Haram offers an important example of how faith and violence may coexist. The traditional Islamic way of life that underlies Boko Haram's ideology disapproves of Western civilization, which includes Nigeria's democracy, constitution, and civil service. According to Mohammed Yusuf, Nigerian culture has deviated from the authentic Sharia rule and follows an evil civilization that is supported by Western educational institutions. To put an end to it and establish a pure Islamic state under Sharia law, Boko Haram was established. “Boko Haram” is a Hausa language nickname given by outsiders, meaning, “Western education is forbidden by Islam.” (Thurston, 2016).

As mentioned above, the increasing levels of poverty, social inequality, and political instability in Nigeria have led to a significant number of people seeking refuge in religion. This has served to both strengthen their social standing and provide them with alternative platforms for political expression and struggles, which frequently exacerbate tensions and conflicts within the nation. The influence of political structure on the frequency of Boko Haram terrorism in Nigeria is significant. The growth of the group has also been blamed on political corruption and inequality, which are features of Nigeria's political system.

Boko haram has followed the patterns of older militant Muslim groups. Boko Haram acts more like the Islamic State than older groups like al-Qaeda. It had links with other terrorist networks such as  al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghrib (AQIM) and  al-Shabaab in  Somalia. Boko Haram recruited members from its neighboring countries such as Niger, Mali, and Chad. This shows how major Boko haram is and it has strong ties with and good relationships with other terrorist organizations, and communities.

Initially, Boko Haram wanted to bring down the secular national political system of Nigeria due to its differences from Islamic principles. The founder of Boko Haram, Muhammad Yusuf, thought that a group of fake, fraudulent Muslims had taken control of the nation and wanted it to be governed following Sharia law. In line with the Salafi jihadist movement, Yusuf advocated a return to the early Muslim communities' way of life, which was founded on the Qur'an and the life of the Prophet Sunna. He believed that “Muslims will not regain their earlier dignity or respect nor attain the good life unless they embraced Islam in a fundamental and radical way” (Aguwa, 2017). Therefore, Muhammad Yusuf wanted Muslims to start the jihad in order to overcome their moral and religious crisis.

However, the situation and goals turned violent when members of Operation Flush, a joint military and police force, shot at Mohammed Yusuf's followers during a funeral procession for not wearing helmets while riding motorcycles. Around 19 of them were killed. This incident led the group to retaliate by attacking and killing security forces and burning police stations. Boko Haram fighters raided police stations, seized weapons, attacked prisons to free members, and targeted Muslim leaders. They also robbed banks, looted markets, and attacked villages, especially those supporting the government. As a result of the group's 2009 attacks on government buildings and police stations, there was a lot of violence, and the army was called in. Muhammad Yusuf was among the many members of Boko Haram who were killed. After a year of inactivity, the group resurfaced with a goal to avenge the death of Yusuf and other members.

Boko Haram mostly used guns, especially machine guns, for their attacks. However, when Nigerian security forces started to chase them, the terrorists changed how they operated. Following up on the specialized military training that terrorists obtained in 2014 from other groups of a similar nature, the groups implemented methods like bombing. Boko Haram's use of women in terrorist acts was a distinct strategy that has come to be recognized as this group's identity. Women in the group either had purely supportive roles or actively participated in violent and illegal activities like suicide bombings, armed attacks, and arms smuggling. These women were compelled to participate in suicide attacks after being kidnapped by the group.

Boko Haram's goals and ideology are closely linked to the tactics and targets they choose. Their goals, ideology target, and tactics mentioned above show the alignment between their goals, ideology, and chosen tactics and targets were well planned and strategic.


Aguwa, J. (2017). Boko Haram: History, Ideology, and Goal.  International Journal of Religion & Spirituality in Society7(2).

Agbiboa, D. E., & Maiangwa, B. (2013). Boko Haram, Religious Violence, and the Crisis of National Identity in Nigeria: Towards a Non-killing Approach. Journal of Developing Societies, 29(4), 379-403.

Britannica. (2018). Boko Haram | Nigerian Islamic group. In  Encyclopedia Britannica.

Central Intelligence Agency. (2024). Nigeria. In The World Factbook. Retrieved from

Klobucista, C. (2018).  Nigeria’s Battle With Boko Haram. Council on Foreign Relations.

Pricopi, M. (2016). Tactics used by the terrorist organisation Boko Haram.  Scientific bulletin21(1), 40-45.

Smith, M. (2016).  Boko Haram: inside Nigeria’s unholy war. I.B. Tauris.

Thurston, A. (2016).  “The disease is unbelief”: Boko Haram’s religious and political worldview.

Voll, J. O. (2015). Boko Haram: Religion and Violence in the 21st Century.  Religions6(4), 1182–1202.


Saleem 2

Aden Saleem

CONF 345-DL1

Spring 2024

Individuals Involved

Boko Haram

There are several theories and ideologies as to why people join terrorist groups. Such as psychological theories, religious theories, political, social, etc. Radicalization also holds importance in this case, The term "radicalization" refers to a range of inclinations and susceptibilities that indicate whether a person is leaning toward or away from becoming involved in terrorism. “Violent radicalization is very much a developmental process whereby people progressively become more committed to engaging in violence, generally agree that there are degrees of radicalization beginning with sympathizers to people who are active members of a terrorist organization. However, there is debate about the process of radicalization and how various risk factors interact with one another” (Scull, Alkhadher, Alawadi, 2020). Moreover, according to the article radicalization contains three ingredients, motivational element, ideology, and social process. In terms of the motivating element, there are various reasons why someone can want to engage in terrorism, such as those that are material, thrill-seeking, status- or identity-related, or motivated by a want for revenge.

To understand why people, join terrorist organizations in depth, a study was conducted on terrorist group members in prison in Kuwait. These prisoners came from different backgrounds and were interviewed by professional researchers and the results revealed five main contributing factors, first was religious identity development, which means most of the participants had very little knowledge of the actual teachings of Islam and were more emotionally thinking regarding religion while joining the terrorist organization. The second was personal connections, most joined by making friends from Al-Qaeda while going to the mosque every day, some were forced by relatives. Thirdly, the factor was propaganda. All participants were heavily influenced by various forms of media, mostly online. They were influenced by social media, blogs, YouTube, and news reports. After interviewing all the participants, it was clear that “all participants were highly influenced by online media propaganda” (Scull, Alkhadher, Alawadi, 2020). The fourth reason was defending Islam and the fifth was social marginalization. Social marginalization included low levels of education. The lower level of education was also observed in another research study conducted in Turkey. It stated “When levels of education are observed, it is seen that the vast majority of organizational members (72 percent) received an education equivalent to or lower than primary school. High school graduates number some 16 percent. The remaining 12 percent consists of individuals who have graduated from a 4-year or 2-year undergraduate program or those who dropped out of university education at different stages” (Ozeren, Yilmaz, Sever, Sozer, 2014).

The studies mentioned above give an idea of the background of people who join terrorist groups or how the terrorist groups approach people, the question is does Boko Haram have the same pattern? An article written by Babatunde gives a good idea of what type of individuals Boko Haram recruits. The simple answer is every type, as the article mentions “Male and female, rich and poor, young and old as well as the employed and unemployed have been recruited through teaching, preaching, propaganda, inducement, abduction, coercion, and foreign support” (Babatunde, 2018). Furthermore, explained in the article is how Mohammed Yusuf, the group's founder, was instrumental in drawing adherents with his charismatic leadership. In addition to opposing social inequalities, he pushed for the implementation of Sharia law and a rigid interpretation of Islam. This message resonated with some fundamentalists and marginalized individuals disillusioned with the status quo.

In addition, Boko Haram recruited members using peer pressure, financial incentives, kinship links, and violence. Additionally, the group recruited foreign fighters, often from neighboring countries such as Chad and Cameroon. People from Chad and Cameroon were lured into the group because of money. “Money was the attraction for these foreign fighters” (Babatunde, 2018).

Most of the people were forcefully recruited by groups as they were kidnapped or were given threats if they didn’t join the group, as the article mentions “threats and brutalities made recruits stick to the sect and maintain their loyalty. Some pledged their allegiance for safety. For example, to avoid persecution, a youth in Bama joined and had his family’s house spared when the group ransacked an army barrack in the town” (Babatunde, 2018).

Reportedly, using women for the operations is a trademark of Boko haram “A different tactic of Boko Haram, which had actually become a trademark of this group, was the use of women in terrorist actions” (Pricopi, 2016). According to another article Boko Haram's exploitation of women began in Maiduguri in June 2013 as retaliation for the government's arrest of its members' wives in 2012. Women, mainly from rural areas in Northeast Nigeria and spanning different religious backgrounds, have been both victims and perpetrators of Boko Haram's violence. They carried out attacks both within and outside Borno State. The group's peak in female recruitment occurred with the abduction of 276 schoolgirls aged 12 to 17 from Chibok village in 2014. Due to the factionalization of Boko Haram brought about by this increase in female involvement, the Islamic State of West Africa Province (ISWAP) was established in 2016 under the leadership of Abu Musab al-Barnawi.

Boko Haram's brutality has continued despite government efforts to stop it, including the declaration of emergency zones and military operations. To effectively address the underlying causes of extremism in Nigeria, comprehensive methods are needed, including those that disarm vigilante groups, promote education, foster interfaith dialogue, build community resilience, address structural problems, and run media campaigns that prevent radicalization and recruiting.


Babatunde, O. A. (2018). The Recruitment Mode of the Boko Haram Terrorist Group in Nigeria.  Peace Review30(3), 382–389.

Oluwaniyi, O. O. (2021). Why are women victims or perpetrators in Nigeria’s Boko Haram? Recruitment, roles and implications.  Journal of Contemporary African Studies39(3), 454–469.

Özeren, S., Sever, M., Yilmaz, K., & Sözer, A. (2014). Whom Do They Recruit?: Profiling and Recruitment in the PKK/KCK.  Studies in Conflict & Terrorism37(4), 322–347.

Scull, N. C., Alkhadher, O., & Alawadi, S. (2020). Why people join terrorist groups in Kuwait: A qualitative examination.  Political Psychology41(2), 231-247.

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