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It Takes a Village to Stop a Lone Wolf

MIN READJul 21, 2016 | 08:02 GMT

Lone-wolf attacks usually inflict less damage than those planned by terrorist organizations (the 2016 Nice attack was a notable exception), but they are also more difficult for police to detect.

(PATRICK AVENTURIER/Getty Images)

The recent attacks in Dallas, Nice, Baton Rouge and Wurzburg have again raised public awareness of lone attackers unaffiliated with an organized terrorist group. I am constantly asked how governments can defend against this new threat. But the question is misguided: Lone attackers operating under a model of leaderless resistance is not a new phenomenon. Stratfor has been tracking the devolution of the jihadist movement from a hierarchical structure to a more grassroots one for more than a decade. Though leaderless resistance is by design more difficult for authorities to detect and deter, those who practice it are still bound by the vulnerabilities in the terrorist attack-planning cycle. ...

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