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.


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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