All Articles

  • In recent years, terrorist organizations and activities in the Middle East have been led by Al-Qaeda and its following terrorist organizations. However, the Islamic countries(IS), the Islamic extremist Sunni militant group, takes the lead as a new leading terrorist groups. In other words, many terrorist organizations that followed Al Qaeda are no longer under command of Al Qaeda, but tend to rely on IS organizations for financial and technical support and exchanges. The IS, which emerged as a new leader, is making radical changes such as securing terrorist organizations to take over the ideals of Islam fundamentalism and Jihad against the Western world. As the al Qaeda couldn't sustain the leading position after the death of Bin Laden, the al Qaeda lost its directions in terrorist groups. The IS declared the establishment of the Islamic State, dominating the regions in Iraq and Syrian territory. In Africa, a new terrorist organization, Boco Haram, emerged as a terrorist group in the world in April 2015, when 276 Nigerian girls were kidnapped. In a word, bin Laden who was the leader of the Islamic terrorist group in the Middle East, had died, but the activities of the new terrorist groups are even more arousing and threatening the international community. Therefore, in order to understand the trends of international terrorist organizations, it is necessary to examine the domestic and international situation in the Middle East. Dynamics in terrorist groups including al Qaeda and the IS organizations are complex and the conflicts and stances between Sunni and Shi'a have been more increasing than ever. In particular, Syrian civil war, a center of the Middle East terrorist activity, and terrorist organizations based in the region should be studied. It seems to be different for each group, but in the end, the terrorist groups share the same religious objective and are characterized mainly by each region for the construction of a united Islamic empire. Korea is also expected to be exposed to changes and activities of terrorist organizations due to the turmoil in the Middle East because many Koreans live in the Middle East such as dispatching troops to the Middle East. Thus, it is very important to take measures in advance.
    Keyword:Turmoil in Middle East, Islamic State, Al Qaeda, Dispatched Korean Military Units, Counterterrorism
  • Homegrown terrorism and lone wolf terrorism are important terms for the rapidly changing pattern of terrorist attacks since 9/11. Considering that terrorism is intended to terrorize others and spread fear and destruction, entities that terrorist groups can do as much damage as they can are selected as a target of terrorism. A recent research suggested that terrorist attacks against soft targets including business entities and private and non-governmental facilities have increased while terrorist attacks against hard targets including military and governmental facilities have decreased in general. The activities of terrorist groups have shown new trends since 9/11. First, it is changing from group-oriented activities to the distributed network by using the Internet and advanced communication technologies. They are recruiting members through the Internet and social media, teaching them how to conduct terrorist attacks, and even raising money for terrorism. Secondly, terrorist targets are changing into soft targets such as skyscrapers and public facilities since 9/11. 7/7 terrorist attacks in London, 2005 and Mumbai attacks in 2008 are typical examples of this trend. Facilities referring to soft targets are crowded with many unspecified people, which makes it important to prevent and counter terrorism at the national level because it can cause a lot of casualties and danger in case of terrorist attacks. This article introduced the discussion about soft target terrorism and examined characteristics and vulnerabilities of facilities related to mega sports event. It also tried to suggest countermeasures based on these vulnerabilities. This article is meaningful as an exploratory study introducing the terrorist target of soft target which is rarely introduced in Korea. Studies on the possibility of terrorism in Korea have mainly discussed the possibility of terrorist attacks by North Korea or international terrorism. Since South Korea is ahead of the PyeongChang Olympic Games in 2018 and has been on the list of countries for possible terrorist attacks by the IS, both hard and soft target should be considered together to prevent terrorist attacks. For these reasons, it is meaningful to introduce the discussion about soft target terrorism which can cause massive damage as Korea is ahead of the sports mega event, Pyeongchang Winter Olympic Games in 2018.
    Keyword:Soft Target Terrorism, Homegrown Terrorism, lone Wolf Terrorism, Countering Soft Target Terrorism, Target Hardening
  • It is analyzed that the followers of the IS have abandoned their base as the bases that the IS built in Syria and Iraq is about to collapse. As a result, there is a growing possibility of so-called "homegrown terrorism" in the country of origin, where the number of IS members entering Europe is increasing. It is also expected that the "transition effect" of the IS supporters and followers are scattered around the world and terrorist attacks may appear when the allied attack threatens to collapse the Middle East base. The IS, which has lost its influence in Iraq and Syria, is scattered all over the world in order to demonstrate its presence and is trying to encourage local 'lone wolves' to conduct terrorist attacks. Also, it is reported that the IS members from Western Europe who had participated the organization in Syria, Iraq or Libya returned to their country and conducted terrorist attacks, which made terrorist activities more proliferate. It is estimated that nearly 5,000 European Union citizens are participating in the extremist militant groups including the IS. Recently in Europe, there has been a new kind of terrorism called 'Truck Terror' or 'Rush Terror.' In addition to this, traditional terrorist attacks of using small arms and bombs are still in use. Britain, which is experiencing more frequent terrorism in recent years, is in shock. The country did not concern about the terrorist attacks by the jihadists or the IS so far because the British government had taken a variety of communication policies for Muslims and Mr. Sadiq Khan has been elected a mayor of the City of London. Because London was a friendly city for Islam and Muslims, the impact of recent terrorism is even greater. As seen in recent terrorist attacks, fear of terrorism is getting bigger as terrorism occurs in places where tourist attractions, theaters, markets, restaurants and other soft targets are gathering in daily life. It seems to be very challenging to prevent and control the terrorist attacks in spite of the counterterrorism policies and activities by Europol and its member States. What Koreans are concerned about is that Koreans may get damaged from terrorist attacks in Western Eu-rope and other countries. Yet it is an assumption, the matter will be more serious if the terrorist attacks target citizens and facilities in Korea. Thus, it is time to minimize damage through international organizations such as the United Nations, the European Parliament, and the sharing and cooperation of information with foreign governments.
    Keyword:Islamic State, Jihadist, Homegrown Terror, Lone Wolf, ECTC