Title

Al-Qaeda's Franchising Strategy

Document Type

Journal Article

Role

author

Standard Number

0039-6338

Journal Title

Survival

Volume

53

Issue

3

First Page

29

Last Page

50

Publication Date

2011

Abstract

In recent years al Qaeda established franchises throughout the Middle East. The establishment of formal branches, often through merger with jihadist groups, represents a political statement and, as such, goes beyond merely enhancing the group's operational capabilities. And yet, while its organizational expansion creates an image of success, this is hardly a true reflection of al Qaeda's reality. In fact, it reflects weakness and can be attributed to internal tension in the group's strategic thinking, conflict between its strategic objectives and organizational interests, the negative effects of its leadership's hubris, and an aggressive American campaign that puts severe constraints on al Qaeda's ability to operate. Thus, although al Qaeda still presents a severe threat, it is not as grave as the expansion of its brand name would suggest. Moreover, al Qaeda's franchising creates opportunities for more creative counterterrorism less reliant on military force. --author-supplied description

Share

COinS