Why Is Suicide Terrorism Applied as an Instrument of Violence?

Md. Badrul Islam

Assistant Professor, Department of International Relations at the Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Science and Technology University, Gopalganj, Bangladesh.


Since the year 2000, the number of suicide terrorist attacks has increased considerably. Like terrorism, defining suicide terrorism is a complex task due to differing perspectives. Historical examples show that suicide attacks are carried out by a variety of religious traditions and ideological groups, as well as by state and non-state actors. This has renewed interest in this field of study and enhanced the significance of comprehending the organizational and individual motivations underlying suicide terrorism. Suicide terrorism is a strategic choice for terrorist groups due to its cost-effectiveness and high success rate. While suicide bombing is a cost-effective strategy, it is not the last resort. The success of suicide bombings signals to the government and the public that groups are ready to continue fighting, even if it means causing the deaths of members. The effectiveness of suicide terrorism is controversial because this strategy is successful in achieving limited and modest goals, but it is not successful enough to compel the government to withdraw itself from its vital national interests. This article begins by giving a brief conceptual overview and historical background on issues related to suicide terrorism. Next are the justifications for causes and motivations that are currently documented in the literature. It explains the reasons for the accomplishment. Finally, the effectiveness of suicide terrorism is based on available empirical evidence.

Keywords: Terrorism, Suicide Terrorism, Suicide Attacks, Causes, Effectiveness

DOI: https://doi.org/10.55875/JBGAV2N2A5

[Read Full Article as a Pdf]