Ultimate Business Model– Management of Savagery: ISIS, al-Qa`ida, Jihadist… Strategy of Savagery…

It’s the terrorist business model, playbook, manifesto… and its called Management of Savagery– It’s from a book written more than a decade ago under the name Abu Bakr Naji, and it serves as the terrorist’s key strategy for– finding, creating, managing chaos… The Management of

Savagery refers to the control of chaos that results from breakdown of order. It’s interim stage between collapse of the old order and establishment of a caliphate, a stage characterized by– ungoverned space, savage politics, lack of the provision of basic needs, loss of religious adherence… 

There is a deliberate purpose to the savagery– total domination of its subjects through fear and intimidation, on the one hand… and outright hate, vengeance towards its enemies, on the other…

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This manifesto is based on a mythic and medieval past where how they execute their victims is as important as to why they execute them… Shocking violence is a key element of the strategy… The beheadings, violence practiced are not whimsical, crazed fanaticism, but a very deliberate, considered strategy, and the seemingly random violence has a precise purpose: It’s [sick] aim is to strike huge fear; to break the psychology of a people… According to this doctrine; in instances in which hostage demands are not met, the hostages should be liquidated in a terrifying manner, which will send fear into the hearts of the enemy and supporters…

Understanding the Management of Savagery is an indispensable first step towards understanding the kind of war that some Islamist groups have embarked upon; it’s not necessarily the war we think it is… According to Scott Atran; simply treating ‘terrorism’ or ‘violent extremism’ masks the menace, and merely dismissing it as a ‘nihilistic’ reflects a willful and dangerous avoidance of trying to comprehend, and deal with its profoundly alluring moral mission to change and save the world… The truth is more complicated… ISIS is reaching out to fill the void wherever a state of ‘chaos’ or ‘savagery’ (at-tawahoush) exists, as in Mid-East, Central Asia, Africa… And where there is insufficient chaos in the lands of the infidel, it seeks to create it, as in Europe…

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In the article Terrorism: What’s the Business Model? by Karl Muth writes: A misunderstanding of terrorist habits is symptomatic of a larger misconception about the business model, financial resources and sophistication of modern terrorists enterprises. Terrorist attacks are profit centers, not cost centers… Here are interesting questions: Do terrorists have necessary ‘capital (money)’ to create substantial cash flows from terrorist events? Can these groups raise outside ‘capital (money)’ by splitting proceeds with cooperative investors? The answer is yes, in one or both cases…

Imagine an efficient terrorist enterprise backed by savvy investors with enormous financial resources making the practice of terrorism is not only sustainable but very profitable… The economic effects of major attacks are dramatic and predictable, hence it’s relatively easy to profit from even basic portfolio management and modest resources… Western civilization’s obsession with a fantasy war against a group of unsophisticated, impoverished nomads living in the wilderness is highly naive, and leaves it unprepared to reality of the situation…

In the article Understanding Terrorist Business Model by Alex Gallo writes: During the past few years, two seemingly distinct and ostensibly contradictory narratives have emerged regarding the capability, positioning, and operational strategy of terrorism… On one hand, many government leaders and counter-terrorism experts have asserted that terrorist are weakening and too impotent to conduct large-scale attacks. However, on other hand, there are examples of terrorist having the ability to successfully influence and facilitate smaller scale attacks around the world…

Hence, one can speculate that terrorist organization, such as; al-Qa`ida have made a calculated decision to leverage its branding and expertise, and almost exclusively engaging in ‘professional consulting’, or advisory entrepreneurial activity… As a result, these groups have effectively de-emphasized the resource-intensive portion of their strategy, i.e.; training, equipping, deploying fighters… and support other violent movement groups to carry out these direct operational activities… These jihadist groups provide value as ‘consultancy’ in two critical ways; 1. by serving as a financial adviser and facilitator to the global jihadist financial coffers… 2. by providing ideological coherence within the global jihadist movement…

These groups, e.g.; al-Qa`ida… uniquely understands how to play this role effectively, even though they may not wholly share the same agenda, experiences and ideological visions… The basic consequence of this evolution towards a ‘consultancy’ business model is that the profile of these groups increasingly become– diffuse, fragmented, unpredictable… At a micro-level, it’s this shift toward the services-end of the value chain that at a macro-level has materially altered the very nature of violence, and the strategic ‘feel’ of global jihadist movements.

Hence, the attempt by Western policy makers to write-off jihadists as losers, dunces, clowns… betrays the reluctance to confront the ideology that motivates those who seek to throw in their lot with revolutionary movements like ISIS. According to David Martin Jones and M.L.R. Smith; the result is a sad ignorance among Western policy makers of the group’s deliberate strategy of savagery… Attempting to identify what drives young men (and women) along the path of jihad and the sanguinary embrace of ISIS, is hardly relevant to understanding the true extent of the current threat…

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Rather than condemnatory rhetoric, Western policy makers should focus on evaluating the intended purpose that the acts of savagery are designed to serve. An examination of ISIS’s thinking suggests they have thought about the ‘strategy of savagery’ very carefully… That ISIS and its jihadist confreres beyond the Middle East adhere to a campaign of ultra-violence, often rotating around graphic displays of killing that shock and disrupt modern sensibilities is itself significant, because it displays how they have deduced what they perceive as the fundamental weakness in Western society, i.e.; its attachment to life…

Hence, far from being desperate or over-extended, Islamist strategic thinking reveals a rigorous design from first principles that discerns the weaknesses in Western society (beginning with the attachment to life), and manners in which to exploit them to achieve long-term goals…

The salutary fact is that these theorists have thought about how to manage the escalation process, thereby controlling the strategy of savagery– doubtlessly and probably accurately– concluding that Western nations lacks the collective ‘will’ to counter-escalate in any coherent way…