Assessing the threat of islamically motivated terrorism in Bulgaria
Dimov, Stefan L.
Gregg, Heather S.
Lober, George W.
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The purpose of this thesis is to create a simple model, called the Religious Extremism Manifestation Model (REMM), that will help identify whether specific conditions in Bulgaria are favorable for the emergence of Islamic extremism and terrorism. Building on fundamentalist theory, and Gregg’s insights into the causes of religious violence, the REMM model focuses on four variables—groups and leaders, intentions, capabilities, and targets—as necessary conditions for religiously motivated terrorism. Using the REMM model to analyze the potential for the growth of Islamically motivated terrorism in Bulgaria, the thesis argues that the Bulgarian government needs to increase the following: funding and cooperation between security services; a better understanding of its Muslim minority in order to decrease their sense of alienation; resources and services for minorities that can compete with Islamic non-governmental organizations (NGOs); cooperation with the EU to devise a strategy for managing immigrants; and monitoring the presence of foreign influence, including Islamic NGOs, Bulgarians studying in Islamic schools abroad, and influential materials that could promote religiously motivated terrorism.
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