Publication:
German foreign fighters in Syria and Iraq

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Authors
Reynolds, Sean C.
Subjects
foreign fighters
jihadist mobilization
radicalization
ISIS
Syrian civil war
anchoring
bloc mobilization
terrorist recruiting
online radicalization
Advisors
Baylouny, Anne Marie
Hafez, Mohammed
Date of Issue
2016-03
Date
Mar-16
Publisher
Monterey, California: Naval Postgraduate School
Language
Abstract
This thesis examines why approximately 700 German foreign fighters traveled to Syria and Iraq between early 2012 and late 2015. It presents the author’s original research on 99 German foreign fighter profiles, examining their preexisting network connections in Germany as well as their biographical availability and integration into German society. The study finds that German foreign fighters are primarily mobilized through traditional social network connections and that the mobilizing network in Germany consists of a nationwide, interconnected, and politically active Salafist scene. The project also finds that while Western governments often worry about the looming threat of online radicalization, verifiable examples of purely Internet-based radicalization remain rare.
Type
Thesis
Description
Department
National Security Affairs
National Security Affairs
Organization
Identifiers
NPS Report Number
Sponsors
Funder
Format
Citation
Distribution Statement
Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited.
Rights
This publication is a work of the U.S. Government as defined in Title 17, United States Code, Section 101. Copyright protection is not available for this work in the United States.
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