Improving the U.S. Military's Understanding of Unstable Environments Vulnerable to Violent Extremist Groups: Insights from Social Scienceby David E. Thaler Gabriella C. Gonzalez Parisa Roshan Ryan Andrew Brown Blake W. Mobley
For over a decade, operations associated with irregular warfare have placed large demands on U. S. ground forces and have led to development of new Army and Joint doctrine. This report helps analysts identify and assess twelve key factors that create and perpetuate environments susceptible to insurgency, terrorism, and other extremist violence and instability to inform military decisions on allocation of analytic and security assistance resources.
Israel and Iran have come to view each other as direct regional rivals. The two countries are not natural rivals; they have shared geopolitical interests, which led to years of cooperation both before and after the 1979 Islamic revolution. But their rivalry has intensified recently, particularly with the rise of fundamentalist leaders in Iran and the prospect of a nuclear-armed Iran posing grave strategic and ideological challenges to Israel.
Predicting Suicide Attacks: Integrating Spatial, Temporal, and Social Features of Terrorist Attack Targetsby Walter L. Perry Claude Berrebi Thomas Sullivan John Hollywood Parisa Roshan Ryan Andrew Brown Amber Jaycocks Lisa Miyashiro
As part of an exploration of ways to predict what determines the targets of suicide attacks, RAND conducted a proof-of-principle analysis of whether adding sociocultural, political, economic, and demographic factors would enhance the predictive ability of a methodology that focused on geospatial features. This test case focused on terrorist bombing incidents in Israel, but the findings indicate that the methodology merits further exploration.
In the months after the contested Iranian presidential election in June 2009, Iranians spoke out about the election using Twitter--a social media service that allows users to send short text messages, called tweets, with relative anonymity. This research analyzed more than 2.5 million tweets discussing the Iran election that were sent in the nine months following it, drawing insights into Iranian public and mood in the post-election period.