The Strategic Logic of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria
On Tuesday, March 24, 2015, together with the Department of Middle Eastern and South Asian Studies of Emory University, the Atlantic Institute co-sponsored a luncheon for the Halle Institute’s Speaker Series where we hosted Robert Pape. Dr. Pape is a professor of Political Science at the University of Chicago where he is also the founding director of the Chicago Project on Security and Terrorism (CPOST). He is widely considered as one of the world’s foremost experts on strategic air power and suicide terrorism. Dr. Pape specifically studies and gathers data on suicide terrorism which he calls as the most lethal form of terrorism. Even more specifically, Dr. Pape seeks to find out who becomes a suicide attacker and why.
The program started with Prof. Vincent Cornell, Chair of the Department of Middle Eastern and South Asian Studies, introducing Dr. Pape. Later Mustafa Sahin, Director of Academic Affairs at the Atlantic Institute informed the audience about the upcoming peace building conference that we are organizing at Morehouse College on April 9-10, 2015. Then Dr. Pape took the stage to give his lecture entitled the Strategic Logic of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria.
Dr. Pape shared the results of his extensive research on suicide terrorism with the audience. He argued that 95% of suicide terrorist attacks have been driven by the desire to coerce democracies into withdrawing their military forces from a territory that is not their own. In other words, he suggested that the presence of foreign military troops is the greatest trigger for suicide terrorism. Dr. Pape’s lecture was informative as well as eye-opening, as it forced all those who attended to consider what really causes suicide terrorists to carry out their lethal actions.
Watch the lecture here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z-Dd6mtZA5k
About Robert Pape: Widely considered one of the world's foremost experts on strategic air power and terrorism, Robert Pape is professor of political science at the University of Chicago and the founding director of the Chicago Project on Security and Terrorism (CPOST).
Pape has studied and published on U.S. action in Kuwait, Bosnia and Kosovo, Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, and Syria. His major publications include Cutting the Fuse: The Explosion of Global Suicide Terrorism and How to Stop It (2010), Dying to Win: The Strategic Logic of Suicide Terrorism (2005), and Bombing to Win: Air Power and Coercion in War (1996), and his commentary on international security and terrorism has been featured in the New York Times and the Washington Post, among other publications. He has served as an advisor for many U.S. policymakers.
Pape graduated the University of Pittsburgh with a degree in political science before earning a PhD. in the same subject at the University of Chicago.