How Diaspora Communities Influence Terrorist Groups

Editor’s Note: Terrorist groups often draw on ethnic or religious brethren in other countries. These communities raise money, provide arms, offer volunteers, lobby host governments and otherwise try to advance the terrorist cause. James Piazza of The Pennsylvania State University goes deep on diasporas. He identifies the ways in which they make a terrorism problem worse and why fighting terrorism requires countering the influence of militant diasporas. Daniel Byman *** Ties between terrorist groups and diaspora communities are not a recent phenomenon. In the late 19th century, anti-tsarist anarchist terrorist movements nurtured connections with networks of supporters among Russian and Eastern European immigrant communities in the United States. Throughout most of the 20th century, the Irish Republican Army (IRA) enjoyed close links with the Irish-American community. The EOKA (National Organization of Cypriot Struggle) terrorist movement, which sought the independence of…

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