Homework Question

I’m stuck on a English question and need an explanation.

Discussion Questions: What were the driving factors that inspired Ted Kaczynski to violence? Which radicalization process that you learned in week 2 do you think best fit his path to extremism? What did you learn from reading about this case as it relates to homegrown violent extremism? What were the driving factors that inspired Tim McVeigh to violence? Which radicalization process that you learned in week 2 do you think best fit his path to extremism? What did you learn from reading about this case as it relates to homegrown violent extremism?

Required Readings:

Oklahoma City Bombing Trial (Timothy McVeigh Trial): http://law2.umkc.edu/faculty/projects/ftrials/mcveigh/mcveightrial.html

The Unabomber’s Legacy, Part I: https://www.wired.com/1998/04/the-unabombers-legacy-part-i/

Barnett, B. (2015, December 9). 20 Years Later: A Look Back at the Unabomber Manifesto. Perspectives on Terrorism, North America. Retrieved from: http://www.terrorismanalysts.com/pt/index.php/pot/article/view/472

Baysinger, T. G. (2006). Right-wing group characteristics and ideology. Homeland Security Affairs, 2(2) Retrieved from https://www.hsaj.org/articles/166

Chase, A. (2000, June). Harvard and the Making of the Unabomber. The Atlantic. Retrieved from http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2000/06/harvard-and-the-making-of-the-unabomber/378239/

Crothers, L. (2002). The Cultural Foundations of the Modern Militia Movement. New Political Science, 24(2), 221-234. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com.ezproxy1.apus.edu/login.aspx?direct=true&db=aph&AN=7066968&site=ehost-live&scope=site

Diamond, S. A. (2008, April, 8). Terrorism, Resentment and the Unabomber. Psychology Today. Retrieved from https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/evil-deeds/200804/terrorism-resentment-and-the-unabomber

Instructions: Fully utilize the materials that have been provided to you in order to support your response. Your initial post should be at least 350 words. Please respond to at least two other students. Responses should be a minimum of 150 words and include direct questions. You may challenge, support or supplement another student’s answer using the terms, concepts and theories from the required readings. Also, do not be afraid to respectfully disagree where you feel appropriate; as this should be part of your analysis process at this academic level.

Student Responses:

Student# 1 Lindy

What were the driving factors that inspired Ted Kaczynski to violence? Which radicalization process that you learned in week 2 do you think best fit his path to extremism? What did you learn from reading about this case as it relates to homegrown violent extremism? What were the driving factors that inspired Tim McVeigh to violence? Which radicalization process that you learned in week 2 do you think best fit his path to extremism? What did you learn from reading about this case as it relates to homegrown violent extremism?

From 1979 to 1995, Theodore “Ted” Kaczynski better known as the Unabomber hoped that his domestic terrorist plot would bring awareness to the grievances that he had with technology and how it impacted and ultimately destroyed lives. He targeted people that were leaders in the industry including businessmen and women and eventually branching out to people that were in the Airline industry. Katz (1998) explains that he used his manifesto to air his grievances with the world, and how that would lead to what he felt like justified killings aimed at getting everyone’s attention and stopping the expansion of technology further. Kaczynski was a highly educated individual entering Harvard University at a young age earning his masters then graduating from the University of Michigan with a Ph.D. in Mathematics.

Katz (1998) explains that Kaczynski had isolated himself living a life of extreme alienation from society and developed a good vs. evil mentality and openly had a lot of unease about the rapid spread of technology to the point it became an obsession for him. Chase (2000) explains that he had the belief that society was bad and that he needed to not only rebel against it but wage violence and anger to rid the evil he felt was taking over. Barnett (2015) states that his hope by releasing his manifesto was that he would inspire like-minded environmental extremists to act alongside him

Kaczynski’s behavior definitely meets a lot of the radicalization process including but not limited to his grievances, his isolation or drawing back from society, his good vs. evil mentality, and his idea that he needed to act out and only found a way to do so by way of violence. He hoped by releasing his manifesto that it would inspire other like-minded people to act in the same way. For Ted I feel like the Radicalization method that is most fitting would be the NYPD’s Radicalization Process because it allows you to look at the person and the way they were before, then moving on the next phase of self-identification where that behavior changes for them just as we see with Kaczynski. He then moved to the next phase where ideology and getting with like-minded individuals. Kaczynski was different because he didn’t completely reach out to other people, but he definitely expressed his viewpoints and grievances moving him further along in the radicalization process and eventually led him to justify his attacks. Homegrown extremists still show that change of behavior and motioning of each of the steps even though they are not a part of a radical jihadist group.

-Lindy

Reference:

Barnett, B. (2015, December 9). 20 Years Later: A Look Back at the Unabomber Manifesto. Perspectives on Terrorism, North America. Retrieved from: http://www.terrorismanalysts.com/pt/index.php/pot/…

Chase, A. (2000, June). Harvard and the Making of the Unabomber. The Atlantic. Retrieved from http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2000/0…

Katz, Jason. (1998, April 17). The Unabomber’s Legacy Part 1. Wired. https://www.wired.com/1998/04/the-unabombers-legac…

Michael King & Donald M. Taylor (2011) The Radicalization of Homegrown Jihadists: A Review of Theoretical Models and Social Psychological Evidence, Terrorism and Political Violence, 23:4, 602-622,DOI: 10.1080/09546553.2011.587064

Student# 2 Thomas

Ted Kaczynski

Ted Kaczynski is known now as the UNABOMBER, for his 20 year long bombing campaign against universities (the UN in UNABOMBER) and Airlines (the A in UNABOMBER). He was a gifted youngster in mathematics, and got into Harvard at the age of 16. He was smaller then many kids his age and was treated differently because of his intelligence, he probably faced some bullying. While in college he took part in an experiment where he, and others were verbally abused for extended periods of time. In 1962 he graduated from Harvard and moved to the University of Michigan to get his doctorate, which he did do and had a dissertation that was widely praised. After this he became a professor at Berkeley in California. This didn’t last long though. Kaczynski was never a social person despite having been socially active in younger years. He avoided contact with students and others, eventually withdrawing from society to live an off the grid lifestyle. After living in isolation for many years Kaczynski moved to the Chicago area to work with his brother where he attempted to have a relationship with a woman who worked at the same factory, this did not workout. That may have been the last straw, because after this event he began using the mail system to send 16 package Bombs to people in Universities and major Airlines. In his case the isolation he kept himself in lead to his self radicalizing, reenforced by being rejected (Or perceived rejection) every time he tried to enter society.

Timothy McVeigh

Timothy McVeigh is known as the Oklahoma City bomber. McVeigh came from a broken home, and faced bullying as a child. He became interested in anti government writings while young, but chose to join the army. He served with distinction in the gulf war, and even tried out for special forces. When this didn’t workout he left the army, falling back into his antigovernment ideals. He loved guns and shooting, and followed the gun show circuit reading and speaking about separatist or antigovernment information. He studied the actions of the FBI and ATF when they took action against the Waco Texas compound, and the Ruby ridge property, both over supposed gun crimes. This pushed him over the edge so to speak, and he filled a box truck with home made explosives and detonated it in front of the federal building in Oklahoma City, killing over 100 men women and children, wounding more than 600.

I think that in both cases Borum’s Four-Stage Model of radicalization is applicable. Both men are truly lone wolf terrorists who did self radicalize over a period of time. The rejections and social abuse at young formative ages, leading to situational wrongs in society, or law enforcement, then on to action fits with the four stages of; Grievance, Injustice, Target Attribution, and Distancing and devaluation. I learned that anything in society can be a radicalizing factor, like in the UNABOMBER case, and that the lone wolf title should be applied to these cases.

Sources

https://scholarcommons.usf.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1140&context=jss

https://www.biography.com/crime-figure/ted-kaczynski

https://www.biography.com/crime-figure/timothy-mcveigh

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