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“Red alert”: Terrorists exploit young people’s experience, perceptions of corruption even beyond religious extremism

Trying to understand the minds of extremist Muslim terrorists? New research may help:

“Studies of the recruitment of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isil), Boko Haram, Al-Shabaab and the Al Qaeda find that both personal experiences with injustice and perceptions of government corruption play central roles, far more than religious identities or narratives.”

“Red alert. The recruitment strategies of the Isil, Boko Haram, Al-Shabaab and Al-Qaeda suggest that their success is based on two things: discredited politicians and discredited governments.”

Those are conclusions of research reported at the recent Panama City, Panama, International Anti-Corruption Conference attended by 1300 participants from 135 counties.

And there’s another dimension to the terrible cost of government corruption as reported in Pakistan’s The News in the same conference summary article,”$8 billion per year”: 

According to Transparency International, “trillions of dollars are spent each year buying goods and services for public projects…Contracts to suppliers can be awarded without fair competition. This allows companies with political connections to triumph over their rivals. Or companies within the same industry can rig their bids, so each gets a piece of the pie. This increases the cost of services to the public. We’ve found that corruption can add as much as 50 percent to a project’s costs. But corruption in public procurement isn’t just about money. It also reduces the quality of work or services. And it could cost lives…”

The News article concludes with this correlating conclusion:

“Here are the top four countries in the Global Terrorism Index: Iraq, Afghanistan, Nigeria and Pakistan. Is it a mere coincidence that Iraq, Afghanistan, Nigeria and Pakistan are also the worst performers in the Corruption Perception Index? Yes, corruption and extremism are cousins.”

See added analysis, “Fighting Global Corruption, The Multi-Trillion Dollar Mission”