Leadership in Jihadist Terrorist Organizations


  • Tinatin Karosanidze Free University of Tbilisi


Leadership, terrorism, jihadist organizations, profiles, counterterrorism


On May 2, 2011, Al-Qaeda leader Usama Bin Laden was assassinated in Abbottabad, Pakistan. This special operation was planned and carried out within the framework of the US counterterrorism strategy. It was recognized as a US victory over terrorism. After the 9/11 terrorist attacks, the United States arrested or killed many Al-Qaeda leaders. Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, Al-Qaeda’s leader in Iraq was killed in the raids in 2006; on October 5, 2012, US forces arrested Abu Anas al-Libi, the leader of Al-Qaeda’s Libyan group; in June 2012 Abu Yahia al-Libi, Al-Qaeda’s deputy leader was killed in a drone strike in Pakistan. A few months later, another leader and propagandist of Al-Qaeda, Anwar al-Awlaq was killed in a drone strike.

The organization has not stopped operating since the liquidation or arrest of Al-Qaeda leaders. It still remains a powerful organization that continues to organize terrorist attacks in the world. As it turned out, US tactics to fight against the leaders of terrorist groups were unsuccessful (Jurgensmeyer 2003, 234).

The aim of the study is to answer the questions: why is it ineffective to liquidate or arrest the leaders of jihadist terrorist groups? How do jihadist terrorist groups manage to continue their activities after attacking the leader? Is the successful operation of the terrorist groups related to the type of the leader? 



How to Cite

Karosanidze, Tinatin. 2020. “Leadership in Jihadist Terrorist Organizations”. Free University Journal of Asian Studies, no. 2 (December). Tbilisi. https://journals.org.ge/index.php/asianstudies/article/view/42.