Internet Anthropologist Think Tank: Iran's pay-for-performance terrorism

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    Thursday, January 10, 2008

    Iran's pay-for-performance terrorism

    Iran's pay-for-performance funding policy is also evident from its interactions with Palestinian Islamic Jihad.

    Until Palestinian officials released imprisoned Islamic Jihad bomb makers and terrorist recruiters in 2000 and 2001 (following the collapse of Israeli-Palestinian peace talks), it had been years since Islamic Jihad carried out a successful attack. Islamic Jihad conducted several suicide bombings in 1995 and then not again until September 2000 with the exception of the November 6, 1998, double bombing in the Mahane Yehuda market that injured twenty.

    Plot after plot failed, either because of terrorist incompetence or successful counterterrorism operations. But once their key operatives were released from jail, Islamic Jihad terrorist activity quickly picked up.

    In early June 2002, Iran's Ayatollah Ali Khamene'i met with Islamic Jihad leader Ramadan Shallah on the sidelines of a Tehran conference convened in support of the Palestinian Intifada. Khamene'i pledged to separate Iran's funding for Islamic Jihad from that of Hizballah and to increase Islamic Jihad funding by 70 percent "to cover the expense of recruiting young Palestinians for suicide operations."

    U.S. officials note that in the period following the onset of violence in September 2000, Tehran instituted an incentive system in which millions of dollars in cash bonuses to Islamic Jihad were conferred to the organization for successful attacks. Tehran often demands of its terrorist beneficiaries videotapes or other evidence of successful attacks.

    Today's designation establishes that this pay system continues. The significance of this pay system is that it encourages groups to continue carrying out attacks on an ongoing basis to maintain the level of funding it gets from Tehran.




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