Review: Driven to Death–Psychological and Social Aspects of Suicide Terrorism

4 Star, Terrorism & Jihad
Amazon Page

Ariel Merari

4.0 out of 5 stars Useful but Severely Flawed in Context

November 19, 2010

I read a great deal and below offer an alternative recommendation to this book. A careful look through the “Inside the Book” elements, including the Index (Pape is not there) and the Conclusion, confirm that this is a book that seeks to place all the blame on the suicide terrorists without regard to the extreme deprivations being placed upon them by dictators and occupying powers. I give this book a fourth star because it serves a useful purpose–this is a valuable study in and of itself, but it loses a star for failing to be honest about the larger context. Below are a few books that provide that context.

The key conclusion that this book does not do enough to highlight is that there is a direct correlation between suicide terrorism and a specific country being occupied or a specific ethnic groups being severely and harshly repressed. Stop the occupations, genocides, and other attrocities, and most of the suicide terrorism will stop as well.

The primary purpose of this intervention is to point to the below books and my summary reviews of each.

Dying to Win: The Strategic Logic of Suicide Terrorism

Breaking the Real Axis of Evil: How to Oust the World's Last Dictators by 2025

Imperial Hubris: Why the West is Losing the War on Terror

Sleeping with the Devil: How Washington Sold Our Soul for Saudi Crude

The Fifty-Year Wound: How America's Cold War Victory Has Shaped Our World

See also at Phi Beta Iota under Remixed Reviews:

Worth a Look: Book Review Lists (Negative) where 40 lists of reviews are provided sorted under the causative revolution categories of political-legal, socio-economic, ideo-cultural, techno-demographic, and natural geographic, will all links live.

Terrorism is a boil. We choose to lance that boil by shooting it off while driving a car on a winding road. It should not come as a surprise when we drive the car over the cliff as a result of our poor choice of tools and bad decisions.

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