Honors Theses

Date of Award

Spring 5-9-2020

Document Type

Undergraduate Thesis


Political Science

First Advisor

Ashleen Williams

Relational Format



This paper discusses the internal activities of terrorist organizations during their different periods of high and low activity. The research in this paper focuses on the case studies of three organizations, al Qaeda, Boko Haram, and ISIS, and analyzes the shifts in their activities throughout their life cycles. By focusing on terrorist organizations rooted in Salafi-Jihadism, this paper aims to point out the importance of analyzing these organizations through the context of their own ideology. Due to their ideology, these groups view their fight to be centuries-long, thus they do not view a period of reduced activity as their defeat. By understanding the life cycle of terrorist organizations and the trends that correspond with the different stages of the cycle, researchers will be better able to assess how to combat these groups.

Available for download on Friday, April 07, 2023