Date of Graduation
Masters of Science, Defense and Strategic Studies
Defense and Strategic Studies
information operations, terrorism, foreign fighters, the Islamic state, strategic communications, psychological strategy
Defense and Security Studies | International Relations | Multicultural Psychology | Social Policy | Social Psychology | Terrorism Studies
This thesis focuses on the necessity of psychological strategies to combat the Islamic State’s recruitment of foreign fighters. This thesis argues that psychological strategies are a primary weapon due to the psychological nature of the war against the Islamic State, which is a part of the overall war of ideas. This thesis does not consider psychological strategies for other aspects of U.S. counterterrorism strategy, nor does it reflect the difficulties involved with developing U.S. strategies in the U.S. federal government. Furthermore, this thesis only focuses on foreign fighter defending and supporting the Islamic State, which is the successor of Al Qaeda in Iraq and does not consider foreign fighters supporting other terrorist organizations. The result of the research done for this thesis finds that psychological strategies must become a core element in U.S. policy towards this issue.
© David Michael Smaney
Smaney, David Michael, "A Radical Idea: Applying Psychological Strategy to Combat Foreign Fighters Defending the Islamic State" (2017). MSU Graduate Theses. 3102.