Matthew Seitz

Date of Graduation

Fall 2008


Master of Science in Defense and Strategic Studies


Defense and Strategic Studies

Committee Chair

Bradley Thayer


The current U.S. strategy to defeat al-Qaeda by using military force has achieved some short-term success by forcing the group underground and limiting its effectiveness, but it has not achieved the strategic goal of preventing individuals from joining the group. Military might should not be used as the cure-all to counter al-Qaeda, its affiliate groups, and leaderless terrorists, collectively referred to as the Global Jihad Movement. In order to counter terrorist mobilization and recruitment, the U.S. should focus more attention on other state tools to counter terrorism such as diplomacy, financial controls, criminal law enforcement, intelligence, and more specifically deception, covert action, and psychological operations (PSYOPS). The current utilization of PSYOPS is ineffective at countering propaganda and mobilization in the Global Jihad Movement, therefore it must change. Through the change in PSYOPS and through the use of other tools of state power available to the United States, a more effective strategy of countering recruitment and mobilization in the Global Jihad Movement can be achieved. Only when this strategy of counter-mobilization is implemented, will we finally start to see some success in ending the Global Jihad Movement once and for all.


terrorism, global jihad, psychological operations, psyop, mind game, deception, counter-mobilization, Islamist extremism, al-Qaeda, leaderless terrorists, affiliate groups, Islamic, extremist, Islam

Subject Categories

Defense and Security Studies


© Matthew Seitz

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