Global Terrorism This Week (GTTW) – September 5 – 11, 2022

Global Terrorism This Week for September 5 to 11 shows, once again, a heavily dominant jihadi threat.

Weekly thought: is political violence in the West inevitable?

We are living through some scary times according to some. Hate is on the rise. People are getting all riled up, including online, and some of this nastiness is manifesting itself in the real world.

So, how worried should we be? If you believe the Globe and Mail’s Andrew Coyne, very. In a recent op-ed piece he wrote, among other things, “Some time in the not too distant future, when the first Canadian politician has been assassinated since Pierre Laporte, we will all look back and wonder what we could have done to prevent it.” He is referring largely to what we call right-wing extremism (RWE), a much more accurate term than the current Canadian Liberal government’s meaningless use of the phrase ‘ideologically-motivated violent extremism’ (IMVE).

Wow, that sounds serious. And Coyne is a good essayist.

Me? I am a little less worried for several reasons. As I have noted on many earlier occasions, the vast, vast majority of idiots who say or post idiotic things online never do a damn thing about it, either because they are cowards, incompetent or not really that angry. It is thus far from certain that we will see any spike in actual violent attacks any time soon.

Secondly, I know that my former colleagues at CSIS – the Canadian Security Intelligence Service – are actively investigating this threat and will alert the RCMP – the Royal Canadian Mounted Police – of any individual(s) who seem to be edging into possible acts.

Thirdly, terrorism on a global scale is still overwhelmingly dominated by Islamist extremists – jihadis to some. That was also the #1 threat when I worked in counterterrorism at CSIS and I have a hard time believing that situation has changed so drastically in seven years.

There are, of course, no guarantees in life and Mr. Coyne could be right. Still, at this juncture, given Canadian history and recent events, an increase in politically-motivated violence is not a surety.

Or at least I don’t think it is. If I turn out to be wrong I will be the first to admit it.

Now, about those jihadis…

This week by the numbers

  • Countries which suffered attacks: 13 (Afghanistan, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, DRC, Germany, Iraq, Lebanon, Mali, Mozambique, Palestine/Israel, Somalia, Syria, Yemen)
  • Approximate number of casualties (dead/wounded/terrorists killed): 182/61/405
  • Ideology of attackers: Islamist (89%); nationalist (3%); other (8%)



Burkina Faso


Democratic Republic of Congo


  • Eight people went on trial on September 5 in a special French terrorism court accused of helping an attacker who drove a truck into a crowded beachfront on Bastille Day six years ago, killing 86 people (among whom were 33 foreign nationals). During a planned two-and-half months of court proceedings in Paris, survivors and those mourning loved ones will recount the horrors inflicted in the southern French resort of Nice on the night of July 14, 2016. Shortly after the end of a fireworks display, the truck careered through the crowds for two kilometers like a snow plow, hitting person after person. The final death toll was included 15 children and adolescents, while 450 others were injured. The attacker, Mohamed Lahouaiej Bouhlel, was killed by police soon after. ISIS claimed responsibility for the carnage, although French prosecutors said that while Bouhlel had been inspired by the extremist group’s propaganda, investigators found no evidence that IS orchestrated the attack.
  • France’s anti-terrorism prosecutor ordered that 12 far right extremists should face trial over a ‘plot’ to attack President Macron in 2018. The prosecutor said the far-right group held meetings and carried out research and training and “developed a project of violent action” against the president. During their meetings, the idea of burning mosques, murdering migrants, kidnapping officials and manufacturing explosives was reportedly raised and group members also participated in paramilitary training and held discussions it described as showing “racism, xenophobia, anti-Semitism, anti-republicanism and neo-Nazism”.










  • Israeli forces arrested 25 terrorist suspects in the West Bank on September 6 and 7. During the operation, an improvised explosive device (IED) was thrown and shots were fired at the soldiers, who responded with live fire: the man who threw the IED was killed.
  • A Palestinian man carrying a makeshift firearm and two bombs was arrested by officers in Jaffa on September 8, and later admitted he sought to commit a major terror attack in Tel Aviv. According to police, the 19-year-old resident of Nablus, with no permit to enter Israel, aroused the suspicion of officers of the elite police reconnaissance unit Yasam near Jaffa’s clock tower, a major landmark and tourist attraction. He was detained and found to be carrying a ‘Carlo’ submachine gun and two pipe bombs filled with nails. Police said he had been taken for further questioning by the Shin Bet security agency.
  • Israeli PM Lapid stated on September 9 that Shin Bet had foiled ‘hundreds’ of terrorist attacks in 2021, including shooting attacks, explosives, suicide bombings, and kidnappings.





United Kingdom

  • The United Kingdom (UK) Home Office released data on September 9 showing a record number of child terror arrests in UK during the lockdown from June 2021 to June 2022 after school shutdowns sparked by COVID. There are worries about at-risk children being radicalised during the pandemic.


By Phil Gurski

Phil Gurski is the President and CEO of Borealis Threat and Risk Consulting Ltd. Phil is a 32-year veteran of CSE and CSIS and the author of six books on terrorism.

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