Perceptions of extremists and deradicalization programs among university students in Kuwait

Kyle A. Msall

Abstract


The increase of terrorism and terrorist organizations such as the self-proclaimed Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham throughout the Middle East over the past three years have led to an exponential increase in individuals living outside of the Middle East becoming radicalized. These individuals range from children to adults, both male and female. The current study focuses on the process of deradicalization. While a number of studies have begun exploring this issue with regards to the actual process, this study focuses on the perceptions of deradicalization from the public. The study is a mixed-method design with the quantitative portion being a questionnaire about what the students’ perceptions are toward consequences of convicted individuals in relation to extremists. Much research has been done on citizens’ perceptions toward convicted criminals in countries such as the US and the current study seeks to relate those findings, which suggest that there is a highly negative attitude toward convicted criminals, to the attitudes expressed by the university students in Kuwait toward extremists. The qualitative portion of the study involved an open-ended prompt which gave the participants the chance to discuss and describe their thoughts about whether or not a religious extremist could be rehabilitated and deradicalized. The qualitative portion of the study was the primary focus because it is important for program and policy developers associated with deradicalization to understand what the general public perceives regarding the process. The results for the qualitative portion were divided into two main themes: the first being “change is possible” for extremists and the second being “change is not possible” for extremists. However, an interesting find was the third theme that emerged from both of the first two themes, characterized as “all people should be given a second chance.” The current study aims to add to the research gap regarding the public’s perception of deradicalization in the hopes that future work will be conducted in this area.  


Keywords


perceptions toward deradicalization, extremists, radicalism

Full Text:

PDF

References


Ahmed, K. (2016). Radicalism Leading to Violent Extremism in Canada: A Multi-Level Analysis of Muslim Community and University Based Student Leaders’ Perceptions and Experiences. Journal for Deradicalization, (6), 231-271.

Al-Badayneh, D. (2010). Human Development, Peace, Corruption, and Terrorism in the Arab World. International Journal of Security and Terrorism, 1(2), 63-85.

Al-Badayneh, D. M., Khelifa, M., & Alhasan, K. (2016). Radicalizing Arab University Students: A Global Emerging Threat. Journalism and Mass Communication, 6(2), 67-78.

Ashour, O. (2007). Lions Tamed? An inquiry into the causes of de-radicalization of armed Islamist movements: The case of the Egyptian Islamic Group. The Middle East Journal, 61(4), 596-625.

Bartlett, J., Birdwell, J., & King, M. (2010). The edge of violence: A radical approach to extremism. Demos.

Bertram, L. (2015). How Could a Terrorist be De-Radicalised?. Journal for Deradicalization, (5), 120-149.

Braun, V., & Clark, V. Using thematic analysis in psychology. Qualitative Research in Psychology, 3(2), 77-101. doi: 10.1191/1478088706qp063oa.

Brooks, L. E., Visher, C. A., & Naser, R. L. (2006). Community residents' perceptions of prisoner reentry in selected Cleveland neighborhoods. Justice Policy Center.

Christmann, K. (2012). Preventing Religious Radicalisation and Violent Extremism. A Systematic Review of the Research Evidence.

Colwell-Chanthaphonh, C. (2003). Dismembering/disremembering the Buddhas Renderings on the Internet during the Afghan purge of the past. Journal of Social Archaeology, 3(1), 75-98.

Creswell, J. W. (2013). Qualitative Inquiry and Research Design (3rd ed.). Washington, DC: Sage.

Dalgaard-Nielsen, A. (2013). Promoting Exit from Violent Extremism: Themes and Approaches. Studies in Conflict & Terrorism, 36(2), 99-115. doi:10.1080/1057610x.2013.747073

Dechesne, M., & De Roon, C. (2013). Coming home: Deradicalization for returning Syria jihadis. Journal Exit-Deutschland. Zeitschrift für Deradikalisierung und demokratische Kultur, 3, 84-95.

Della Porta, D., & LaFree, G. (2012). Guest editorial: Processes of radicalization and de-radicalization. International Journal of Conflict and Violence (IJCV), 6(1), 4-10.

Doosje, B., Moghaddam, F. M., Kruglanski, A. W., de Wolf, A., Mann, L., & Feddes, A. R. (2016). Terrorism, radicalization and de-radicalization. Current Opinion in Psychology, 11, 79-84.

Goodwin, R., Willson, M., & Stanley, G. (2005). Terror threat perception and its consequences in contemporary Britain. British Journal of Psychology, 96(4), 389-406.

Hafez, M., & Mullins, C. (2015). The radicalization puzzle: a theoretical synthesis of empirical approaches to homegrown extremism. Studies in Conflict & Terrorism.

Horgan, J., & Altier, M. (2012). The Future of Terrorist De-Radicalization Programs. Georgetown Journal of International Affairs, 13(2), 83-90.

Horgan, J., Altier, M. B., Shortland, N., & Taylor, M. (2016). Walking away: the disengagement and de-radicalization of a violent right-wing extremist. Behavioral Sciences of Terrorism and Political Aggression, 1-15. doi:10.1080/19434472.2016.1156722

Horgan, J., & Braddock, K. (2010). rehabilitating the Terrorists?: Challenges in Assessing the Effectiveness of De-radicalization programs. Terrorism and Political Violence, 22(2), 267-291.

Jore, S. H. (2007). The Norwegian research on terrorism 1996-2006: Paradigms and attitudes towards security measures. Risk, Reliability and Societal Safety, 2579-2586.

Koehler, D. (2016). Understanding Deradicalization. Methods, Tools and Programs for Countering Violent Extremism Oxon/New York: Routledge.

Kuznetcov, A., & Kuznetcov, V. (2013). The legal definition of terrorism in the United States and Russia. World Applied Sciences Journal, 28(1), 130-134. doi:10.5829/idosi.wasj.2013.28.01.13783

Larkins, D. (2017, February 10). Bus beheader Vince Li gets absolute discharge. In Toronto Sun.

Lemyre, L., Turner, M. C., Lee, J. E., & Krewski, D. (2006). Public perception of terrorism threats and related information sources in Canada: implications for the management of terrorism risks. Journal of Risk Research, 9(7), 755-774.

Lizardo, O. (2015). Defining and theorizing terrorism: A global actor-centered approach. Journal of World-Systems Research, 14(2), 91-118.

McCauley, C., & Moskalenko, S. (2008). Mechanisms of political radicalization: Pathways toward terrorism. Terrorism and political violence, 20(3), 415-433.

Morse, A. (2016). From Guantanamo Bay to Pelican Bay: Hunger Striking and the Biopolitical Geographies of Resistance.

Pammett, J., Anderson, J., Carton, A., Vanderkelen, F., Segovia, C., Chen-hua Yo, E., & Fu, Y. (2014). ISSP Module 2014 Citizenship II. In International Social Survey Programme.

Sedgwick, M. (2010). The Concept of Radicalization as a Source of Confusion. Terrorism and Political Violence, 22(4), 479-494. doi:10.1080/09546553.2010.491009

Smith, C., Burke, H., de Leiuen, C., & Jackson, G. (2015). The Islamic State’s symbolic war: Da'esh's socially mediated terrorism as a threat to cultural heritage. Journal of Social Archaeology, 1469605315617048.

Stevens, G., Agho, K., Taylor, M., Jones, A. L., Jacobs, J., Barr, M., & Raphael, B. (2011). Alert but less alarmed: a pooled analysis of terrorism threat perception in Australia. BMC public health, 11(1), 1. doi.org/10.1186/1471-2458-11-797

Rade, C. B., Desmarais, S. L., & Mitchell, R. E. (2016). A meta-analysis of public attitudes toward ex-offenders. Criminal Justice and Behavior, 43(9), 1260-1280.doi: 10.1177/0093854816655837

Wakefield, S., & Uggen, C. (2010). Incarceration and stratification. Annual Review of Sociology, 36, 387-406. doi:10.1146/annurev.soc.012809.102551

Williams, M. J., Horgan, J., & Evans, W. P. (2016). Evaluation of a Multi-Faceted, U.S. Community-Based, Muslim-Led CVE Program.

Williams, M. J., Horgan, J. G., & Evans, W. P. (2015). The critical role of friends in networks for countering violent extremism: toward a theory of vicarious help-seeking. Behavioral Sciences of Terrorism and Political Aggression, 8(1), 45-65. doi:10.1080/19434472.2015.1101147


Refbacks

  • There are currently no refbacks.


Copyright (c) 2017 Kyle A. Msall

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

ISSN: 2363-9849 

Proud Member of the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ)