Security and Defence

Reports and papers

Through the militant lens: the power of ideology and narratives

15 Jan 2014 - 13:45
Source: Flickr / Roger Price

In March 2012, Prof. Dr. Rohan Gunaratna interviewed Umar Patek and Ali Imron, both of whom have admitted involvement in the two bomb attacks in Bali in October 2002 which killed over 200 people.

This ICCT Research Paper explores violent extremist “narratives” within the Indonesian context by interviewing a convicted terrorist (Ali Imron) and one currently undergoing trial (Umar Patek).

Understanding and de-constructing

It is hoped that by understanding and de-constructing those emotional stories or ideologies that are often told and used to justify violence, or to motivate someone to commit violence, in pursuit of a cause; that the policy making community can then counter these narratives more effectively.

This Paper first explores the background of violent extremist narratives and then recounts and analyzes the Patek and Imron interviews. Based on these interviews and current knowledge of violent extremist narratives, the paper concludes with a series of recommendations.

On 21 June 2012, Umar Patek was found guilty of murder and bomb-making in connection with the Bali attacks, he was sentenced to 20 years in prison.