October 24, 2014 | Quote

Lone-Wolf Attacks Duel With Airstrikes in New Warfare Era

“The primary hypothesis at this point should be that” the Ottawa attacker “was influenced by the Islamic State and its call to action,” said Daveed Gartenstein-Ross, director of a terrorism center at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, a Washington policy group. “This is an asymmetric style of attack, the timing is quite meaningful, the targets are highly symbolic — Canadian power and the Canadian military.”

Islamic State’s ability to act not only asymmetrically but also as a conventional military while adopting characteristics of a state makes the group unique, Gartenstein-Ross said.

“They’re not just a terrorist actor,” he said, citing the conventional military style of its attack on the Kurdish town of Kobani and the way the group collects taxes, sells oil, and attempts to govern territory. “It actually takes on a lot of state characteristics,” he said.

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