Author: Krista E. Wiegand
Category: Political Science
Eventually, most terrorist and guerrilla groups are defeated by governments or gradually die off - sometimes becoming political parties, democratically participating in the non-violent governance of their states. Yet some terrorist and guerrilla groups maintain military capabilities, using violence and democratic participation simultaneously. Here, Krista E. Wiegand examines the different political strategies that Islamist terrorist and guerrilla groups use to achieve their political objectives. Focussing on Hezbollah in Lebanon and Hamas in Palestine, Wiegand skilfully reveals the factors that determine why Islamist militant groups become involved in governance as political parties, how mainstream governments may or may not accept them as legitimate, why some groups like al- Gama'a al-Islamiya in Egypt renounce guerrilla tactics, and how some groups govern whilst employing political violence. Bombs and Ballots is a valuable contribution to the study of state-society relations in the Middle East, exposing the blurred line between terrorist activity and governance.