The idea of killing oneself for a cause is unimaginable for most people; however, for some individuals, it is a heroic act. Young men, women, and even children have taken their own lives enacting this fatalistic practice. Suicide bombers truly define the meaning of the word terror. This phenomenon is far from new to the world, in World War 2; Japanese pilots called kamikazes voluntarily committed suicide by slamming their planes into American war ships in a last-minute effort to avoid losing the war. Similarly, suicide attackers strap their bodies with explosives and explode their selves in crowds, hotels, marketplaces, and embassies throughout the world. Alarmingly, there are many people willing and committed to carrying out such missions. The driving force behind suicide attackers is not solely based on religion; in fact, it has just as much to do with revenge, humiliation, and indoctrination.
In some cases, suicide bombers decide to take such actions as an act of vengeance. Paul J. Smith, Author of “The Terrorism Ahead” notes that revenge is the driving force behind certain suicide attacks as a direct response to an event, such as a death of a family member (142). In the Middle East, this scene plays out daily. On May 19, 2003, Hiba Daragmeh detonates herself at Amaquim shopping mall in Alfula, Israel to retaliate against her brother’s imprisonment in Israel (Smith 142).The ageless land conflict between Israel and the Palestinians have led to many casualties on both sides. A suicide bomber detonates a bomb in Israeli territory and kills Israeli civilians. Israel retaliates, and attacks suspected terrorist cites, during these skirmishes Innocent Palestinians and Israelis are killed which drives the thirst for revenge mutually on both sides.
Besides vengeance, humiliation can play a determining factor in suicide bombings. In Palestine, the people desire for statehood and the ability to govern their selves without Israeli control. Maxine Rosaler the author of “Hamas” describes how Palestininians are unable to move freely through sections of the West Bank or the Gaza strip and how they have to deal with complex identification processing and checkpoints (21). The feeling of occupation is present everywhere in Gaza. Laurie S. Friedman “Author of Terrorist Attacks” states Terrorists have differing reasons for enacting violence; however, they share the same philosophy of appalling and drastic methods to express their frustrations (42).
The inability of Palestinians and Israel to finalize a peace accord to pave the way for Palestinian statehood is driving up frustrations and indignity among the people in Palestinian territories. Aleya El Bindari-Hammad an Egyptian professor, states, “Many suicide bombers come from relatively educated, middle-class back-grounds and are not direct victims of material desperation. But they suffer from a desperation no less painful-the conviction that they have been collectively and utterly humiliated” (qtd. In...