Terrorist Leaders as Micro-Managers?

Jacob N. Shapiro, author of THE TERRORIST’S DILEMMA: MANAGING VIOLENT COVERT ORGANIZATIONS, has written s smaller, summary article for Foreign Affairs about how terrorist leaders face a interesting dilemma: they must recruit violent, unstable people, and then convince them to follow orders, live undercover and simply, and only undertake missions of a certain scope and impact.

So how do they do it? Well, the leaders resort to bureaucratic control measures like budgets, reports, and micro-management. But that leads to an additional problem. Too many limits and people will rebel and form other organizations. Too few limits and your recruits might do something stupid and harm your organization’s mission. Of course, a leader had also better realize that when a he gets wrapped up, this backlog of documents can undue the entire organization.

It’s a really interesting read. Check it out.