Jemaah Islamiyah's Fifth Phase: The Many Faces of a Terrorist Group

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Jemaah Islamiyah (JI) has shifted its structure and strategies several times since its inception, and its ability to evolve over time has ensured its survival. This article evaluates the evolution of JI's influence in Indonesia and its shift in strategy, in an attempt to address the broader issue of its survival as an organization. It hypothesizes that while internal factors initiated the current strategy shift to an ideological and political focus, external factors have successfully exploited and solidified that shift. Explaining JI's historical evolution in four phases, it concludes by considering possibilities for a “fifth phase” of peaceful political participation.

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  • Gillian S. Oak

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