Τριμελής Εξεταστική Επιτροπή:
Δρ. Ευθύμιος Λέκκας, Καθηγ. ΕΚΠΑ
Δρ. Εμμανουήλ Σκούρτσος, Επικ. Καθηγ. ΕΚΠΑ
Δρ. Στυλιανός Λόζιος, Επικ. Καθηγ. ΕΚΠΑ
Εξειδικευμένη Επιστημονική Καθοδήγηση:
Δημήτριος Ρούκας, Ψυχίατρος - Ψυχοθεραπευτής
The current master thesis is dealing with the issue of two distinctive lone actor attackers; the lone wolf and the active shooter. They may derive from different settings, but both of them represent a major challenge for law enforcement and intelligence agencies across the globe. This is mostly due to their clandestine path towards intended violence. Their attacks give rise to an asymmetric security threat that comes as a surprise to their victims. It is essential to begin with the meaning of safety, examining the lexicographic one along with the psychological scope, in order to profile its meaning as a core human need. It is also necessary to review and clarify the complex definitional frame of terrorism, in order to give an answer to the questions “what is the feeling of terror that derives from terrorism” and “how this feeling impacts on the sense of safety”, followed by the research of the connection between mental illness and violence.
The following chapters examine separately the lone wolf and the active shooter cases, based on the international bibliography. The research begins with a throwback in the origin and the genesis of the two phenomena. It then takes a deeper step to the individual characteristics, proceeded behavior and motivations to conclude with the planning and preparation phases. The end-all goal is the unification of the two paths and to explore and stress their similarities and their differences in an effort to elucidate the preconditions that lead to the act of violence.
Regarding to the basis of the thesis, the sense of safety is examined primary in its lexicographic and definitional terms. It continues from a psychological scope in order to explain its significance for the individual as a core need in its life. The terror that strikes this very feeling of safety is then featured, concerned as the foundation of terrorism. The abstract and fruitful definitional frame of terrorism is explored through its various definitions that have been argued in the bibliography, each one from their own scope. The next chapters explore the individual developmental process to violence of each case separately. The blurred boundaries lead to the imperative need for an apprehension of the offenders’ features, including the socio-demographic traits, the descendant behavior, the motivational mechanisms and finally the preparation and planning process.
The former research focused on the comparative analysis of the lone-actor terrorists and school shooters, due to the origins of the active shooter in the school attacks. The present thesis takes a first step and places in the picture the wider category of the active shooter, as it reached to include more offenders aside from school shooters. The findings of the comparison are abundant. Many stereotypes that the wider community and the mass media reproduce seem to break down. The path towards targeted violence is now more common among the two type of offenders than it used to be thought.
The significance of the findings lies in the effort of the classification and dilatation of the knowledge on the lone-actor attacks. On the scope of this thesis, their importance could be found in their future use to establish methods for the recognition of the distinctive indicators in these cases, with an ultimate goal of early detection and prevention.
safety, terrorism, intended violence, lone wolf, active shooter