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NCJ Number: 220460 Find in a Library
Title: Kurdish Workers Party (PKK) as Criminal Syndicate: Funding Terrorism Through Organized Crime--A Case Study
Journal: Studies in Conflict & Terrorism  Volume:30  Issue:10  Dated:October 2007  Pages:901-920
Author(s): Mitchel P. Roth; Murat Sever
Date Published: October 2007
Page Count: 20
Type: Issue Overview
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article examines the convergence of terrorism and organized crime through the prism of the Kurdish Workers’ Party (PKK).
Abstract: The Kurdish Workers’ Party (PKK) is a multilevel business organization that is involved in all phases of the narcotics trade, from production to retail distribution, a complex vertical business. Most recently, the PKK has begun coordinating its activities with other terrorist groups in Northern Iraq. Far more attention has been lavished on the terrorist adoption of organized crime activities than the converse. However, there are lessons to be learned by examining how organized crime groups have adopted various terrorist strategies. A case is made for criminal organizations adopting tactics and weapons that were once the preserve of the terrorist. An example was the Sicilian Mafia campaign in 1992 and 1993 that resulted in the assassinations of prosecuting magistrates and other innocents. The Mafia resorted to terrorist tactics again with car bombings of the Uffizi Museum in Florence, as well as other symbols of Italian heritage, all accomplished to intimidate the Italian Government into abandoning its campaign against organized crime. If there is any consensus regarding the convergence of terrorism and organized crime, even the most pragmatic admit terrorist organizations, such as the PKK, are stealing whole chapters out of the criminal playbook as they sell drugs and counterfeit goods, and smuggle illegal aliens, and at the same time convert their terrorist cells into criminal gangs. Scholars have long recognized that terrorist groups have engaged in transnational organized crime activities. But the question that comes up is, “When does a criminal enterprise become a terrorist group or vice versa?” This article explores the relationship between terrorism and transnational organized crime (TOC) by examining the involvement of Turkey’s most prominent terrorist organization and its TOC activities, including drug trafficking, human smuggling, illegal immigration, extortion, money laundering, and other types of smuggling. 2 tables, 111 notes
Main Term(s): Organized crime
Index Term(s): Criminal infiltration of business; Drug cartels; Drug manufacturing; Mob infiltration; Smuggling/Trafficking; Terrorism/Mass Violence; Terrorist tactics
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