Brothers Grim

I wonder whether the security services know whether attacks planned by siblings have a higher success rate?

Khalid and Ibrahim el-Bakraoui

Belgium has become the latest victim of a terrorist attack. Daesh/Islamic State have claimed responsibility for the bombings in Brussels, and the authorities there have named two of the suicide bombers as brothers Khalid and Ibrahim el-Bakraoui.

The last three terrorist outrages in Europe have all been carried out by brothers.  Salah and Brahim Abdeslam were part of the group who carried out the Paris attacks on 13th November 2015.

Saïd and Chérif Kouachi were the Charlie Hebdo gunmen.

There were also three sets of brothers among the September 11 hijackers: Wail and Waleed Al-Shehri were on United Airlines Flight 11; Ahmed and Hamza al-Ghamdi hijacked United Airlines Flight 175; and Nawaf and Salem al-Hazmi took over American Airlines Flight 77.

The men who bombed the Boston Marathon in 2013 were brothers too: Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev.

This is not really a surprising trend. Planning a terrorist attack obviously requires that you place a great deal of trust in your accomplices. I wonder whether the security services know whether attacks planned by siblings have a higher success rate than those where the perpetrators are not related?

Either way, it’s becoming a depressingly familiar real-life trope.

4 thoughts on “Brothers Grim”

  1. One way to partially answer it would be to compare this to the number of ‘successful’ events done by non-siblings.

    On a related note, I feel as though there were brothers involved in some of the various grooming cases around England, Rotherham and so forth. For eg: http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2016/feb/24/child-sex-abuse-rotherham-guilty-gang-hussain, also http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/crime/10146369/Oxford-sex-grooming-gang-jailed-for-life.html
    Not sure what this tells us, but there we are.

    1. Yes, there was one case (I think maybe Swindon or somewhere) where there was an entire family of brothers involved. It’s beside the point when there are victims (murdered, or abused) involved, but one can’t help but think of the mother of the perpetrators when you hear about these kinds of crime.

    1. Oh yeah, father too. But, well, that’s the saying isn’t it? “Won’t their mother be proud” and this is the exact opposite.

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