Poverty has more of a role in terrorism than experts believe. Past research, literature, and data reviewed and analyzed by SI procures a bias that confirms, poor people, despite level of education, are easily radicalized and conscripted into violent religious extremism. SI reviewed Karl Marx sociological perspectives, particularly those around masses. According to Karl Marx, religion is an opiate of the poor. That perspective converges with SI findings that poverty attracts religious believes, and that radical ascription to religious ideologies provides cohorts with a sense of self-worth besides hope (that religion gives poor people hope).
- More educated youths joined violent religious extremist organizations between 2010 and 2016 and early 2017. They were motivated by the promise of money which then provides them a sense of self-worth or purpose in life (poverty is best viewed from an employment and economic activities lens. Today, more and more youths are graduating from university colleges but cannot secure employment or funding to engage in economic activities. This makes them vulnerable). Poverty is the root cause of disenfranchisement of millions of people, thus, can be referred to as a catalyst.
- SI also found out that, to achieve their objectives (radicalizing and conscripting poor people), terror groups, exploit socio-politics and economics of impoverished regions to influence and subsequently build a religious perception. How? They fuse economics with religion to malign political establishments in the target area. This is a form outbidding. Religion is used to build ideologies that more often are anti-(government and political) establishment. The common approaches include blaming the political establishment for the poor economic state (misconstruing authority as repression and occupation).
- Upon ideologically outbidding political authority in such areas, terrorists conscript select youths into violent extremism and begins to orchestrate premeditated, religious-politically motivated violence perpetrated against noncombatants to influence the political establishment and its supporters (the audience of terrorist’s activities).