Like fashions or musical genres, the flavors of terrorism seem to go in and out of style with generations. At the end of the 19th and early part of the 20th centuries, anarchism was the rage. Following WWI, there was strong anti-colonialism fervor. The 1960s brought leftist violence, while the late ‘70s and into the 1980s violence came from the right and often had religious underpinnings.
Today, there seems to be no shortage of reasons for terrorist activities, from anti-abortionists, such as Eric Rudolph, to the anti-technology Unabomber Ted Kaczynski. However, regardless of their ideology, an increasing number of today’s terrorists are soloists. They might sympathize with and gain moral support from larger extremists groups, but they take that extra step, moving from extremist to terrorist, alone. Flying solo, they aren’t bogged down by group decisions, don’t have to check with a leader and lessen the risk of being discovered. Eric Rudolph carried out attacks for two years and wasn’t captured for another five. Ted Kaczynski’s reign of terror lasted 17 years, and he did it without leaving his Montana home, except for trips to post his deadly letters.
My character also will act alone. His support system will be virtual. His outcomes very real.