Researchers not affiliated to CPOST have identified a number of variables and stakeholders that are affected by suicide attacks. The following list is not meant to be comprehensive.
- Conflict intensity: Conflicts where suicide attacks are employed tend to be more intense. These conflicts usually spark counterterrorism efforts that lead to higher levels of violence.
- State repression: Suicide attacks increase pressure on governments to protect civilians from violence, leading to higher levels of state repression.
- Post-conflict politics: Suicide attacks and other forms of political violence are used as a bargaining tool during peace negotiations, thereby potentially altering their outcomes.
- Propaganda appeal: Suicide attacks amplify a militant group’s propaganda efforts and increase its symbolic power due to their shocking nature.
- Recruitment: Suicide attacks increase recruitment by demonstrating the group’s ideological commitment.
- Organizational competition: Suicide attacks fuel competition amongst militant groups.
- Foreign forces: Suicide attacks on foreign military personnel increase pressure on foreign governments to withdraw their forces from the contested territory.
- Domestic governments: By targeting domestic security forces with suicide attacks, the militant groups deny governments their ability to operate effectively.