Homeland Security Terrorist Leadership Communications

We have been focusing upon how those at the top of terrorist groups perform leadership roles and influence various audiences (both within their organizations and to the world at large). For this research paper compare and contrast the leadership and communication techniques of former al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden with those of one other terrorist leader. Compare and contrast bin Laden’s leadership and communication approaches with Ayman al-Zawahiri’s. State the topic.

Ayman al-Zawahiri (al Qaeda successor of Osama bin Laden)

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Use these sources below and other outside sources from google scholarly.

Gohel, S. M. (2017) Deciphering Ayman Al-Zawahiri and Al-Qaeda’s strategic and ideological imperatives. Perspectives on Terrorism, 11 (1). pp. 54-67. ISSN 2334-3745. Retrieved from http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/86743/1/Gohel_Deciphering%20Al-Qaeda_2018.pdf

Ayman al-Zawahiri (2018). The Counter Extremist Project. Retrieved from https://www.counterextremism.com/extremists/ayman-al-zawahiri

Sude, B. (2015, September). Assessing Al-Qa`ida Central’s Resilience. Retrieved from https://ctc.usma.edu/assessing-al-qaida-centrals-resilience/

Council on Foreign Relations. (2011, July 14). Profile: Ayman al-Zawahiri. Retrieved from https://www.cfr.org/backgrounder/profile-ayman-al-zawahiri

Assignment Specifics:

A brief and defined/stated introduction, with the topic and your thesis

The body of your report is to be at least FOUR FULL pages in length (not counting title page and references) and is to contain the following:

The main body, containing the “meat” of the paper, where you provide the requested information supported by class readings and with your analysis.

A brief and defined/stated conclusion, summarizing your information clearly and concisely

Make sure you read the instructions carefully and that you focus your paper on answering the assigned questions.

This assignment is a research paper, not an opinion paper, so you need to use scholarly sources to support your thesis.

Use formal academic writing and do not use the first person such as ‘I’ or ‘my’; see the OWL site on academic writing style. Make sure you use APA style in-text parenthetical citations at the end of every sentence where you are quoting another’s ideas (or any information) that is not your own thoughts and words, like this (Bergen, 2015, para 14).

Citations are required for paraphrases as well, but not the page or paragraph number in that case. You are welcome to use supplementary sources to complement the assigned readings based upon your research, but make sure you use only scholarly and credible sources.


Written according to the APA style and format (parenthetical in-text citation formats only
not endnotes or footnotes).

Use Times New Roman 12 point font.

1-inch margins on all sides with no paragraph indentation other than the first line by .5 inches.

Double-space all text.

A respectable number of credible resources used, cited in the paper as in-text citations, and included on the reference page.

Finally, be mindful of excessive direct quotes as the paper should not contain just a string of quotations from sources. “Quotes cannot make up more than 10% of the text of your assignment.” So paraphrase where you can and provide your own analysis and synthesis of your research (direct quotes only when necessary to support your thesis).


APUS AssignmentRubricLower Level

Undergraduate 100-200 Courses

Updated:  June 2012

Full Rubric for Classroom Publication



School of Security and Global Studies Rubric Features

  • Rubric categories are evenly distributed – 20 points per category.
  • Assignment settings equal 100 points for each assignment.
  • Grade book isset for weighted categories (not points).
  • Separate rubrics in 100-200, 300-400, 500-600 level courses for assignments.
  • Standard forum discussion rubric for all levels.


Quick Table for Insertion in Assignments (within Word document)

Criteria Exemplary       16-20 Accomplished 11-15 Developing        6-10 Beginning          0-5 Total
Thesis and Support          






Purpose/Audience – 20 points


The writing fails to meet the minimum requirements of the assignment. It offers little insight into the subject and has serious flaws in logic and omissions in evidence.


The writing meets the minimum requirements of the assignment. It offers insight into the subject through basic logic and the presentation of ideas based on some evidence.


The writing clearly goes beyond the minimum requirements of the assignment. It attempts to engage the reader through originality and presentation of complex ideas.


The writing engages the reader with an original approach to the subject. It may encompass conflicting ideas and inspires the reader to contemplate the relationship of complex ideas.


Thesis and Support – 20 points


The writing may need a more clearly articulated thesis and/or appropriate related subordinate ideas. Fuzzy logic may be evident and adequate supporting evidence is lacking.


The writing has a clear thesis and related subordinate ideas supported by clear thinking and appropriate evidence. Logical arguments may be one-sided or incomplete.


The writing has a clearly articulated thesis supported by appropriate evidence and sound logic. Minor gaps in logic and argument may appear.




The writing has a clearly articulated original thesis and subordinate ideas supported by reliable and relevant evidence based on original research.


Organization – 20 points


The writing is noticeably lacking in organization. There is no clear introduction nor conclusion and ideas are neither carefully nor fully developed. Supporting evidence is clearly lacking.


The writing demonstrates rudimentary organization and logical structure, but ideas may be more fully developed and supported by more appropriate evidence.


The writing is organized logically and flows well. An introduction and conclusion are evident, but transitions may be smoother.


The writing flows smoothly and logically from a well-defined thesis. It contains an appropriate introduction, conclusion, and smooth transitions.


Style – 20 points


The writing lacks clarity and is sometimes confusing. The language chosen is not appropriate to the subject nor the assignment.


The writing is clear but could be expressed in a style more appropriate to the subject. It is jargon-free but may require a more complete explanation of some terms used.



The writing keeps the reader’s attention through a carefully crafted prose style. Language chosen is appropriate to the subject, but may call attention to itself in minor ways.


The writing engages the reader through an original prose style appropriate to the subject. Language is precise.  Sentences are varied but not noticeably so. Active voice is apparent.


Grammar and Mechanics – 20 points


The writing exhibits substantial errors in grammar and style so that the basic ideas are lost.  Sources are overly quoted and not adequately documented or cited.There is no evidence of proofreading, editing, or rewriting.


The writing could benefit from additional proofreading, as some errors impede the flow of the reading. Sources are documented and cited but need to show greater consistency.Additional proofreading would help eliminate errors


The writing may exhibit a few minor errors in grammar or style, but do impair the flow of the reading. Most quoted material is properly documented and cited.


The writing is free of grammatical, proofreading, and stylistic errors. All quoted material is properly documented and cited.Main ideas are not lost in surrounding supporting evidence.

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