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Extreme poverty is the greatest humanitarian crisis of our time and a fundamental contributing factor to 21st century terrorism and insurgency

A lack of choice leads to desperation. Desperate situations cause people to commit desperate acts. Most of the time people commit these acts not out of some misplaced hatred for the West, but out of love for their five-year-old son and three-year-old daughter at home who are starving to death…

The reality is that terrorists and insurgencies cannot function without the support of the communities in which they operate. Studies show that they earn this support by providing social services for their often impoverished constituency. But the services provided by these organizations come at a great cost to the community – including economic oppression and coercion into violent activities – which perpetuates the cycle of extreme poverty

I left my job as a Marine with a vision to help create a world where people living in extreme poverty could have the choice to determine their future.

— excerpts from “Linking Extreme Poverty and Global Terrorism" by Jake Harriman writing in NYTimes.com (Mar. 13, 2012)

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