It seems that every day you hear of some psycho suicide bomber in Iraq or someplace in the Middle East blowing themselves up in the name of freedom; whose victims are more often than not innocent civilians. This begs the question – Is suicide bombing an effective way to wage a war? (Does Sun Tzu mention it?) Like most blog entries, I haven’t bothered to do any empirical research, but I’m going to make a reasonable guess that the average kill ratio of a suicide bomber is around 4 to 1. This of course means that in order for the extremists to win, they must have a significant population advantage and higher fertility rate over their enemy. Sure, there may be no shortage of psycho Jihadists wondering around, but even at the September 11 kill ratios or 160 to 1, you would still need to get an army of around 2 million suicide bombers past customs to destroy the United States. Actually, law of diminishing returns says that you’ll probably need significantly more than 2 million. Their demographic isn’t very helpful either considering that most bombers are childless men aged between 16 and 25. Perhaps they could try recruiting some women over childbearing age, although they may not be as easily persuaded by the whole 76 virgins in heaven thing.
Long live the suicide bombers!