Abu Nidal Organization (ANO)

Abu Nidal Organization (ANO) is identified by the United States Department of State as an international terrorist organization led by Sabri al-Banna. Split from the Palestine Liberation Army (PLO) in 1974, the ANO is comprised of various functional committees, including political, military, and financial committees.

Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG)

The Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) is the most violent of the Islamic separatist groups operating in the southern Philippines. Some ASG leaders have studied or worked in the Middle East and reportedly fought in Afghanistan during the Soviet war.


The Abwehr was the German military intelligence organization from 1866 to 1944. The organization predates the emergence of Germany itself, and was founded to gather intelligence information for the Prussian government during a war with neighboring Austria.

ADFGX Cipher

The ADFGX cipher, sometimes referred to as the ADFGVX cipher, is one of the most famous codes in the entire history of cryptography. Introduced by the Germans in World War I, it is based on an ancient idea of associating letters with positions on a grid.


Aflatoxins belong to a group of toxins called mycotoxins, which are derived from fungi. In particular, aflatoxins are produced by the soil-born molds Aspergillus flavus and Aspergillus parasiticus that grow on the seeds and plants.

Africa, Modern U.S. Security Policy and Interventions

United States policy in Africa since World War II has generally been non-interventionist, in the sense that U.S. troops have seldom actually engaged in military or quasi-military activities on the African continent.

Agent Orange

Agent Orange is a defoliant, that is, a chemical that kills plants and causes the leaves to fall off the dying plants. The name was a code devised by the United States military during the development of the chemical mixture.

Air and Water Purification, Security Issues

Both water and air are particularly vulnerable to contamination by some bacteria and protozoa, and by their toxic products.

Air Force Intelligence, United States

The intelligence-gathering efforts of the U.S. Air Force long predate its establishment as a separate military service in 1947.

Air Force Office of Special Investigations, United States

The Air Force Office of Special Investigations (AFOSI) is the principal investigative service of the United States Air Force. Established in 1948, AFOSI is charged with investigating and preventing criminal activities by United States Air Force personnel, as well as by individuals outside the air force whose actions threaten the service's equipment, personnel, activities, or security.

Air Marshals, United States

United States air marshals are the first police force of the federal government created solely to protect against terrorism. Though they existed in limited numbers prior to the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, the signing of the Aviation and Transportation Security Act (ATSA) on November 19 of the same year completely changed the nature of the air marshal program.

Air Plume and Chemical Analysis

An air plume is a layer of warm air that immediately surrounds a person's body. It has also been referred to as a human thermal plume.

Aircraft Carrier

Sometimes characterized as "floating cities," aircraft carriers are a potent symbol of America's strength as a superpower. Although nations ranging from the United Kingdom and Russia to Peru and Thailand have their light carrier and helicopter carriers, the large carriers of the United States are without parallel in ability and firepower.

Airline Security

Following the September 11 terrorist attacks on the United States, airline and airport security reform was a key aspect of international anti-terrorist efforts. Although some nations, such as Great Britain and Israel, had created strong passenger and luggage screening protocols before 2001, there were few international standards for airport security.

Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade

The al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade comprises an unknown number of small cells of Fatah-affiliated activists that emerged at the outset of the current intifadah to attack Israeli targets. It aims to drive the Israeli military and settlers from the West Bank, Gaza Strip, and Jerusalem and to establish a Palestinian state.

Alex Boncayao Brigade (ABB)

The Alex Boncayao Brigade (ABB), the breakaway urban hit squad of the Communist Party of the Philippines New People's Army, was formed in the mid-1980s. The ABB was added to the Terrorist Exclusion list in December 2001.

Al-Gama'A Al-Islamiyya (Islamic Group, IG)

Al-Gama'a al-Islamiyya (Islamic Group, IG) is Egypt's largest militant group, active since the late 1970s, and appears to be loosely organized. IG has an external wing with supporters in several countries worldwide.

Al-Ittihad Al-Islami (AIAI)

Al-Ittihad al-Islami (AIAI) also operates as, or is known as, the Islamic Union.

Al-Jama'A Al-Islamiyyah Al-Muqatilah Bi-Libya

Al-Jama'a al-Islamiyyah al-Muqatilah bi-Libya also operates as, or is known as, the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group, Fighting Islamic Group, Libyan Fighting Group, and/or Libyan Islamic Group.


Al-Jihad (also known as Egyptian Islamic Jihad, Jihad Group, and Islamic Jihad) is an Egyptian Islamic extremist group active since the late 1970s. Al-Jihad merged with Osama Bin Ladin's al-Qaida organization in June, 2001, but may retain some capability to conduct independent operations.

Allied Democratic Forces (ADF)

The Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) is a diverse coalition of a few hundred fighters from the National Army for the Liberation of Uganda (NALU), Islamists from the Salaf Tabliq group, Hutu militiamen, and fighters from ousted regimes in Congo. The conglomeration of fighters formed in 1995 in opposition to the government of Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni.

Al-Qaeda (Also Known as Al-Qaida)

Responsible for the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks upon the United States, Al-Qaeda (also known as Al-Qaida) was established by Osama bin Ladin (also spelled Usama Bin Ladin or Osama bin Laden) in the late 1980s to bring together Arabs who fought in Afghanistan against the Soviet Union. Al-Qaeda helped finance, recruit, transport, and train Sunni Islamic extremists for the Afghan resistance.

Americas, Modern U.S. Security Policy and Interventions

In 1823, the Monroe Doctrine provided a framework for United States security policy in the Americas by declaring the Western Hemisphere under a U.S. "sphere of influence".

Ames (Aldrich H.) Espionage Case

A 31-year veteran of the Central Intelligence Agency, Aldrich "Rick" Hazen Ames became famous in 1994 as the highest paid "mole" (double agent) in United States history. Ames made millions of (US) dollars for information he provided to the Soviet KGB, and later Russian intelligence, while a mid-level employee of the CIA.


In the 1990s, the use of biological weapons by terrorists became a serious threat to the security of countries around the globe, and the United States in particular. During the Gulf War of 1990 to 1991, and in subsequent United Nations inspection efforts, the government of Iraq's development of advanced anthrax based bioweapons was revealed.

Anthrax, Terrorist Use as a Biological Weapon

During the past two decades, the potential use of biological weapons by terrorist groups has received a great deal of attention, particularly in the United States. The existence of an anthrax bioweapon development campaign by the government of Iraq was revealed during the Persian Gulf War from 1990 to 1991.

Anthrax Vaccine

Anthrax is an infection that is caused by the bacterium Bacillus anthracis.

Anthrax Weaponization

The lethality of inhalation anthrax, combined with the ability of the lethal payload to be delivered in the spore form, has made anthrax an attractive candidate for weaponization. In addition, a vaccine to anthrax does exist, but is not yet widely available.

Antiballistic Missile Treaty

The Antiballistic Missile (ABM) Treaty was signed by the United States and the Soviet Union (U.S.S.R.) in 1972. The treaty was one of two treaties produced by the first series of Strategic Arms Limitation Talks (SALT I) between the two countries; the other was an interim agreement limiting offensive nuclear weapons.


The security and stability of a country depends in part on the health of its citizens. One of the factors that influence the health of people is infectious disease (a disease that can be spread from person to person or from another living being to a human).