Using Corpus Linguistics Tools to Analyze a Russian-Language Islamic Extremist Forum
The Internet plays an important role in the continued functioning of extremist and terrorist groups. Studying extremist ideology based on linguistic analysis using methods of corpus and computer linguistics to help supplement and make qualitative analysis more objective is crucial. However, corpus-based linguistic research into the ideology of extremists remains scarce. This is due to a limited access to such texts. The Dark Web Project of the University of Arizona AI Lab that contains gigabytes of texts of private extremist and terrorist forums is a valuable source for corpus-based studies of extremist discourse. The aim of the research is a corpus-based study of Russian-language posts of Caucasian extremists from KavkazChat forum (included on the RF Federal list of extremist materials) where The 2010 Moscow Metro bombings are discussed. WordSmith Tools software package was used to identify most frequent words and word clusters, build concordances, find collocates, etc. A comparative corpus analysis of texts by Islamic extremists and those by common Internet users on the same topic (comments on relevant newsfeeds) allowed us to identify a number of features of Islamic extremist rhetoric.