25 Most Feared Guerrilla Groups Ever

Driven by ideology and a desire for revolution people throughout history have often banded together in pursuit of lofty and noble goals. Although violence is oftentimes a necessary evil, every once in a while the goals being fought for fall somewhere between less-than-lofty and downright despicable. When this happens the so-called guerrillas doing the fighting tend to resort to some rather horrendous tactics in an attempt to leverage fear and terror. These are the 25 most feared guerrilla groups ever.

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Jemaah Islamiah


An Asian militant Islamic terrorist organization, which means “Islamic Congregation,” this group has been dedicated to establishing a Daulah Islamiyah or a regional Islamic caliphate in Southeast Asia. Linked to other terrorist organizations such as al-Qaeda and the Taliban, the Islamic Liberation Front, and Jamah Ansharut Tauhid; it is a trans-national organization with cells in the Philippines, Thailand, Malaysia, and Singapore. Besides the 2002 Bali bombings, the group was also behind the 2003 JW Marriot hotel bombing and the 2004 Australian embassy attack, both in Jakarta, Indonesia. The group has an active presence in Indonesia where it publicly maintained a website as of January 2013.


Túpac Amaru Revolutionary Movement


Named after Túpac Amaru II, an 18th century revolutionary leader; the Tupamaros was a Marxist revolutionary group that was active in Peru from the early 1980s to 1997. One of the main actors in the armed internal conflict in Peru, it was led by Victor Polay Campos or ‘comrade Rolando’ until his incarceration, and later by Nestor Cerpa Cartolini or ‘comrade Evaristo’ until his death in 1997. It was considered by the Peruvian government to be a terrorist organization and was only removed from the US List of Foreign Terrorist Organizations on October 5, 2001.


Armed Islamic Group of Algeria


An Islamic organization that wants to overthrow the Algerian government, they are known for conducting violent campaigns of civilian massacres, sometimes wiping out entire villages between the years of 1992 and 1998. The group adopted violent strategies in 1992 after the military government voided the victory of the Islamic Salvation Front. The group has also killed more than 100 men and women expatriates through bombings, 


Khmer Rouge


The followers of the Communist Party of Kampuchea in Cambodia, it was formed in 1968 as a derivative of the Vietnam People’s Army from North Vietnam. The ruling party from 1975 to 1979 led by Pol Pot, its social engineering policies led to widespread famine and the Cambodian genocide, where arbitrary executions and torture were carried out by its cadres that included purges of its own ranks against perceived subversive elements.


The Japanese Red Army


A communist militant group founded by Fusako Shigenobu in 1971 in Lebanon; the group’s goals were to overthrow the Japanese government and monarchy and start a world revolution. It has very close ties to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), which provides them with financing, weaponry and training. Some of the group’s infamous activities include the Lod airport massacre that killed 26 people and injured 80 others; hijacking of Japan airlines, and the Laju incident in Singapore where they attacked a Shell facility and took 5 people as hostages.

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