Terrorism in Western Europe Used to Be Much Worse

ISIS is scary, but the terror groups of the ’70s and ’80s were much deadlier.

Soldiers patrol the street in downtown Brussels.Ye Pingfan/Xinhua/ZUMA


Following the Paris attacks, and now the Brussels bombings, the so-called Islamic State has been described as a terrorist organization unlike any seen in recent history. This isn’t a new idea: Back in 2014 former defense secretary Chuck Hagel said that ISIS “is beyond anything that we’ve seen.” 

Yet even with the threat of terrorist attacks from homegrown and ISIS-linked jihadists, the streets of Western Europe are safer now than in the not-too-distant past, when terror groups ranging from the IRA to Basque separatists killed hundreds. After the ISIS attacks that struck Paris in November 2015, killing 130 people, the statistics portal Statista created this chart for Huffington Post showing the number of victims claimed by terrorist attacks in Western Europe since 1970.

Infographic: Victims Of Terrorist Attacks In Western Europe | Statista