Since the failed attempt by a young Nigerian to blow-up an airplane in Detroit, I have been trying to get an understanding of what is common on such terrorists and would-be-terrorists? We know about what motivates them to get into the field (my book on Terrorism, available at Amazon.com has provided ample of analysis and evidences on that subject), but rarely did we study about the particular background they come from. As noted by Newsweek editor Fareed Zakaria these guys are not necessarily from poor families, which usually is the case or at least was believed to be so by many experts. We also noticed that terrorism even uses mentally handicapped people as its time bombers who would explode themselves or be remotely exploded by an agent.
As I have maintained all along suicide of any kind is haram in Islam. It is also the opinion of all scholars in Islam. Well, there are some recent exceptions though on this consensus of our ulama from some people who try to portray themselves as experts on such matters. But they are not and remain a very small minority. They are not obscure though since the western media and their agents in the east have highlighted their absurd views as if they conform to the majority opinion. No, they don't.
My years of research into the published information concerning personal lives of many terrorists makes me to conclude that they mostly come from broken families. Most of them missed a father-like figure who was needed as they grew up from being a child to an adult being. This negligence within the immediate family surroundings created within them a sense of being liked or approved by others, even taking on risky businesses which others won't. Psychologically speaking, they are, therefore, more emotional than most other children having a normal upbringing in the family. With a little dose of an ideology or a cause from a passionate preacher or leader and suffering of a people that they cared for these individuals can be more easily recruited to become foot-soldiers of terrorism.
(See my book: Democracy, Politics and Terrorism - America's Quest for Security in the Age of Insecurity, available in the Amazon.com to get a comprehensive understanding of the subject.)