Analysis & Commentary


9th February 2016 - The Long War Journal

Senior Taliban leader dies of cancer

Bill Roggio

The Taliban has announced the death of Mullah Hassan Rahmani, a member of its top leadership council who until recently opposed the appointment of Mullah Akhtar Mohammad Mansour as the jihadist group’s new emir.

6th February 2016 - The Long War Journal

Jihadists reinforce other rebels during key battle in Aleppo province

Thomas Joscelyn

Al Nusrah Front, al Qaeda’s official branch in Syria, sent a massive convoy of fighters to the Aleppo province in late January. The jihadists’ redeployment was promoted in a short video posted on Twitter.

5th February 2016 - The Long War Journal

Hezbollah tries to shift attention to the West Bank

David Daoud

Israeli security forces announced last week their dismantling of a five-man terror cell from the West Bank city of Tulkarem, jihadists who were recruited by Hezbollah’s secretive Unit 133. The men were instructed to gather intelligence information on Israel Defense Forces (IDF) training...

5th February 2016 - The Long War Journal

Shabaab regains ground in southern Somalia

Bill Roggio

Shabaab, al Qaeda’s official branch in East Africa, has retaken control several towns in southern Somalia after the withdrawal of African Union and government forces.

4th February 2016 - The Long War Journal

Senior AQAP commander reportedly killed in US drone strike in Yemen

Bill Roggio, Thomas Joscelyn

A senior al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) leader may have been killed in a US drone strike that was launched in southern Yemen last night. Several fighters were reportedly killed and jihadists on social media claim that one of them was Jalal al Bala’idi, a prominent AQAP field...

4th February 2016 - Tablet Magazine

America Makes a U-Turn in the Middle East

Tony Badran

The administration of President Barack Obama seldom missed an opportunity to insist that the alternative to the Iran nuclear deal was a war with Iran, a prospect that has now presumably been kicked further down the road. Middle Easterners are not so lucky: They get to fight their wars with...

4th February 2016 - Forbes

What Makes A Great President?

Michael Ledeen

We moved to Washington from Rome early in 1977, and I worked at CSIS, then home to many luminaries of the Republican Establishment. There was a lot of talk about Ronald Reagan, running for the Republican presidential nomination, and most of that talk was anything but flattering.

3rd February 2016 - The Long War Journal

AQAP provides social services, implements sharia while advancing in southern Yemen

Thomas Joscelyn

Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) took control of Azzan, a town in Yemen’s southeastern Shabwa province, earlier this week. The jihadists reportedly faced no resistance as they settled in. Citing local residents, Xinhua reported that “many checkpoints were established in Azzan and...

3rd February 2016 - FDD Policy Brief

Nuclear Deal Paves Way for Iran-Russia Ballistic Missile Cooperation

Boris Zilberman

Since the start of talks over Iran’s nuclear program over two years ago, Russia and Iran have moved towards deepening economic and strategic ties in anticipation of Tehran’s reintegration into the global economy.

3rd February 2016 - CapX

US picks sides in EU anti-Israel trade war

Benjamin Weinthal

When a European Union policy decision can bring together two senators as ideologically diverse as Kirsten Gillibrand (D-New York) and Ted Cruz (R-Texas), the issue must be egregious. And the EU initiative targeting Israeli exports fits the bill. Gillibrand and Cruz took the lead along with a...

3rd February 2016 - The Long War Journal

US strikes Pakistani Taliban faction in eastern Afghanistan

Bill Roggio

The US is reported to have killed 18 Taliban fighters from Pakistan in an airstrike last night in an eastern Afghanistan area known to serve as a safe haven for several terrorist groups. The Taliban fighters who were killed are believed to belong to a group led by Sajna Mehsud, an al...

3rd February 2016 - The Wall Street Journal Europe

Flying in the Face of U.S. Sanctions

Emanuele Ottolenghi

Mahan Air is an Iranian passenger airline that also happens to be a favorite with the country’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps. The IRGC uses Mahan planes to ferry weapons and personnel to aid the Syrian regime. That’s according to the U.S. government, which has repeatedly committed...

3rd February 2016 - FDD Press

Nuclear Deal: Impact on Iran-Turkey Economic Relations

Jonathan Schanzer

The recent implementation of the Iran nuclear deal (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA) will have a profound impact on the Middle East. From heightened tensions between Iran and Saudi Arabia to Iran’s ability to finance terrorist proxies with sanctions relief, there are many...

3rd February 2016 - The Wall Street Journal

The Revolution Devours Its Own

Reuel Marc Gerecht

Laura Secor surprised me. I had expected to read yet another journalist’s account of an Iran where “reformists,” though bruised and battered, remain hopeful and allied to “moderate” president Hassan Rouhani. An Iran in which Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif actually means what...

3rd February 2016 - The Washington Times

The Islamist wears Dolce & Gabbana

Clifford D. May

In the “culture” section of the venerable Atlantic magazine last month, there was a news item I wouldn’t want you to miss: “The Italian fashion house Dolce & Gabbana has just launched a line of hijabs (headscarves) and abayas (cloaks) in the label’s signature playful, theatrical...

2nd February 2016 - The Long War Journal

Ansar al Sharia Libya relies on al Qaeda ideologues to guide followers

Thomas Joscelyn

Jihadist groups around the globe denounced Saudi Arabia’s execution of more than 40 men in early January.

1st February 2016 - The Long War Journal

Senior al Qaeda ‘hidden commander’ thought killed by US in 2014

Bill Roggio

A senior al Qaeda leader wanted by the US, who has served on the organization’s military committee, is said to have been killed in a US airstrike along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border in August 2014.

29th January 2016 - The Long War Journal

Al Nusrah Front chief proposed rebel unity plan

Thomas Joscelyn

The Al Nusrah Front, al Qaeda’s official branch in Syria, has discussed a possible merger with some of its closest allies, according to well-connected jihadists online.

28th January 2016 - Business Insider

France just formally welcomed the Iranian president — and his checkbook

Saeed Ghasseminejad

Hassan Rouhani visited Paris on Thursday, part of the first European visit by an Iranian president in 16 years. The trip, which follows Rouhani’s visit to Rome earlier in the week, is aimed at boosting Tehran’s trade with Europe after years of sanctions.

28th January 2016 - The Long War Journal

Islamic State joins others in training children for jihad in Afghanistan

Bill Roggio

The Islamic State’s branch in the Afghanistan-Pakistan region, called Wilayat Khorasan or Khorasan “province, is training children to wage jihad. It is unclear where the children’s training center is located, but it is likely situated in Afghanistan’s eastern province of Nangarhar....

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