The Link Between Mass Shootings and Terrorism
Part of my work is trying to understand why people kill. For years, I’ve studied it and found a resemblance between mass shooters in the United States and many people who become terrorists. In many cases, such as the recent shooting at a community college in Oregon, the killers... Read more
Al Qaeda’s Top Man in Syria Hates Islamic State — and America
It goes without saying that Al Qaeda is a violently anti-American organization, but for Sanafi Al Nasr it’s personal. Sentinel, the monthly newsletter of West Point’s Combating Terrorism Center, has a new and comprehensive profile of Al Nasr, the mysterious Saudi militant who rose to a prominent position within... Read more
China’s Got Its Own War on Terror
The news media has in the last decade focused on conflict-affected Muslim minorities in Chechnya, controlled by Russia; Kashmir, controlled by India; and Mindanao, controlled by the Philippines. But Islamic historical regions elsewhere have received less attention. One such region — known to the Chinese as Xinjiang and its... Read more
Kuwait’s Hidden Terrorism Problem
Dhari Al Jasmi, a Sunni resident of Kuwait City, rechecked his smartphone. Another terrorist organization had bombed another mosque in the Middle East, yet the victims of this bombing looked different from the Libyan and Yemeni casualties who so often appeared on television. “When I saw the bombing on... Read more
The Insurgency in Southern Thailand Is a Total Mystery
The insurgency in Southern Thailand remains an enigma to the Thai government, the international community and many analysts and observers. For one, the Malay Muslim rebels have rarely explained or revealed themselves. This makes their goals, ideologies and leaders befuddle the Royal Thai Army and the Royal Thai Police,... Read more
Turkish Police Have a Bad Habit of Harassing Journalists
Turkish authorities have arrested three Vice reporters — British citizens Jake Hanrahan and Philip Pendlebury along with their Iraqi fixer. They were in Turkey’s Kurdish region covering violent clashes between Turkish security forces and Kurds in the province of Diyabakır. On Aug. 31, police charged the trio with “engaging in terror activity.” Diyabakır Police... Read more
How Does the Government Decide When to Kill a Terrorist?
The White House and Pentagon are less than forthcoming about how they decide to send drones or commandos to kill or capture terrorists. In March 2011, the Defense Intelligence Agency’s Historical Research Branch published a report called “Intelligence and the Challenge of High Value Targets.” The U.S. Air Force’s... Read more
Islamic State Is Becoming an Actual Government
Islamic State is a bunch of slave-running, homicidal rapists and terrorists. But increasingly, it’s also the legitimate government of northwest Iraq and eastern Syria. Laith Alkhouri and Alex Kassirer from West Point’s Combating Terrorism Center explained: While the Islamic State’s barbarity is undeniable, its life force stems from a... Read more
South Carolina Brig Housed Terror Detainees for Many Years
The Pentagon is considering Fort Leavenworth in Kansas and a U.S. Navy brig near Charleston, South Carolina as possible recipients of war-on-terror detainees that the military wants to transfer out of the American prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. U.S. president Barack Obama, a Democrat, is eager to end Gitmo’s... Read more
Save Animals to Beat Terrorists
Illegal trafficking in live animals and wildlife products generates an estimated $10 billion a year in ill-gotten gains and threatens pangolins, rhinos, elephants, apes, big cats and other species with extinction. According to the U.S. State Department, the trade fuels corruption, threatens the rule of law and destabilizes communities... Read more