Be Very Skeptical—A Lot of Your Open-Source Intel Is Fake
Soon after the chemical weapons attack on residents of Ghouta, Syria in August 2013, analysts, journalists and policymakers scrambled to understand who was responsible. The prospect of American intervention hinged in part on what they discovered. U.K.-based Eliot Higgins had made a name for himself among reporters and conflict... Read more
Iran Has a Dogfighting Drone
It’s Sacred Defense week in Iran and that means two things. First, it’s the solemn anniversary of the 1980 Iraqi invasion and the bloody, savage eight-year war that followed. Second, it’s that special time of year when Iran’s Revolutionary Guards Corps rolls out its latest and purportedly greatest weapons—like... Read more
Iran’s Awesomely Bad ‘Top Gun’ Knockoff
It’s an action thriller about an F-14 fighter pilot and volleyball ace who gets tapped for special training with the best of his peers. Soon he’s tangling with bad guys over the Middle East in the 1980s. Top Gun? Not quite. It’s Passion of Flight, Iran’s awesomely-bad, ahistorical 2012... Read more
Like It or Not, Iran Is a Drone Power
America isn’t the only country that deploys drones to spy on its enemies. In the skies over Syria’s bloody civil war, above Iraq’s jihadist insurgency and across a number of regional conflicts, Iran’s drones are becoming an increasingly common sight. Ever since the Iran-Iraq war in the 1980s, Iran... Read more
Free Speech Gets Tricky When ISIS Shows Up
The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria militant group has been wrestling with major social media companies in an attempt to keep its hateful message online. Sites such as Twitter shut down ISIS wherever they can—so increasingly, the militants’ propaganda is also turning up downstream on smaller, alternative social... Read more
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