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Thread: Beyond the frontline: watching ISIS

  1. #201
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    An insightful Frontline special on the Islamic State in Afghanistan. They filmed and interviewed an IS member training Afghan children. The virus continues to spread.

    http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontl...n-afghanistan/

    ISIS in Afghanistan

    17 NOV 15

  2. #202
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Default One day when the war machine is defeated

    Via Kings of War the author, Jill Sergeant asks a hard question:
    how the various parties – local, regional, and global – will move forward when the war machine is defeated.....can we imagine any space for humanity for Iraq’s lost generation swept along by the currents of an abhorrent promise?
    Link:http://kingsofwar.org.uk/2015/11/ccl...iers-of-isis/?

    A recent article from The Nation is cited:
    What I Discovered From Interviewing Imprisoned ISIS Fighters (sub-titled)They’re drawn to the movement for reasons that have little to do with belief in extremist Islam.
    Link:http://www.thenation.com/article/wha...sis-prisoners/

    For economy of effort this is the key passage:
     These boys came of age under the disastrous American occupation after 2003, in the chaotic and violent Arab part of Iraq, ruled by the viciously sectarian Shia government of Nouri al-Maliki. Growing up Sunni Arab was no fun. A later interviewee described his life growing up under American occupation: He couldn’t go out, he didn’t have a life, and he specifically mentioned that he didn’t have girlfriends. An Islamic State fighter’s biggest resentment was the lack of an adolescence. Another of the interviewees was displaced at the critical age of 13, when his family fled to Kirkuk from Diyala province at the height of Iraq’s sectarian civil war. They are children of the occupation, many with missing fathers at crucial periods (through jail, death from execution, or fighting in the insurgency), filled with rage against America and their own government. They are not fueled by the idea of an Islamic caliphate without borders; rather, ISIS is the first group since the crushed Al Qaeda to offer these humiliated and enraged young men a way to defend their dignity, family, and tribe. This is not radicalization to the ISIS way of life, but the promise of a way out of their insecure and undignified lives; the promise of living in pride as Iraqi Sunni Arabs, which is not just a religious identity but cultural, tribal, and land-based, too.
    davidbfpo

  3. #203
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    Just did a new interview for Musings On Iraq. I talked with Kyle Orton about the role of Baathists in the Islamic State and how Saddam's Faith campaign created a generation of Iraqi Islamists that would joint the insurgency. Here's a link.

  4. #204
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    Thanks to a twitter "lurker" who recommends readers that the free, online publication Perspectives on Terrorism has a special issue on ISIS, including a bibliography:http://www.terrorismanalysts.com/pt/.../issue/view/53
    davidbfpo

  5. #205
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    There's some great articles and resources in that issue.

  6. #206
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    Default Military Reviews U.S. Response to ISIS Rise

    Military Reviews U.S. Response to ISIS Rise

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  7. #207
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    Three articles that are worth reading, all were written after Paris:


    1. From Lawfare 'We Were Wrong About ISIS' and the Editor's intro explains:
      For over a decade, the Islamic State and its predecessors focused almost exclusively on Iraq, Syria, and their neighbors. The downing of the Russian airplane over the Sinai Peninsula and especially the recent killing spree in Paris suggest that the Islamic State is now going global. Jennifer Williams, long my Lawfare colleague and now at Vox, explains why I and other terrorism experts may have missed this change.
      Link:https://www.lawfareblog.com/we-were-wrong-about-isis
    2. From Shiraz Maher of ICSR, Kings College 'Why Isis seeks a battle with Western nations - and why it can't be ignored'. Link:http://www.newstatesman.com/world/mi...ant-be-ignored
    3. A long critical commentary in The London Review of Books, worth reading as an alternative narrative. Link:http://www.lrb.co.uk/v37/n23/adam-sh...ing-about-isis
    davidbfpo

  8. #208
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    From Lawfare 'We Were Wrong About ISIS' and the Editor's intro explains:
    I'll read the article, but it makes one wonder how people come to these conclusions to begin with? Perhaps the prevailing myth that politics are local? Perhaps it was just was just hope? It also could be part of our pseudo-intellectual cult in the think tanks, where members pretend to be experts by down playing the threat despite all the evidence that point to anything but a localized revolution.

    ISIL is spread rapidly to Libya, it is clearly in the Sinai, Boku Haram in West Africa (they have spread beyond Nigeria) is aligned with ISIL, ISIL is in Afghanistan (and their influence is growing there), there are also in Yemen. Beyond that we have foreign fighters joining their ranks from around the world, and now that their operation in France and possibly planned operation in Belgium has finally put to bed the rest that these foreign fighters won't bring trouble back to their countries of origin. We need to watch countries like Indonesia carefully since they have hundreds of foreign fighters in Syria. We're seeing claims of ISIL in Bangladesh, but it seems a bit early to state that is a fact, but evidence is mounting.

    Bush was wrong to invade Iraq in my view, but what he did get right after 9/11 is when he said this would be a different kind of war. I think for the most part we appreciate that, but we still don't understand it.

  9. #209
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    Default Childrend of ISIS

    http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/frontline/fi...ldren-of-isis/

    An 11 minute special on the children of ISIS.

    Below is a link to the transcript

    http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/frontline/fi...sis/transcript

    He says he refused to join and was sentenced to a horrifying
    punishment.

    OMAR: They gathered the people, they tied my hand and leg. They put my hand on a wooden block, and cut my hand off with a butcher's knife, then cut off my foot and put them in front of me to see.

    These photos show Omar's actual amputation, and the man, known as "the Bulldozer," who severed his limbs.
    Another lost generation in the making. This reminds me of how the child soldiers in Sierra Leone were coerced into fighting.

  10. #210
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    Cross posting this here. Did analysis of security incidents in Iraq from Jan 2014-Oct 2015. Attacks have been going down in country since start of 2014. IS made big offensive in northern Iraq in winter 2014-15 but that failed. Looks like IS has been concentrating upon consolidating its hold upon areas of Iraq it holds rather than trying to seize new territory. Lots of charts and figures. Here's a link.

  11. #211
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    Two thoughtful academic articles:
    1. Burning the earth: Isis and the threat to Britain; Nearly 14 years on from the start of the so-called war on terror, the global jihad movement is deepening and expanding by Shiraz Maher (Kings ICSR):http://www.newstatesman.com/politics...threat-britain
    2. Why ISIL Will Fail on Its Own; As a movement, it’s dangerous. But as a state, it’s collapsing. Here’s how to make that work for us. BY Eli Berman & Jacob Shapiro:http://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2015/11/why-isil-will-fail-on-its-own-21340
    davidbfpo

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    Default DoD to Deploy ‘Targeting Force’ to Hunt Down ISIS Leaders

    DoD to Deploy ‘Targeting Force’ to Hunt Down ISIS Leaders

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    Default Obama Unleashes Hunter-Killers on ISIS

    Obama Unleashes Hunter-Killers on ISIS

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  14. #214
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    Default Panel Casts Doubt on U.S. Propaganda Efforts Against ISIS

    Panel Casts Doubt on U.S. Propaganda Efforts Against ISIS

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  15. #215
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    Default Obama Warns of ‘New Phase’ in Terror Threat, Vows to Destroy ISIS

    Obama Warns of ‘New Phase’ in Terror Threat, Vows to Destroy ISIS

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  16. #216
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    Default Lessons of the Past Hint at Hurdles in Fight to Stop ISIS

    Lessons of the Past Hint at Hurdles in Fight to Stop ISIS

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  17. #217
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    Default Finding the ISIS Center of Gravity: Why Does It Have to Be So Complicated?

    Finding the ISIS Center of Gravity: Why Does It Have to Be So Complicated?

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  18. #218
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    Default Why Air Power Alone Won’t Beat ISIS

    Why Air Power Alone Won’t Beat ISIS

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  19. #219
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    Default How to Put ISIS on the Run

    How to Put ISIS on the Run

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  20. #220
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    Default ISIS is Not a Terrorist Organization

    ISIS is Not a Terrorist Organization

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