For a brief moment, the Islamic State was a massive success.
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Iraq’s Harsh Approach to Punishing Islamic State ‘Collaborators’ Stands to Have Counterproductive Consequences
“[The Islamic State]’s ideology is so dangerous that we cannot afford to show any leniency” —an Iraqi judge interviewed in Mosul (Dec. 13, 2017)
Editor’s Note: The Islamic State’s territorial expansion and burgeoning online presence seemed to rise together. As the group lost territory, however, its online presence evolved. Jade Parker and Charlie Winter, two leading analysts of the Islamic State’s propaganda machine, describe how the group’s propaganda production has changed in the post-Caliphate era and how we can prepare for the next round.
Editor’s Note: Of the many horrible things the Islamic State has done, one of the worst is its indoctrination of children and use of them in its gruesome deeds. The children are both victims and perpetrators. Governments have a responsibility to care for them yet must also guard against possible threats they may pose. Robin Simcox of the Heritage Foundation lays out the challenges ahead for several European states, as well as how they might confront this knotty problem.
In the post-September 11 era, the United States has suffered fewer terrorist attacks than many observers expected, even as the threat of the Islamic State looms. The relative safety of the U.S. homeland is in part due to the United States’ externalization of its counterterrorism operations: U.S. partners in the Middle East collect intelligence on the Islamic State, disrupt its fighters and operatives, host drone and air assets, and bomb the group in coordination with U.S. forces.
Editor's note: This post is adapted from testimony given by the author before the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations on June 8. Video of the hearing is available here.
In the midst of all the U.S. domestic and Trump coverage, it’s worth noting a front-page Wall Street Journal story from ten days ago on the French government targeting French citizens fighting for ISIS in Iraq.
At an April 27 hearing at the House Foreign Affairs Committee on policy options in Syria titled “After the Missile Strikes,” Charles Lister, a Senior Fellow at the Middle East Institute, cautioned the dais on the need to “not rush Raqqa.” On May 9, the Pentagon announced that indeed U.S. President Donald Trump intends to do just that.
The latest atrocity claimed by the Islamic State—the killing of at least 22 people, many of them children, at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester—illustrates how the terrorism threat has evolved. The United Kingdom, after all, is no stranger to terrorism.
As several colleagues noted last week, Representative Adam Schiff has revived his effort to get Congress to replace the 2001 and 2002 AUMFs with a new “Consolidated AUMF” that would explicitly name the Islamic State (he had a similar bill in the last Congress, which Jack endorsed here). What follows below is a section-by-section analysis of H.J. Res.