Ashby Henningsen, UMBC: Just over a year has passed since the Bardo Museum terrorist attack in Tunisia last year, and yet the threat of extremist continues to loom over the country. Caught within a destabilized and violent region, Tunisia has struggled to keep their developing democracy safe and secure from radicals. Tunisian politicians, in order […]Read more "Trading Freedom for Security in Tunisia"
Alex Fine, JHU: As the world continues to combat extremism from the likes of ISIS and Boko Haram in locales ranging from Beirut to Brussels, one may be forgiven for not hearing of the Battle of Tipo-Tipo currently raging on Basilan Island in the Philippines. Last Sunday, 18 Filipino soldiers were killed in a day-long […]Read more "Not Just a Mediterranean Problem"
Muhammad Hudhud, JHU: Earlier this month, the United States conducted one of the largest air strikes in its 13-year (and counting) involvement in Somalia. The Pentagon noted that both drones and manned aircraft were used to target an Al-Shabaab training camp in Raso, in the southern half of the coastal country. While the training camp […]Read more "Transparency, Hostility, and Obama: Drone Warfare in Somalia and Beyond"
Matthew Petti, JHU: One of the favorite pieces of scripture of the “Islamic State” (ISIS) is a ḥadīth (prophetic saying or action) on the signs of the Apocalypse. Abū Hureira reported hearing from the Prophet that the Last Day would not occur until a Roman army landed at the town of Dābiq. Today Dābiq is […]Read more "“Istanbul Not Constantinople”: ISIS and the Prophecy of Dābiq"
George Gulino, JHU: ISIS, or rather Daesh, has come back into focus as a chief international security threat since the attacks in Paris on November 13th. Almost simultaneous suicide bombings/hostage killings at the soccer stadium Stade de France, the Bataclan concert hall and a few bars and restaurants claimed the lives of 130 and injured […]Read more "The Situation in Syria is Worse than Ever, and Worse Than You Thought"
Anna Benham, JHU: After the attacks on Paris earlier this November, the American political rhetoric has been loaded and tense. This past week, Republican Presidential candidate Ben Carson referred to refugees as “rabid dogs”, and Governor Bobby Jindal instructed the National Guard to “track” refugees. This forces the United States to re-examine what the words […]Read more "The Facts Behind Refugees"
Dana Ettinger, JHU: President Obama is taking a page out of the Republicans’ playbook: he’s sending troops to Syria to combat the Islamic State (ISIS). The conflict in Syria is, broadly speaking, three-sided: Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad’s regime, those rebelling against the Assad regime (including the Kurdish separatists), and ISIS. Ostensibly, both Assad and the […]Read more "American Special Forces in Syria"
Lorenzo Cico, JHU: After a first month of apparent success, it seems Russian President Vladimir Putin’s military forces have succumbed to the difficulty of deployed operations. Since September 30, Russian air force jets flying from the Latakia air base have been conducting air strikes in support of Syrian government forces. On October 8, Russia warships […]Read more "Russia’s Jets are Breaking Down in Syria – What Now?"
Grant Welby, JHU: In the dark, turbulent and unpredictable fight against ISIS, a bright spot appears on the horizon: the perseverance and inspiring courage of the Kurds. Against overwhelming odds in places like Kobani and Tel Abyad, the Kurds have succeeded where so many others, including the Free Syrian Army, and Iraqi Government, have lost […]Read more "A Snapshot in Time: The Kurdish Struggle and National Ambitions"
Ashby Henningsen, UMBC: For several years, Tunisia has stood as an outlier within the broader Middle East and North Africa. Whereas post-revolutionary violence, ethnic and sectarian divisions, and institutional frailty have plagued many of its neighbors in the wake of the Arab Spring, Tunisia has enjoyed a relatively bloodless and stable transition towards democracy. Yet […]Read more "The Aftermath of Bardo: Searching for Answers, Facing Uncertainty"