Terrorism

January 12, 2017
Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb’s (AQIM) propensity for kidnapping was back on display earlier this week, as al Qaeda’s North African branch released a video of Swiss Christian missionary Beatrice Stockly, who has been held captive by the terrorist group for more than a year.
January 8, 2017
Abraham Lincoln, America’s 16th president, subscribed to the philosophy, “Keep your friends close and your enemies closer,” a line attributed to Sun Tzu, the famous sixth-century Chinese military strategist. Mr.
December 1, 2016
The Cipher Brief sat down with former U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan Ronald Neumann to discuss some of the challenges that the incoming Trump Administration will face in Afghanistan and the steps the U.S. government can take to reaffirm its commitment to stability in Afghanistan.
December 1, 2016
With the Trump Administration set to take office next month, The Cipher Brief spoke with Robert Grenier, former CIA Chief of Station in Pakistan and Afghanistan and author of the book, “88 Days to Kandahar,” to discuss ways for the U.S.
December 1, 2016
President-elect Donald Trump has repeatedly said that fighting Islamic extremism is one of his administration's top priorities.
November 25, 2016
There has been a downward trend in large-scale warfare on the African continent since the number of wars peaked in the mid 1990s. However, new forms of violence are now replacing mass warfare in many of America’s key African allies.
September 27, 2016
Over the last several years, China has learned that its borders and people are not immune to the threat of terrorism.
September 27, 2016
On September 10th in the restive Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (XUAR) in northwest China, as many as 10 people were killed or injured when police investigated the house of suspected terrorists.
September 15, 2016
In the aftermath of 9/11, every major security, law enforcement, and intelligence organization initiated changes to address the looming terrorist threat. None made more profound changes to its intelligence structure, operations, and culture than the New York City Police Department (NYPD).
September 8, 2016
In August, U.S. President Barack Obama reassured the Pentagon that the Islamic State will “inevitably be defeated.” U.S.
July 28, 2016
The threat of terrorism in West Africa appears to be growing, creating concerns about whether it is safe to do business there.
July 26, 2016
The terrorist attack at Holey Bakery in Dhaka earlier this month deviated in important ways from the previous trend of assassination-style attacks against specific individuals in Bangladesh.
July 26, 2016
Earlier this month, after ISIS claimed responsibility for a brazen and bloody assault on a café in Dhaka, Bangladesh, analysts pointed to the attack as more proof of the group’s geographical
July 26, 2016
The recent attack at the Holey Artisan Bakery in Dhaka, Bangladesh where 20 people were brutally murdered finally brought international attention to a disturbing trend in one of the world’s largest Muslim countries.
July 20, 2016
On Thursday evening, Mohamed Lahouaiej Bouhlel drove for more than a mile through a crowd of people celebrating France’s independence day on the Promenade des Anglais in Nice, killing at least 84 and injuring more than 200.
July 17, 2016
Whether ISIS had any connection with the terrorist attack in Nice, it really “doesn’t matter,” former CIA case officer and Soufan Group Director of Special Projects Patrick Skinner told The Cipher Brief in an interview.    We talked to Skinner about ISIS’ messaging and the difficulty the West
July 17, 2016
The Cipher Brief sat down with Former Director of Analysis at the NYPD, Mitch Silber, to discuss the implications of Thursday’s terrorist attack in Nice, France.
July 17, 2016
While details continue to emerge about Thursday’s terrorist attack in Nice, France, one thing remains clear: regardless of whether ISIS orchestrated the attack, inspired it, or had no connection to it whatsoever, the organization’s “prestige” among its supporters continues to rise after each terr
July 15, 2016
A slightly different version of this article appeared recently in the Washington Times.  General Hayden has requested that we reprint it in The Cipher Brief following Thursday’s h
July 14, 2016
The Cipher Brief sat down with Matt Levitt, former Deputy Assistant Secretary for Intelligence and Analysis at the Treasury Department, to discuss Hezbollah’s roles in Lebanon, Syria and as a proxy for Iran.
July 14, 2016
Tehran likes to style the alliance between itself, Hezbollah, and the Assad regime in Syria as the core of an “Axis of Resistance.” The name tries to evoke the strength of will to confront, if not overthrow, foreign occupiers and oppressors—that is Israel and the United States—by Iran and its reg
July 14, 2016
Designated by the United States as a terrorist group in 1997, Hezbollah is a Shia extremist organization and political party based in Lebanon that wears many faces.
July 11, 2016
Whoever the American people elect to be our next president in November, she or he will inherit numerous problems, including terrorism, the hollowing out of nation states by narcotics traffickers, and instability in the Middle East.  All of these problems have at least one thing in common.  They a
July 5, 2016
In the years since 9/11, the FBI has refocused its efforts beyond law enforcement to include, and even prioritize, intelligence gathering and counterterrorism operations.  As the United States’ official domestic security agency, the FBI’s responsibilities have become quite expansive.
July 5, 2016
After the San Bernardino terrorist attack there were the usual cries “to do something” to better protect the nation.
July 5, 2016
When the Cipher Brief asked me to write an article assessing how well the FBI has done since 9/11 in protecting our country from terrorism threats and whether there was a need for a separate domestic intelligence agency, I agreed without hesitation.
July 1, 2016
After Orlando (and now Istanbul on top of San Bernardino and Paris and Brussels), will we ever feel safe again?  Why can't our governments protect us from these senseless atrocities? 
June 30, 2016
Tuesday evening’s terrorist attack at the Ataturk Airport in Istanbul may have severe implications for Turkey moving forward.
June 30, 2016
The coordinated terrorist attack at the international airport in Istanbul on Tuesday is the latest in a rash of deadly attacks that have struck Turkey in the past 18 months.
June 30, 2016
The Cipher Brief spoke with Soner Cagaptay, Director of the Turkish Research Program at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, to discuss the dramatic implications of Tuesday’s terrorist attack at Istanbul’s Ataturk Airport.
June 24, 2016
Those who use radical and extremist methods to achieve their political goals employ the most horrifying and inhumane ways to kill, terrorize, and punish people, and do so with a high level of resilience and transformative abilities.
June 24, 2016
Bosnia and Kosovo are two of the biggest exporters of jihadists joining the Islamic State (ISIS) and al-Nusra Front (al-Qaeda’s affiliate in Syria) from the Balkans.
June 24, 2016
Every second year is an election year in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
June 23, 2016
On June 6, five Jordanians were killed during an assault on a General Intelligence complex twelve miles north of Amman. The incident was Jordan’s largest terrorist attack in more than a decade.
June 23, 2016
Despite a recent wave of terrorist attacks in northern Jordan, the country’s government remains strong.
June 23, 2016
Often hailed as an island of stability amidst a region of chaos, Jordan’s security remains an issue of paramount importance for the United States. Jordan’s close cooperation with Washington has proven vital to U.S.
June 2, 2016
Islamic militant group Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis pledged allegiance to the Islamic State (also known as ISIS or ISIL) in November 2014, after a deadly attack on Egyptian security forces in the Sinai Peninsula.
June 2, 2016
The U.S. government has continued providing military support to Egypt despite the 2013 military coup that overthrew then-president Mohamed Morsi. Moreover, the U.S.
June 2, 2016
The U.S. and Egypt remain allies  although relations have been strained since the 2011 Egyptian revolution, which resulted in the ousting of then-President Hosni Mubarak.
May 24, 2016
On Thursday, May 19, EgyptAir flight 804 crashed over the Mediterranean Sea, killing all 66 people aboard.  Although terrorism is on the list of possible culprits, the cause of the crash is still under investigation. But the flight joins a list of similar tragedies that have struck since 2014.
May 24, 2016
Commercial aviation is an industry in which safety and security are paramount. However, as with other critical infrastructure, consumer demand has brought the systems that run the aviation industry into greater contact with the Internet – and created more opportunities for cyber attack.
May 24, 2016
Today, commercial aviation is growing at a rapid rate.  Unfortunately, commercial aviation is also the primary target of several terrorist groups and other malicious actors around the world.  Since the late 20th century, commercial aviation has been attacked from a variety of threat ve
May 1, 2016
At 11:00 AM, five years ago Monday, sailors on the USS Carl Vinson watched the shrouded body of Osama bin Laden slide into the North Arabian Sea.
May 1, 2016
Five years ago, U.S. special operations forces killed Osama bin Laden in a raid on his hiding place in Abbottabad, Pakistan.
May 1, 2016
In March 2016, Pentagon officials announced that U.S. forces had killed Abdul Rahman Mustafa al-Qaduli and several other senior Islamic State leaders in Syria.
April 27, 2016
An emerging nexus between terror and crime in Europe needs to be addressed with an even stronger nexus between law enforcement, the intelligence community, and the financial industry. The crime-terror nexus is not a new phenomenon.
April 27, 2016
In 2012, the European Parliament commissioned and published a study entitled: “Europe’s Crime-Terror Nexus: Links between terrorist and organised crime groups in the European Union.
April 27, 2016
Terrorism and crime have always been closely linked and the dividing line between them blurred.     For terrorist groups, criminality can be an end in itself.
April 20, 2016
As the Taliban causes havoc on the battlefield and with terrorist attacks, The Cipher Brief asked Daniel Markey, a former State Department official and senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations to weigh in on the outlook for Afghanistan.   Markey says the Taliban’s car bombing in Kabu
April 15, 2016
When Tashfeen Malik and Syed Farook killed 14 people at a holiday office party in San Bernardino, California, the detail that stood out the most is that the perpetrators were a man and a woman, and that Tashfeen was not just a woman but a mother.  Indeed, that the couple had dropped off

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