Special Report: Terror Rising in Bangladesh

Today, Ansar al-Islam, the Bangladesh division of al-Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent (AQIS), claimed responsibility for the killing of LGBT magazine editor Xulhaz Mannan and his associate in Dhaka. The message comes only three days after the Islamic State’s (IS) claim for the April 23 murder of Rezaul Karim Siddique, an English professor at Rajshahi University, whom attackers killed with machetes. Only two weeks earlier, on April 8, AQIS claimed credit for the killing of blogger Nazimuddin Samad, an act which the group intended "to teach a lesson to the blasphemers."

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Trump, Clinton, and Jihadi Videos

Jihadists’ use of presidential candidate Donald Trump’s statements regarding Muslims has been a hot topic in recent media discussions. On December 19, 2015, Hillary Clinton asserted that the Islamic State (IS) was “going to people showing videos of Donald Trump insulting Islam and Muslims in order to recruit more radical jihadists.” Jennifer Palmieri, Clinton’s Director of Communications, subsequently acknowledged that the campaign was unaware of such a video, stating, “She didn’t have a particular video in mind, but he is being used in social media.” Trump gloated in the gaffe.

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2015 Retrospective: How the Fall of the IMU Reveals the Limits of IS’ Expansion

The 2015 fall of the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU), a Central Asian jihadi movement that has long fought alongside the Taliban in Afghanistan and Pakistan, highlights the impact of two fundamental shifts in the jihadi landscape during 2015. Mobilized by the Afghan Taliban’s two-year-long deception over the death of the Taliban’s enigmatic and magnetic former leader, Mullah Omar, the IMU responded to the Islamic State’s (IS) attempts to create a foothold in Afghanistan.

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IS Media Comments on San Bernardino Show Confusion

Two days after the attack in San Bernardino, a statement from an Islamic State (IS)-linked media group broke what had been a relatively quiet response from the jihadist community. The message, released on December 4, 2015 by the ‘Amaq News Agency, stated of the attackers, Syed Farouk and Tashfeen Malik:

The two attackers shot inside the center, causing the killing of 14 people and the wounding of 17 others, and fled, before being killed later after a gunfire exchange with American police, who chased them for several hours.

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IS Shifts Propaganda Archive to the Dark Web

At 2:05 PM on November 15, two days after the Paris attacks, a Telegram channel disseminating Islamic State (IS) propaganda posted a message discussing the “Isdarat [Releases]” website, which archives IS propaganda and releases from other IS-affiliated groups. The message shared links to a Tor hidden service with a “.onion” address, more commonly known as a website on the “dark web,” for the Isdarat outlet.

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The Paris Attacks: Classic Jihadi Principals with Modern Jihadi Capabilities

The Islamic State’s (IS) coordinated terror attack staged throughout Paris on the evening of November 13, 2015—Europe’s most deadly urban terror attack in over a decade—signal a simultaneous return to jihadi ideological roots as well as a new era in tactical evolution and strategic ambition.

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Media is Blowing IS’ Threat for an “Attack on Washington” out of Proportion

Headlines across major media outlets reported today that the Islamic State (IS) had threatened an “attack on Washington.” The reports referred to a video released today by IS, and have implied its threats as a revelation of coming attacks, further rattling the nerves of a public still in shock from the Paris attacks. While the video these articles refer to did issue a threat, it did so out of celebration for the Paris attacks, and it does not represent any concrete development in the ongoing threat from IS. That stated, these threats need to be placed in perspective—not blown out of proportion.

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Coordinated Celebration by IS Supporters for Paris Attack May Speak to Group’s Involvement

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Islamic State (IS) fighters and supporters on social media erupted in explosive celebration over the November 13, 2015 terrorist attacks in Paris, France, which resulted in over 150 dead. The extent of the celebration far exceeded past online rallying by IS supporters, especially noting the fact that IS has not claimed the attack.

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Not Surprising that Abu Usama al-Masri Suspected for Flight KGL9268 Downing

As the Islamic State’s (IS) claim for taking down KGL9268—the Russian plane that crashed over Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula on October 31—seems increasingly plausible by the day, British officials have now identified Abu Usama al-Masri as a “person of interest” in the matter.

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Assessing IS’ Claim of Responsibility for the Russian Plane Downing in Egypt

The downing of KGL9268 is a tragedy riddled with conflicting variables within a weighted geopolitical context: a plane of Russian passengers amid the escalation of Russian forces in Syria; the plane’s downing over an Islamic State (IS)-plagued region; a vague claim of responsibility from IS; and an equally vague statement by a Kogalymavia airline official that the crash was caused by “external influence.”

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