Margaret Foster is a doctoral student at Duke University, studying terrorism and transnational violence with research interests in organizational dynamics of violent groups, network effects of terrorism, and how transnationalism influences conflicts and the organizations involved in them.

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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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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The Kouachi Brothers: Inaugurating a New Era of Jihad

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On January 7, 2015 Cherif and Said Kouachi, whose ties to the French jihadi scene extend for a decade, made history by storming the Charlie Hebdo offices in Paris, France, and massacring many of those they found inside. The two brothers’ attack may have inaugurated a new era, wedding operations carried out with available tools to high-visibility civilian targets in the West.

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