Is al-Qaeda Finally Responding to the Caliphate?

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As I noted in a post last week, al-Qaeda’s failure to respond to the declaration of the Caliphate by the Islamic State (IS)—formerly the Islamic State of Iraq and Sham (ISIS)—has been rather puzzling.  Given the seriousness of the dispute between the two organizations and the challenge that the new state poses to al-Qaeda’s dominance of the global jihad, it would seem incumbent upon the more established group to answer the declaration in some convincing way. This week, at long last, al-Qaeda has issued a short newsletter that contains at least the beginning of a response to Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi’s announcement.It also allows us to see that al-Qaeda might have been setting up this response over the past few weeks.

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Islamic State Tries Diaspora and Quitter as Social Media Alternatives

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UPDATE: Both al-'Itisaam Foundation and al-Hayat Media Center’s accounts have been taken off of Quitter. Remaining on both pages is a world peace-promoting artwork, quote by Mahatma Gandhi, and link to ebooks by the figure.

UPDATE: As of August 20, 2014, all Islamic State accounts on Diaspora have also been taken down. 

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Neo-Nazis Comment on MH17 Crash, Call Death of AIDS Researchers “Good News”

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In response to the reported death of approximately 100 AIDS researchers aboard flight MH17, the commercial airplane shot down by a missile over Ukraine, Neo-Nazis made a crass exhibition of their opinion regarding the AIDS virus on an extremist online forum. Users expressed their views on the Vanguard News Network (VNN) Forum—a neo-Nazi forum which has, in the past, included notorious figures like Craig Cobb, a white supremacist jailed for intimidating residents of Leith, North Dakota; North Carolina White Patriot Party leader Glenn Miller, accused of committing a shooting at Overland Park Jewish Community Center in Kansas in April 2014; and the Spokane, Washington bomber, Kevin Harpham.

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Islamic State Friendica Accounts Taken Down, Supporters Call for Hacking Department

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Islamic State (IS) media accounts on the new Friendica social media platform were taken down over the weekend in what IS supporters have interpreted as a cyber-attack. This comes only three days after SITE Intel Director Rita Katz reported on and analyzed the group’s temporary migration to the site.

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IS: From Twitter.com to Friendica.eu

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In an unexpected move, media outlets of the Islamic State (IS) have announced that they will be suspending Twitter posts for an unspecified amount of time as the group has moved to a different social media outlet. The Twitter account of al-Battar Media, an Arabic-language group dedicated to promoting IS propaganda, declared in a July 12, 2014 tweet that select IS groups would resort to a European server of the social network Friendica, stating:

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