Tunisian jihadist group posts pictures of spoils, claims attacks on Tunisian military

Map of jihadist attacks in Tunisia in 2014. Map made by Caleb Weiss for The Long War Journal.

The Tunisian Uqba Ibn Nafi Battalion has released a new set of images on its official Twitter page. The pictures were then quickly disseminated by other jihadists.

The photos showcase a slew of weapons captured from clashes with the Tunisian military. In one picture, several Streyr AUG’s, the standard service rifle of the Tunisian military, are shown laid out before the viewer. One picture shows an FN Minimi light machine gun. Two pictures also detail a number of mortar tubes and rounds along with an M2 Browning machine gun. Thrown in with the weapons are copious amounts of ammunition.

The pictures were released along with a short message claiming responsibility for a few recent attacks in Tunisia. According to a translation from SITE Intelligence Group, the Uqba Ibn Nafi Battalion claimed an attack on Tunisian soldiers in the Hanchir Ettala area in the Mount Chaambi region, as well as an attack on a military bus in Nebeur near Kef.

The Uqba Ibn Nafi Battalion is named after the seventh century Arab general who initiated the conquest of the Maghreb, which includes Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria, and Libya. In July, the battalion instigated an attack on the Tunisian military in the Chaambi Mountain region; the attack left 15 soldiers dead and 20 others wounded. It is thought that the group has also been behind several other attacks on Tunisian soldiers in recent months.

The Battalion is a joint venture between Ansar al Sharia Tunisia and al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), al Qaeda’s official branch in North Africa. Ansar al Sharia Tunisia has been listed as a Foreign Terrorist Organization by the US State Department. It has also been added to the United Nations’ list of individuals and entities affiliated with al Qaeda. The battalion is headed by Khaled Chaieb, who is close to AQIM emir Abdelmalek Droukdel.

For more on Ansar al Sharia Tunisia and its al Qaeda connections, see LWJ reports:

Pictures released by the Uqba Ibn Nafi Battalion can be seen below:

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Caleb Weiss is an intern at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and a contributor to The Long War Journal.

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9 Comments

  • sundoesntrise says:

    I honestly believe that this is the future of armed militancy in the Islamic world. They won’t be able to completely control the region, or even singular countries, but they will indeed be able to carve out armed cantons which they control. The areas that they cannot control, they will exert ‘presence’ over control, and they will do similar to what is shown in this article about Tunisia; they will be able to stage attacks, conduct them, inflict losses ranging in severity, then upload the results to the Internet to show their successes. And so the cycle repeats, as it always has.
    Large ungoverned areas such as deserts, valleys, mountains, and other such areas will be used by them as a safe haven to plot attacks on the governments in the area, as well as perhaps the West as well.

  • Drake says:

    Re: sundoesntrise: And will continue to do so until the world acknowledges that until eradication of their philosophy, this will ever be the way of the world.

  • Abu Adam says:

    Sundoesntrise,
    You are right, but you neglected the part where they expand beyond the areas they control, until they reach where you live. 🙂

  • sundoesntrise says:

    Abu Adam,
    I assume you’re attempting to be scary in a sense. You put a little smiley face there to top it off. How can they expand to where I live if you agreed that my comment was right in the first place? Can you even read?
    I’ll say it in a language you can understand, Abu Adam: Maybe when the cowards you cheer for on the Internet are actually able to defeat the Nusayris of all people, then you can start making threats toward people like me. You can’t even defeat the Nusayris, so watch your arrogance, it’s not getting you anywhere.
    I assume Bill would approve my comment if he approved yours, which is essentially an awful attempt at being tough and trying to threaten me on the Internet.

  • Abu Adam says:

    Sundoesntrise,
    You are making the wrong assumption that the Nusayris need to be defeated first. There was no fighting against the Nusayris when 9/11 took place. Remember that? 🙂
    No, I am not threatening you or anyone else. I am simply stating that your comment somewhat implied that the jihadis are going to stay in the areas that they carved out for themselves. And, that would be an invalid assumption if we look at the fact that they now control territory that they did not control a year or two ago. It is fair to assume that they will expand as they are doing every day. Even the Western media can’t deny that.
    I am just trying to educate you brave and ferocious Western internet warriors. 🙂

  • sundoesntrise says:

    “You are making the wrong assumption that the Nusayris need to be defeated first. There was no fighting against the Nusayris when 9/11 took place. Remember that? :)”
    Where did I say that they need to be defeated first? Nowhere. I simply said you cannot defeat them – period. They are beating the people YOU support, and walking all over their dead bodies. The Nusayri regime might be brutal, but the people you support talked too much smack and couldn’t back it up.
    “No, I am not threatening you or anyone else. I am simply stating that your comment somewhat implied that the jihadis are going to stay in the areas that they carved out for themselves.”
    I never said that either, good thing you said “somewhat implied” though. I suggest you read my original comment again – maybe 25, 50 times if you have to.
    “And, that would be an invalid assumption if we look at the fact that they now control territory that they did not control a year or two ago. It is fair to assume that they will expand as they are doing every day. Even the Western media can’t deny that.”
    If I were to deny what you are saying right now, I wouldn’t have even bothered to make my original comment in the first place. The thing is, is that like a lot of the Syrian Jihadists now realize, you will not have a fun time on your ‘Jihad’. You will be constantly shelled, chased by security forces, detained, killed and beaten back. The people you support will never be able to take over capital cities and entire countries, there will always be a force stronger than them which asserts dominance over them. Welcome to real life, where the bigger guy will always club you over the head and put you in your place.
    “I am just trying to educate you brave and ferocious Western internet warriors. :)”
    I’ve been reading up on this stuff for years, it doesn’t mean I think I’m some type of expert analyst. Is there a mirror anywhere nearby you? You obviously need to take a look in one.

  • Abu Adam says:

    sundoesntrise,
    It is just a question of time. The Nusayris will not only be defeated, they will be removed from the face of the earth. At some point, your kind will take them in as refugees in droves. 🙂 We have already defeated them and their supporters in many areas in Syria. You are obviously very misinformed, but that is not surprising. 🙂 I am here in the middle of it, and you are not. 🙂

  • RanaSahib says:

    Very interesting back and forth between two posters above. Just a few reminders:
    Jihadists don’t operate in a vacuum. Devoid of popular support from a major cosmopolitan centre, jihadists will generally remain as annoying fringe elements. This is the reason for the Taliban’s demise, as well: People were not buying into the Jihadist utopia. But of course this is also tough to do when you’ve got international sanctions squeezing you from all sides.
    Jihadist tit for tat tactics such as the infamous attack on Pakistan schoolchildren has rendered home turf hostile. Common folk are are not willing to suffer the jihadist cause any further leniency or reasonable doubt.
    Finally, a zero sum game appears to be likely with the internecine strife plaguing varying jihadist teams in the arena. Having common cause, so far they cannot make common cause.

  • sundoesntrise says:

    Oh, so limited victories where you are constantly attacked from the land and air is satisfying to you? All you can do is point fingers and spitefully use smiley face emoticons. Talk smack about the Nusayris all you want, you are not even close to beating them. This magical day where you finally defeat them only exists in your mind. They are tougher and they have proved it on the battlefield. Hey, how are all those other psychotic people who tried to fight the Nusayris doing now anyways? Oh yeah, that’s right; dead, tortured, injured, or refugees. Good job there.

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