Author Archives: Thomas Joscelyn

Thomas Joscelyn is a Senior Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and the Senior Editor for The Long War Journal.

The Abu Zubaydah file

The US government has released an unclassified summary of Abu Zubaydah’s career. Some claim that Abu Zubaydah wasn’t really an al Qaeda member when he was detained in March 2002, but the newly released file alleges that he worked closely with multiple senior al Qaeda operatives and possibly had foreknowledge of the terror group’s three most successful attacks between August 1998 and September 2001.



Jihadists who attacked Russian police appear in Islamic State video

Amaq News Agency has released a video purportedly showing the two jihadists responsible for attacking Russian policemen in Balashikha yesterday. The video is consistent with the pattern followed after small-scale attacks in Germany and France in July. In each case, the assailants recorded themselves swearing allegiance to Abu Bakr al Baghdadi prior to their assaults.


The battle for Sirte, Libya continues

The US has launched 62 “precision” airstrikes against the Islamic State in Sirte, Libya since Aug. 1, according to data provided by US Africa Command earlier today. The jihadists have lost significant ground, but continue to conduct suicide attacks using vehicle-borne improvised explosive devices (VBIEDs) inside the city.


Hamza bin Laden calls for regime change in Saudi Arabia

Hamza bin Laden, Osama’s son, criticizes Saudi Arabia’s intervention in Yemen in a newly released audio message. Hamza claims that the Saudi campaign has aided Houthi rebels by interfering in Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula’s war against them. He calls on Muslims to overthrow the Saudi government.


An alleged ‘agent’ of Iran transferred from Guantanamo to the UAE

A leaked Joint Task Force – Guantanamo threat assessment describes Haji Hamidullah, who was recently transferred from Guantanamo to the UAE, as an “agent” of Iran. The Long War Journal first profiled Hamidullah in 2011. The leaked JTF-GTMO file contains numerous intelligence reports tying Iranian intelligence to the Afghan insurgency.