Al Qaeda

Afghan forces suffer heavy casualties in Kunduz

The Red Unit, the Taliban's version of special forces that operates throughout Afghanistan and is often at the tip of the spear of assaults on district centers, military bases and outposts, is said to have initiated the fighting in Dasht-i-Archi district. At least 30 Afghan soldiers were killed during the assault. Read more >

Analysis: The Turkistan Islamic Party’s jihad in Syria

The Turkistan Islamic Party (TIP) in Afghanistan and Syria has long operated as part of the Taliban-al Qaeda axis. Earlier this year, however, the TIP's Syrian branch sided with Hay'at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS) during its battles with other rebel groups. This infighting and related events have complicated the picture with respect to the TIP in Syria. One TIP-affiliated outlet claimed earlier this year that the group's senior management had sent new leadership from Afghanistan to Syria. Read more >

Jihadists try to rally opposition in southern Syria

Hay'at Tahrir al Sham (HTS) and its jihadist rivals in the "Guardians of Religion" organization have called on all Muslims to resist the Assad regime's new offensive in southern Syria. However, severe infighting has limited the jihadists' ability to launch sustained operations against the Assad regime and its allies. Read more >

Emir of Pakistani Taliban thought killed in US airstrike

The Afghan Ministry of Defense claims Mullah Fazlullah was killed in a US airstrike in Kunar on June 13. His death has not been confirmed by the US or the Movement of the Taliban in Pakistan. Fazlullah's death, if confirmed, may not be as impactful as US, Pakistani, and Afghan officials would like to believe. Read more >

State Department amends terror designation for Al Nusrah Front

The State Department has amended the terrorist designation for Al Nusrah Front to include the "alias" Hay'at Tahrir al Sham (HTS). State's announcement indicates that the US government still considers HTS to be part of al Qaeda's network, despite the jihadists' vitriolic disputes over its formation. State didn't explain its reasoning behind the move. Read more >

As US relocates embassy to Jerusalem, al Qaeda leader condemns international system

Al Qaeda has released a message from its leader, Ayman al Zawahiri, that is timed to coincide with the Trump administration's relocation of the American embassy in Israel to Jerusalem. Zawahiri notes that the decision caused a "big uproar," but he reminds listeners that Tel Aviv is also supposedly Muslim land. He calls for jihad to uproot the entire international system led by the US and the UN. Read more >

State urges Taliban yet again to ‘run for office’

US officials should stop debasing themselves by issuing facile calls for peace. The Taliban has no intention of joining a political process and as it has stated numerous times, its goals are the expulsion of US and foreign forces, the overthrow of the Afghan government, the re-establishment of the of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan and the imposition of its harsh brand of Sharia. Read more >

Al Qaeda chief says America is the ‘first enemy’ of Muslims

As Sahab has released two new messages from al Qaeda leader Ayman al Zawahiri in recent days. In the first, he again criticizes Abu Bakr al Baghdadi's Islamic State, accusing it of sowing dissent in the jihadists' ranks. In the second, Zawahiri reminds jihadists and Muslims that his organization considers the US to be their "first enemy." Read more >

Analysis: ISIS hasn’t been defeated

On January 19, the Pentagon released its new National Defense Strategy, which prioritizes "inter-state strategic competition" from China and Russia over "terrorism." In many ways, the strategy makes sense. However, the threat from ISIS and al Qaeda has not been eliminated. The jihadists are fighting around the globe, everywhere from West Africa to Southeast Asia. Read more >