Author Archives: Thomas Joscelyn

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

Zawahiri asserts al Qaeda’s independence in new message

Al Qaeda has released a video message featuring Ayman al Zawahiri, who criticizes Al Jazeera at length. Although the video was released on the anniversary of the 9/11 hijackings, it was likely timed to coincide with the normalization of relations between Israel and the Kingdom of Bahrain.




Taliban falsely claims al Qaeda doesn’t exist in Afghanistan

During an online conference last week, CENTCOM commander Gen. McKenzie questioned the Taliban’s commitment to its supposed counterterrorism assurances. He pointed to al Qaeda’s presence in eastern Afghanistan and claimed Ayman al Zawahiri is there. In response, the Taliban falsely claimed that al Qaeda hasn’t been present in Afghanistan since the days of the Islamic Emirate.





Taliban ‘reluctant to publicly break with al Qaeda,’ Inspector General reports

According to a new report by the Lead Inspector General for Operation Freedom’s Sentinel, U.S. officials have assessed that the Taliban is “reluctant to publicly break with al Qaeda,” while Pakistan continues to harbor senior Taliban leaders, including the Haqqanis. The report confirms that the Taliban went on the offensive following the Feb. 29 withdrawal agreement with the U.S.