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.

Islamic State arm reportedly seizes Nigerian town

Islamic State West Africa reportedly seized the town of Baga in northeastern Nigeria earlier this week. The Nigerian military downplayed the jihadis’ advances, but it appears that ISWA seized the town, at least temporarily. And ISWA documented its spoils in a series of images released today.



Jihadis claim US-designated terrorist killed in Syria

Jihadis on social media claim that Abu Julaybib al-Urduni, an al Qaeda loyalist, has been killed in Syria. Abu Julaybib helped found Al Nusrah Front, but later had a falling out with Al Nusrah’s leader over the group’s “disassociation” from al Qaeda and other issues.


Analysis: The Islamic State hasn’t been defeated

President Trump claimed earlier today that the Islamic State has been “defeated” in Syria. But an unknown number of the group’s top leaders, including presumably Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, remain alive. And there are likely thousands of fighters in both Syria and Iraq, where they operate as insurgents.



Taliban confirms meeting with US in the UAE

The Taliban has confirmed that it is meeting with an American delegation in the UAE on Dec. 17. Representatives from Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and the UAE are attending as well, according to the Taliban. There was no mention of the Afghan government in the Taliban’s statement.


Islamic State issues statement on Strasbourg attack after shooter killed

The Islamic State’s Amaq News Agency released a short message claiming that the terrorist responsible for attacking the Strasbourg Christmas market was a “soldier” of the so-called caliphate. The message was disseminated online hours after Chérif Chekatt, who has been identified as the assailant, was shot dead by French police. Thus far, the Islamic State hasn’t provided any corroborating details.


Islamic State unleashes suicide bombers in Hajin, Syria

In the past 24 hours, the Islamic State has conducted more than one suicide bombing against US-backed forces in Hajin, Syria. One Islamic State “martyr” blew himself up near the Hajin hospital, which became the scene of intense fighting earlier this week.