Conflict update, January 8 2017

Iraq Iraqi counter-terrorism forces in east Mosul say they’ve reached the eastern bank of the Tigris River. Some Iraqi politicians are claiming that as much as 88 percent of the eastern half of the city has been liberated, which is probably a substantial exaggeration, but it’s impossible to dispute that the offensive has made significant… Continue reading Conflict update, January 8 2017

In Memoriam, I guess

The Egyptian government is saying that it has killed the leader of ISIS-Sinai, Abu Duaa al-Ansari, in an airstrike: Dead is the head of the Ansar Bait al-Maqdis movement, identified as Abu Duaa al-Ansari, and a number of his aides in airstrikes targeting the ISIS affiliate’s strongholds, the army statement said. “They managed to destroy… Continue reading In Memoriam, I guess

Developing story: apparent terrorist attack in Nice, France

Several hours ago a truck drove into and through a crowd of people gathered to celebrate Bastille Day in Nice, France. At least 77 people were killed according to the latest figures on TV, with at least 50 more injured. The driver was reportedly “zigzagging” (for up to two kilometers) once he’d driven into the… Continue reading Developing story: apparent terrorist attack in Nice, France

Well, alright, but keep your hands off my 401(k)

Syria analyst Aymenn Jawad Al-Tamimi has been cataloging and translating ISIS administrative documents for about a year now. It’s a great resource for, among other things, getting a flavor of what Kevin Drum calls ISIS’s “bureaucratic streak” (I agree with him, it’s hard not to laugh at this stuff–in fact, I’m about to do just… Continue reading Well, alright, but keep your hands off my 401(k)

Al-Shabaab: the terror group that has Kenyan authorities terrorizing their own people

The University of Chicago is closed today, apart from its hospitals. I can tell you from personal experience that this is almost unprecedented. It took real-deal blizzards (and I mean “blizzard” by Chicago standards, which means “so much snow that it would shut DC down for a month”) to get that place to even consider… Continue reading Al-Shabaab: the terror group that has Kenyan authorities terrorizing their own people

Another group claims responsibility for the Bamako hotel attack

A deadly attack on a hotel in Mali kills several people, many of them foreigners, and leaves the country unsettled. Very quickly, the al-Qaeda-affiliated terror group al-Mourabitoun claims responsibility for the attack in a statement delivered to the media. But in the aftermath of the attack, a second group comes forward to claim responsibility for… Continue reading Another group claims responsibility for the Bamako hotel attack

Some early thoughts on the Mali hotel attack

The Radisson Blu Hotel in Bamako, the capital of Mali, was struck by gunmen earlier today in an attack that so far has killed at least 27 people. The situation is still unfolding (though it may be nearing a resolution), with gunmen still believed to be inside the hotel, though a “special forces raid,” possibly… Continue reading Some early thoughts on the Mali hotel attack