Archive for the 'Islam' Category

The Islamic State (IS) and Pledges of Allegiance: The Case of Jamaat Ansar al-Islam

By Aymenn Jawad Al-Tamimi With the rise of IS, it is of interest to examine how IS has secured pledges of allegiance (bay’ah) from other groups both on the domestic front (i.e. within Iraq and Syria) and abroad (e.g. in Gaza-Sinai and Libya). I would argue that the case of Jamaat Ansar al-Islam (‘The Group […]

Jamaat Jund al-Qawqaz: A Caucasus Emirate Group in Latakia

By Aymenn Jawad Al-Tamimi Relatively little news comes out these days from northeast Latakia province, which remains outside of regime control despite the recapture of the Armenian town of Kassab in June. However, it is important to observers of jihadi groups as what I would call ‘the muhajireen’s hangout’. For example, the Moroccan group Harakat […]

The Factions of Kobani (Ayn al-Arab)

By Aymenn Jawad Al-Tamimi Media attention has somewhat focused away from the city of Kobani as the intense wave of coalition airstrikes against the Islamic State (IS) first helped to slow down the group’s advance into Kobani. That said, the Democratic Union Party (PYD)’s project of an autonomous canton centred Kobani has been destroyed, and […]

The Islamic State and Jabhat al-Nusra: A Looming Grand Jihadi Alliance?

By Aymenn Jawad Al-Tamimi The international coalition- led by the U.S.- against the Islamic State [IS], with additional American airstrikes targeting the ‘Khorasan’ al-Qa’ida group in Syria (in reality just al-Qa’ida veterans from the Afghanistan-Pakistan embedded with Syria’s al-Qa’ida affiliate Jabhat al-Nusra [JN])- has prompted media speculation of a wider truce, alliance or even merger […]

A Visit to the Tomb of Hafez al-Asad

The following is an excerpt from “Among the Ruins: Syria Past and Present,” just out from Oxford University Press/ C. Hurst & Co. For further information on the book and the history of Syria, follow me on Facebook and Twitter. The road from Latakia to Qardaha wound gently along the Mediterranean coast. From here, the […]