Terrorism

North Africa's Jihadis

By Alex Thurston
 

In the following interview, Alex Thurston, a fellow at the Woodrow Wilson Center, discusses jihadism in North Africa.

US CENTCOM Commander on ISIS, Al Qaeda and Violent Extremist Organizations

On February 27, General Joseph Votel, commander of U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM), warned the House Committee on Armed Services that violent extremist organizations are one of the most "grave challenges" CENTCOM faces in its area of operations today. "The violent extremist ideologies of ISIS, al-Qa’ida (AQ) and other VEOs remain a threat to the United States and our allies and partners, not just in the CENTCOM region but worldwide," Votel said during the hearing.

Secretary Tillerson's Middle East Tour

From February 11-16, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson met with officials in Egypt, Kuwait, Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey during a tour of the Middle East. A highlight of Tillerson's trip was a ministerial meeting for the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS in Kuwait City, Kuwait. "The global coalition has made outstanding progress, but the fight is not over," the secretary said.

Changing Patterns of Extremism and Terrorism in Pakistan

Current tensions between the United States and Pakistan underscore the problems posed by the Afghan Taliban and Haqqani Network, groups that Washington blames for orchestrating attacks on U.S. troops in Afghanistan from safe havens in Pakistan. However, the story of extremism and terrorism in Pakistan extends well beyond these two groups, and it continues to evolve—even as Pakistan has experienced major reductions in terrorist violence in recent years.

Trump and South Asia, One Year On: A Case of Policy Continuity With the Past

Despite several notable differences, President ’s policy in the region—so far—has largely been strikingly similar to that of President Barack Obama’s.

When assessing President ’s efforts abroad over his first year in office, there are copious examples of major foreign policy breaks with his predecessor, Barack Obama. has taken a hard line on Iran, backed out of the Transpacific Partnership agreement, cracked down hard on immigration, recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, and rejected the idea of climate change.

And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

Vice President Pence Visits Egypt, Jordan and Israel

From January 20-22, Vice President Mike Pence met with the leaders of Egypt, Jordan and Israel in his first official trip to the Middle East. One of the key points of discussion was the issue of terrorism. "Radical Islamic terrorism knows no borders targeting America, Israel, nations across the Middle East, and the wider world," Pence said to the Israeli parliament.

Doubling Down on Pakistan

President Trump has doubled down on U.S. policy toward Pakistan.  On New Year’s Day, before most of us were even out of bed, Trump fired off a seemingly out-of-the-blue Twitter blast at Pakistan, accusing America’s problematic ally of giving us “nothing but lies & deceit.”  Pakistan provides “safe haven to the terrorists we hunt in Afghanistan, with little help.  No more!”

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