Small Wars Journal

Islamic State

Combating Terrorism Center at West Point: CTC releases declassified tactical interrogation reports on current Islamic State leader

Fri, 04/23/2021 - 2:56am

A valuable research tool hosted by the CTC.

https://ctc.usma.edu/ctc-releases-declassified-tactical-interrogation-reports-on-current-islamic-state-leader/

https://ctc.usma.edu/al-mawla-interrogation-reports/

Urban Warfare Project Podcast: The Battle of Marawi

Fri, 03/05/2021 - 3:58pm

Link: https://mwi.usma.edu/the-battle-of-marawi/ 

 

In this episode of the Urban Warfare Project Podcast, John Spencer is joined by Dr. Charles Knight. He is a senior lecturer in terrorism, asymmetric conflict, and urban operations at Charles Sturt University and a senior researcher at the University of New South Wales.

Dr. Knight has researched and and written about the 2017 Battle of Marawi, in which the Philippine Army fought against Islamic State fighters over the course of five months. With the two sides fighting through the streets, alleys, and buildings of Marawi, it was one of the biggest and most high-intensity urban battles of the modern era. In the conversation, Dr. Knight explains the context in which the battle must be understood, the phases through which the fighting progressed, and the types of tactics that characterized the battle.

Lead Inspector General for Operation Inherent Resolve Quarterly Report to the United States Congress | October 1, 2020 – December 31, 2020

A roundup of the conflict in against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. 

Topics Include:

Partner Forces

The state of ISIS in Iraq and Syria

Troop Reductions

 

 

Link: https://www.dodig.mil/In-the-Spotlight/Article/2497908/lead-inspector-general-for-operation-inherent-resolve-quarterly-report-to-the-u/

Riley.C.Murray Thu, 02/11/2021 - 7:48pm

RAND: The Air War Against The Islamic State

Fri, 02/05/2021 - 9:55pm

Full Report: https://www.rand.org/pubs/research_reports/RRA388-1.html

Airpower played a pivotal role in the U.S.-led fight against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) from 2014 to 2019 and contributed to the success of Operation Inherent Resolve. This report sheds light on the impact of the air operations in Operation Inherent Resolve and whether airpower could have been applied differently to achieve faster, more-sustainable outcomes. The authors incorporate interviews with U.S. and coalition personnel, primary-source documents, and U.S. and coalition strike and sortie data to document the operational history of the air war, assess the relationship between airpower effects, and analyze the strategic and operational impact of airpower in Operation Inherent Resolve.

The authors find that, although airpower played an essential role in combating ISIS, airpower alone would not have been likely to defeat the militant organization. Instead, the combination of airpower and ground forces—led by Iraqi and Syrian partners—was needed to destroy the Islamic State as a territorial entity. The overarching strategy of Operation Inherent Resolve, which put ground-force partners in the lead, created several challenges and innovations in the application of airpower, which have implications for future air wars. To be prepared to meet future demands against nonstate and near-peer adversaries, the U.S. Air Force and the joint force should apply lessons learned from Operation Inherent Resolve.

ISIS’ New Leader and the Group’s Regeneration

Wed, 02/19/2020 - 1:11am
Newfound breathing room has emboldened ISIS to release the name of its new leader and increase the pace and audacity of insurgent attacks against Kurdish, Syrian government, and Iraqi targets, pointing to the conclusion that this aspect of the Syrian Civil War has merely transformed into a new phase.

About the Author(s)

Clues to Al-Baghdadi's Successor

Fri, 12/13/2019 - 10:10am
Abu Ibrahim al Hashimi al-Qurayshi is a new alias for ISIL’s new leader designed to obscure his identityand prevent targeting by counter-terrorism forces. There is a good chance that Amir Muhammed Sa’eed al-Mawla, also known as Hajji Abdullah al-‘Afri, is the new ISIL emir. This article explains what this succession means for ISIL and the world, and what we can glean from the announcement of the new leader.

About the Author(s)

Salafi Jihadism and Chemical Weapons Attacks: Ideological Contrasts and Strategic Constraints SWJED Thu, 06/27/2019 - 1:07am
Chemical weapons attacks remain an uncommon choice for militant and terrorist organizations targeting Western countries. Their rarity makes them an attractive option, as the shock factor associated chemical weapons attacks plays into the main goal of any terrorist attack: to instill fear and insecurity in the population.