Jailbreaks in Iraq. A surge in Syria. A growing presence in Lebanon. The terrorist group’s influence is on the rise, says Bruce Riedel.
TheDailyBeast.com, July 26, 2013
Two spectacular al Qaeda prison breaks in Iraq, freeing over 500 of its members in two separate prisons simultaneously this week, demonstrate the group is back with a vengeance. Al Qaeda’s Iraq branch is also the moving force behind the jihadist success in Syria. The resurgence of al Qaeda in Iraq has sobering implications for what is likely to follow the drawdown of NATO forces in Afghanistan for the al Qaeda mother ship in Pakistan.
The Future of Al Qaeda
PDF (88 Pages): 2013-07-28 Future of Al Qaeda
Th e speed of change throughout the Middle East and North Africa since 2011 has demonstrated that a policy of Soviet-era containment manifested since the Cold War by support for repressive dictatorships that suppressed, rather than emancipated their populations, catalysed the appeal of Al-Qaeda. Instead, as the Arab Spring has shown, populations desire economic growth, employment and good governance in the place of the defi cient development outcomes, conflict and militancy that characterise life in so much of this region. As the recently released US National Strategy for Counterterrorism elucidates, a comprehensive approach to tackling Al-Qaeda must include “objectives such as promoting responsive governance and respect for the rights of citizens, which will reduce Al-Qaeda’s resonance and relevancy.”149