Watts in FA: ISIS and al Qaeda Race to the Bottom


As they watched their vaunted Islamic State (also known as ISIS) lose ground to Kurdish advances over the past month, ISIS fanboys had less and less to cheer about and fewer reasons to make their way to Syria and Iraq. But then things started to change. First, in early November, a Russian airliner fell from the sky over Sinai courtesy of an ISIS bomb. Only a few days later, a twin suicide bombing rocked Hezbollah in Lebanon. Then, ISIS’ Paris attacks, anunprecedented multitarget operation, captured the media cycle for days. These events reinvigorated ISIS’ global media machine and sent a clear message to jihadists around the world: “Hurry up!”

Read the rest at Foreign Affairs

Clint Watts is a Fox Fellow at the Foreign Policy Research Institute in Philadelphia and a Senior Fellow at the Center for Cyber and Homeland Security at The George Washington University.  Prior to his current work as a security consultant, Clint served as a U.S. Army infantry officer, a FBI Special Agent on a Joint Terrorism Task Force and as the Executive Officer of the Combating Terrorism Center at West Point.