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Al Qaeda

A top shot of a man in a hat looking at a newspaper.
A top shot of a man in a hat looking at a newspaper.

Inside the Waning Days of al Qaeda

A new book on the documents recovered in the Abbottabad raid reveals an organization far weaker than many believed it to be.

Armed militants of Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan pose for photographs.
Armed militants of Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan pose for photographs.

Pakistan Sponsored Terror Next Door. Now, It’s Back to Roost

Afghans rue the return of the Taliban. So does Pakistan, as al Qaeda-linked militants run rampant.

A primary and secondary school is destroyed.
A primary and secondary school is destroyed.

Al Qaeda Isn’t Dead Yet

The Taliban takeover of Afghanistan has put 9/11’s planners back in the terror cockpit.

Taliban fighters pass a billboard in Kabul.
Taliban fighters pass a billboard in Kabul.

The Myth of Moderate Jihadis

The unspoken pact between Washington and anti-Islamic State jihadi groups is a short-sighted move that will reward extremists.

Osama bin Laden holds a press conference.
Osama bin Laden holds a press conference.

The Taliban’s Victory Is Al Qaeda’s Victory

Afghanistan’s new rulers still have strong ties to the terrorist group that attacked the United States on 9/11.

Trump supporters clash with police and security forces as people storm the U.S. Capitol in Washington on Jan. 6.
Trump supporters clash with police and security forces as people storm the U.S. Capitol in Washington on Jan. 6.

The Capitol Coup Attempt Was the Far-Right’s Opening Shot

Jan. 6 was a classic example of propaganda by the deed—a revolutionary approach favored by everyone from 19th-century anarchists to Osama bin Laden.

Police escort Islamist extremists accused of plotting the Holey Artisan Bakery attack to a courtroom for their trial in Dhaka, on Nov. 27, 2019.
Police escort Islamist extremists accused of plotting the Holey Artisan Bakery attack to a courtroom for their trial in Dhaka, on Nov. 27, 2019.

The Radicalization of Bangladeshi Cyberspace

After the pandemic pushed people online, Islamist extremist groups reached an even wider audience. But the authorities are fighting back.

A Sudanese man holds bags to build a barricade amid flood waters in Tuti island, where the Blue and White Nile merge between the twin cities of Khartoum and Omdurman, on Sept. 3.
A Sudanese man holds bags to build a barricade amid flood waters in Tuti island, where the Blue and White Nile merge between the twin cities of Khartoum and Omdurman, on Sept. 3.

The White House Wants Peace With Sudan. Congress Wants Khartoum to Pay.

Normalizing ties with Israel could mean removal from the U.S. state sponsors of terrorism list, allowing the country to rebuild its shattered economy—but U.S. legislators are standing in the way.

Sudanese Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok visits Sudan's North Darfur state.
Sudanese Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok visits Sudan's North Darfur state.

Document of the Week: Pompeo Seeks Deal to Remove Sudan From Terrorist List Before U.S. Election

Bipartisan congressional support for removing Sudan from U.S. terrorism lists grows as Khartoum pledges hundreds of millions of dollars in compensation to American victims.

Osama bin Laden with then-advisor Ayman al-Zawahiri during a November 2001 interview at an undisclosed location in Afghanistan.
Osama bin Laden with then-advisor Ayman al-Zawahiri during a November 2001 interview at an undisclosed location in Afghanistan.

Al Qaeda’s Leader Is Old, Bumbling—and a Terrorist Mastermind

Ayman al-Zawahiri isn’t trying to plan another 9/11 attack—because he doesn’t need to.

A Soldier assigned to the United Kingdom specialized infantry trains Nigerian forces on refined weapon-reloading techniques during Flintlock 20 near Thies, Senegal, Feb. 17, 2020. (U.S. photo by Sgt. Steven Lewis)
A Soldier assigned to the United Kingdom specialized infantry trains Nigerian forces on refined weapon-reloading techniques during Flintlock 20 near Thies, Senegal, Feb. 17, 2020. (U.S. photo by Sgt. Steven Lewis)

In West Africa, U.S. Military Struggles for Scarce Resources as Terrorism Threat Grows

Tensions with Iran almost scuttled a major international training exercise in the Sahel.

The annual Tribute in Light memorial echoing the twin towers of the World Trade Center illuminates the night sky during the tenth Anniversary of the 9/11 attacks on Sept. 11, 2011, in this view from Bayonne, New Jersey.
The annual Tribute in Light memorial echoing the twin towers of the World Trade Center illuminates the night sky during the tenth Anniversary of the 9/11 attacks on Sept. 11, 2011, in this view from Bayonne, New Jersey.

It’s Hard to Commemorate 9/11 If You Don’t Understand It.

Today’s university freshmen were born after the Twin Towers fell. In the Trump era, lack of historical perspective makes young people susceptible to alarmism and more likely to misread threats.

Islamic fighters from the al-Qaida group in the Levant, Al-Nusra Front, wave their movement's flag as they parade at the Yarmuk Palestinian refugee camp, south of Damascus, to denounce Israels military offensive on the Gaza Strip, on July 28, 2014.
Islamic fighters from the al-Qaida group in the Levant, Al-Nusra Front, wave their movement's flag as they parade at the Yarmuk Palestinian refugee camp, south of Damascus, to denounce Israels military offensive on the Gaza Strip, on July 28, 2014.

Al Qaeda Is Ready to Attack You Again

Eighteen years after 9/11, the terrorist group has found a new home—and rediscovered its old mission.

The Taliban’s Broken Pledge to Contain Terrorists

A generation ago, the Taliban promised to prevent Osama bin Laden from targeting Americans—then came 9/11.

U.S. soldiers arrive at Saudi Arabia's Dhahran air base in 1991.
U.S. soldiers arrive at Saudi Arabia's Dhahran air base in 1991.

Did Mohammed bin Salman Just Give Jihadis the World’s Greatest Terrorist Recruiting Tool?

Anger at the presence of U.S. troops on sacred Saudi soil led Osama bin Laden to found al Qaeda and wage jihad on the West. The crown prince’s decision to welcome them back could light the fuse again.

Hamza bin Laden, Osama bin Laden's son, is shown at his wedding in a video released by the CIA on Nov. 1, 2017.
Hamza bin Laden, Osama bin Laden's son, is shown at his wedding in a video released by the CIA on Nov. 1, 2017.

Like Terrorist Father, Like Terrorist Son

Hamza bin Laden was the son of al Qaeda’s founder—and the future leader that the terrorist group needed.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo walks toward a plane to depart Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, on June 24.
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo walks toward a plane to depart Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, on June 24.

U.S. Intelligence Undercuts Trump’s Case on Iran-al Qaeda Links

Despite claims by Pompeo, Tehran and al Qaeda have been at odds more often than they've been aligned since 9/11.

A screen grab from a propaganda video released April 29 purportedly shows Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi for the first time in five years at an undisclosed location.
A screen grab from a propaganda video released April 29 purportedly shows Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi for the first time in five years at an undisclosed location.

‘Let’s Kill This Baby in the Crib’

That’s what the CIA said when it had Osama bin Laden in its sights after 9/11. Instead, America veered off into Iraq, and the result is Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, who appeared in a new video this week.

A discarded Islamic State flag lies torn on the ground in the village of Baghouz, Syria, on March 24. (Giuseppe Cacace/AFP/Getty Images)
A discarded Islamic State flag lies torn on the ground in the village of Baghouz, Syria, on March 24. (Giuseppe Cacace/AFP/Getty Images)

ISIS’s West African Offshoot Is Following al Qaeda’s Rules for Success

The amorphous Boko Haram splinter group is taking inspiration where it can get it and bringing disaster to the Lake Chad Basin in the process.

A man prays at the burial of a friend on January 16, 2018 in Nairobi, Kenya after al-Shabab militants stormed the Dusit hotel complex.
A man prays at the burial of a friend on January 16, 2018 in Nairobi, Kenya after al-Shabab militants stormed the Dusit hotel complex.

Al-Shabab Wants You To Know It’s Alive and Well

The brutal attack in Kenya is designed to show Washington and the world that the terrorist group is still a force to be reckoned with in East Africa.

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