The videos depicting beheadings of Western civilians by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) have shocked audiences worldwide. But perhaps more surprising is something more mundane: the distinctly British accent of the English-speaking, knife-wielding militant.
Writing in Defense One, Janine Davidson analyzes intercepted and published letters between two Al-Qaeda affiliates. In doing so, she identifies some of the terror network's best practices and "lessons learned."
Charles Berger discusses an al-Qaeda more Balkanized than unified and argues that instead of a single strategy which treats all of these groups as Al Qaeda, the United States needs tailored strategies for each.
The authors argue that the United States has responded inadequately to the rise of Chinese power and recommend placing less strategic emphasis on the goal of integrating China into the international system and more on balancing China's rise.
Campbell evaluates the implications of the Boko Haram insurgency and recommends that the United States support Nigerian efforts to address the drivers of Boko Haram, such as poverty and corruption, and to foster stronger ties with Nigerian civil society.
Learn more about CFR’s mission and its work over the past year in the 2014 Annual Report. The Annual Report spotlights new initiatives, high-profile events, and authoritative scholarship from CFR experts, and includes a message from CFR President Richard N. Haass. Read and download »