Even as Afghan forces take the lead in providing security and NATO draws down its military presence, the Taliban continues to wage a resilient insurgency. Prospects appear dim for a negotiated settlement or the group's participation in electoral politics.
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.
Algerian and Western counterterrorism efforts, along with an African-led peacekeeping force in Mali, have shifted the North African al-Qaeda franchise's criminal and terrorist activities to remote areas of the Sahara and Sahel, explains this Backgrounder.
Hezbollah's long-standing resistance to Israel gained this Lebanon-based Shiite political party and militant group broad support, but its involvement in Syria's civil war may jeopardize its domestic standing, explains this Backgrounder.
Pakistan has emerged as a sanctuary for some of the world's most violent groups, including al-Qaeda, the Taliban, and homegrown militants, that threaten the stability of Pakistan as well as the region.
Ed Husain hosts author Matt Levitt in a discussion of Hezbollah's terrorist activities, focusing on the group's presence internationally and including not only attempted and successful attacks, but also the group's illegal financial activities.
The Taliban believes it will have the upper hand in potential negotiations with the Afghan government and its partner in Washington, but it remains unclear what the insurgent group's goals are in any settlement, says expert Amin Tarzi.
Al-Qaeda's affiliates "provide new justification for the Obama administration's efforts to turn elements of its counterterrorism policies, including kill lists and drone bases, into fixtures for a fight expected to last another decade or more."
The People's Mujahedin of Iran, or MEK, is a militant Iranian opposition group and a recognized terrorist organization, according to the U.S. State Department. This Backgrounder examines the group's history and the politics surrounding its relocation from Iraq.
In this United States Institute of Peace special report, freelance journalist Andrew Walker explains the history of Boko Haram, an extremist Islamic sect in Nigeria, that has created havoc across the north of the country and its violent attacks on government offices, the United Nations, and churches.
The Council on Foreign Relations' David Rockefeller Studies Program—CFR's "think tank"—is home to more than seventy full-time, adjunct, and visiting scholars and practitioners (called "fellows"). Their expertise covers the world's major regions as well as the critical issues shaping today's global agenda. Download the printable CFR Experts Guide.
The author examines Pakistan's complex role in U.S. foreign policy and advocates for a two-pronged approach that works to quarantine threats while integrating Pakistan into the broader U.S. agenda in Asia.