Expert Witness, UK Defence Select Committee, 3 November 2015

  On 3 November 2015, I gave expert testimony to the UK Parliament.  Ahead of the publication of the Strategic Defence and Security Review, I briefed the UK Defence Select Committee on potential threats from North Africa and the Middle East. Below is a record of my opening remarks. Phil Wilson MP: What specific threats to the UK and its ...

COMMENTARY

‘Aleppo and the Myth of Syria’s Sovereignty’, 18 October 2016

  The narrative of sovereignty by the Syrian government is based on a number of myths.     The Syrian government’s campaign has reached a grim crescendo in Aleppo, further bewildering an international community struggling to ...

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21
Oct

‘Cultural Heritage and the Islamic State’, York Festival of Ideas, 19 June 2016

On 19 June 2016, the York Festival of Ideas held a focus day on Fragile Heritage.  I was invited to deliver the keynote address, the text of which is included below. “Our darkest predictions are unfortunately taking place”, said ...

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11
Oct

‘ISIL May be in Crisis, But So is the Coalition’, 31 May 2016

Writing on Al Jazeera, I argue that ISIL’s current battlefield losses will not automatically translate into meaningful gains for the coalition.   ‘The battle to recapture Fallujah from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant ...

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3
Jun

Expert Witness, UK Defence Select Committee, 3 November 2015

  On 3 November 2015, I gave expert testimony to the UK Parliament.  Ahead of the publication of the Strategic Defence and Security Review, I briefed the UK Defence Select Committee on potential threats from North Africa and the Middle East. ...

Read more
1
Dec

‘Defining a “Full-Spectrum” Counter-Terrorism Strategy’, 22 July 2015

Chris Mackmurdo and I previously argued that there needs to be a ‘full-spectrum’ approach to combatting ISIL and similar groups. Since then, British Prime Minister David Cameron and Defence Secretary Michael Fallon have both used this language, ...

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25
Sep

3-minute Interview with Contest Global, June 2015

  In June 2015 I was interview by Dr Chris Mackmurdo, former head of counter-terrorism analysis at the UK Foreign Office, for Contest Global. ‘You’ve recently written about the dangers of global jihadism as a state-building ...

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25
Sep

‘ISIS and Global Jihad’, 18 May 2015

For the International Institute for Strategic Studies, and on the eve of the launch of its new publication, Armed Conflict Survey, I examine the two seemingly contradictory effects of ISIS on global jihad.  I argue that the competing tendencies ...

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28
May

‘New Terrorism and the UK National Security Strategy’, 1 June 2015

‘New’ Terrorism and the National Security Strategy Written by Dr Alia Brahimi and Chris Mackmurdo, former head of terrorism and national security analysis at the UK Foreign Office. ‘The threat to the UK from terrorism is increasing and, in ...

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28
May

‘The Islamic State in Libya: Between Unity and Fragmentation’, 5 April 2015

For PS21, a new global think tank founded by Reuters Global Defence Correspondent Peter Apps, I examine the rise of the Islamic State in Libya. The Islamic State in Libya: Between Unity and Fragmentation ‘We have an appointment with Rome, God ...

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20
Apr

‘What Strategy for Tikrit, Mosul and Beyond?’, 12 March 2015

For Al-Jazeera, I argue that, to bring meaningful progress against the so-called Islamic State, the ‘spring offensive’ in Iraq must serve a broader political strategy. The very recent histories of both Iraq and Syria suggest that the ...

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20
Apr
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