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The Edge of Terrorism

Israeli Security Services Turn to Data Mining to Anticipate "Unorganized Threats"

June 23rd 2018

Shadowy Computer User

Israel's domestic intelligence agency chief Nadav Argaman last week released sobering figures on the scope of the ongoing terrorist threat facing Israelis. The figures that make it clear that the relative quiet routine in Israeli cities is deceptive, and that this quiet rests completely on counter-terrorist efforts, which almost defy the imagination in their scope.

Communities located on Israel's border region with Gaza have been experiencing frequent Hamas assaults in recent months, from rockets, mortars, and now explosive devices and Molotov cocktails attached to kites and balloons, which are sent over the border into Israel to burn down farmland and forests.

The rest of Israel, however has been mostly free of attacks for some time – though this is not because the terrorists have stopped trying. Read more ..

The Weapon's Edge

The F-35’s Combat Debut

June 7th 2018


After 179 months and more than $400 billion in acquisition costs, the F-35 finally made its combat debut—and almost nobody knew.

The Israeli Air Force (IAF), the first international customer to receive the Lockheed Martin-built aircraft, was quietly the first to use it in combat operations, finally revealing so on May 22.

“We are flying the F-35 all over the Middle East. It has become part of our operational capabilities,” says IAF Commander Maj. Gen. Amikam Norkin. “We are the first to attack using the F-35 in the Middle East and have already attacked twice on different fronts.”

The Israeli F-35 flew in Lebanese airspace, past Beirut, on its way to attack Iranian targets in Syria, according to air force images. It has also conducted operations in another unidentified area. And according to news reports, the Israeli F-35 took part in the attacks on Syria following the downing of an Israeli F-16 by a Syrian surface-to-air SA-5 missile. Read more ..

The Edge of Terrorism

On Facebook: Gaza Protestors Instructed ‘Bring a Knife, Dagger, Handgun,’ Kidnap Israelis, Murder Soldiers

May 17th 2018

Nakba day protests 2011

Two Palestinian Facebook pages and a forum directing rioters in Gaza gave explicit instructions to murder and kidnap Israelis on May 14, the day the U.S. embassy opened in Jerusalem, as well as suggestions on how to accomplish this goal.
It is not clear if Hamas itself was the group sending these messages. What is critical is that Gazans were encouraged to bring weapons to the demonstrations and use these weapons to either murder or capture Israelis. Israeli soldiers may have been facing Palestinians who were using the cover of demonstrating civilians to attempt to break through the border with the goal of murdering and kidnapping Israelis.
The following are the instructions to bring weapons, murder “soldiers and settlers,” and kidnap Israeli citizens for use as bargaining chips to impose conditions on Israel:

Iran's Nukes

Israel Presents Iran Nuclear Files

April 30th 2018

Iran centrifuges

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu stepped up pressure on the United States to pull out of a 2015 nuclear deal with Iran, holding a primetime address on Israeli TV to present what he called evidence of a secret Iranian nuclear weapons program.

Intelligence experts and diplomats said he did not seem to have presented a “smoking gun” showing that Iran had violated the agreement, although he may have helped make a case on behalf of hawks in the U.S. administration who want to scrap it.

Most of the purported evidence Netanyahu unveiled dated to the period before the 2015 accord was signed, although he said Iran had also kept important files on nuclear technology since then, and continued adding to its “nuclear weapons knowledge”. Tehran dismissed Netanyahu as “the boy who cried wolf”, and called his presentation propaganda. Read more ..

The Trump Era

Coalition Launched 105 Weapons against Syria, None Intercepted

April 16th 2018

Standard Missile 3

As American, British and French ordnance rained down on a trio of Syrian regime targets, Russian air defense systems made no attempt to intercept the weapons, the Pentagon said Saturday.

The attacks may have set the Syrian chemical weapons programs back for “years,” said Marine Corps Lt. Gen. Kenneth McKenzie, the director of the Joint Staff, while acknowledging that the three sites were not the totality of the Syrian chemical weapons program.

The strikes involved ordnance from all three of the western allied nations, from both air and naval assets. Overall, 105 weapons were launched by the three nations. The three targeted areas were:

1) The Barzah Research and Development Center, which McKenzie called the “heart” of the chemical weapons program for the Assad regime and is located in “one of the most heavily defended” areas in the world, very close to the capitol of Damascus. This site was targeted by American forces only, with 57 Tomahawk missiles launched by sea and 19 JASSM-ER weapons launched from a pair of B-1 bombers, accompanied by protective fighter coverage. The U.S. assesses this facility was destroyed. 


The Battle for Syria

Russia blames Israel for Attack on Syrian Air Base Likely Over Gas Atrocity

April 9th 2018

Syria fighting injured baby

ussia blamed Israel for a missile attack on a Syria air base on Monday morning, which came after President Bashar al-Assad triggered international outrage by carrying out a suspected chemical attack in a besieged suburb of Damascus.

The US and France both denied attacking the T-4 airfield near Homs, which is close to the ancient city of Palmyra in central Syria.

Russia said Israel launched eight missiles, five of which were shot down, from outside of Syrian airspace.

At least 14 fighters, including Iranians, were killed in the early morning strike, according to the monitoring organisation the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. Syria also accused Israel of carrying out the strike.


Financing the Flames

Palestinian Authority to Pay $355 Million in 2018 to Terrorists and their Families

March 29th 2018

International Currency 3

The Palestinian Authority has authorized payments of $355 million to convicted terrorists and the families of terrorists as part of their 2018, according to a report.

Get Financing the Flames and read the original Edwin Black investigation on the topic

According to Palestinian Media Watch, the P.A. budget for the Commission of Prisoner Affairs, which pays the salaries of terrorist prisoners and released prisoners, is set at $166 million, of which $158 million will go to terrorists.

Additionally, the budget for the Families of the Martyrs and Wounded Institution is set at $200 million, of which $197 million will go to the families of terrorists.

As such, the total payment by the P.A. for 2018 is set at $355 million, which is 7.47 percent of its operation budget of $4.76 billion in 2018 and some 44 percent of the funding the P.A. hopes to receive in foreign aid this year. Read more ..

The Digital Edge

Defense Agency Moving Classified Data to Amazon's Secret Cloud After Protest Resolved

March 13th 2018

Amazon Box2

For the first time, the Defense Department will begin moving classified data and applications to Amazon Web Services’ Secret Region—the same cloud environment developed for the CIA and intelligence community several years ago.

U.S. Transportation Command—the part of the department responsible for moving troops and equipment around the globe—announced its intent to make use of AWS’ Classified Secret Commercial Cloud Services in December after the company expanded its capabilities and availability to non-intelligence agencies.

The Defense Department’s sole-source decision—a contract awarded without a full and open competition—was protested by Microsoft, which itself offers a variety of cloud services to the federal government. The company withdrew its protest March 8, allowing TRANSCOM to begin migrating data to the AWS Secret Region. In a statement to Nextgov, Microsoft said it withdrew its protest “because the issues involved were resolved” to the company’s satisfaction. Read more ..

The Weapon's Edge

Russia's New Nukes Are Similar to a Risky Project the U.S. Abandoned

March 2nd 2018


Part of Russian Pres. Vladimir Putin’s state of the nation speech Thursday sounded like something from a 1960s James Bond film. Putin announced his country has developed and recently tested a cruise missile and an underwater drone that are nuclear-powered as well as hypersonic missiles capable of flying at up to 20 times the speed of sound. Putin’s words were punctuated by video and computer graphics the Russian leader used to drive home the point that the weapons would render NATO’s U.S.-led missile defense systems “useless.”

For the West, the prospect of Russia having all three of those new weapons is unsettling to say the least. But the nuclear-powered cruise missile, in particular, harkens back to a weapons system the U.S. Air Force began developing at the height of the cold war and later abandoned. Project Pluto (pdf), an initiative commissioned in 1957, had the goal of developing nuclear-powered engines for use in Supersonic Low-Altitude Missiles (SLAM). The Pentagon tested prototype engines with 500-megawatt reactors at the Department of Energy Nevada Test Site in 1961 and 1964, but soon after had second thoughts about the project.

Scientific American spoke with Edwin Lyman, a senior scientist in the Union of Concerned Scientists’ Global Security Program, about the eerie parallels between Putin’s nuclear-powered missile and Project Pluto—including the Pentagon’s reasons for ending the project, and the lessons about the dangers of nuclear power and weaponry that seem to have been forgotten. Read more ..

Israel Thwarts 20-30 Terrorist Attacks Weekly

February 28th 2018

soldiers pray at wailing wall

The IDF's Central Command has been carrying out massive operations to thwart planned terrorist attacks, particularly in and around Hebron, Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman announced Tuesday.

"We are thwarting 20 to 30 terrorist attacks each week, facing ever-increasing terrorist efforts," Lieberman said. He attributed the successful anti-terror operations to "quality intelligence and a combination of smart deployment of forces and advanced technology," and emphasized that the IDF had prevented "the vast majority of terrorist activity."

Lieberman spoke during a tour of the Jewish quarter of Hebron, where he was accompanied by IDF Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Gadi Eizenkot, GOC Central Command Maj. Gen.  Roni Numa, and Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories Maj. Gen. Yoav Mordechai.


Mideast on Edge

Analyzing The Latest Round Of Big Military Moves In The Middle East

February 16th 2018

Israeli tank Operation Protective Edge

There are lessons to be learned from Iran firing a drone into Israeli air space and Israel’s destruction of about half of Syria’s air defense capabilities in response:

  • Iran is testing not only its capabilities abroad, but the reactions of its enemies and its security on the home front
  • Israel is testing as well
  • Russia’s appears unwilling to take on any more military activity than absolutely necessary and is unwilling to confront Iran.
  • The US will stand by Israel, but may not be willing to push Iran out of Syria.


Iran’s goal is to operate militarily across Iraq, Syria, and Lebanon – north of its adversaries Saudi Arabia, Jordan, and Israel. To this end, Iran “helped” move not only ISIS fighters, but tens of thousands of Sunni Arabs, from its westward path. Iran controls militias of more than 80,000 fighters in Syria. Israeli sources say there are 3,000 members of Iran’s IRGC commanding 9,000 Hizb’allah, and 10,000 “violent Shia militias recruited from across the Mideast, including Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan.” The rest are Syrian.


The Battle for Syria

Assad Is Still Using Chemical Weapons in Syria

February 10th 2018

Syria fighting injured baby

UN investigators are looking into reports the Syrian regime used chemical weapons on at least two rebel-held towns in recent days. The reports mark at least the sixth time the regime of President Bashar Assad has used such weapons against civilian population centers.

The UN Commission of Inquiry on Syria said Tuesday it had received multiple reports “that bombs allegedly containing weaponized chlorine have been used in the town of Saraqeb in Idlib and Douma in eastern Ghouta.” The allegation is likely to further increase tensions between the U.S. and Russia at the UN Security Council, where both countries are permanent, veto-wielding members. The U.S. complains that Russia, which backs the Assad regime, blocks any meaningful action against the Syrian leader’s use of internationally prohibited weapons.


The Edge of Terrorism

Why the Muslim Brotherhood Declared U.S. an Enemy State

January 16th 2018


In the first official statement of its kind, the Muslim Brotherhood announced last month that it now regards the United States of America as an enemy, following President Trump's decision to move its embassy in Israel to Jerusalem. The statement was published on the Brotherhood's Arabic language website, where it often publishes more incendiary rhetoric.

"Jerusalem is an Islamic and Arab land, for which we make blood, freedom and life, and we fight every aggressor and every supporter of aggression," the statement said.

It called for a unified Islamist and Palestinian response "to ignite an uprising throughout the Islamic world against the Zionist occupation and the American administration in support of the occupation and against the rights and freedoms of the peoples." Read more ..

The Weapon's Edge

India May Proceed with $500 Million Israeli Spike Missile

January 10th 2018

Iron Dome sunset

Months after it decided to scrap a deal to acquire the weapons from an Israeli firm, India is considering purchase of Spike anti-tank guided missiles (ATGMs) from Israel via the government-to-government (G-to-G) route, PTI reported.

Interestingly, the latest development comes a week before Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is scheduled to visit India. It is expected that the two countries may deliberate on finding ways to further deepen the already close defence ties between India and Israel during his talks with Indian leaders in New Delhi.

As per the original proposal, India had planned to procure the ATGMs for the Army at a cost of USD 500 million. According to a PTI report, the government is now examining the possibility of purchasing the missiles from Israel through the G-to-G route in the same manner it sealed the deal for procuring 36 Rafale jets from France. Read more ..

The Battle for Syria

Russia Says Its Syria Bases Beat Back an Attack by 13 Drones

January 9th 2018

Flying Robot

The main Russian air and naval bases in Syria beat back an attack by 13 armed drones over the weekend, the Russian Ministry of Defense said on Monday.

The small drones were shot down before they caused any damage and there were no casualties, according to a statement on the military’s Facebook page.

But the attack could indicate that militants opposed to the government of President Bashar al-Assad were stepping up the violence directed against the Russian military, which intervened in September 2015 to prop up the beleaguered Syrian government, then its main ally in the Middle East.

Two Russian military personnel died in a mortar attack against the Hmeimim air base on Dec. 31, the military announced last week.


Israel on Edge

Friday With IDF Troops Facing Palestinian Rioters On Gaza Border

January 1st 2018

Israeli Commandoes

As we travel towards the border fence, we see a pillar of thick black smoke rising to the heavens. "They're burning tires," the scout tells me as he suppresses a smile. "Burning tires look great on camera."

He has been serving in this area for years, and he has already seen it all. The Palestinian protests that erupted following US President Donald Trump's recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital no longer surprise him. They take place, he tells me, all days of the week, but on Fridays after prayers in the mosques, Hamas and Islamic Jihad make special efforts to send young Gazans to protest along the border fence.

We stop behind an earthen mound adjacent to the border fence. Behind it lie Golani and Duvdevan soldiers, divided into small groups, careful not to raise their heads. The Palestinian protesters are hurling glass marbles at them using slingshots. If such marbles hit the head or other sensitive parts of the body, they could kill. There are only 30 to 40 meters separating the soldiers and the protesters in some places. At this distance, marbles are as dangerous as a bullet, perhaps even more so. Read more ..

The Weapon's Edge

World's Largest Amphibious Aircraft Takes Off in China

December 25th 2017

The East is Red

China's home-grown AG600, the world's largest amphibious aircraft in production, took to the skies on Sunday for its maiden flight. The plane, codenamed "Kunlong" according to state news agency Xinhua, took off from the southern city of Zhuhai and landed after roughly an hour-long flight.

With a wingspan of 38.8 meters (127 feet) and powered by four turboprop engines, the aircraft is capable of carrying 50 people and can stay airborne for 12 hours.

"Its successful maiden flight makes China among the world's few countries capable of developing a large amphibious aircraft," chief designer Huang Lingcai told Xinhua.

The amphibious aircraft has military applications but will be used for firefighting and marine rescue, with at least 17 orders placed so far with state-owned manufacturer Aviation Industry Corp of China, state media reported. Read more ..

The Caliphate

Success for al-Qaeda in Syria?

December 20th 2017

IS with Missile

One of the most common concepts to describe al-Qaida’s presence in Syria has been that of ‘playing the long game.'[1] That is, whereas its rival the Islamic State focused on quickly defeating other Syrian insurgent groups and opponents, establishing a state project and imposing the harshest aspects of Islamic law (i.e. the hudud punishments for serious crimes), al-Qaida has chosen to embed deeply within the insurgency fighting the Assad regime. Thus, al-Qaida affiliates and al-Qaida-linked groups have generally proven themselves to be valuable military partners for other factions, while not working to impose all aspects of Islamic law immediately on the populations in their zones of control and influence, but rather working to condition the locals to accept their imposition eventually. Read more ..

The Edge of Terrorism

Qatar Charities Support of Extreme Islamist Ideology

December 19th 2017

Hamas Terrorists

Qatar's purposeful support of the Muslim Brotherhood, Iran, Turkey, and radical Islamist terrorist groups led Saudi Arabia,BahrainEgypt, and the UAE to cut all ties with the Emirate last June. Indeed, it was no secret that "Qatar has a long history of harboring terrorist operatives and financing various extremist groups, including Hamas, the Taliban, al Qaeda, the al-Nusra Front, and the Muslim Brotherhood."

Nonetheless, Qatar has been protesting and arguing ever since that the "blockade" violates international law and human rights. But the Anti-Terrorist Quartet (ATQ) has put Qatar on their 'terror finance watchlist' and
 banned major Qatari charities. Among the terrorist-supporting charities named, is Qatar Charity that advertises its mission is "to participate in the preservation of Islamic culture through the construction of mosques. We spread our Islamic teachings with the world, and we invite you to be part of it in this achievement." But the QC -- that nation's and one of the Arab World's largest charities -- has long been known to fund the very same extremists Islamists terror groups listed by the ATQ.

Campus Hate

Why Is A Harvard University Student Group Honoring Islamist Extremist Nihad Awad?

December 9th 2017

Koran and prayer beads

In a profile of legendary child psychologist, Harvard professor, and civil rights activist Robert Coles, journalist David Swift describes Coles as "one of our great moral visionaries." To honor Coles's legacy, Harvard University's student-led non-profit group, the Phillips Brooks House Association (PBHA) has admirably named a prestigious annual activists' award after Coles.

Less admirably, however, this year the students selected Council on American Islamic Relations' (CAIR) co-founder and executive director Nihad Awad to deliver the 2017 Robert Coles "Call of Service" Lecture and win the coveted award.

Nihad Awad is certainly a significant figure, but he is not a "great moral visionary." Instead, Awad has a long history of promoting and condoning Islamist anti-Semitism, refusing to condemn terrorist organizations, and maintaining close connections with Muslim Brotherhood offshoots.

During the early 1990s, when Awad worked for the (now defunct) organization Islamic Association for Palestine (IAP), the organization distributed a pamphlet (stamped with their logo) called "America's Greatest Enemy: The Jew! And an Unholy Alliance!" The anti-Semitic booklet was featured in counterterrorism expert Steven Emerson's 1994 PBS documentary "Terrorists Among Us." Read more ..

The Caliphate

ISIS's Fall Means Fewer Terror Deaths As Jihadis Adjust, IPT Analysis Shows

December 3rd 2017

ISIS Group

The fall of ISIS's physical caliphate is likely to create a shift in radical Islamic terrorism, an Investigative Project on Terrorism (IPT) analysis of data from the University of Maryland's National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and the Responses to Terrorism (START)'s Global Terrorism Database (GTD) finds.

Fewer people may be killed in radical Islamic terror attacks, but the terrorists will seek new safe havens and adapt their online strategies to maintain a virtual caliphate.

From the data, five phases were identified. The first phase from 2001-2006 saw on average 2,500 fatalities globally. Phase two from 2007-2011 saw an average of 3,200 global fatalities. In phase three, 2012-2013, there was an annual average of 9,500 global fatalities, and in phase four, 2014-2016, an exponential spike in fatalities showed an average annual of around 27,500 global fatalities. Now that the caliphate is finally collapsing, the fifth phase, according to the IPT, will start to see a decline in annual fatalities globally. Read more ..

Iran and North Korea

High-Level Contacts Between North Korea and Iran Hint at Deeper Military Cooperation

November 29th 2017

Un-review troops

 High-level meetings between North Korean and Iranian officials in recent months are stoking concerns inside the U.S. government about the depth of military ties between the two American adversaries. In September, President Trump ordered U.S. intelligence agencies to conduct a fresh review of any potential bilateral nuclear collaboration. Yet officials in Washington, Asia, and the Middle East who track the relationship indicate that Pyongyang and Tehran have already signaled a commitment to jointly develop their ballistic missile systems and other military/scientific programs.

North Korea has vastly expanded its nuclear and long-range missile capabilities over the past year, developing intercontinental ballistic missiles that could potentially target the western United States with nuclear warheads. Over the same period, U.S. intelligence agencies have spotted Iranian defense officials in Pyongyang, raising the specter that they might share dangerous technological advances with each other. Read more ..

The Weapon's Edge

Israel Deploys Sea-based Iron Dome

November 28th 2017

Israeli Navy

The Israeli military has declared initial operational capability of a ship-based version of the Iron Dome intercepting system following a live-fire test earlier in the day that destroyed multiple incoming targets at sea.

The Nov. 27 milestone test capped more than 18 months of intensive coordination between the Israeli Air Force, the Israeli Navy and local industry to integrate Iron Dome with the Adir surveillance, track and guidance radar onboard the INS Lahav, a Sa’ar-5 corvette-class surface ship.

“Officially, from today, we added another operational layer to defend Israeli assets in the Mediterranean Sea,” Brig. Gen. Zvika Haimovich, commander of the Air Force’s Aerial Defense Division, told reporters.

“Now there is full connectivity between the ship-based Iron Dome, the Adir radar and our ground-based Iron Dome batteries. It was proven in today’s live-fire test and its performance is excellent,” Haimovich said. Read more ..

The Edge of Terrorism

Terrorists, Victims, or Both? The Children of ISIS Return

November 23rd 2017

IS with Missile

They learn to count by attending public lashings. By the age of 9, they know how to use a gun, make a bomb, and torture prisoners. They have been raised to know that Allah hates the infidel, and rewards those who kill unbelievers, the men and women living in the West. They are the children of ISIS. And now Europe prepares for their arrival.

With the fall of the Islamic State, countries across the globe anticipate the return of so-called "foreign fighters," those who joined ISIS and its jihad from outside its strongholds in Syria and Iraq – about 6,000 of them from Europe, America, Australia, and elsewhere in the West, according to 2015 figures. And among them are an unknown number of young children, some of whom traveled there with their parents, others who were born there. Read more ..

Saudi on Edge

Sheikh Kamel: Has the Mighty Saudi Fallen?

November 19th 2017

Saudi police

Inconceivably, in November 2017 Sheikh Saleh Abdallah Kamel chairman and founderof the Dallah al Baraka Group, chairman of the General Council for Islamic Banks and the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce, perhaps Saudi Arabia's richest private citizen, was placed under house arrest. His banking empire, untouched by numerous American and European investigations concerning their possible funding of terrorism, including al Qaeda, the Muslim Brotherhood, and affiliated groups, now appears under threat.

In 2000 a Bosnia police raid on the Benevolence Foundation charity located in Sarajevo resulted in the most important discovery of al Qaeda documents unearthed up to that date. The director of that charity, who was located in the United States, was later brought to trial in Chicago (US government indictment of Enaam Arnaout on 9 October 2002, 02 CR 892). Read more ..

The Edge of Terrorism

Minneapolis Star-Tribune Newspaper Refuses to Identify Muslim Stabber at Mall of America

November 15th 2017

Minneapolis skyline

On Sunday night, a man who police identified as Mahad Abdiaziz Abdirahman, 20, of Minneapolis, stabbed two men at the Mall of America near Bloomington, Minnesota, after they tried to stop him from stealing clothes inside a dressing room at Macy’s at about 6:45 p.m.  However, the Minneapolis Star-Tribune failed to mention his name or other identifying attributes in its report on the crime. The paper referred to him only as ‘the suspect.'”

A search on the Star-Tribune website for Mahad Abdirahman revealed that the name was not listed. “Mahad” means “one who preaches and invites people to Islam.” “Abdiaziz” means “the slave of Allah the master,” and Abdirahman is a common Somali Muslim last name which means “the slave of Allah who is the gracious.”


The Iranian Threat

Iran Building Permanent Military Base in Syria

November 13th 2017

Iranian Revolutionary Guard

Iran is establishing a permanent military base inside Syria, a Western intelligence source has told the BBC.

The Iranian military is said to have established a compound at a site used by the Syrian army outside El-Kiswah, 14 km (8 miles) south of Damascus.

The report comes amid growing tensions over Iranian influence in Syria and across the region.

Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu recently warned that Iran wanted to establish itself militarily in Syria.

"Israel will not let that happen," he said.

Satellite images commissioned by the BBC seem to show construction activity at the site referenced by the intelligence source between January and October this year. Read more ..

The Caliphate

Islamic State Advice on Attacks in “Enemy Abode”

November 12th 2017

ISIS Battle Position

As the Islamic State goes into rapid decline as an entity controlling territory in Iraq and Syria, the overwhelming majority of its propaganda output has become dedicated to coverage of military operations against its enemies. Alongside that shift has come increasing emphasis on the idea that the Islamic State will still live on its ‘soldiers’ conduct operations in the heart of enemy territory. The latest issue of the Islamic State’s al-Naba’ newsletter (issue 105) contains the following infographic on the matter. Of course, in seeking to conduct attacks in ‘enemy’ countries, many Islamic State supporters are undoubtedly seeking fame in what would otherwise have been an uneventful existence without supposed meaning to their lives. Yet the infographic warns against that sort of motivation.

Also notable in this infographic is the urge to inflict maximum damage at minimum cost. Much speculation exists as to how far the Islamic State finances attacks by its operatives in the West but self-funding by operatives seems to be the preferred means, such as through taking out loans under false pretences, or relying on proceeds of common criminal activity like drug-dealing and robbery. Read more ..

The Battle for Syria

Syrian Forces Oust ISIS from Last Border Stronghold

November 10th 2017

Syrian Rebel w/SAW

Syrian government forces said Thursday they have recaptured the Islamic State’s former border stronghold of Bukamal, shrinking the group’s remaining territory and leaving the militants with only a few enclaves.

The move into Bukamal, also called Abu Kamal, in eastern Syria choked off a key route for the Islamic State across the border with Iraq. The Syrian state news agency said Wednesday that pro-government forces had linked up with Iraqi troops to clear what remained of the “collapsed” militant group in the area.

The Islamic State’s self-declared caliphate, announced three years ago, once stretched across Syria and Iraq to occupy an area the size of Belgium. Now, after a series of defeats, the militants have been penned into a string of Syrian towns and villages along the Euphrates River. Read more ..

The Edge of Terrorism

Nine Held in Anti-Terror Raids Across France As 'Attack Is Thwarted'

November 9th 2017

French antiterror police squad

Nine suspects were arrested in a series of anti-terror operations carried out around France on Tuesday, with French media reporting a planned attack on the city of Nice had been thwarted.

The raids took place in the greater Paris region of Île-de-France and the Provence-Alpes-Côtes-d'Azur region of the south east.

According to reports some nine individuals aged between 18 and 60-years-old were arrested in the raids carried out by France's specialist counter-terrorist police.

The arrests were reportedly made in the Val-de-Marne department to the south west of Paris, Seine-Saint-Denis to the capital's north, the city of Aix-en Provence, north of Marseille and the town of Menton, on the border with Italy.


North Korea's Nukes

US Putting Nuclear Bombers on High Alert

October 23rd 2017

A Bomber

B-52 bombers rigged with nuclear weapons are being prepared for 24-hour alert for the first time since the Cold War, a senior U.S. Air Force official has reportedly said.

In a report by security news website Defense One General David Goldfein, Air Force chief of staff, said U.S. military leaders are reacting to new threat levels.

"The world is a dangerous place and we've got folks that are talking openly about use of nuclear weapons," he said, according to the report. Goldfein said no official order had been given to put nuclear bombers on alert, but said preparations are underway. The U.S. Department of Defense was not immediately available for comment when contacted by CNBC. Read more ..

The Edge of Terrorism

German Intelligence: Hizballah Fighters Posing As Refugees

October 17th 2017


Hizballah terrorists are exploiting Germany's refugee policy and entered the country as part of the recent wave of Middle East migrants, according to the Jerusalem Post's review of a German intelligence report released this month.

"Since mid-2015 there are increased indications of fighters from Shi'ite militias entering Germany as legal refugees," the report says, and "roughly 50% [of the fighters] show a direct connection to Hezbollah."

A growing number of Hizballah operatives are settling in the North Rhine-Westphalia region, the report says. The region hosts the Imam-Mahdi Center – a traditional hub for Hizballah operatives. The report also cites a growing and open Hamas presence in North Rhine-Westphalia, despite Germany's terrorist designation of the Palestinian organization, where Hamas supporters exploit Germany to "collect funds" and "recruit new members to spread their propaganda." Read more ..

Iran's Nuke's

Iran's Secret Sites Linked To Nuclear Weapons Development Revealed

October 13th 2017

Iran Nuclear Equipment centrifuges

President Donald Trump is expected this week to “decertify” the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), better known simply as the Iran deal, declaring that the agreement reached in 2015 by the U.S. and five other international powers is not in America’s national interest. The matter will then be tossed back to Congress, which will have 60 days to decide whether to reimpose hefty pre-2015 sanctions.

While the President’s likely move has generated wide condemnation from foreign policy leaders — who reiterate that the United Nations nuclear watchdog agency, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), has maintained Iran is in compliance — a new 52-page investigative report by the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), entitled: “Iran’s Nuclear Core: Uninspected Military Sites,” obtained exclusively by Fox News and slated for release Wednesday, asserts that the country’s nuclear weapons program has far from halted. Read more ..

Iran's Nukes

Iran Warns U.S. Against Imposing Further Sanctions

October 9th 2017

Iranian Revolutionary Guard

Iran warned the United States against designating its Revolutionary Guards Corp as a terrorist group and said U.S. regional military bases would be at risk if further sanctions were passed.

The warning came after the White House said on Friday that President Donald Trump would announce new U.S. responses to Iran’s missile tests, support for “terrorism” and cyber operations as part of his new Iran strategy.

“As we’ve announced in the past, if America’s new law for sanctions is passed, this country will have to move their regional bases outside the 2,000 km range of Iran’s missiles,” Guards’ commander Mohammad Ali Jafari said, according to state media.

Jafari also said that additional sanctions would end the chances for future dialogue with the United States, according to state media, and issued a stark warning to American troops. Read more ..

The Drone Threat

DARPA Seeks New Tech To Neutralize Adversary Drones

October 5th 2017

Flying Robot

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (Arlington County, VA) is seeking out innovative drone sensing and neutralization technologies.

The U.S defense agency's Tactical Technology Office recently posted a request for information looking to identify promising technologies for countering adversary small unmanned air systems (sUAS). These would be used to augment or complement DARPA's Mobile Force Protection (MFP) program, which is currently developing a system capable of defeating self-guided sUAS - i.e., those that "do not rely on a radio or GPS receiver for their operation" - attacking a high-value convoy in transit.

The program emphasizes low-footprint solutions - in terms of size, weight, power, and required personnel needed for operation - as well as "varied and low collateral damage neutralization techniques and effectors." Phase one of the three-phase program is currently in progress, with a plan to culminate in a field evaluation in January 2018.


The Caliphate

Media Fitna in the Islamic State

October 4th 2017

ISIS Battle Position

The Islamic State has two main types of media departments that come under its media administration: central media institutions such as al-Furqan Media and al-Hayat Media, and the provincial media offices. The latter category includes areas of formally declared ‘provinces’ (e.g. Raqqa province in Syria and Diyala province in Iraq) and areas where the Islamic State operates on the ground but has not declared a ‘province’ (e.g. Somalia). In addition to these institutions, we have Amaq News Agency, which covers services provision and civilian life in Islamic State territories, military operations and even Islamic State terrorist attacks around the world, but has not been formally acknowledged to be a part of the Islamic State’s media apparatus. In origin, Amaq News Agency is the foremost example of what was envisioned as an ‘auxiliary’ media agency for the Islamic State.

The internal documents I have obtained concern problems in media production in Raqqa province and disagreements between media departments. For example, in the first document, the Delegated Committee (the higher governing body of the Islamic State) reprimands the wali (provincial governor) of Raqqa for supposed shortcomings in media coverage of events. The Delegated Committee also asks the wali to get on with the issuing of Mawkab al-Nur (‘Procession [/Convoy] of Light’). Read more ..

Iran's Nukes

If the U.S. Reimposes Sanctions on Iran, Allies Will Follow

October 3rd 2017

Iran-US Hatred

“We will not be able to coerce Europe, Russia, and China into shunning Iran’s economy over policy interests that they do not share.” — Adam Szubin, former director of the U.S. Office of Foreign Assets Control

“The United States would have to threaten all customers who buy Iranian crude. The response would be global outrage and resistance, especially from our allies.” — Matthew Reed, vice president at Foreign Reports

In November 2011, Illinois Sen. Mark Kirk — with help from then-Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell — took the Obama White House by surprise, filing an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act that imposed crippling sanctions on the Central Bank of Iran. Days later, Kirk and New Jersey Sen. Bob Menendez forged a bipartisan compromise and a vote was scheduled. Read more ..

The Edge of Terrorism

Las Vegas Mass Shooting-- 50 Dead

October 2nd 2017

FBI sting

America is reeling from the worst mass shooting in its history after at least 50 people were killed and more than 200 wounded at a country music festival in Las Vegas on Sunday night.

Police say the shooter was 64-year-old Stephen Paddock, described as a local man, who opened fire on the Route 91 Harvest Festival in Las Vegas Village from a room across the street in the Mandalay Bay Hotel shortly after 10pm.

Officers say Paddock was shot and killed after they breached a room in the hotel, where he had stashed an 'arsenal' of weapons used during the massacre.

Investigators are now raiding the Mesquite home he shared with Marilou Danley, described as his 'companion', who was detained for questioning in the early hours of Monday morning.

Sheriff Joseph Lombardo, of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, said investigations are still ongoing and police have not yet determined a motive.  Read more ..

The Edge of Terrorism

Two Women Killed At Marseille Train Station In Suspected Terror Attack

October 1st 2017

French soldiers

Two women were stabbed to death Sunday in a suspected terrorist attack at the Marseille train station in southern France.

The assailant was shot dead by French security forces, Fox News reported.

Police sources told Sky News the attacker shouted "Allahu Akkbar” as he carried out the attack at Gare St. Charles. One woman had her throat slit and the other was stabbed to death, Fox News has learned.

The attacker was believed to be a man in his late twenties and of North African background. The area around Marseille's central station was sealed off following the attack.

French police said in a tweet Sunday around 2:30 p.m. local time that they had responded to an incident at the train station. Read more ..

The Battle for Syria

Israel Strikes Weapons Depot by Damascus Airport

September 25th 2017

Jets vapor trail

Israeli strikes hit a weapons depot by Damascus airport overnight, targeting a warehouse belonging to Lebanese militant group Hezbollah, which is allied with the Syrian government, a monitor said Friday.

"Israeli warplanes targeted with rocket fire a weapons depot belonging to Hezbollah near the airport," said Rami Abdel Rahman, director of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

There was no immediate official confirmation from either Damascus or Israel, but the Jewish state has been accused of carrying out multiple strikes in Syria, including earlier this month.

On September 7, the Syrian army said Israeli warplanes hit one of its positions near the central town of Masyaf. The site was reportedly used by Hezbollah forces and those of Iran, another Syrian government ally. In April, the government accused Israel of firing several missiles at a military position near Damascus airport, triggering a huge explosion. Read more ..

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