On Security

Gauging the Jihadist Movement in 2016: The al Qaeda Camp

Scott Stewart
VP of Tactical Analysis, Stratfor
Dec 31, 2015 | 08:01 GMT
A TV grab from the Qatar-based Al Jazeera dated June 17, 2005, shows al Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri delivering a speech at an undisclosed location.

A TV grab from the Qatar-based Al-Jazeera news channel dated 17 June 2005 shows Al-Qaeda number two Ayman al-Zawahiri delivering a speech at an undisclosed location with a machine gun next to him. Al-Zawahiri, in a video posted on the Internet 29 September 2006, called US President George W Bush a liar who had 'failed in his war against Al-Qaeda', Al-Jazeera television reported. The previous day, Islamist websites on the Internet had said there would be a new video message posted by Zawahiri entitled ' Bush, the pope, Darfur and the Crusades.' AFP PHOTO/AL-JAZEERA -- QATAR OUT & INTERNET OUT -- (Photo credit should read -/AFP/Getty Images)

(AFP/Getty Images)

Although badly damaged, al Qaeda has thus far managed to survive the focused and prolonged assault by the global coalition attempting to destroy it. It has also weathered the ideological and physical challenges from the Islamic State -- a foe that is arguably more dangerous to the group than the U.S.-led counterterrorism campaign. If pressure on the al Qaeda core and its franchises is eased, the group could recover much of its pre-9/11 terrorist capability. ...

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