Monday, November 17, 2014

Kenya arrests, 200 arrested as Kenya police raid suspected Al-Qaeda linked mosques "One man was killed Monday as Kenyan security forces arrested more than 200 people and seized weapons in raids on mosques accused of links with Somalia's Al-Qaeda affiliated Shebab militants, police said."

Iran to have Internet ‘smart filtering’ within months, Iran to have Internet ‘smart filtering’ within months, 14 Nov 2014 "Iran will have “smart filtering” within six months to weed out Internet content the authorities deem offensive or criminal, the telecommunications minister said on Friday."

Doha-based Qardawi rejects UAE blacklisting, Doha-based Qardawi rejects UAE blacklisting, 17 Nov 2014 "The International Union of Muslim Scholars and its chairman, Qatar-based Egyptian cleric Youssef al-Qaradawi, expressed “astonishment” on Monday at being designated a terrorist body by the United Arab Emirates."

Say hello to, the Islamic answer to Amazon

just picked this up from a couple of weeks ago: Guardian, Say hello to, the Islamic answer to Amazon see (screenshot left)

Boko Haram - opinion piece

Jacob Zenn, Washington Post, Boko Haram is acting increasingly like the Islamic State. Why don’t we treat it that way?, 13 Nov 2014 "The United States may have “insurgency fatigue” as a result of unsettled scores in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria, let alone the enduring conflicts in Libya, Mali, Somalia and elsewhere. But Nigeria is a longtime ally of the United States, and effective global leadership in West Africa is needed to halt Boko Haram’s momentum. Only then can students like those in Yobe State, Chibok and elsewhere have the opportunity to craft a future for themselves and their country."

ISIS at RISK » ISIS at RISK "The more the media spreads news about ISIS or ISIL or IS or Da’ish, the crazier it gets. The current Wikipedia entry is one of the longest I have ever seen. But let’s take a reality check here. ISIS is a digital creation as much as a successful terrorist operation that feeds the current media frenzy with Islam and terrorism."


Independent, A new Isis video – but a different ending. What could it mean? "The video that appeared on Sunday confirmed to show the head of the American aid worker Peter Kassig at the feet of a hooded killer of Isis is at once similar and dissimilar to the tapes we have seen before announcing the killing of Western hostages. Common to all of them is their savagery."

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Islamic State sets sights on Saudis

BBC News, Islamic State sets sights on Saudis "In a 17-minute audio message, purportedly from its elusive leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the group sets its sights firmly on Saudi Arabia, birthplace of Islam and the world's largest oil producer and exporter."

Friday, November 14, 2014


Malay Mail, Free Saudi cyber activists, demands media watchdog, 14 Nov 2014 "Media watchdog Reporters Without Borders (RSF) urged Saudi authorities today to drop charges against dissidents jailed in recent months over their Internet activity."


Yahoo News, Jordan takes Islamic State battle to Internet, mosques ""Jordan is waging a war against jihadist ideology and amended the anti-terrorism law... because the Internet has become the main tool for mobilising and recruiting" militants, said analyst Hasan Abu Haniya." Also listen to Radio 4, The World Tonight from last night on Jordanian issues

Jihadis who travel to Syria could be barred from UK return for two years

Guardian, Jihadis who travel to Syria could be barred from UK return for two years "Suspected jihadis, including teenagers, who travel to Syria will be prevented from returning to Britain for two years and only allowed to re-enter if they consent to face trial, home detention, regular police monitoring or go on a deradicalisation course."

The Journal of Arab & Muslim Media Research, The Journal of Arab & Muslim Media Research "The Journal of Arab & Muslim Media Research released its new issue (Vol. 7, Issue 1, 2014), edited by Noureddine Miladi from the Qatar University. The issue focuses on representation of Muslims in the British media and the future of traditional media in the Middle East region."

Wednesday, November 05, 2014

IS Mosul Net Hit

Coalition Airstrikes Demolish IS Internet Network in Mosul | BAS NEWS " The Iraqi authorities also revealed that during the airstrikes, the internet network of Islamic State in Mosul has become the target and coalition jets has destroyed the network."

Opinion re IS

How social media is helping Islamic State to spread its poison - Telegraph " In the post-Snowden world, this has become immeasurably more difficult – not least because the whistle-blower’s revelations prompted many of the world’s leading social media companies to tighten up their security arrangements, primarily to reassure customers that their private activities were safe from the activities of intelligence-seeking eavesdroppers."

IS Iceland, Why the Islamic State is interested in Iceland, 14 Oct 2014 I just picked up on this, although it came out a few weeks ago

Tech groups aid terror, says UK spy chief

Tech groups aid terror, says UK spy chief -  also see Robert Hannigan,, The web is a terrorist’s command-and-control network of choice. Radio 4 also had a piece on this yesterday [4 November] on PM (about 15 minutes in): Themes discussed would be familiar/obvious to many readers of this blog, I expect.

Monday, November 03, 2014

British-Iranian woman jailed for a year for trying to watch volleyball game

Guardian, British-Iranian woman jailed for a year for trying to watch volleyball game "Ghoncheh Ghavami, 25, a law graduate from London, was found guilty of spreading “propaganda against the regime” following a secret hearing at Tehran’s revolutionary court." Here's a related Amnesty International page

Reading list: Media Evolution on the Eve of the Arab Spring, Media Evolution on the Eve of the Arab Spring, Edited by Leila Hudson, Adel Iskandar, Mimi Kirk, "Leading scholars of Arab media come together to offer unparalleled insight into the communication environment that preceded the political and societal ruptures that shook the Arab world 2010-2011. Examining the role of competing publics, the state's ability to construct meaning, and social and political change in the region, they unsettle oversimplifications of much of the existing literature and examine numerous precipitating conditions, including, political stagnation, civil engagement, new media, rural and urban divides, Islamist blogospheres, video games, Turkish and Syrian dramas, mediated diplomacy, and diaspora." Looks interesting. Out at the end of the year. Expensive!!

'15 Progressive Islamic Facebook Pages', 15 Progressive Islamic Facebook Pages That You Should Really Check Out! "When was the last time you came across a very enlightening post from a mainstream Islamic page that completely changed your paradigm, or at least made you think differently? If you only follow mainstream Islamic pages, chances are that it may very well have been a long time ago (if ever). I don’t know about you, but I’ve had some pretty terrible experiences with popular Islamic pages. And, let me tell you why." Opinion ... define 'progressive'.

Who is the 'Angel of Kobane'?

BBC News, Who is the 'Angel of Kobane'?, 3 Nov 2014 "Thousands around the world on social media have shared the image of the "Angel of Kobane" or "Rehana", a Kurdish fighter who has become a symbol of resistance against Islamic State. According to the stories, she's slain as many as 100 Islamic State fighters. Only one hitch: she's probably not who people think she is."

Whose side is Turkey on?

LRB · Patrick Cockburn · Whose side is Turkey on?

Uprising could trigger Isis undoing, says study

Guardian, Uprising could trigger Isis undoing, says study "A large-scale uprising from people living under the totalitarian regime of Islamic State (Isis) is the most likely trigger that will lead to the undoing of the self-declared caliphate, according to an authoritative report into the jihadi group by the former head of counter-terrorism at MI6."

Friday, October 31, 2014

Zora Foundation

RFE/RL, How To Be A Good Islamic State Wife "The Zora Foundation says it aims to prepare potential female IS recruits for jihad in several ways. Among the "useful skills" taught by the group will include practical competencies such as first aid (to be used to help militants injured in battles), how to work with design and editing programs (to help spread IS propaganda), how to use weapons, and how to cook and sew for militants."

Czech Intelligence: Al-Qaeda using social networking in EU, Czech Intelligence: Al-Qaeda using social networking in EU "Al-Qaeda tends to focus on spreading its ideology among young Muslims in Europe and the Czech Republic via the Internet, for which it mainly used its website and social networks, the Czech Military Intelligence Service (VZ) says in its annual report for 2013."

Colorado teen radicalisation

Denver Post, Analyst group: Colorado teens spoke with top Islamic State terrorists, 29 Oct 2014 "Two of the three girls had secondary Twitter accounts — one of which included "SlaveOfAllah" in the handle — that they used to express their Islamic views. When the three left on their trip, their travels created international chatter on social media as supporters and detractors offered words of support and criticism." Features work of SITE

Thursday, October 30, 2014

'Isis wants to spread Ebola: security chief', Isis wants to spread Ebola: security chief, 30 Oct 2014 "Spain’s state secretary for security, Francisco Martínez, has told Congress that jihadists with connections to the extremist force Isis have discussed on internet forums how they could use Ebola as a weapon against the United States and the West in general."

Hyderabad techie arrested for allegedly trying to join the Islamic State, Hyderabad techie arrested for allegedly trying to join the Islamic State, 29 Oct 2014 "Software engineer Munawad Salman, hailing from Tamil Nadu, got attracted to jihadist group Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) through social media networks and had planned to join its forces, a senior police officer said today."

Opinion: 'A Beginner's Guide to Dressing Like the Islamic State for Halloween'

Laila Alawa,, A Beginner's Guide to Dressing Like the Islamic State for Halloween "Pretending to be a member of IS is not unique or trendy. Rather, it plays right into what these types of terrorist organizations want: public recognition of their existence and tacit permission to be a part of American culture. Considering that IS regularly recruits soldiers on social media, it's not too far-fetched to wonder if some of these social media posts of people dressing up "like them" may one day serve as recruitment tools. Ultimately, these types of costumes whitewash a violent criminal organization while simultaneously insulting Muslims, a diverse, mostly peaceful community of 1.6 billion people. "

Portsmouth recruits to ISIS

BBC News, Portsmouth men killed in Syria were 'radicalised online', 26 Oct 2014 "A faith equality leader in Portsmouth has blamed social media and the internet for "radicalising" young men fighting in Syria for Islamic State."

Child recruitment to ISIS

Bloomberg, Mosul’s Children Lured to Islamic State to Swell Ranks "The 13-year-old encountered fighters on his street who told him he should visit their new centers in the neighborhood. He then watched a video of Islamic State battles in a nearby house, which had been converted into a makeshift Internet cafe and cinema.

"One of the fighters “said we can be heroes just like the men in these videos and we can have a salary and a gun,” Abdullah, who registered his name, said in a phone interview conducted with his family’s consent. “I thought I will be a hero and help my family with money but my father told me this is a bad idea and I will have a job one day if I study and finish my school.”"

Russia Bans Wayback Machine

Moscow Times, Russia Bans Wayback Machine Internet Archive Over Islamic State Video "The Russian government has blacklisted the California-based Wayback Machine, a comprehensive archive of the Internet, over an Islamist video available on the website.

"The video, called "The Clang of Swords," by the notorious terrorist group Islamic State, was declared extremist by a court in Russia's southern Stavropol region in July."

US urges online fight against Islamic State group

France24, US urges online fight against Islamic State group "As US-led airstrikes continue to target the Islamic State (IS) group in Iraq and Syria, Washington has called for the battle against the jihadist group be taken to the internet amid mounting concern over its aggressive recruitment efforts."

Iranian vampire movie

io9, Iranian Vampire Movie A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night Is A Must-Watch Official site here

Civil Defense Chief Discloses Iran's Tough Response to US Cyberattack on Natanz, Civil Defense Chief Discloses Iran's Tough Response to US Cyberattack on Natanz "Head of Iran's Civil Defense Organization Brigadier General Gholam Reza Jalali revealed on Tuesday that a US cyberattack on Iran's nuclear enrichment facility in Natanz failed due to his organization's tough defensive measures."

"And now for something completely different ..."

Dean Obeidallah, Daily Beast, Middle East Goes Monty Python on ISIS It's an interesting article, which points to this video (among others):