Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Gaza and technology

London Review of Books, If Israel were smart; Sara Roy on Gaza, Vol. 39 No. 12, 15 June 2017, pages 19-20

"Gaza has a talented, tech-savvy population; if ever there were peace, an American investor said, ‘Gaza’s internet sector would become another India.’ The number of internet users in Gaza is reportedly equal to that of Tel Aviv, and a small number are already subcontracting for companies in India, Bangladesh and Israel."

Terrorist or Disturbed Loner? The Contentious Politics of a Label

Max Fisher, NYT, Terrorist or Disturbed Loner? The Contentious Politics of a Label "Prime Minister Theresa May called the attack terrorism. But debate has continued, suggesting it is about more than labels, but a suspicion that society grants greater importance to non-Muslim than Muslim victims and to Islamist than far-right or other threats."

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Facebook posts 'glorifying' Finsbury Park terror attack reported to Government counter-extremism service

Independent, Facebook posts 'glorifying' Finsbury Park terror attack reported to Government counter-extremism service

Finsbury Park

Coverage of the events surrounding the Finsbury Park attack can be found in my Islam in Britain blog

Tablets

mashable, How tablets are transforming the lives of young refugees in sub-Saharan Africa "The Vodafone Foundation announced its Instant Schools for Africa program on Wednesday—an initiative providing free, unlimited access to online educational materials for young people and teachers. Developed with Learning Equality, a leading nonprofit provider of open-source educational technology, the program launched in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Ghana, Kenya, Lesotho, Mozambique, and Tanzania."

Friday, June 09, 2017

As Isis territory shrinks it will rely more on internet

Maura Conway, irishtimes.com, As Isis territory shrinks it will rely more on internet "Relatively few Isis terrorists, however, have been radicalised solely by online means. Nevertheless, in our hyper-connected world the internet is implicated in almost all contemporary terrorism, whether, for example, as a radicalisation tool or for planning attacks."

Manchester bomber

ITV, Manchester bomber's younger brother says he was radicalised online in Britain "Ahmed Bin Salem, a spokesman for Tripoli's Special Deterrence Force, told Reuters: "Hashem said that he and Salman got the ideology of Daesh (Islamic State) in Manchester in 2015 from the internet and some friends in the UK.

"He added that they used to watch videos and had sympathy for children in Syria and wanted to do something for Daesh to help."

The Internet is changing civil wars

washingtonpost.com, Analysis | The Internet is changing civil wars. Watch out for these five trends. "This new ICT environment may help explain why so many civil wars have broken out in Muslim majority states since 2003 — and why they have been fought by multiple Islamist groups whose goals extend throughout the Muslim world."

Thursday, June 08, 2017

Abedi radicalised online

Reuters, Manchester bomber radicalised in Britain in 2015 - Tripoli counter-terrorism force, 8 June 2017

"Salman Abedi's brother Hashem also said he had bought equipment for the attack in Britain, though he did not know where it would be carried out, Ahmed Bin Salem, a spokesman for Tripoli's Special Deterrence Force (Rada), told Reuters.

 ... 

"Hashem said that he and Salman got the ideology of Daesh (Islamic State) in Manchester in 2015 from the internet and some friends in the U.K.," said Bin Salem [Ahmed Bin Salem, a spokesman for Tripoli's Special Deterrence Force]

""He added that they used to watch videos and had sympathy for children in Syria and wanted to do something for Daesh to help.""

Wednesday, June 07, 2017

The Silicon Valley with a heart: How Beirut's techies are helping Syrian refugees

middleeasteye.net, The Silicon Valley with a heart: How Beirut's techies are helping Syrian refugees "Entrepreneurs and international institutions are adapting new technologies to solve refugee challenges and improve their lives."

Iran attacks: 'IS' hits parliament and Khomeini mausoleum

BBC News, Iran attacks: 'IS' hits parliament and Khomeini mausoleum, 7 June 2017 "IS said it had carried out the attack and later posted a video which showed what it claimed was footage from inside the parliament building.

"A voice is heard saying, in Arabic: "We're not going anywhere. We're staying forever.""

NPR, ISIS Takes Credit For Iran Attacks, Several Deaths Reported 

IRNA, Interior Ministry confirms end of terrorist attacks in Tehran (also see adjacent links to condemnation of the attacks).  "In an apparently coordinated attempt, two terrorist groups attacked mausoleum of the late Imam Khomeini, southern Tehran, and the Iranian Parliament (Majlis) on Wednesday morning, killing 12 people and injuring 42 more."

Monday, June 05, 2017

Google won't remove hate preacher rants

Daily Mail, Google won't remove hate preacher rants as they don't break the rules "The hate preacher’s videos have been watched more than a million times, and won warped comments of approval from viewers, one of whom wrote: ‘Kuffar must [and] will be eliminated’."

Facebook says aims to be 'hostile environment' for terrorists

Reuters, After London attack, Facebook says aims to be 'hostile environment' for terrorists

May and regulation

CNN, Theresa May: Internet must be regulated to prevent terrorism  I agree with the comments of Peter Neumann here: " Peter Neumann, a professor who studies political violence and radicalization at King's College in London, said that blaming social media is "politically convenient but intellectually lazy.""

London attack 3 June 2017

Coverage associated with the London attack on 3 June can be found on my Islam in Britain blog.  Material associated specifically with internet-associated issues is posted here. Please check out my Twitter feed @garybunt, which includes my real-time coverage of links to event.

Qatar situation

The digital element of this current dispute is significant, especially in relation to this blog. A variety of opinions are available:

BBC News, Qatar row: Six countries cut links with Doha

Middle East Eye, Three potential motives behind the spat between Qatar and its Gulf neighbours "It's clear that the hacking of Qatar's news agency last month was a premeditated assault. Here's why it happened - and why now."

 Middle East Eye, Qatar hits back as Saudi, Egypt, UAE cut diplomatic, transport ties "Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain cut their ties with Qatar and expelled the Gulf state from the coalition fighting the war in Yemen, accusing it of supporting terrorism. It opens up the worst rift in years among some of the most powerful states in the Arab world."

Arab News,  Bahrain, KSA, Egypt and UAE cut diplomatic ties with Qatar

Al Jazeera,  Inside Story: What's behind recent media attacks against Qatar?


Friday, June 02, 2017

Terrorism kills more Muslims than anyone else

Independent, Terrorism kills more Muslims than anyone else data and discussion

How the Syrian War Changed How War Crimes Are Documented

Cristina Roca, News Deeply, Long Read: How the Syrian War Changed How War Crimes Are Documented "Seven years of war have transformed Syrian monitoring groups into sophisticated investigation centers. But with few options to hold perpetrators of humanitarian law violations accountable, the number of Syrians supplying evidence of human rights violations is dwindling, along with their hope for justice." Recommended.

Chobi by Omar Souleyman



Currently listening to 'Chobi' by Omar Souleyman, from his new release 'To Syria, With Love'.

Founder Of Islamic State News Agency Reported Killed In U.S. Air Strike

RFE/RL, Founder Of Islamic State News Agency Reported Killed In U.S. Air Strike, 2 June 2017 "The founder of the Islamic State (IS) group's news agency [Baraa Kadek] has been killed with his daughter in an air strike last week in eastern Syria, his brother and Syrian opposition activists say."

Thursday, June 01, 2017

Allegations: "Hard-Line Moralist in Indonesia Faces Pornography Charges"

NYT, Hard-Line Moralist in Indonesia Faces Pornography Charges, 30 May 2017 "Many Indonesians have leapt to Mr. Rizieq’s defense online, and posters in Jakarta, the capital, bearing his image call on Muslims to “defend preachers and religion.”"

When Hatred Goes Viral

Larry Greenemeier, Scientific American, When Hatred Goes Viral 
"A key researcher behind PhotoDNA says he is developing software called eGLYPH, which applies PhotoDNA’s basic principles to identify video promoting terrorism—even if the clips have been edited, copied or otherwise altered."

For Many Muslim Women, Ramadan's Celebrations Require a Whole New Wardrobe

Racked, For Many Muslim Women, Ramadan's Celebrations Require a Whole New Wardrobe

'Black Crows'

غَرَابِيبُ سُودٌ

Intense new 20 part series 'Black Crows' for Ramadan viewing on MBC:

 

NPR, New Show 'Black Crows' To Tell Stories Of Life Under ISIS

The National, TV drama Black Crows looks at ISIL threat from a female perspective

ANSA.it, ISIS threatens producers, cast of 'Black Crows' TV show 

Reuters, Saudi-owned TV drama fights Islamic State propaganda 

Foreign Policy, Can Good Television Beat the Islamic State?

It is also referred to in this post on Arabic for Nerds, Are there TV shows in Classical Arabic with English subtitles? which points out that the series will be available post-Ramadan on MBC's YouTube channel.

ISIS Philippines

Mubaraz Ahmed, religionandgeopolitics.org, ISIS in the Philippines? The Marawi Battle Intensifies "The raising of ISIS’ black flag over the city sent a strong message that despite setbacks in the Levant, the jihadi group remains active in other parts of the world."

Telegram & IS

Laura Smith, BBC News, Messaging app Telegram centrepiece of IS social media strategy "Although a long-time user of social media, IS activities took a significant turn in September 2015 when the group's official media outlets took to the messaging app Telegram. The move to the encrypted messaging service came after a long-running conflict with Twitter, which regularly shut down IS accounts, and some experimentation with less well-known platforms from which it was also expelled." Comprehensive article.

Beggars using social media to solicit alms

The Peninsula Qatar, Beggars using social media to solicit alms, 30 May 2017 "Beggars send text or a WhatsApp message and claim that they have a relative in critical condition or need help to have a surgery done."

Celebrating Zaha Hadid

Google Doodles, Celebrating Zaha Hadid


App to rescue animals

Cairo Scene, Startup Scene Profile: Egyptian Students Create an App to Rescue Street Animals "The ambitious app, set to launch in June, aims to keep malnourished and abused animals off the streets across Egypt, by connecting users to shelters."

Yalahwy: I Am an Egyptian Veiled Muslim Woman and I Date

Cairo Scene, Yalahwy: I Am an Egyptian Veiled Muslim Woman and I Date picks up on an online controversy surrounding John Legend's new music video.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Kuwaiti mobile operator's advert criticised and praised

BBC News, Kuwaiti mobile operator's advert criticised and praised "Kuwait-based Zain released the advert entitled "We Will Sing With Love" to mark the start of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan. It shows a man wearing an explosive belt walking through staged scenes reminiscent to bombings that took place in several countries and has been viewed more than three million times."



Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Egypt's media ban: The audacity of ignorance

Rania Al Malky, Middle East Eye, Egypt's media ban: The audacity of ignorance, 29 May 2017 "In an unprecedented move, the Egyptian government officially acknowledged blocking 21 websites for allegedly running content “that supports terrorism and extremism as well as publishing lies”."

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Social media users change profile picture in support of Qatar

Social media users change profile picture in support of Qatarthepeninsulaqatar.com, Social media users change profile picture in support of Qatar "A combination picture of the Emir H H Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani and Father Emir H H Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani has gone viral among Qatari social media users. A hashtag calling to change the profile picture to this combination pic is also trending on Qatar social media."

Thursday, May 25, 2017

"Hackers take aim at Qatar by publishing fake news on QNA"

Doha News, Hackers take aim at Qatar by publishing fake news on QNA, 24 May 2017
"An “unknown entity” has hacked Qatar’s official news agency, and is responsible for publishing a false statement attributed to the Emir, the Government Communications Office (GCO) has said."

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Manchester explosion

Independent, Manchester explosion: Isis supporters share messages celebrating explosion

Sky News, Tracing the Manchester bomber: Was he part of a network?  

De los imames a los nuevos predicadores: liderazgos en la interpretacion del Islam en Europa

Lina Klemkaite, CIDOB, De los imames a los nuevos predicadores: liderazgos en la interpretacion del Islam en Europa "The aim of this article is to analyse the locus of Muslim religious authority in Europe. It has shifted, leading to an increased number of Muslim voices demanding space for critical and intellectual participation and a degree of rivalry for religious and social authority. Those competing for religious au- thority have primarily been men, but women – contrary to prevailing opinion – have not been wholly excluded. We may thus af rm that women also participate in this compe- tition for authority, although only to a cer- tain degree. Ultimately, there are ever more Muslim social, political and religious lead- ers advocating a range of causes with the aim of satisfying the sophisticated demands of the individualised Muslim community."

Friday, May 19, 2017

Abu Zubaydah

Rob Hastings,inews, Exclusive: 'The terrorist I helped capture shouldn't be tortured', 16 May 2017 "Former CIA analyst John Kiriakou helped capture alleged terrorist Abu Zubaydah - and was the first CIA source to confirm he was tortured."

Instagram 'worst for young mental health'

BBC News, Instagram 'worst for young mental health' "Instagram is rated as the worst social media platform when it comes to its impact on young people's mental health, a UK snapshot survey suggests."

Iran's election and social media issues

Here's a quick round-up of selected coverage on Iran's election, focusing on the impact of social media:

BBC News, Iran's Instagram election sees rivals fight battles on social media

The Slate, What Did Iranian President Rouhani Actually Achieve? Channel 4,  Qom report  (Jon Snow report)

Deutsche Welle, Posting political opinions: how Iran's social media is shaping its presidential election

NYT, Iran Has Its Own Hard-Line Populist, and He’s on the Rise 

NPR, The Rise Of The Internet-Based Economy Shows What's Changed In Iran
 
Vocative,  Iranian Hardliners Finally Join Social Media Ahead Of Elections  "Supporters of the hardline camp are now widely visible online, in thousands of posts on Twitter or joining dozens of channels and groups affiliated with their candidate on the Telegram messaging app, which used by an estimated 20 million people in Iran."


Reuters, Iran hardliners join social media free-for-all before vote, "By far the most popular social media outlet is Telegram, a chat service that is a niche player in most Western countries but has some 20 million users in Iran, according to a report by the Iranian Students' News Agency (ISNA)."

CNBC, Iran's election is too close to call. Tehran's role on the world stage hangs in the balance

Arab News, Mock election poster calls on Iranians to elect Snoop Dogg as president 


Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Countering terrorism by telling a better story

Deo Akiiki, Countering terrorism by telling a better story | defenceWeb military perspective/opinion

How a woman in England tracks civilian deaths in Syria, one bomb at a time

Greg Jaffe, washingtonpost.com, How a woman in England tracks civilian deaths in Syria, one bomb at a time "Haddad spent the last part of her day, before her children returned from school, searching online for Amaq, the Islamic State affiliated news agency. Much of the site is devoted to Islamic State propaganda, but it can also be an important source of information, photos and video on civilian casualties in places, such as Raqqa, where the Islamic State’s brutal clampdown has made it exceedingly dangerous for Syrians to communicate with the outside world." Very interesting article.

How Facebook Helps to Reveal the Fate of Missing Syrian Refugees

wired.com, How Facebook Helps to Reveal the Fate of Missing Syrian Refugees Just read this excellent piece in the latest Wired (UK print version)

The Myth of the Muslim World

Chronicle, The Myth of the Muslim World  



Cover: The Idea of the Muslim World in HARDCOVERCemil Aydin's book 'The Idea of the Muslim World' reviewed by Asma Afsaruddin. This sounds like a must-read.  

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

New & Noted

Digital Resistance in the Middle East New Media Activism in Everyday Life - Deborah L. Wheeler 

Big Data

 
Posted by  Mostafa Gaafar‏ @imGaafar May 14:

Egypt: 1 Ransomeware: 0

Our Man in the Middle East

BBC, Our Man in the Middle East - Series 1, The Giant Awakens Jeremy Bowen reflects ...
Gulf News, UAE’s strategy to counter cyber terrorism can be a model for others "As the threat of cyber terrorism grows with no international consensus on defining what cyber terrorism is, the UAE’s strategy in confronting cyber threats can be used as an example that other countries can look into in their own fight against the menace, said a government official at the International Conference for the Criminalisation of Cyber Terrorism (ICCCT) on Tuesday."

After name ban, China arrests Muslim for 'tweeting Quran'

The New Arab, After name ban, China arrests Muslim for 'tweeting Quran'
"A Muslim woman in China's troubled northwestern region of Xinjiang has been arrested for posting passages from the Quran and other religious material on social media."

Monday, May 15, 2017

Afghanistan: Breaking down cyber barriers

qantara.de, Breaking down cyber barriers "Groups of teenage girls huddle around computers in a bright blue classroom, some typing furiously, others browsing blogs with the latest fashion trends. Just outside, people go about their daily business in Afghanistan's bustling city of Herat, famed for its ancient fortress and beautiful blue-tiled mosque.

"A few months earlier, these teenagers didn't know how to switch on a computer. These days, the girls at Goharshad Begum High School in Afghanistan's third-largest city, post to Facebook and Twitter, update their blogs and code with ease."  More info here: Digital Citizen Fund (DCF)

Meet the Muslim Vloggers Creating Change Through YouTube

ummahsonic.com, Meet the Muslim Vloggers Creating Change Through YouTube

Riyadh to host forum on terrorism and extremism

arabnews.com, Riyadh to host forum on terrorism and extremism "The city will host a forum on terrorism and extremism on May 21 under the sponsorship of the Islamic Military Alliance to Fight Terrorism (IMAFT), the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) said."

Saudi religious police’s new fieldwork strategy includes iPads, but no return to previous powers

arabnews.com, Saudi religious police’s new fieldwork strategy includes iPads, but no return to previous powers "The plan defined field members’ tasks, namely intensifying their presence in public places, communicating with the field supervisor, briefing him on all violations and reporting them via an app on their iPads."

Friday, May 12, 2017

Accusations re. Facebook

Daily Mail, Facebook shuts down atheist and ex-Muslim groups amid claims they are being targeted by 'fundamentalists' "Facebook has been accused of shutting down ex-Muslim and atheist groups amid claims they were targeted by 'fundamentalists' who wanted them closed."

Copenhagen imam accused of calling for killing of Jews

BBC News, Copenhagen imam accused of calling for killing of Jews "Mundhir Abdallah was reported to police after being filmed citing in Arabic a hadith - a teaching of the Prophet Muhammad - considered anti-Semitic."

Vinas Case

CNN, American al Qaeda recruit to be released from prison Also see: "he American al Qaeda recruit who once pitched terrorist leaders on plans to bomb the Long Island Railroad and a WalMart store was sentenced Thursday to time served plus 90 days in prison during a New York federal court appearance."

Jihadists Using Matchmaking Sites to Find Partners

VOA News, Jihadists Using Matchmaking Sites to Find Partners "Observers say that the jihadists’ use of the dating site may suggest it is becoming harder for IS members to find people to marry. The number of mainly young Western and North African women traveling to Syria to marry fighters appears to have gone down, they say."

How Iranian Women Became the Queens of Online Shopping

racked.com, How Iranian Women Became the Queens of Online Shopping "Persian women, in particular, became the queens of both online shopping and slaying the style game on Instagram. Iranian marketing expert Niki Aghaei wrote on LinkedIn that 7.5 million Iranians between the ages of 16 and 35 are active on Instagram. The digital Persian marketplace is full of original, avant-garde designs and photoshoots that shop owners would never dare display in the real Islamic Republic. “We create freedom for ourselves,” Ashgari said."

Pentagon hackers

Washington Post, U.S. military cyber operation to attack ISIS last year sparked heated debate over alerting allies "A secret global operation by the Pentagon late last year to sabotage the Islamic State’s online videos and propaganda sparked fierce debate inside the government over whether it was necessary to notify countries that are home to computer hosting services used by the extremist group, including U.S. allies in Europe." Also see: washingtontimes.com, Pentagon hackers infiltrated Islamic State accounts, changed passwords: Report

Monday, May 08, 2017

Kashmir

Wasim Khalid, geo.tv, The Kashmir war goes viral "Last month, authorities in Indian-occupied Kashmir banned 22 social media platforms, including Facebook, Twitter and Whatsapp, for a period of one month. The crackdown, claims the state government, was necessary for the “maintenance of public order” after pro-freedom protests broke out in the troubled region on the day of a poll in Srinagar. The ensuing violence killed nine people." analysis/opinion

Iranians Are Shopping Online More Than Ever

techrasa.com, Iranians Are Shopping Online More Than Ever "The fast improvements of the internet infrastructure along with the changes in online payment methods and the efficiency of online purchases are building up the rapid growth of Iran’s online shopping scene."

Internet chats between Kashmir youth and Syria, Iraq on the rise, put on radar

hindustantimes.com, Internet chats between Kashmir youth and Syria, Iraq on the rise, put on radar

Online operatives of Islamic State become most-wanted targets

Tribune/sfexaminer.com, Online operatives of Islamic State become most-wanted targets

Kerala becomes easy target for Islamic State as radicalised youth turn to home for jihad recruitment

Firstpost.com, Kerala becomes easy target for Islamic State as radicalised youth turn to home for jihad recruitment "Contrary to reports, it seems many of the 21 youth who had left Kerala to fight for the Islamic State in Afghanistan are still alive. What's more, they seem to be engaged in a mission to indoctrinate more youth into their mission. And the recruitment zone seems to be their backyard of Kasargod, Kerala's northernmost district." opinion/analysis

Head of Islamic State in Afghanistan killed

Sky.com, Head of Islamic State in Afghanistan killed "The head of Islamic State in Afghanistan, Abdul Hasib, has been killed, the government has said."

In Quebec, one who turned away from extremism helps others find the path

startribune.com, In Quebec, one who turned away from extremism helps others find the path

Trump a servant of Allah, according to Saudi cleric

The New Arab, Trump a servant of Allah, according to Saudi cleric "The cleric's invocation for Trump to aid the Muslim world did not go down so well on social media with dozens of users harshly criticising the post."

Egypt's Al-Azhar university replaces head in apostasy row

Reuters/Yahoo, Egypt's Al-Azhar university replaces head in apostasy row "Al-Azhar said its Grand Imam, Sheikh Ahmed al-Tayeb, had named Mohamed Hussein al-Mahrsawy, dean of the Arabic language faculty, as the university's acting president following the resignation of Ahmed Hosny and pending the appointment of a permanent successor."

Eyebrows raised as Saudi father names newborn after US first daughter

arabnews.com, Eyebrows raised as Saudi father names newborn after US first daughter "The name was registered with the Health Ministry at the Women and Children Hospital in Arar and a picture of the birth certificate is being widely circulated on Whatsapp inside the Kingdom."

Thursday, May 04, 2017

Praise Allah! Islam goes evangelical in southern Nigeria

AFP/Malay Mail, Praise Allah! Islam goes evangelical in southern Nigeria "NASFAT and other charismatic Islam groups born in its wake have been embraced by the Yoruba community, which is traditionally based in the southwest and one of the few ethnic groups in Nigeria not to be attached to a particular religion."

Jihadists have own internet hideout to dodge police

Business Daily, Jihadists have own internet hideout to dodge police "Islamic State militants are developing their own social media platform to avoid security crackdowns on their communications and propaganda, according to the head of the EU’s police agency."

Wednesday, May 03, 2017

Dubai font

Guardian, Microsoft creates its first city typeface for Dubai

I like the look of the font, very clean and modern. Haven't test driven it fully yet.  It is available for download here.

How Two Mississippi College Students Fell in Love and Decided to Join a Terrorist Group

The Atlantic, How Two Mississippi College Students Fell in Love and Decided to Join a Terrorist Group "In three short months, Jaelyn Young and Muhammad Dakhlalla found themselves at the center of America’s debate over radicalization."

Majority of men in Middle East survey believe a woman's place is in the home

Guardian, Majority of men in Middle East survey believe a woman's place is in the home "Study carried out across Middle East and north Africa shows sexist attitudes prevail, with men’s views of equality at odds with hopes of young women."  The survey is here: International Men and Gender Equality Survey 

Cardiff terrorist who hid extremist data on Bond-style cufflink is jailed

Guardian, Cardiff terrorist who hid extremist data on Bond-style cufflink is jailed "Isis member Samata Ullah, who ran ‘one-stop shop’ for terrorists from his bedroom, pleaded guilty to five terrorism offences"

KSA: Black but beautiful? 'It's not a compliment'

BBC News, Black but beautiful? 'It's not a compliment' "Abeer Sinder is Saudi Arabia's first black beauty vlogger. But sometimes, she says, the compliments she receives aren't flattering."

The FBI translator who went rogue and married an ISIS terrorist

CNN, The FBI translator who went rogue and married an ISIS terrorist "An FBI translator with a top-secret security clearance traveled to Syria in 2014 and married a key ISIS operative she had been assigned to investigate, CNN has learned."

#ArabYouthSurvey

ArabYouthSurvey, Finding #1 from the 9th edition of the #ArabYouthSurvey.

Jordanians take to social media to voice support for Palestinian hunger strikers

Jordan Times, Jordanians take to social media to voice support for Palestinian hunger strikers "Jordanians have taken to social media to show their solidarity with Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike in Israeli jails, in what they call “The Salted Water Challenge”."

Tuesday, May 02, 2017

Swiss govt says threat of extremist attacks "remains at heightened level"

Reuters, Swiss govt says threat of extremist attacks "remains at heightened level" "The risk of extremist attacks in Switzerland remains elevated, the Swiss spy agency said on Tuesday, and more attacks by the Islamic State militant group and its sympathisers were expected across Europe."

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Teen admits planning 'London bomb attack'

BBC News, Teen admits planning 'London bomb attack' "In legal papers prepared for his defence, Syed was described as "highly vulnerable due to family history, lack of education, addiction to violent online games and the arrest and imprisonment of his brother"."

Monday, April 24, 2017

Fashion: These Hijab-Wearing Vloggers Are Changing Minds With Makeup

HP, These Hijab-Wearing Vloggers Are Changing Minds With Makeup "Muslim vloggers Dina Tokio, Zukreat Nazar, Manal Chinutay, and Amena Khan have a combined following of over 4 million people. In a new video from Elle, these talented women open up about how they use their platform to not only provide makeup and beauty and style inspiration, but to shatter misconceptions and change the conversation about Muslim women." 

'The Resurgent Threat of al Qaeda'

Ali Soufan, WSJ.com, The Resurgent Threat of al Qaeda "How should we respond to this threat? Military muscle alone won’t do. We can kill as many terrorists as we want, but if more keep coming to fill jihadist ranks, we will make no headway. Defeating al Qaeda and its progeny requires cutting off their supply of recruits, and we can do that only by taking more effective action in the arena of ideology."

The Arabic Manuscripts Collection in the British Library

Qatar Digital Library, The Arabic Manuscripts Collection in the British Library

Task force to go into ‘dark net’

The Australian, Task force to go into ‘dark net’ "The Australian Border Force has set up a small team of intelligence analyst­s to patrol the so-called “dark net’’, the network of heavily encrypted internet sites that has become a marketplace for drugs, guns, child pornography and extremis­t activity."

Reading List: Rolling Back the Islamic State


Haven't read this one yet

Government and AIMPLB must empower Muslim women to solve triple talaq issue

Daily O, Government and AIMPLB must empower Muslim women to solve triple talaq issue "Triple talaq through the instant messaging methods of mobile and internet or in drunken condition without giving the couple the opportunity of reconciliation is undesirable, according to Islamic jurisprudence."

IS Informer To Testify Against German Islamists

handelsblatt.com, IS Informer To Testify Against German Islamists "A one-time supporter of the group known as the Islamic State, Anil O, experienced the same route to radicalization as Anis Amri, who committed the terror attack on the Berlin Christmas market. He will appear in court Monday to testify against leading radical Islamists in Germany."

Al-Qaeda's Zawahiri calls for 'guerrilla war' in Syria

aljazeera.com, Al-Qaeda's Zawahiri calls for 'guerrilla war' in Syria "In an audio tape titled "Syria will only bow to God", released on the internet on Sunday, Zawahiri urged Syrian rebels to "have patience and prepare themselves for a long war against the Crusaders and their Shia allies"."

‘Muhammad Wanndy not ground fighter, active on Internet'

freemalaysiatoday.com, ‘Muhammad Wanndy not ground fighter, active on Internet' "Muhammad Wanndy Mohamed Jedi, who has been listed by the US as a high-profile target for law enforcement agencies worldwide, works as a guard in Syria and is not a fighter, claims a businessman whose daughter is also in the war-ravaged country."

How ISIS Disseminates Propaganda over the Internet Despite Counter-Measures and How to Fight Back

Lorand Bodo & Anne Speckhard, moderndiplomacy.eu, How ISIS Disseminates Propaganda over the Internet Despite Counter-Measures and How to Fight Back "As ISIS is rapidly losing its territory in Syria and Iraq they continue to win on the digital battlefield, maintaining a strong recruiting presence in the digital space."

Friday, April 21, 2017

KSA cellphone campaigning

NY Times, Cellphones in Hand, Saudi Women Challenge Notions of Male Control, 21 Apr 2017, "The three cases are part of a campaign by Saudi women, who have been broadcasting daring videos with their cellphones, using Facebook to organize street protests and posting Twitter messages to challenge the very idea of male supremacy in their famously patriarchal society."

"I don’t study religion: so what am I doing in the study of religion?"

Mallory Nye, medium.com, I don’t study religion: so what am I doing in the study of religion? opinion piece

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Sean Spicer: Hitler 'Didn't Even Sink to Using Chemical Weapons'

time.com, Sean Spicer: Hitler 'Didn't Even Sink to Using Chemical Weapons' "Sean Spicer incorrectly claimed that Adolf Hitler did not use chemical weapons during World War II while comparing him to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad during a Tuesday press conference."

Wednesday, April 05, 2017

From altar boy to ISIS fighter

CNN, From altar boy to ISIS fighter (ISIS: Behind the Mask) report, looking at foreign fighters who leave Syria.

Social media, apps radicalization tools for Islamic State

livemint.com, Social media, apps radicalization tools for Islamic State " An official at the National Investigation Agency (NIA), which has been probing the matter, said the group’s modus operandi revolved around tracking youths mostly between the ages of 20-30 years and monitoring their behaviour on social media platforms. The process of radicalization through social media and apps, however, was far from easy, the official said requesting anonymity."

Singapore’s Malay-Muslims

channelnewsasia.com, Singapore’s Malay-Muslims can be modern, vibrant community that the world looks up to: Shanmugam "The minister cited a Pew Research Centre study which showed that 10 per cent of Malaysian Malays had a favourable opinion of Islamic State (IS) and nearly one quarter were not prepared to come out and say that IS is wrong.

“We have to make sure that we do not get there. And a key part of that depends on you, the leaders of the Malay community - whether you can make sure that the right religious values are put forth. We have to work hard at this because the influences are on the Internet,” said Mr Shanmugam."

The women who sleep with a stranger to save their marriage

Athar Ahmad, BBC News, The women who sleep with a stranger to save their marriage, 5 Apr 2017 "A number of online services are charging "divorced" Muslim women thousands of pounds to take part in "halala" Islamic marriages, a BBC investigation has found. Women pay to marry, have sex with and then divorce a stranger, so they can get back with their first husbands."

Monday, April 03, 2017

Fake News Fatwa

Truth, Beyond Belief - BBC Radio 4 There's some discussion on 'fake news' and religion in this programme, which includes a section on the recent 'fake news fatwa' from Indonesia (it's about halfway through the recording).

Sufism, a Mystical Islam, Growing in Los Angeles

World Religion News, Sufism, a Mystical Islam, Growing in Los Angeles - "Los Angeles, CA has witnessed the rising popularity of Sufism. One prominent group is the Moroccan-origin Shadhili Order. Founded in the seventh century by Abu Hasan Ali ash-Shadhili, the number of members have increased from only ten a decade before to 500 members within Los Angeles."

IS analysed

Charlie Winter, lawfareblog.com, What I Learned from Reading the Islamic State’s Propaganda Instruction Manual "The Islamic State has long issued a steady torrent of sophisticated propaganda to demonize its enemies, inspire its followers, and advance its cause in general. How does the Islamic State think about its own propaganda efforts? Through serious sleuthing and impressive analysis, Charlie Winter of the International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation has unearthed the Islamic State’s media guide for its own operatives and explains to us its three-pronged strategy."

Friday, March 31, 2017

A War of Keywords

Frank Gardner, BBC News, UK losing online extremism battle, research suggests, "Britain and other western countries are losing the battle against extremism online, research has suggested. "Extremist content on search engines is becoming ever more dominant, the Centre on Religion and Geopolitics and firm Digitalis has found."

The report is here: Mubaraz Ahmed, Fred Lloyd George, A War of Keywords. I downloaded a copy in December 2016.

Note: The Centre on Religion and Geopolitics is part of the Tony Blair Institute for Global Change.

Tech giants join forces on online terror fight

Sky News, Tech giants join forces on online terror fight, 31 Mar 2017.

IS Encryption

Joseph Cox, Motherboard, Inside the Site Teaching Islamic State Supporters How to Use Encryption

Thursday, March 30, 2017

The myth of the ‘lone wolf’ terrorist

Jason Burke, Guardian, The myth of the ‘lone wolf’ terrorist, 30 Mar 2017 "In recent years, references to such attacks have become inescapable. But this lazy term obscures the real nature of the threat against us."

Would a fatwa stop Indonesia’s ‘fake news’?

scmp.com, Would a fatwa stop Indonesia’s ‘fake news’?, 24 Mar 2017 "Indonesia’s highest Muslim clerical council is set to issue a religious decree that prohibits the circulation of fake news on the internet, underscoring rising concerns that hoaxes are inflaming ethnic and religious tensions in the world’s most populous Muslim-majority nation."

How Islamic Terrorists Are Being Radicalized Online

thedailybeast.com, How Islamic Terrorists Are Being Radicalized Online new documentary 'American Jihad' discussed, which focuses on Anwar al-Awlaki.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

This is why the government is so worried about WhatsApp encryption

Independent, This is why the government is so worried about WhatsApp encryption "Home Secretary Amber Rudd has criticised WhatsApp’s use of encryption to protects its users’ communications, in the wake of the Westminster terror attack."

IS brainwashes boys to become deadly soldiers

Sky News, IS brainwashes boys to become deadly soldiers "Distressing propaganda video shows young boys running through a warehouse and killing handcuffed men begging for their lives."

The 712-page Google doc that proves Muslims do condemn terrorism

Guardian, The 712-page Google doc that proves Muslims do condemn terrorism "It happened in history class. Heraa Hashmi, a 19-year-old American Muslim student at the University of Colorado, was supposed to be discussing the Crusades with the man sitting next to her. Within a few minutes, however, he was crusading against Islam."

Westminster attack

Coverage of the Westminster attack can be found on my Islam in Britain blog

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Internet Trolls Are Using Facebook To Target Myanmar's Muslims

buzzfeed.com, Internet Trolls Are Using Facebook To Target Myanmar's Muslims "The notion that Muslims are seeking to take over Myanmar by having too many children and converting innocent Buddhists is central to Burmese nationalist propaganda, which has been circulating for many years. The threat to Muslims like Harry also comes at a time when Myanmar is fighting a political battle over what constitutes fake news and hate speech on social media, an issue that is upending the lives of Muslim minorities and has led to arrests, state surveillance, and bloodshed."

Monday, March 20, 2017

Terrorist admits hiding Islamic State activities in James Bond-style cuff link

itv.com, Terrorist admits hiding Islamic State activities in James Bond-style cuff link "At the time of his arrest, he had a USB cufflink with a Linux operating system loaded onto it to conceal a hoard of extremist data, including a blog."

Google braces for questions as more big-name firms pull adverts

Guardian, Google braces for questions as more big-name firms pull adverts "Google executives are bracing for a two-pronged inquisition from the advertising industry and the government over the company’s plans to stop ads being placed next to extremist material."

Ijithad in action

Friday, March 17, 2017

'Blasphemous' content and Facebook

Dawn, Facebook to send delegation for investigating blasphemous content: Interior ministry, 16 Mar 2017 "Popular social networking website Facebook will send a delegation to Pakistan for investigating content which the government considers to be blasphemous, a spokesperson from the Ministry of Interior said. "

Monday, March 13, 2017

UAE to target misuse of the internet

The National, UAE to target misuse of the internet, 13 Mar 2017 "Encouraging the breach of state laws as well as blasphemy will also be pursued as well as cases involving insulting God, His prophets and matters considered holy in Islam, as well as insults aimed at matters considered holy to other religions recognised under Islamic Sharia law, as well as the rituals of these faiths."

Is Pakistan blocking the entire social media for blasphemy? 

Pakistan Today, Is Pakistan blocking the entire social media for blasphemy? , 12 Mar 2017 "Islamabad High Court on Tuesday directed the government to remove blasphemous content from local social media platforms, even if it means blocking the social media entirely."

Telegram Iran

LA Times, Telegram was the app where Iranians talked politics. Then the government caught on, 13 Mar 2017 "Over the years, Telegram has helped quench Iranians’ thirst for online political expression in a country where Twitter and Facebook are banned. But leading up to Iran’s presidential election in May, Telegram is now seen by some as a force that’s stifling political speech.



"That’s because in recent months Iranian security and intelligence agencies have begun arresting Telegram users and now require those who run popular Telegram channels to apply for permits — disclosing their identities."

Blackmailers prey on UAE Snapchat users

The National, Blackmailers prey on UAE Snapchat users, 11 Mar 2017

Chinese Officials Warn of Global Religious Extremism Threat

VOA, Chinese Officials Warn of Global Religious Extremism Threat "Chinese officials are issuing new warnings about the specter of global religious extremism seeping into the country, following reports of fighters from China's Muslim minority fighting alongside militants in Syria and Iraq."

In the Picture

Mashable, Getty and MuslimGirl team up to create empowering images of Muslim women, 8 Mar 2016 "Whether it's a woman with a hijab in the workplace or a woman exercising in workout clothes near New York City's East River, the collection of images shows a diverse array of Muslim women in everyday scenarios. And that, on its own, can be revolutionary."

Monday, March 06, 2017

Ahmadinejad joins Twitter

Guardian, Guardian, Iran's Ahmadinejad joins Twitter despite ban

'Islamic Culture War'

foreignaffairs.com, The Coming Islamic Culture War " What the Middle East's Internet Boom Means for Gay Rights, and More"

e-commence

businessoffashion.com, Middle East E-Commerce Takes Flight "The Middle East is on the verge of a massive digital disruption with significant untapped e-commerce potential, according to a 2016 Digital Middle East report by McKinsey & Company. With e-commerce penetration in the Middle East estimated at a mere 2 percent of retail sales, “there is only growth in this space,” according to Guenez."

ISIS Unveiled: The Story Behind Indonesia’s First Female Suicide Bomber

Time, ISIS Unveiled: The Story Behind Indonesia’s First Female Suicide Bomber detailed article, well worth reading. "It’s one of the many contradictions of ISIS that a group whose medieval precepts prohibit innovation utilizes technology so deftly. Practically every social app on the market is used to communicate and share the group’s eschatological propaganda, from Twitter and Facebook to messaging platforms — encrypted and otherwise — like Telegram, Surespot, Threema, Kik and WhatsApp."

Wednesday, March 01, 2017

Abdal Hakim Murad interview

cafedissensusblog.com, Internet Is Not a Holy Place, says British Muslim Scholar Interview with Abdal Hakim Murad: "“The traditional etiquette of knowledge-seeking is absent in online learning platforms which lacks the warmth of face to face interaction,” added Cambridge’s own ‘Shaykh’, who has consistently been included in the “500 Most Influential Muslims” list published annually by the Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Centre."

Halal dining app

asianimage.co.uk, Mum's new dining app showcases the world of halal food and restaurants

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Halla Walla!

BBC News, Meet the new Arab emojis perking up Dubai's WhatsApp chats "They called it "HALLA WALLA" - which is Arabic slang for "Hi there!", and a common greeting around Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and Bahrain."

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Long Road Ahead for Justice and Accountability in Syria

AP/VOA, Long Road Ahead for Justice and Accountability in Syria "The litany of horrors in Syria has caused destruction on such a scale that the United Nations has stopped counting the dead. Rights groups estimate nearly half a million people have died in a conflict punctuated by dozens of massacres, protracted siege and starvation campaigns, barrel bombs and chemical weapon attacks."

Family says Gitmo changed 'IS suicide bomber'

Sky News, Family says Gitmo changed 'IS suicide bomber', 23 Feb 2017 "The family of Jamal al Harith said the man they knew up to 2001, when he was taken to Guantanamo Bay, "would not have become involved with a despicable organisation such as so-called Islamic State"."

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

MI6 and MI5 should review £20million compensation handed to 16 former Guantanamo Bay detainees to check it is not used for 'nefarious purposes' says David Blunkett 

Telegraph, MI6 and MI5 should review £20million compensation handed to 16 former Guantanamo Bay detainees to check it is not used for 'nefarious purposes' says David Blunkett  "Jamal al-Harith, a Muslim convert born Ronald Fiddler who detonated a car bomb at an Iraqi army base near Mosul, was released from the US detention camp in 2004 and successfully claimed compensation after saying British agents knew or were complicit in his mistreatment."

Friday, February 17, 2017

J Is For Jihad: How The Islamic State Indoctrinates Children With Math, Grammar, Tanks, and Guns

foreignpolicy.com, J Is For Jihad: How The Islamic State Indoctrinates Children With Math, Grammar, Tanks, and Guns "Experts say there is a tactical purpose behind the pedagogy. “There’s a need to physically and mentally prepare children to be the ‘next generation’” of fighters, said Mia Bloom, terrorism expert at Georgia State University told Foreign Policy. “It exposes the children to violence in a routine and daily fashion so it ceases to be shocking and normalizes violence,” she said."

Tariq Ramadan - Newsnight piece


opinion piece from Tariq Ramadan

Palmyra digitally preserved

NYT, The Ancient Syrian City ISIS Is Destroying, Preserved Online refers to getty.edu, The Legacy of Ancient Palmyra

How Smartphones Changed the World

How Smartphones Changed the World, BBC Radio 1 and 1Xtra's Stories - BBC Radio 1 latter section includes reference to Yazidi networking online

Maths in the Early Islamic World, In Our Time

Maths in the Early Islamic World, In Our Time - BBC Radio 4



"Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss the flourishing of maths in the early Islamic world, as thinkers from across the region developed ideas in places such as Baghdad's House of Wisdom."

The six biggest cyber threats GCHQ's security centre wants us to be worried about

Wired, The six biggest cyber threats GCHQ's security centre wants us to be worried about

Munich Security Report 2017

Munich Security Report 2017 

"Is the world facing disorder and the rise of illiberal actors? Just ahead of the 53rd edition of the Munich Security Conference from February 17-19, the Munich Security Conference Foundation released the third edition of its annual report on key issues in international security (download a PDF version of the report here)."

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Monday, February 13, 2017

Thursday, February 09, 2017

Isis carried out cyber-attack on NHS sites

Independent, Isis carried out cyber-attack on NHS sites, 8 Feb 2017 "Islamist hackers linked to Isis carried out an attack on a series of NHS websites in a cyber-attack exposing serious flaws in security systems meant to protect sensitive information, The Independent has learnt."

Countering radicalisation with '180° Turn'

Countering radicalisation with '180° Turn' : Together we are strong - Qantara.de

The Desperate Battle to Destroy ISIS

Luke Modelson, newyorker.com, The Desperate Battle to Destroy ISIS detailed article, includes references to social media

Researchers: Fear of Muslim American Violent Extremism Overblown

VOA, Researchers: Fear of Muslim American Violent Extremism Overblown, 7 Feb 2017 "Indeed, most recent terrorist attacks in the United States have been carried out by homegrown Muslim extremists with few or no links to foreign countries, with recent immigrants and refugees accounting for a minority of mostly non-lethal plots. These same experts attribute that to stringent security procedures put in place after the attacks of 9/11 nearly 15 years ago."

France vs. Jihadism

ifri.org, Marc HECKER, Elie TENENBAUM, France vs. Jihadism: The Republic in a New Age of Terror "This paper assesses the current state of the jihadist threat to France, as well as the French authorities’ security response. With the upcoming presidential election, 2017 will be a decisive year for the country. Terrorism will be at the heart of the campaign and ISIS will most likely try to strike again."

Tuesday, February 07, 2017

Yemen Raid Had Secret Target: Al Qaeda Leader Qassim Al-Rimi

NBC, Yemen Raid Had Secret Target: Al Qaeda Leader Qassim Al-Rimi, 7 Feb 2017 "The Arab uprisings six years ago triggered a huge upsurge of hope. After the three major "waves" of democratisation, there was optimism that democracy would now finally prevail in the Middle East as well. Social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and others became new sources of information and communication channels. In addition, they opened up new ways for Arab civil society to organise and network."

The myth of the Facebook revolution

Niklas Kossow and Ilyas Saliba, qantara.de, The myth of the Facebook revolution "Today, six years after the so-called Facebook revolutions of the Arab Spring, the hopes once placed in the social media have largely vanished. Authoritarian regimes in the region have long since succeeded in taking control of these channels and using them for their own ends."

Thursday, February 02, 2017

Daily Show on Trump

Hasan Minhaj & Trevor Noah on the Daily Show, discussing the Trump ban:

Wednesday, February 01, 2017

Travel ban on Muslims to include social media 'vetting'

aljazeera.com, Travel ban on Muslims to include social media 'vetting', 31 Jan 2017 "Travellers to the United States from seven Muslim-majority countries singled out for "extreme vetting" will face scrutiny of their social media activity and phone records, the new US Homeland Security secretary has said."

Navy SEAL, 8-year-old American girl died in Yemen raid

NBC, Navy SEAL, 8-year-old American girl died in Yemen raid, 31 Jan 2017 "In what an official said was the first military raid carried out under President Donald Trump, two Americans were killed in Yemen on Sunday — one a member of SEAL Team 6 and the other the 8-year-old daughter of Anwar al-Awlaki, the New Mexico-born al Qaeda leader who himself was killed in a U.S. strike five years ago."

Is ISIS Breaking Apart?

Charlie Winter and Colin P. Clarke, foreignaffairs.com, Is ISIS Breaking Apart?: What Its Media Operations Suggest, 31 Jan 2017 "Whatever happens, as the ISIS core attempts to maintain its ideological prominence, it seems reasonable to conclude that ISIS will attempt to dispatch militants back to their countries of origin to conduct attacks. Doing so will help increase group morale and inflate an attenuated potency."

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

‘IS recruiter’ used invisible internet project to communicate with his handler, says NIA

indianexpress.com, ‘IS recruiter’ used invisible internet project to communicate with his handler, says NIA, 28 Jan 2017 "IN A FIRST, the investigations into the alleged Kerala Islamic State (IS) module has revealed that their ring leader Abdul Rashid used invisible internet project or darknet to communicate with his handler. The National Investigation Agency (NIA) suspects that Kerala-based Rashid—who had allegedly fled to Afghanistan last year along with 20 others to fight alongside the globally banned outfit IS — used the masked internet service to talk to Shafi Armar alias Yusuf, who has been identified as his handler."

'Virtual planners' of Islamic State on dark side of the Internet

UPI, 'Virtual planners' of Islamic State on dark side of the Internet, 23 Jan 2017 ""We cannot penetrate into certain conversations," François Molins, a former chief prosecutor in Paris, lamented at the time. "We are dealing with this gigantic black hole, a dark zone where there are just so many dangerous things going on.""

'US military botches online fight against Islamic State'

AP/Yahoo News, US military botches online fight against Islamic State, 31 Jan 2017 "Several current and former WebOps employees cited multiple examples of civilian Arabic specialists who have little experience in counter-propaganda, cannot speak Arabic fluently and have so little understanding of Islam they are no match for the Islamic State online recruiters."

Québec City mosque attack

Guardian, Québec City mosque attack: man charged with six counts of murder, 31 Jan 2017 "A local group dedicated to welcoming refugees, Bienvenu aux réfugiés, said Bissonnette’s name was familiar to them, describing him as an online troll who had denigrated refugees and expressed support for Marine Le Pen, the leader of France’s far-right Front National."

Jihadist groups hail Trump’s travel ban as a victory

washingtonpost.com, Jihadist groups hail Trump’s travel ban as a victory, 29 Jan 2017 "Comments posted to pro-Islamic State social media accounts predicted that President Trump’s executive order would persuade American Muslims to side with the extremists. One posting hailed the U.S. president as “the best caller to Islam,” while others predicted that Trump would soon launch a new war in the Middle East."

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

ISIS 'Knights of Bureaucracy' drone video

Daily Mail, Boy is 'star' of terrifying ISIS suicide car bomb and drone video, 25 Jan 2017 "In a dramatic propaganda video, ISIS showcase their new fleet of attack drones, using them to drop grenades on crowds down below - and then directing suicide car bombers to the same site to inflict yet more damage."

Also see heavy.com, New ISIS Video Shows Them Using Drones to Conduct ‘Airstrikes’ in Mosul, 24 Jan 2017 "The video was released on ISIS terrorist channels on January 24 from “Wilayat Ninawa,” ISIS’ name for the Nineveh Governorate of Iraq that includes Mosul."

Hamza bin Laden: Al Qaeda poster boy

DW.com, Hamza bin Laden: Al Qaeda poster boy, 15 Jan 2017 "He has established himself as an al Qaeda leader. Now the United States has declared Osama bin Laden's son a "global terrorist.""

The Urban And Educated Jihadists Of South Asia – Analysis

Abdul Basit, eurasiareview.com, The Urban And Educated Jihadists Of South Asia – Analysis, 13 Jan 2017 "Contrary to popular perception that the jihadists in South Asia come from poor socio- economic backgrounds with madrasah education, a new breed of educated and urban militants with the urge for a sense of belonging has emerged in the region. The desire to create a global Sunni caliphate, among other factors, has contributed to their violent-radicalisation."

Hipsters in hijabs

SEA Globe, Hipsters in hijabs: inside the multibillion-dollar world of Muslim fashion, 27 Dec 2016 "Globally, the already significant demand for Islamic clothing is rising. According to Thomson Reuters’ State of the Global Islamic Economy Report 2015-2016, revenues generated by purchases of modest clothing by Muslim women in 2015 were estimated at $44 billion. The same report predicts that by 2021, overall Muslim spending on clothing will reach $368 billion. As the report states: “The clothing may be modest; its success is anything but.”"

Inside Minnesota’s Risky Plan to Deradicalize Young ISIS Recruits

Brendan I. Koerner, wired.com, Inside Minnesota’s Risky Plan to Deradicalize Young ISIS Recruits

Saudi Arabia says militants in Jeddah shootout were linked to Islamic State

Reuters, Saudi Arabia says militants in Jeddah shootout were linked to Islamic State " A ministry statement carried by Saudi state news agency SPA on Tuesday identified one of the men as Khaled al-Serwani and said he was linked to an attack in 2015 that killed a worshipper at a Shi'ite mosque in Najan in southern Saudi Arabia.



"Serwani had been "wanted in connection with numerous roles and engagements in terrorist incidents and was involved in espousing propaganda on the Internet and inciting people to fight in foreign conflict zones," said the statement."

Sundance turns lens on Syrian civil war, jihadism

AFP/Daily Mail, Sundance turns lens on Syrian civil war, jihadism, 25 Jan 2017 "Student Abdalaziz Alhamza and his friends decided to form Raqa is Being Silently Slaughtered (RBSS), a band of courageous citizen journalists who risk their lives to document IS atrocities.



"Their work is chronicled in "City of Ghosts," by Oscar-nominated director Matthew Heineman, one of a raft of films on conflict and jihadist terror in the Middle East that premiered this week at the annual Sundance Film Festival."

Monday, January 23, 2017

Why does the GCC need its own electronic army?

ara.tv, Why does the GCC need its own electronic army? "In Saudi Arabia, a study by the local Sakina Campaign, a non-governmental program, found an estimated average of 90 tweets per minute (129,600 per day) were being sent to Saudi users calling for violence, to join extremist groups, attack others verbally or physically, or to destabilize security.



 "So it is probably no wonder then that decision-makers within the Gulf Cooperation Council have recently expressed interest in building their own electronic army, a digital forensics expert confirmed to Al Arabiya English."

Life Under IS Group: Staying Online in Dangerous Times

VOA News, Life Under IS Group: Staying Online in Dangerous Times "During Islamic State’s two-and-a-half-year rule of eastern Mosul, many forms of communication were banned, with rule breakers facing imprisonment or death. Despite the danger, the Internet was still available in much of the city. From his home in Mosul, Bilal Ahmed, 27, tells VOA the story of how he kept his neighborhood online through beatings and threats for nearly two years. He spoke in Arabic and his story is edited for clarity"

The Spectre Of Radicalised Minds Is Back To Haunt Kerala

huffingtonpost.in, The Spectre Of Radicalised Minds Is Back To Haunt Kerala, Via Internet, Courtesy Of The ISIS, 30 Dec 2016 "Kerala is no stranger to radical Islam, but the ISIS influence, spreading through the internet, is altogether more insidious."

Friday, January 20, 2017

The Saudi women afraid to go home

CNN, The Saudi women afraid to go home, 17 Jan 2017 "Throughout the summer Saudi women began tweeting, detailing the injustices of the guardianship system -- risking the wrath of their guardians and the government in doing so."

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Intelligence Community Releases Final Abbottabad Documents

Office of Director of National Intelligence, Closing the Book on Bin Laden – Intelligence Community Releases Final Abbottabad Documents "Today marks the end of a two-and-a-half-year effort to declassify several hundred documents recovered in the raid on Usama bin Laden’s Abbottabad, Pakistan, compound in May 2011."

'al-Risalah' issue 4

Bridget Johnson, pjmedia.com, Pick Up Five AK-47 Bullets for a Buck, al-Qaeda Magazine Tells Jihadists, January 11, 2017 "The fourth edition of al-Risalah, which is published by al-Qaeda in Syria, features a full-page graphic of a grenade composed of typewriter keys with the quote, "Half of jihad is media.""

Allegations: 'University research into IS women was carried out by IS sympathiser'

NRC - DutchNews.nl, University research into IS women was carried out by IS sympathiser, 18 Jan 2017 article on allegations relating to research conducted at the University of Amsterdam - "University of Amsterdam research into women who have joined the terrorist movement IS was partly carried out by a researcher who has herself praised the violent jihad on internet, according to the NRC." Details of the original research are here: Navest, A., de Koning, M. and Moors, A. (2016), Chatting about marriage with female migrants to Syria, Anthropology Today, 32: 22–25. doi: 10.1111/1467-8322.12241

The Swedish Kings of Cyberwar

Hugh Eakin, nybooks.com, The Swedish Kings of Cyberwar, 19 Jan 2017 "In fact, the very qualities that have made Sweden and Norway successful models of advanced democracy may also have made their populations more susceptible to government spying. In Norway, the government committee that put forward the mass surveillance legislation now before parliament has argued that such measures “can be justified as necessary in a democratic society.” And as Swedish and Norwegian scholars point out, Scandinavian citizens are inclined to assume that if the government says it needs certain powers, then it probably does."

What Islamic State will do in 2017

Raffaello Pantucci, New Statesman, What Islamic State will do in 2017, 18 Jan 2017 "In retreat across Syria and Iraq, will the newer terror group emulate the strategy honed by al-Qaeda?"

UN Meeting Says No to Anti-Muslim Hatred

ipsnews.net, UN Meeting Says No to Anti-Muslim Hatred "The rise in anti-muslim attitudes around the world prompted a special UN meeting Tuesday, just days before the inauguration of US President-elect Donald Trump whose controversial policies have drawn on anti-Muslim sentiments."

Terrorists are winning the digital arms race, experts say

csoonline.com, Terrorists are winning the digital arms race, experts say, 17 Jan 2017 "Twitter removed about 250,000 accounts connected with ISIS in one year, but the terrorist group uses 90 other social media platforms, Rob Wainwright, the director of Europol said Tuesday. Terrorist groups have begun to live stream their attacks, and they are using the internet to launch "innovative crowdfunding" campaigns, he said at the World Economic Forum in Davos-Klosters, Switzerland."

Bangladesh human rights

Human Rights Watch, Bangladesh "Bangladesh witnessed a spate of violent attacks against secular bloggers, academics, gay rights activists, foreigners, and members of religious minorities in 2016."

African women form a united front in the battle for equality – podcast

Guardian, African women form a united front in the battle for equality – podcast "Gender equality remains a distant dream for women in Africa. Less than a third of all agricultural land in Africa is operated by women, nearly one in five of whom do not have access to contraception. In addition, almost a quarter of African women are likely to experience violence from their partners. Kary Stewart finds out how women have been working to bring about gender equality. There are contributions from Awino Okech, lecturer on gender studies at Soas, University of London; Jessica Horn, director of programmes for the African Women’s Development Fund; Patricia Isabella Essel, programme manager for Women in Law and Development in Africa; and Hakima Abbas, director of programmes for the Association for Women’s Rights in Development."

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Tunisia attack: Report warned UK about resort security

BBC News, Tunisia attack: Report warned UK about resort security

The Linguistic Labyrinth of Arabic News

Ben Hubbard, NYT, The Linguistic Labyrinth of Arabic News, 14 Jan 2017 "Far from being independent brokers of information, these channels have powerful backers who deploy them to bolster their agendas and undermine their foes. What that means for the viewer, and for the student of Arabic, is having to decipher a complex code of politically charged vocabulary whose usage can swiftly betray someone’s political views."

Turkey says captures nightclub attacker who acted for Islamic State

reuters.com, Turkey says captures nightclub attacker who acted for Islamic State "Two pistols, mobile phone SIM cards, two drones and $197,000 in cash were also seized, Sahin said."

All by myself: Single mother asks for help causing meltdown in Egyptian social media

albawaba.com, All by myself: Single mother asks for help causing meltdown in Egyptian social media "Social media is divided on the issue, reports Al Bawaba. While some have come out in support, others have labelled it as adultery and indecency, calling her derogatory names. Twitterati was quick to respond with viral hashtags "single mother" and "I support Hadir Makaqi.""

Mawlana - the movie

albawaba.com, Controversial Islamic film 'Mawlana' dominates the Egyptian Box Office, 17 Jan 2017 "After its debut on January 4, Mawlana has continued to rank first in terms of revenues in cinemas, despite the piracy of the movie which is available in high quality on the internet."

Man accused of trying to join ISIS but just wanted to live 'off-grid'

Daily Mail, Man accused of trying to join ISIS but just wanted to live 'off-grid'

Boxing coach arrested in San Sebastián on suspicion of running Isis recruitment cell

thelocal, Boxing coach arrested in San Sebastián on suspicion of running Isis recruitment cell, 16 Jan 2017 " "The accused was very active in finding new recruits and would approach young people at risk of social exclusion, easily influenced and emotionally unstable, and make the most of his position as a boxing coach to win their confidence," the ministry said."