Coming Crawling Back: ISIS Seeks Alliance with Al-Qaeda

From Reuters: Islamic State is talking to al Qaeda about a possible alliance as Iraqi troops close in on IS fighters in Mosul, Iraqi Vice President Ayad Allawi said in an interview on Monday. Allawi said he got the information on Monday from Iraqi and regional contacts knowledgeable about Iraq. "The discussion has started now," … Continue reading Coming Crawling Back: ISIS Seeks Alliance with Al-Qaeda

Al-Qaeda Returns: Or, Why The Hell Hasn’t Al-Qaeda In Yemen Been Dealt With?

Last week's attack on Charlie Hebdo in Paris still has fuzzy details, but we seem to be united on at least one: al-Qaeda is back.  Truthfully, though, al-Qaeda never went anywhere; like Jason Voorhees, al-Qaeda was always just waiting in the woods.  The Islamic State may have been Terrorists of the Year in 2014, but … Continue reading Al-Qaeda Returns: Or, Why The Hell Hasn’t Al-Qaeda In Yemen Been Dealt With?

Somalia, Al Shabaab, and How Geography Screwed A Country

The odds are good you've seen Black Hawk Down, where the story of the disaster that was the battle of Mogadishu is told rather well.  With such a baseline of knowledge, you're aware that, at some point in the recent past, Somalia was a mess.  Things haven't changed much. Somalia is the king of Failed States … Continue reading Somalia, Al Shabaab, and How Geography Screwed A Country

Al Qaeda is Jason Voorhees

Virtually every movie of the Friday the 13th movie should have been the last.  And yet, despite the best efforts of both lucky teenagers and determined writers, Jason Voorhees just keeps coming back.  Why?  Because a hardcore group of people out there keep demanding to see him. Al Qaeda is not so different.  Bin Laden … Continue reading Al Qaeda is Jason Voorhees

Gay Marriage, Geopolitics, and the Culture Wars

It may seem a stretch to connect the recent court ruling striking down America's Federal Defense of Marriage Act and the do-or-die power struggles of nation-states. But it's part of a wider global transition where traditional cultures are coming up against worldwide ones. Who can marry who, and what it represents, matters almost as much … Continue reading Gay Marriage, Geopolitics, and the Culture Wars