Propaganda materials distributed in support of IS in the Hadhramaut area of Yemen
Middle East Forum Shillman/Ginsburg Fellow Aymenn Jawad al-Tamimi is one of world's leading researchers on the Islamic State (IS) group terrorizing Iraq and Syria, also known as ISIS. The overwhelming majority of his writings and translations are too detailed or esoteric for distribution to a general audience, so instead MEF compiles periodic updates providing links and summaries for those who wish to follow the groundbreaking work of this prolific researcher.
For more general interest writings by Jawad al-Tamimi, click here.
Some Evidence for the Islamic State's Presence in Yemen: Part I (Mar. 2)
An examination of the IS presence in Yemen, where jihadism has long been dominated by Al-Qa'ida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP). According to Jawad al-Tamimi, available evidence suggests that IS assets in Yemen are "primarily activist in nature," with no "viable military force" on the ground. He includes a translation of a statement from the shari'a (Islamic law) committee of the Shabwa wilayat (governorate) of IS within Yemen.
Some Evidence for the Islamic State's Presence in Yemen: Part II (Mar. 3)
More on the IS presence in Yemen, with specific discussion of a translated statement from the Aden wilayet. Jawad al-Tamimi notes that this statement focuses primarily on the threat of Shi'a Houthi rebels, while ignoring American drone strikes – the bane of its AQAP rivals.
Islamic State Nasheeds and External Relations Dynamics (Mar. 8)
A discussion of the role of musical chants (nasheed) from IS's Ajnad Media Foundation in its efforts to coopt other jihadist groups. Includes a translation of the short IS nasheed, entitled "Spread the Good Tidings to All," that the Nigerian group Boko Haram used in its recent audio message pledging allegiance to IS.
The U.S. Anti-ISIS Strategy's True Cost (Mar. 2)
The Daily Beast
Jawad al-Tamimi argues that U.S. efforts to defeat IS in Iraq and Syria have served to empower Iranian militia proxies. Worse still, the lead role of Iraqi Shi'a militias in the fight to reclaim territory from IS may end up strengthening it by "bolster[ing] IS' narrative that it is defending Sunnis against a sectarian government."
Archive of Jabhat al-Nusra Dar al-Qaḍa Documents (Mar. 3)
A continuously updated selection of past and future translated statements and other materials released by Jabhat al-Nusra's Dar al-Qaḍa, a judicial entity established in August 2014 to impose stricter adherence to shari'a in areas of Syria under the Al-Qaeda affiliate's control. The growth of Dar al-Qada represents an abandonment of Nusra's "prior willingness to share Shari'a committees with other [less militant] factions," a response in part to criticism from IS that the group is lax in enforcing shari'a.
"We have come as soldiers for God"- IS Nasheed (Mar. 10)
A "haunting" nasheed released last month, most recently appearing in the videotaped execution of an alleged "Israeli spy" by IS.
Aymenn Jawad Al-Tamimi is a Shillman-Ginsburg Fellow at the Middle East Forum.