Rumble in the Jungle?

 

The U.S. envoy to Africa’s Great Lakes region, Russ Feingold, called upon the military of the D.R.C. and U.N. peacekeepers – MONUSCO’s Force Intervention Brigade (FIB) to launch an offensive against the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR), a Hutu militia group. The group has been known to have committed atrocities in the eastern Congo, and is a threat to regional stability. Moreover, in an extended amnesty period, only 150 fighters of approximately 1,400 have surrendered.

Special Envoy Feingold publically announced a policy change to neutralize the FDLR. He spoke:

So, moving forward, we cannot continue to wait for the FDLR to voluntarily surrender, as the group has clearly demonstrated over the past six months that a purely voluntary surrender process will not work to end the threat from this illegitimate armed group. Instead, military action must be undertaken to pressure the FDLR to lay down its arms. Any delay in military operations by the DRC military and MONUSCO after January 2nd will play into the FDLR’s hands and only serve to enable the group to continue to commit human rights abuses and prey upon the civilian population in the eastern DRC.

Thus, there may be an impeding rumble in the jungle in the eastern Congo between U.N. peacekeepers and DRC troops against the FDLR.

 

 

Read more at:

AllAfrica. Congo-Kinshasa: Telephonic Media Briefing With Special Envoy Russell Feingold.” December 30, 2014.

Reuters. U.S. envoy urges military action against Congo rebel group.” December 30, 2014.

WSJ. U.S. Envoy Urges U.N., Congolese Military Action Against Rwandan Rebels.” December 30, 2014.

OSINT – Abu Sayyaf Group

Also Known As: ASG; al Harakat al Islamiyya (the Islamic Movement)

Description:  The United States designated ASH, a paramilitary splinter group of the Islamic extremist Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), as a FTO on October 8, 1997.

Targets: Key targets of ASG include Philippine military and civic members, as well as foreign civilian targets of opportunity.

Activities: ASG has executed numerous attacks against its targets, including cross border raids and bombings. ASG has kidnapped foreigners, including Americans, for ransom numerous times. ASG has also used IEDs against Philippine military patrols to devastating effect. The most notorious ASG bombing effort was the 2004 attack on SuperFerry 14 in Manila Bay, resulting in 116 deaths.

Diplomacy: ASG has been known to work with personnel from Jemaah Islamiya.

Strength:  Estimated to be around 400 personnel

AO: Southern Philippine Islands, with a heavy concentration in Mindanao.

Funding and External Aid:  ASG has been funded by kidnaping for ransom, as well as donations from Jemaah Islamiya.

ASG's AO, courtesy of the NCTC

ASG’s AO, courtesy of the NCTC

Local Media:

Business World. Abu Sayyaf.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

Inquirer. Abu Sayyaf.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

Malaya Business Insight. Abu Sayyaf.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

Manila Bulletin. Abu Sayyaf.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

Manila Times. Abu Sayyaf.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

Philstar. Abu Sayyaf.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

Global Media:

Al Jazeera. Abu Sayyaf.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

BBC. Abu Sayyaf.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

BBC. Who are the Abu Sayyaf?” August 22, 2002. Accessed December 31, 2014.

CNN. Abu Sayyaf.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

Foreign Affairs. “Abu Sayyaf.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

Foreign Policy. “Abu Sayyaf.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

The Guardian. “Philippines.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

NPR. Abu Sayyaf.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

NYT. “Abu Sayyaf.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

Reuters. Abu Sayyaf.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

VICE News. “Abu Sayyaf.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

VOA. Abu Sayyaf.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

WaPo. “Abu Sayyaf.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

Think Tanks / Academic:

AEI. “Abu Sayyaf.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

Brookings. “Abu Sayyaf.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

CFR. “Abu Sayyaf Group.” May 27, 2009. Accessed December 31, 2014.

CRS. “Abu Sayyaf: Target of Philippine-U.S. Anti-Terrorism Cooperation.” January 25, 2002. Accessed December 31, 2014.

CRS. “Al Qaeda and Affiliates: Historical Perspective, Global Presence, and Implications for U.S. Policy.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

CRS. “The Republic of the Philippines and U.S. Interests.” April 5, 2012. Accessed December 31, 2014.

CRS. “Terrorism in Southeast Asia.” October 16, 2009. Accessed December 31, 2014.

CSIS. “Abu Sayyaf.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

CTC. “Abu Sayyaf.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

FAS. “Abu Sayyaf Group.” May 4, 2006. Accessed December 31, 2014.

ICG. “Philippines.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

Jihadology. “Abu Sayyaf.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

Naval Postgraduate School. “THE PHILIPPINE RESPONSE TO TERRORISM: THE ABU SAYYAF GROUP.” December 2004. Accessed December 31, 2014.

Stanford University. “Abu Sayyaf Group.” Mapping Militant Organizations. August 6, 2013.  Accessed December 31, 2014.

TRAC. “Abu Sayyaf.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

Government:

Defense Department. “Abu Sayyaf.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

DIA. “Annual Threat Assessment.” February 11, 2014. Accessed December 31, 2014.

NCTC. “Abu Sayyaf.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

State Department. “Abu Sayyaf.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

State Department. “ABU SAYYAF GROUP.” Chapter 6: Foreign Terrorist Organizations. Country Reports on Terrorism 2013.

Cold War Files – Primary Source Research

Great Cold War archives available for public use that contain primary source documents include:

The Cold War Museum

Cold War Studies at Harvard University

The Library of Congress

The Miller Center at the University of Virginia

The National Archives

The National Security Archive

The Wilson Center Cold War International History Project

OSINT – Jemaah Islamiya

Also Known As: Jemaa Islamiyah; Jema’a Islamiyah; Jemaa Islamiyya; Jema’a Islamiyya; Jemaa Islamiyyah; Jema’a Islamiyyah; Jemaah Islamiah; Jemaah Islamiyah; Jema’ah Islamiyah; Jemaah Islamiyyah; Jema’ah Islamiyyah; JI

Description:  The United States designated JI, an Islamic extremist group attempting to establish a caliphate in Southeast Asia, as a FTO on October 23, 2002.

Targets: Key targets of JI include Indonesian military and civic members, as well as foreign targets of opportunity.

Activities: JI has executed numerous attacks against its targets, including cross border raids and bombings. JI’s most notable attack was the 2002 Bali Bombings, resulting in 202 deaths.

Diplomacy: JI has conducted joint operations with the Philippine terrorist group, the Abu Sayyaf Group.

Strength:  Estimates are between 500 to several thousand members.

AO: JI is concentrated within Southeast Asia, with most activities in Malaysia and Indonesia.

Funding and External Aid:  JI uses a combination of TNOC, such as extortion, and legitimate businesses to raise revenue.

Jemaah Islamiya's AO, courtesy of the NCTC

Jemaah Islamiya’s AO, courtesy of the NCTC

Local Media:

The Jakarta Globe. Jemaah Islamiyah.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

The Jakarta Post. Accessed December 31, 2014.

Kompas. Jemaah Islamiyah.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

New Straits Times Online. Jemaah Islamiyah.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

The Star. Jemaah Islamiyah.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

The Sun Daily. Jemaah Islamiyah.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

Global Media:

Al Jazeera. Jemmah Islamiya.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

BBC. Jemmah Islamiah.” February 2, 2012. Accessed December 31, 2014.

CNN. Jemmah Islamiyah.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

Foreign Affairs. “Jemaah Islamiyah.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

Foreign Policy. “Jemaah Islamiya.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

The Guardian. “Profile: Jemaah Islamiyah.” September 9, 2004. Accessed December 31, 2014.

NPR. Jemaah Islamiya.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

NYT. “Jemaah Islamiyah.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

Reuters. Jemaah Islamiyah.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

VICE News. “Jemaah Islamiyah.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

VOA. Jemaah Islamiya.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

WaPo. “Jemaah Islamiyah.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

Think Tanks / Academic:

Brookings. “Jemaah Islamiya.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

CFR. “Jemaah Islamiyah.” June 19, 2009. Accessed December 31, 2014.

CRS. “Terrorism in Southeast Asia .” October 16, 2009. Accessed December 31, 2014.

CSIS. “Jemaah Islamiya.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

CTC. “Jemaah Islamiya.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

Global Security. “Jemaah Islamiya.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

ICG. “Indonesia.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

ICS. “Indonesia: Jemaah Islamiyah’s Publishing Industry.” February 28, 2008. Accessed December 31, 2014.

Stanford University. “Jemaah Islamiyah.” Mapping Militant Organizations. February 14, 2012.  Accessed December 31, 2014.

TRAC. “Jemaah Islamiyah.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

Government:

Defense Department. “Jemaah Islamiya.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

DIA. “Annual Threat Assessment.” February 11, 2014.

NCTC. “Jemaah Islamiya.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

State Department. “Jemaah Islamiyah.” December 31, 2014.

State Department. “Jemmah Islamiyah.” Chapter 6: Foreign Terrorist Organizations. Country Reports on Terrorism 2013.

OSINT – Lashkar-e-Tayyiba

Also Known As: Al Mansoorian; Army of the Pure; Army of the Pure and Righteous; Army of the Righteous; Lashkar e-Toiba; Lashkar-i-Taiba; Paasban-e-Ahle-Hadis; Paasban-e-Kashmir; Paasban-i-Ahle-Hadith; Pasban-e-Ahle-Hadith; Pasban-e-Kashmir; Jamaat-ud-Dawa; JUD; Jama’at al-Dawa; Jamaat ud-Daawa; Jamaat ul-Dawah; Jamaat-ul-Dawa; Jama’at-i-Dawat; Jamaiat-ud-Dawa; Jama’at-ud-Da’awah; Jama’at-ud-Da’awa; Jamaati-ud-Dawa; Idara Khidmat-e-Khalq; Falah-i-Insaniat Foundation; FiF; Falah-e-Insaniat Foundation; Falah-e-Insaniyat; Falah-i-Insaniyat; Falah Insania; Welfare of Humanity; Humanitarian Welfare Foundation; Human Welfare Foundation; LT; LeT

Description:  The United States designated LeT, a Kashmir paramilitary group, as a FTO on December 26, 2001. LeT personnel have a striking anti-India agenda over the status of the Kashmir.

Targets: Key targets of LeT include Indian military and civic members, as well as American and Israeli targets of opportunity.

 Activities: LeT has executed numerous attacks against its targets, including cross border raids and bombings. LeT’s most notorious attack was the 26/11 Mumbai Massacre, a hostage barricade attack in which over 160 people died. LeT was also able to recruit ethnic Pakistanis from abroad, such as American David Headley, to reconnoiter for the attacks. LeT has also engaged in traditional guerilla attacks, such as sniping and mortaring, against Indian personnel in the Kashmir.

Diplomacy: LeT has been known to share safe houses with AQ elements. LeT has also launched propaganda missions with JEM.

Strength:  Estimated to be several thousand strong

AO: Pakistan and India, with a concentration of personnel in the Kashmir

Funding and External Aid:  LeT solicits funds from advertisements in the Pakistani Press, donors from the Middle East, and expats from the United Kingdom.

LT's AO, courtesy of the NCTC

LT’s AO, courtesy of the NCTC

Local Media:

The Daily Times. Lashkar-e-Tayyiba.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

Dawn. Lashkar-e-Tayyiba.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

Deccan Herald. Lashkar-e-Tayyiba.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

The Frontier Post. Lashkar-e-Tayyiba.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

The Hindu. Lashkar-e-Tayyiba.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

The Indian Express. Lashkar-e-Tayyiba.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

The International News. Lashkar-e-Tayyiba.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

The Nation. Lashkar-e-Tayyiba.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

Outlook. Lashkar-e-Tayyiba.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

The Times of India. Lashkar-e-Tayyiba.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

Global Media:

BBC. Lashkar-e-Tayyiba.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

BBC. Profile: Lashkar-e-Taiba.” May 3, 2010. Accessed December 31, 2014.

CNN. Lashkar-e-Tayyiba.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

The Guardian. “Mumbai terror attacks.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

NPR. Lashkar-e-Tayyiba.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

NYT. “Lashkar-e-Taiba.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

Reuters. Lashkar-e-Tayyiba.”Accessed December 31, 2014.

SATP. Army of the Pure.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

VOA. Lashkar-e-Tayyiba.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

WaPo. “Lashkar-e-Tayyiba.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

Think Tanks / Academic:

AEI. “Lashkar-e-Tayyiba.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

Brookings. “Lashkar-e-Tayyiba.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

CFR. “Lashkar-e-Tayyiba.” January 14, 2014. Accessed December 31, 2014.

CSIS. “Lashkar-e-Tayyiba.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

CTC. “Lashkar-e-Tayyiba.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

FAS. “Lashkar-e-Tayyiba.” May 21, 2004.

ICG. “Pakistan.” 2014. Accessed December 31, 2014.

Jihadology. “Lashkar-e-Tahyyiba.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

SITE. “Lashkar-e Tobia: A Global Threat.”2010. Accessed December 31, 2014.

Stanford University. “Lashkar-e-Taiba.” Mapping Militant Organizations. August 3, 2012.  Accessed December 31, 2014.

TRAC. “Lashkar-e-Taiba.” Accessed December 26, 2014.

Government:

Defense Department. “Lashkar-e-Tayyiba.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

DIA. “Annual Threat Assessment.” February 11, 2014.

NCTC. “Lashkar-e-Tayyiba.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

State Department. “Lashkar-e-Tayyiba.” Accessed December 31, 2014.

State Department. “Lashkar-e-Tayyiba.” Chapter 6: Foreign Terrorist Organizations. Country Reports on Terrorism 2013. 

ISIS Presence in Libya

IBT’s photo of an Islamic Youth Council convoy with ISIS flags

IBT’s photo of an Islamic Youth Council convoy with ISIS flags

Following the removal of Muammar Gaddafi’s regime, members of the National Transitional Council (NTC)[1] struggled to maintain cohesion between the central government in Tripoli and regional governments, such as Benghazi.[2] Further complicating the situation on the ground was the proliferation of weapons and militias, cumulating in the September 2012 Benghazi Attack.[3] Major conflict broke out between the Libyan Army and Ansar al-Sharia, an Islamist militia, in Beghanzi around November 2013.[4] Further fighting ensued following ethnic and religious lines, as well as contests over resources.[5] The most current – and dire – wave of fighting started in May 2014, when Libyan National Army General Khalifa Haftar declared war, or “Operation Dignity” on the Ansar al-Sharia militia.[6] The June elections flopped because of low turnout, and the prime minister was removed from office on the order of the supreme court.[7] Egypt and the United Arab Emirates have also become party to the conflict, as they have conducted airstrikes in Tripoli against Islamist militias.[8] Current key parties supporting the government in the conflict include the Libyan Army (conventional pro-government army), the Libya Revolutionaries Operations Room (parliamentary guards with questionable loyalty), National Security Directorate (police), Al-Saiqa Forces (paratroopers), and the Petroleum Facilities Guard (security forces for oil fields).[9] Key militias include Libyan Shield Force, the Libyan National Army, Al-Zintan Revolutionaries’ Military Council, Al-Qaqa Brigade, Al-Sawaiq Brigade, Misrata Brigades, the 17 February Martyrs Brigade, and the Ansar al-Sharia Brigade.[10]

ISIS has established influence in Libya following the development of ungoverned spaces during the civil war. Approximately 800 militants of the Shura Council for the Youth of Islam and 300 Libyan fighters who fought for ISIS in Syria and returned to Libya dominate the town of Derna.[11] Both groups haven pledged allegiance to ISIS’s caliph Abu Bakr al Baghdadi.[12] The militia has declared that Derna, population 100,000, is now a part of the Islamic State as the province of Barqa. The Shura Council for the Youth of Islam has usurped control of courts, schools, and communications.[13] Additionally, ISIS sympathizing cells have been detected in al Bayda, Benghazi, Sirte, al-Khums, and Tripoli.[14] The Shura Council for the Youth of Islam has training and operational capacity, as it launched a suicide attack in Tobruk, resulting fifteen casualties.[15] Thus, ISIS has a footprint in Libya.

Numerous high value targets (HVTs) are present in Syria. Abu Nabil al Anbar, an Iraqi ISIS commander with ties to Baghdadi has been witnessed in Derna.[16] A Saudi cleric with ISIS ties, Abu al-Baraa el-Azdi, appears to be in charge of the courts. He is also known as Mohammed Abdullah.[17] Key members of ISIS are in Libya.

 

Location of Derna, courtesy of CNN

Location of Derna, courtesy of CNN

 

[1] This organization became the “General National Congress” in August 2012.

[2] BBC, “Libya profile,” October 14, 2014. http://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-13755445/.

[3] Ibid.

[4] Ibid.

[5] Ibid.

[6] Ibid.

[7] Ibid.

[8] NYT, “Arab Nations Strike in Libya, Surprising U.S,” August 25, 2014. http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/26/world/africa/egypt-and-united-arab-emirates-said-to-have-secretly-carried-out-libya-airstrikes.html/

[9] BBC, “Guide to key Libyan militias,” May 20, 2014. http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-19744533.

[10] Ibid.

[11] CNN, “ISIS comes to Libya,” November 18, 2014. http://edition.cnn.com/2014/11/18/world/isis-libya/index.html.

[12] Ibid.

[13] CNN, “ISIS comes to Libya,” November 18, 2014.

[14] Ibid.

[15] Ibid.

[16] Ibid.

[17] IBT, “ISIS Establishes Stronghold In Derna, Libya,” November 10, 2014. http://www.ibtimes.com/isis-establishes-stronghold-derna-libya-1721425.

 

AP.How a Libyan city joined the Islamic State group.” November 9, 2014.

BBC. “BBC, “Guide to key Libyan militias.” May 20, 2014.

BBC. Libya Profile.” October 14, 2014.

CFR. Libya.” October 2014.

CNN. “ISIS comes to Libya.” November 18, 2014.

IBT. ISIS Establishes Stronghold In Derna, Libya.” November 10, 2014.

NYT. Arab Nations Strike in Libya, Surprising U.S.” August 25, 2014.