Islamic State

VOX-Pol has released its latest report in the VOX-Pol publication series, titled A Tale Of Two Caliphates: Comparing the Islamic State’s Internal and External Messaging Priorities, co-authored by Dr. Dounia Mahlouly and Charlie Winter. About the Report In recent years, the media department of the self-proclaimed Islamic State has proven itself to be highly adept at…

By Raheel Nawaz The UK government – with considerable pomp and ceremony – recently unveiled a new online tool for detection and removal of jihadi videos boasting a high success rate. It has been claimed by the Home Office that the machine learning tool, which the government developed with ASI Data Science, can identify 94%…

By Kiriloi M. Ingram Since the self-proclaimed Caliphate’s inception, debate amongst scholars has ensued over whether the Islamic State’s (IS’s) muhajirat (female émigrés) would become female combatants. For example, Nelly Lahoud argues that IS is unlikely to devise a policy explicitly allowing women to engage in combat, as legitimating such a role would allow women to…

This is part one of a two-part series; the second part is HERE. By Anne Speckhard, Ardian Shajkovci, Lorand Bodo & Haris Fazliu It is estimated that of the 38,000 foreign fighters who have joined Sunni militant groups, such as ISIS and al-Nusra, in Iraq and Syria, upwards of 875 have originated from the Balkans,…

By Maura Conway and Michael Courtney Jihadi magazines have a long pedigree, are the subject of extensive media coverage and scholarly analysis,[1] and are still easily accessible online. In a recent book chapter, ‘Online Jihadi Instructional Content: The Role of Magazines,’ Conway, Parker, and Looney,  focused on the instructional content, both text and images, published in…

By André Gagné and Marc-André Argentino The Islamic State has lost most of its territory and key cities like Mosul and Raqqa, and more recently Deir al-Zour and al-Qaim, have fallen to the global coalition fighting the terrorist group. In the face of such challenges, it’s tried to maintain legitimacy through what some have called a virtual caliphate. Within…

By Laurence Bindner, Raphael Gluck This article was originally published in French on Ultima Ratio. Since partly going underground in the deep-web, ISIS exerts continuous pressure to make its propaganda surface on the public web. Adapting constantly to ever more active censorship, ISIS uses the various web platforms in an opportunistic and agile way. Therefore,…

By Maura Conway and Suraj Lakhani This post is based on findings contained in the VOX-Pol report Disrupting Daesh: Measuring Takedown of Online Terrorist Material and its Impacts published on 15 August 2017. Alongside the fierce battles that have been raging of late in key strongholds of so-called Islamic State (IS) in Syria and Iraq, intense battles against…

Since late 2016, researchers came to acknowledge both ISIS’ territorial decline and much reduced visibility on mainstream social media networks. They note that its online community of supporters have migrated to encrypted communication channels and that its territory in the Levant has shrunk considerably, which—according to a recent ICSR estimate—impacted on the organisation’s financial resources.…

In one 24-hour period, 65% of Twitter accounts tweeting out-links to IS propaganda were suspended within 17 hours Focus of online disruption on IS allows other jihadi groups to outpace them on social media VOX-Pol researchers from Dublin City University, together with colleagues from the University of Sussex, have found that the social media platform,…