Archive for the ‘Recruitment’ Category

In this part of our series for Jihadica on the Jihadi Twitter phenomenon, Ali Fisher and Nico Prucha take a closer look at 66 Twitter accounts recommended by a Jihadi online forum user. To be clear, we are analyzing these accounts that are defined in this posting as most important for jihadi sympathizers, but it [...]

For the second installment of our Jihadi Twitter Activism series Ali Fisher and Nico Prucha explore data collected from Twitter related to the Syrian AQ branch Jabhat al-Nusra. This post identifies key ‘influence multipliers’ for Jabhat al-Nusra’s strategic communication and an overview of the content that these multipliers disseminate via Twitter.

As is the case for many others, the tenth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks has made me reflect on their impact over the past decade. To this end, Michelle Shephard‘s Decade of Fear has been indispensable. A very personal account of her journalistic efforts to chronicle the war on terrorism over the past decade, Michelle weaves the weft [...]

Three days ago, Abu Hafs al-Sunni al-Sunni, a member of the Atahadi forum, posted an article he titled, “The Strategic Theory of the Second Generation of Jihadis: Propagandistic Foundations and Operational Methods.” Despite the title, it is less about strategy and operations and more about the public relations problems plaguing the jihadis. Here are his main [...]

According to a member of the Shmukh jihadi forum, the media wing of al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula is making a cartoon. I haven’t seen anything like this before and I am very skeptical that it is a real product. But if it’s legit and anywhere near like the purported screen shots and promotional banner [...]

How Online Propaganda Works

Posted: 23rd June 2011 by Will McCants in propaganda, Recruitment, social media

Shmukh user al-Sakit argues that you need a wide distribution of jihadi propaganda on mainstream forums in order to attract a small amount of people.  He observes that the three top mainstream Arabic forums have one million users each.  If you post jihadi propaganda to all of them, only 10% (300,000) are likely to look [...]

The Limits of Gamification

Posted: 25th April 2011 by Will McCants in Jihad culture, propaganda, Recruitment

Jarret and Alix have published an intriguing article in Foreign Policy on how jihadi ideologues and forum administrators are deliberately applying gaming principles to their discussion boards and propaganda.  The jihadis are doing so to encourage their readers to compete with one another to embody the community’s ethos and take direct action. That’s a new [...]

Jihadi Encryption

Posted: 9th February 2011 by Thomas Hegghammer in Europe, Recruitment, tactics, technology, Terrorism trials, U.K.

The Wall Street Journal ran a fascinating story on Monday about the encryption methods employed by radical Islamist activists. The details emerged in the ongoing UK trial of Rajib Karim. The article is a reminder that there is more to online jihadism than what we see published on radical websites.

An Ex-Jihadi in the Arctic

Posted: 15th October 2010 by Thomas Hegghammer in Australia, Converts, Indonesia, Recruitment, training camps

I grew up in the far north of Norway, hundreds of kilometers above the Arctic Circle. As you might expect, my research interests and arctic origin do not intersect very often. Last time was back in 2004 when a plane on the way from my home town Narvik to Bodø was nearly brought down by an axe-swinging Algerian Islamist. [...]

Quilliam Report

Posted: 27th September 2010 by Thomas Hegghammer in Better Know a Forum, Ideological trends, Jihadi media, propaganda, Recruitment, technology

The Quilliam Foundation, a London based think tank, has released a very interesting new report by Muhammad Ali Musawi titled Cheering for Osama: How Jihadis Use Discussion Forums. It is one of the best introductions to the world of online jihadism that I have seen. It also points out some recent forum trends that should [...]