Alexander Thurston, specialist in militant Islamism, discusses the history and evolution of Boko Haram. Q. Boko Haram: The History of an African Jihadist Movement, your new book, offers a comprehensive history of one of the world’s deadliest jihadist groups. Who are Boko Haram and what are the origins of this group? Boko Haram originated in north-eastern Nigeria […]Read more "Interview: Alexander Thurston"
This article by Abigail Watson was first published on DefenceReport on November 30, 2017. Recent reports suggest that UK special forces could have been left “understaffed” for years, and efforts to rectify this appear flawed. This adds to building questions about whether the current level of oversight is sufficient to protect our special forces. In […]Read more "Are there sufficient mechanisms to protect UK special forces?"
This article by Abigail Watson was first published on E-International Relations on November 28th 2017. Special Forces have long captured people’s imaginations. Books, films, videogames and news outlets propagate an image of heroism and mysticism – only added to by governments’ reticence to discuss their operations. The impact of this is that, while almost everyone […]Read more "The Golden Age of Special Operations Forces"
Acclaimed author and military strategist Dr. Mark Moyar discusses the history and current use of US special operations forces, America’s most elite soldiers. Q. Your book Oppose Any Foe was recently published. The book examines the history of U.S. special operations forces. What are the origins of America’s special operations forces and why were they created? […]Read more "Interview – Mark Moyar"
This article was originally published on OpenDemocracy on June 30th, 2017. With a lower threshold for the use of lethal force, the government must ensure greater clarity over how it avoids individuals paying the ultimate price for UK mistakes. At the start of this year, the UK Attorney General, Jeremy Wright QC, outlined how the […]Read more "The devil is in the detail: the problem with the UK’s legal basis for self-defence"
This article was first published on RealClearDefense on July 20th, 2017. Following claims that a Special Air Service (SAS) unit “is suspected of executing unarmed civilians in Afghanistan and fabricating reports to cover up potential war crimes,” there have been a number of calls for an investigation into the actions of British troops. The Ministry […]Read more "The Dangers of the UK’s Blanket No Comment Policy for Special Forces"
This article was originally published on Small Wars Journal on Apil 22, 2017. If the government continues to refuse comment on most of its counterterrorism activity abroad it will struggle to win what is increasingly a war of narratives and the strategic use of (dis)information. Terrorist groups around the world are increasingly placing as much […]Read more "Why the UK Will Lose the Information War Against Terrorism"