Happiness in the proximity of faith and death

[ by Charles Cameron — the emotional impact of faith, from a nun present at the Normandy attack to a failed suicide bomber in Syria ] . According to this IB Times article, Tragic last words of Catholic priest killed by Isis terrorists revealed, Sister Helene Decaux, one of the nuns who was present at […] Read more »

Hipbone update & request for your vote!

[ by Charles Cameron — 3 Quarks Daily, Boston Apocalyptic conference, LapidoMedia, World Religions and Spirituality Project, Bellingcat, Loopcast, Pragati, Sembl ] . First, please vote! . My story, War in Heaven, is in the running for the 3 Quarks Daily Arts & Literature Prize. 3 Quarks Daily is a great aggregator site, I’m honored […] Read more »

When the promise of the miraculous is disappointed

[ by Charles Cameron — the role of promise and illusion in recruitment, disappointment and disillusion in CVE ] . Here’s an example of promise and disillusionment from the early Afghan jihad: upper quote below from Abdullah Azzam, lower quote from Mustafa Hamid. ** It seems that disappointed hopes are and/or should be a major […] Read more »

Two new “must read” books

[ by Charles Cameron — Hamid & Farrall, Stern & Berger, full reviews coming up shortly ] . ** I recently received a review copy of Mustafa Hamid & Leah Farrall‘s breakthrough book, The Arabs at War in Afghanistan, courtesy of the publisher, Michael Dwyer of Hurst, and will be writing it up once I’ve […] Read more »

A very brief brief on black banners

[ by Charles Cameron — wherein black flag patches run riot ] . Just a quick something I gleaned via Leah Farrall‘s recent blog post: That’s the ist of an excerpt I transcribed from an Aussie Insight video last year, which featured host Jenny Brockie and the gentleman depicted, one Abu Bakr. Bakr was arrested […] Read more »

Language as tripwire: the Khorasan Group and the active and passive voices

[ by Charles Cameron -- first in a series in which the language makes a difference ] . Can we just call this grouping what it is… Al Qaeda. Pure and simple and not fricking new. — Leah Farrall (@allthingsct) September 23, 2014 ** There is this business of the so-called “Khorasan Group”. Two paragraphs […] Read more »

Recruitment, poetry and tears

[ by Charles Cameron -- Hegghammer on testing and trusting as precursors to AQ recuitment ] . I’ve been having trouble finding any of the anasheed Ibn Siqilli was posting on his site, many of which have been taken down — but this one, found in a comment of his on Leah Farrall‘s site, has [...] Read more »

Games of telephone and counter-telephone?

[ by Charles Cameron -- embassy or consulate -- a minor detail for an editor, perhaps, but all the difference in the world for Ambassador J Christopher Stevens ] . Here’s a screen grab of a piece posted on the Atlantic site today: . The article itself is worth your time, and I’ll get back [...] Read more »

Next-Gen Terror Watchers Go Deep Into Al-Qaida, Tweet a Lot

A new generation of counterterrorism scholars goes into exacting granularity about the extremist movements they study, distinguishing between varieties of extremism and everyday Muslims. And they do it all on Twitter. Read more »