The Evolving Terrorist Threat: Implications for Global Security

The Evolving Terrorist Threat: Implications for Global Security

Part 1: Change or Continuity Since 2014: ISIS in Global Context?

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When do good news and more good news not add up to happily ever after? When the topic at hand is jihadist terrorism. Yes, al-Qaeda and Islamic State both are severely weakened. But no, the threat of terror attacks isn’t vanquished. That’s the consensus of this panel of experts convened by the RAND Corporation. While they see progress in the fight against terror, they also predict jihadi groups simply will metastasize, not go away. getAbstract recommends this panel discussion to policy makers and global managers seeking clear-eyed insight into an intractable problem.


These would seem to be heady times for the nations fighting Islamic terrorists: US forces killed al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden. Islamic State in Iraq, Syria and other regions has lost territory and suffered wrenching defeats. Yet it’s far too early to declare victory against jihadists. Here’s one sobering thought: As bin Laden launched the September 11, 2001, attacks on the United States, he had just 400 sworn followers. Now, al-Qaeda in Yemen alone counts at least 5,000 recruits.

ISIS rose quickly and gruesomely, and it fell rapidly...

About the Speakers

Ali Soufan is chair and CEO of the Soufan Group. Seth Jones directs the International Security and Defense Policy Center at the RAND Corporation. Daveed Gartenstein-Ross is senior fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies. Eric Schmitt covers terrorism for The New York Times.

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