What next for the missing Bethnal Green girls in Syria?

Originally Published by The Telegraph 03 July 2015. Original linked here.

Britain has seen hundreds of male foreign terrorist fighters return home, but what happens when Isil jihadi brides want to come back? While the number of Western male foreign terrorist fighters remains staggering, there is an equally unprecedented number of Western females migrating to Syria and Iraq to join Isil state-building efforts.

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‘Till Martyrdom Do Us Part’ – Gender and the ISIS Phenomenon

By Erin Marie Saltman and Melanie Smith

The following is the introduction to the latest Women and Extremism report from ISD. A link to the full report can be found here. Launched 28 May 2015

Although often assumed to be passive agents, women have played significant roles in a number of contemporary terrorist organizations. Violent extremist groups across the political and ideological spectrum have utilised female forces for a range of activities including logistics, recruitment, political safeguarding, operations, suicide bombing and combat. However, the recent unprecedented surge in female recruits to the terrorist organization Islamic State (ISIS) has brought this phenomenon into sharp focus. For many there remain misperceptions and misunderstandings concerning the role women play within these violent networks, often paired with engendered responses to the radicalisation of women. By analysing how terrorist organisations choose to utilise women, we are able to better understand the decision-making processes of terrorists and the inner-workings of the organization itself. Continue reading

Islamic State: The Changing Face of Modern Jihadism

Report by Dr Erin Marie Saltman and Charlie Winter

This report was launched by Quilliam (November 2014). The link to the full report can be found here. The following is the Executive Summary to the report: Continue reading

ISIS have used social media to wreak havoc in Iraq and Syria, but we can stop them

Originally Published by The Independent: 19 June 2014. Original linked here.

The group’s expert use of Facebook and Twitter has helped fuel their support. The Islamic State in Iraq and ash-Sham (ISIS) has taken control of huge swathes of Iraq and Syria, as well as hundreds of millions of US dollars. Already notorious for their brutal religious extremism, it might come as a surprise that they’re also highly adept at social media.

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