From the Editor
Our October issue focuses mostly on the Islamic State. In our interview, Rear Admiral Michael Dumont, Brigadier General Michael Kurilla, and Colonel Stephen Michael weigh in on the military campaign against the group. Our cover story by Jessica Lewis McFate outlines how the Islamic State’s defensive efforts in Syria and Iraq have positioned it to exploit Russian airstrikes weakening other groups. J.M. Berger charts how the group has recruited and instigated attacks in the West through “tailored online interventions.” As a war of words between al-Qa`ida and the Islamic State escalates, Brian Fishman reveals that al-Qa`ida was warned early on about the Islamic State’s apocalyptic obsessions. Daveed Gartenstein-Ross and Bridget Moreng examine the evolution of the jihadi threat in Tunisia since the June beach attack in Sousse.
We also debut a section providing briefings on recent major developments. Metin Gurcan writes about the Ankara bombings. Saleem Mehsud explains how the Afghan Taliban’s temporary seizure of Kunduz has bolsered the new leader Mullah Mansoor. And Zachary Abuza explains how there are still more questions than answers about the network behind the Bangkok attack.
Paul Cruickshank, Editor-in-Chief