Jihadism in 2010: The Threat Continues
Forecast for 2010
In the coming year we believe that, globally, we will see many of the trends continue from last year. We believe that the al Qaeda core will continue to be marginalized on the physical battlefield and struggle to remain relevant on the ideological battlefield. The regional jihadist franchise groups will continue to be at the vanguard of the physical battle, and the grassroots operatives will remain a persistent, though lower-level, threat.
Full article HERE
This is pretty much what I have been seeing on the internet since 2007 or so. Many franchises showing up and replicating their site data to recruit and train the armchair Jihadi. We are at a state now where as this report cites, AQ proper has been caged up in the hills and marginalized operationally. However, their “idea” has only spread and strengthened in the intervening years since 9/11. The net effect, being that since we screwed the pooch on getting OBL and Ayman into custody or body bags, they have only increased in popularity.
The problem now comes to this:
We all know how behind the eight ball we are regarding HUMINT in the theatre. Our recent loss to a triple agent in PK shows just how desperate we are for HUMINT on these guys. So much so that they missed all the signs that a jihadi blogger they were about to meet was indeed going to pull the rip cord on a vest bomb. Simply, we still lack the resources in language, culture, and in ability to blend in and assimilate into the targets environment to be of any real use INTEL wise.
Add to this now that many of these same guys are online and chatting, writing, sending files, etc. The online world, where we lack a cohesive strategy to wage war against them never mind against the cyber warriors from China. We are mostly blind and we need not to be.
This morning I woke to a twitter that referenced a guy who is waging a cyber offensive against the jihadi’s. His idea of waging war is to knock their sites offline for a while.
Piffle and counter-productive.
What we need are more HUMINT sources using SIGINT and OSINT to assimilate into their online culture and eventually bring down the IRL actors, not just knock down a site that will only have mirrors (multiple) all over the Internet. This guy may mean well, but his approach is too one dimensional and over all, useless.
We need to get our act together.