Drawing on their unusual access to intelligence sources, law enforcement, and groundbreaking research, two of America’s leading experts on violent extremism and terrorism explain the genesis, evolution, and implications of today’s most barbaric jihadist army, Islamic State—and how we can fight it.
Though terrorist groups are a fixture of contemporary politics and warfare, the world has never witnessed the degree of sheer brutality demonstrated by the group know as ISIS—the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant. Its sadistic disregard for human life, sophisticated use of social media, acquisition of territory, and ability to attract foreign fighters—many from modern Western democracies—is unprecedented.
Jessica Stern and J. M. Berger analyze the tools ISIS uses both to frighten innocent citizens and lure new soldiers—including the “ghoulish pornography” of their pro-jihadi videos, the seductive appeal of “jihadic chic,” and its startling effective social media expertise. While this jihadi army poses a significant threat, our response must be carefully calibrated the authors warn; sending troops onto the battlefield could become the ideal recruiting tool, increasing ISIS’s ranks.
ISIS: The State of Terror offers practical ideas on potential government responses—most importantly, emphasizing that we must alter our present conceptions of terrorism and terrorists and react to the rapidly changing jihadi landscape, both online and off, as quickly as the terrorists do. As it lays out what our next move—as a country, as a government, as the world—should be, it offers a vital assessment of the future of counterterrorism and countering violent extremism.
Buy Online: Amazon
About co-author J.M. Berger
J.M. Berger is a researcher, analyst and writer covering extremism, with a special focus on extremist activities in the U.S. and extremist use of social media. He is the author of the critically acclaimed Jihad Joe: Americans Who Go to War in the Name of Islam, a comprehensive history of American jihadists. His work has appeared in The New York Times, The Atlantic,The Daily Beast, Foreign Policy, the CTC Sentinel, the New York Daily News and the Boston Globe, and on National Public Radio, Public Radio International and the National Geographic Channel. Berger has discussed terrorism and extremism on CNN, Fox News and many other radio and television outlets.
J.M runs IntelWire.com a website that publishes investigative reports and analysis on terrorism, as well exclusive primary source documents. IntelWire has published thousands of declassified documents on the September 11 attacks and the Oklahoma City bombing. Connect with him on Twitter for more updates and analysis.