Criminology homework help

| March 28, 2020

Now that both al Qaeda and ISIS have become parent organizations, which franchise or affiliate of AQ or ISIS do you feel is the greatest threat to the U.S. Homeland?

ISIS was borne from an al-Qaeda lineage. Once coalition war efforts were squarely focused on al-Qaeda the result was a weakened terrorist network that was in recovery mode. This allowed al-Qaeda in Iraq to break away and challenge for power and position. Al-Qaeda in Iraq broke away and became the Islamic State. They experienced success in obtaining their sought after caliphate in Iraq and Syria. They were in some ways able to accomplish what al-Qaeda was not. Though it was brief ISIS did establish a caliphate. This got America’s attention and led to direct military action. If it seems like we have seen this movie before it’s because this is almost exactly how al-Qaeda lost power and gave way to the rise of ISIS. Now that ISIS has lost its strong hold over Iraq and Syria. The ISIS offshoot in Libya looks poised to make a splash in the terrorism game of thrones. Their situation closely resembles the one that incubated the rise of ISIS in Iraq. War deposed their dictator who though ruthless and criminal kept a lid on an instable region. The government that has taken power did so with coalition backing that receded once operations ended, leaving a weakened government in power. This government does not have the necessary power or influence to maintain stability to halt the growth of jihadist groups who tend to thrive in regions that have these gutted governments (Clarke, 2018). These Libyan Islamic extremist have demonstrated an ability to capitalize on their proximity to Europe by carrying out attacks in 2016 and 2017 in Berlin and Manchester (Clarke, 2018). They have also carried out a number of attacks Tunisia. The fundamentalist offshoots in Libya pose the greatest threat the United States as they continue to grow, have access to arms and ammunition, and are operating in an environment similar to the one that allowed ISIS to establish a caliphate in Iraq and Syria. Though attacking the American homeland is not an immediate threat there are embassies in the region as well as the threat they pose if American interdiction is required to remove them from power if they are able to mimic the success ISIS had in establishing a caliphate. You don’t have to go to America to harm Americans, if they make enough noise, America will come to them.

Both AQ and ISIS have demonstrated the ability to adapt as well as recover from major military offensives. Can you picture a day when AQ and ISIS could get over their differences and merge?

Though al-Qaeda and ISIS do not presently see eye to eye I can picture a scenario where they become allies. If pressure from governments, especially western governments on Islamic governments to control the region mount, causing regional powers to mitigate the radical Islamic threat I do believe we can see a case of the enemy of my enemy is my friend arising. With pressure from the west creating a desperate situation ISIS and al-Qaeda would push their differences aside in order to focus on what they believe is their true enemy. With pressure mounting ISIS would likely be forced to stop attacking Muslims and align itself more closely to al-Qaeda in order to survive. Al-Qaeda has showcased an uncanny ability to evolve in order to survive. This ability to remain relevant has not come without lessons that other terrorist groups must be aware of s Al-Qaeda has intertwined with the Taliban in Afghanistan and is now being negotiated with as a legitimate government (Hoffman, 2018). They have set a precedence that will become the blue print for other groups to follow if they aim for legitimacy.


Clarke, C. P. (2018). Predicting the Next ISIS. The National Interest.

Hoffman, B. (2018). Al-Qaeda’s Resurrection. Council on Foreign Affairs.

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