Conflict Portrait: Afghanistan

The armed conflict between the Afghan government, along with its international allies, and armed radical Islamist insurgents intensified after 2014. At the end of that year, the mandate of the NATO-led ISAF combat mission expired, and the responsibility for security was officially handed over to the Afghan authorities. ISAF was replaced by a far smaller… Read more »

Syria Travellers and Security Threats

Foreign fighters returning from Syria have emerged as a looming security threat in many European countries, so also in Norway. As well as preventive measures against radicalization and mobilization by the Islamic State, there have been calls for the withdrawal of citizenship and deportation of returned foreign fighters. This raises a number of questions: Are Norwegians more secure if we send potential terrorists… Read more »

The Threat from ISIS is not Military

For more than a decade, alarmists have essentially argued that, because the 9/11 attackers proved to be good with box-cutters, they would soon be able to fabricate nuclear weapons. And now, after the dramatic and horrible Paris terror attacks, a similar process of alarmed exaggeration seems to be happening with ISIS. In a reactive pose… Read more »

The “Sunnification” of Turkey´s Foreign Policy

Two months is a long time in politics – even more so in Turkish politics. At the beginning of June, the Turkish election brought a wave of hope across the country with results that broke the majoritarian (and authoritarian) rule of the reigning Justice and Development Party (AKP). The pro-Kurdish People´s Democratic Party (HDP), winning… Read more »

Boko Haram does not have the Fire Power of the Islamic State

Boko Haram’s influence and cruelty is still increasing. On the 3rd of January the Islamist group first attacked Baga, situated at the riverside of Lake Chad in the north of the State of Borno. They then came back several days later and demolished the entire city and its surrounding villages. The attack reportedly caused more… Read more »

Can Iraq be Fixed?

Iraq’s new prime minister, Haider al-Abadi, faces the enormous task of uniting the country. But whatever the outcome, Iraq cannot be restored to how it was before the summer. There is broad agreement that the former Iraqi prime minister, Nour al-Maliki, was a part of the problem, and that his replacement by Haider al-Abadi is… Read more »