Report: ISIS Bans Burqas

The Islamic State is said to have banned the garment it once required following assassinations by veiled women near Mosul.

BY CounterJihad · @CounterjihadUS | September 6, 2016

The Islamic State (ISIS) is reported to have banned the wearing of burqas following the assassination of some of its local leadership near Mosul by veiled women, the International Business Timesreports.  In the past, ISIS has killed or beaten women who refused to wear the burqa, a kind of veil that not only covers the body but contains a grille to mask even the eyes.  It is distinct from the niqab, which reveals the eyes, as well as the hijab, a scarf that covers the hair only.

About the Author


The CounterJihad is a movement of American citizen-activists dedicated to safeguarding the country from the danger posed by Islamic Supremacists.

If reports are accurate, several local ISIS leaders have been murdered by women wearing these veils in recent days.  The reports are unclear as to the women’s alleged motives, though as the IBD accurately reports, “ISIS has a poor record when it comes to women’s rights[.]”  This “poor record” includes sex slavery, rape, beatings, and the denial of basic freedoms such as speech, expression, and conscience.

There is some question as to whether the reports are in fact accurate.  IBD cites two different sources, one of which bears striking resemblance to Russian propaganda.  The other source is the Jerusalem Post, which in turn cites the Daily Mail out of the United Kingdom.  The Daily Mail‘s source turns out to be Iran Front Page, which translated a piece by Al Alam.  Al Alam is a state-run outfit out of Iran.  Iran and Russia have been coordinating their war efforts against ISIS as well as in Syria, and this may include propaganda efforts.  Nevertheless, the story is certainly plausible given ISIS’s history of abusing women.

The story is also plausible because the full face veil does indeed represent a real security threat.  The European Human Rights court threw out a case against a French law banning face coverings like the burqa both for security reasons and because it accepted the French argument that such coverings incompatible with the French way of “living together.”  The French law targets any face coverings, making exceptions only for things like motorcycle helmets and carnival masks.

A similar law in Belgium was defended as necessary for security reasons only, extending not only to the burqa but to the less-restrictive niqab:

Isabelle Niedlispacher, representing the Belgian government, which introduced a similar ban in 2011 and which was party to the French defence, declared both the burqa and niqab “incompatible” with the rule of law.

The garments certainly do make identification more difficult, which can create problems for enforcement of the law as well as for security.  While reports that Illinois was considering allowing the burqa in drivers license photos proved to be significantly overstated, the arguments against doing so are legitimate.  The capacity for security officials to identify particular individuals is a crucial aspect of their ability to maintain the rule of law.

That rule is certainly threatened by ISIS in Europe, where the Islamic State claims it has “hundreds” of operatives ready to strike.  How many of them are women is unclear, although there have been incidents of men wearing burqas for tactical advantage as well.  The garments are so deeply concealing that they mask even the sex of the wearer, as well as readily veiling weapons or explosives.


10 new wars that could be unleashed as a result of the one against ISIS

The borders of the Islamic State’s “caliphate” are shrinking fast. The group’s strongholds in Iraq and Syria are collapsing one by one. The U.S.-led war has reached a point where questions are being raised about what comes next.

So far, the answer seems likely to be: more war.

That’s partly because the U.S. strategy for defeating the Islamic State relies on a variety of regional allies and local armed groups who are often bitterly at odds. Though all of them regard the Islamic State as an enemy, most of them regard one another as enemies, too. As they conquer territory from the militants, they are staking out claims to the captured lands in ways that risk bringing them into conflict with others who are also seizing territory. New wars are brewing, for control of the post-Islamic State order.

Here is a list of 10 of them, in no particular order. There are doubtless more. Some have already started. Others may never happen. But any one of them could increase the Islamic State’s chances of survival, perpetuating the conditions that enabled the group to thrive — and perhaps entangling the United States in the region for many years to come.

WAR NO. 1: U.S.-backed Syrian Kurdish forces and Turkish-backed Arab forces

This is one of the wars that have already started, and it is also one of the more complicated ones. Turkey, which is fighting a war at home against separatist Turkish Kurds, has watched with alarm as Syrian Kurds have capitalized on U.S. support to expand Kurdish control over northeastern Syria. Syrian Arab rebels allied to Turkey are also opposed to the Kurdish expansion, which is encroaching on Arab areas. So when Turkey intervened in Syria two weeks ago to help Syrian rebels capture Islamic State territory, it was clear that the Kurds were as much of a target as the Islamic State. Fighting has since erupted, and though the United States has asked both sides to stop, it is unclear whether the it has enough leverage over its rival allies to prevent a deepening conflict.

WAR NO. 2: Turkey and the Syrian Kurds

This war would be similar to war No. 1, but bigger. For now, Turkey has confined its incursion into Syria to an area of Syria occupied by the Islamic State that is mostly Arab. But Turkey is just as worried about the de facto Kurdish state emerging along its border farther east. Kurds declared an autonomous region there earlier this year, and Turkey is now building a wall along the border to try to seal it off. If the tensions persist, a direct Turkish invasion of the Kurdish area — where a small number of U.S. troops also are based — can’t be ruled out.

WAR NO. 3: Syrian Kurds and the Syrian government

The Syrian government also feels threatened by the territorial ambitions of the Kurds. Until recently, they had maintained an uneasy alliance, and Syrian President Bashar al-Assad boasted on a number of occasions that his government provides the Kurds with arms. But the relationship has soured since the autonomy declaration by the Kurds, and the two sides have fought brief battles in areas where they both have forces.

There is now a cease-fire, but the Kurdish aspirations to self-rule are directly at odds with Assad’s proclaimed goal of reasserting Syrian sovereignty over the whole country.

WAR NO. 4: The United States and Syria

This is a war that could have erupted on any number of occasions in the five years since President Obama called for the ouster of Assad. That it hasn’t is testimony to how much both sides want to avoid conflict. It still seems extremely unlikely. But there are a few front lines where the Islamic State war could at some point bring U.S.-backed groups into direct conflict with Syrian government forces. Among them is the Islamic State’s Syrian capital, Raqqa, where in June the United States and Syria were both backing rival offensives from opposite directions. Last month, the U.S. military scrambled jets to deter Syrian warplanes from bombing the Kurds.

WAR NO. 5: Turkey and Syria

The Turkish intervention in Syria has for now been confined to fighting the Islamic State and Kurdish forces. Turkey has also taken steps to mend fences with both Russia and Iran, Assad’s most important allies, who appear to have given a green light to Turkey’s intervention in northern Syria.

If Turkey’s fight against the Islamic State goes well, however, the Turkish forces will soon find themselves up against Syrian government front lines around the contested city of Aleppo. That could get messy.

WAR NO. 6: Iraqi Kurds and the Iraqi government

Moving east from Syria along the Islamic State’s dwindling borders into Iraq, the situation is somewhat less immediately volatile. But it is no less complicated  — or dangerous. Just as Syrian Kurds have expanded the areas that are under their control in ways that challenge the Syrian government’s sovereignty, so too have Iraqi Kurds moved into areas of Iraq that were once under Iraqi government control. The U.S.-backed Iraqi government says it intends to reclaim these areas once the Islamic State has been fully vanquished. The U.S.-backed Kurds have said they won’t let go of any territory Kurds have shed blood to conquer.

These disputes predate the existence of the Islamic State, but they will reemerge with a vengeance once the militants are defeated.

WAR NO. 7: Iraqi Kurds and Shiite militias

This would take place for reasons similar to war No. 6, except that it has already started to simmer. Shiite militias, many of them backed by Iran, have taken a leading role in some of the conquests of Islamic State territory, pushing north from Baghdad to drive the militants back. They have come up against U.S.-allied Kurdish peshmerga fighters pressing south from the Kurdish areas. In at least one location, Tuz Khurmatu, clashes have already taken place.

But, the Kurds themselves are not united, either in Syria or Iraq, which gives rise to the possibility of:

WAR NO. 8: Kurds against Kurds

This is perhaps the most complicated of all the scenarios, but it is far from unlikely. The Kurds are bitterly divided among themselves over just about everything except their aspirations to a Kurdish state. The Kurds of Iraq are split between two factions that fought a bloody civil war in the 1990s. One of them is a sworn foe of the Kurds who control northern Syria. The other is allied to the Syrian Kurds — who themselves are far from united. Conflict between U.S.-allied Kurdish groups is possible, in Iraq or Syria or both.

WAR NO. 9: Sunni Arabs against Shiites and/or Kurds

In pursuit of the goal of defeating the Islamic State, towns and villages that are predominantly Sunni are being conquered by forces that are mostly Kurdish or Shiite. Many Sunnis are teaming up with them to help defeat the militants. Many are overwhelmingly relieved when their oppressors are driven out.

But there are also reports of abuses by Shiites and Kurds against the Sunni communities they liberate. These include the forced displacement of Sunnis from their homes and mass detentions of Sunni men. In the absence of genuine reconciliation, including political solutions that empower Sunnis, a new form of Sunni insurgency could emerge.

Retreating Islamic State blamed for setting oil wells ablaze in Iraq


Residents of the northern Iraqi town of Qayyara complain of black smoke billowing from oil wells set ablaze by retreating militants of Islamic State as life gradually gets back to normal. (Reuters)

WAR NO. 10: The remnants of the Islamic State against everyone

The Islamic State still controls a big chunk of territory in Syria and Iraq. Offensives to control its twin capitals, Mosul and Raqqa, have yet to begin. If the groups who are supposed to participate in the offensives fight among themselves, those battles could be delayed indefinitely.

Even if they don’t, these other conflicts, left unresolved, will herald long-term instability in the region.  Military gains are not being matched by political solutions to the wider chaos and dysfunction that enabled the rise of the Islamic State in the first place. If the current war begets new wars, the Islamic State may yet endure.


NATO is helping officers from Iraq learn to find and defuse improvised explosive devices (IEDs)


Did Russian Special Forces Help the Syrian Army Win Aleppo?

The possibility that the Russians may have been more heavily involved in the recent fighting in Aleppo than they have let on has been provided by a photo which has appeared in the Arab media that is claimed to show Russian special forces soldiers talking to a Syrian soldier on the grounds of the so-called ‘Aleppo artillery base’ shortly after its recapture by the Syrian army.

As  discussed previously, the recapture of what is (wrongly) called the ‘Aleppo artillery base’ by the Syrian army on 4th September 2016 has led to the closure of the narrow corridor Jihadi fighters punched through the government lines encircling the Jihadi held districts of western Aleppo on 5th August 2016.

The Russian special forces soldiers in the photo appear to be fully armed and in full combat gear, as if they had recently taken part in the fighting to recapture the ‘Aleppo military base’.

russian special forces in Aleppo military academy 2

If Russian special forces were involved in the fighting to recapture the base, then that might explain the speed of its recapture after weeks of fighting.

The photo should not be taken as definite proof that Russian special forces were involved in the fighting in Aleppo.  It cannot be said definitely that the photo was taken inside the base; nor can it be said definitely when it was taken.

Even if the photo was taken inside the base after it was recaptured by the Syrian army, the Russian soldiers’ presence in the base does not prove that they were involved in the fighting that led to its recapture on 4th September 2016.

The Russians have consistently denied that their troops are involved in any ground fighting in Syria, and if their special forces troops were involved in the recapture of the ‘Aleppo artillery base’ then on the face of it that would contradict this.

However it has now become common international practice to treat special forces soldiers differently from other soldiers, so that denials of a country’s participation in ground fighting apparently does not extend to them.  A good example is the recently confirmed presence of British special forces troops in Syria, which has come after months of denials by the British government that British ground troops would be sent to Syria.

The Russian military did deploy a small number of Russian elite naval infantry (supposedly and depending upon reports between 80 and 120 men) to Aleppo a few days ago, purportedly to participate in humanitarian operations there.  It could be that this deployment was used as cover for the deployment of the special forces troops who have now been photographed in the ‘Aleppo artillery base’, and who may have been involved in its recapture.

If Russian special forces were involved in the fighting that led to the recapture of the ‘Aleppo artillery base’ then this would almost certainly have been approved at the highest level at one of the various meetings of Russia’s Security Council which took place in August.  The strongest probability is the impromptu meeting which happened on 8th August 2016 – three days after the storming by the Jihadis of the ‘Aleppo artillery base’ – on the eve of Putin’s flight to Baku to meet with the leaders of Azerbaijan and Iran.  Whenever the decision was made Putin would of course have been personally involved.

Even if it eventually confirmed that Russian special forces troops were involved in the recapture of the ‘Aleppo artillery base’ a sense of proportion is needed.  Though these are highly trained elite troops, they are not supermen.  If they really did number 80-120 men as reports say, then they obviously could not have captured the whole large territory of the ‘Aleppo artillery base’ in the face of resistance by hundreds and possibly thousands of Jihadi fighters all by themselves.

They would have made up only a small proportion of the mainly Syrian troops who recaptured the base.  Whilst they might have been involved in some of the actual fighting, they are more likely to have exercised command, control and surveillance functions, assisting the Syrian troops who fought to recapture the base.

Updated: Russian Fighter Came Within 10 Ft. of Navy Surveillance Plane Over Black Sea

P-8A Poseidon. US Navy Photo

This post has been updated with additional information on U.S. P-8A deployments to Europe.

A Russian fighter has come within 10 feet of a Navy surveillance flight over the Black Sea on Wednesday, defense officials told USNI News.
The incident between the Navy P-8A Poseidon surveillance aircraft and a Sukhoi Su-27 Flanker occurred at about 11:20 A.M. local time in international airspace over the Black Sea, according to a statement provided to USNI News.

“During the intercept, which lasted approximately 19 minutes, the Su-27 initially maintained a 30-foot separation distance then closed to within 10 feet of the P-8A, which is considered unsafe and unprofessional,” read the statement.
“We have deep concerns when there is an unsafe maneuver. These actions have the potential to unnecessarily escalate tensions between countries, and could result in a miscalculation or accident which results in serious injury or death.

Russian Sukhoi Su-27 Flanker Fighter

P-8As arrived in the region and began operating last month, a Navy official told USNI News on Wednesday. The aircraft are among the Navy’s newest anti-submarine warfare (ASW) platforms. The P-8A patrols aircraft come as the Russian Navy has expanded its submarine presence in the Black Sea. Specifically, the Russians have based four of Improved Kilo-class (Varshavyanka-class or Project 636) diesel-electric submarines in the Black Sea.

Since 2014, Russia and NATO forces have had several incidents in the Baltic and the Black Seas between aircraft and ships.

In 2014 a Russian Sukhoi SU-24 Fencer made repeated passes over USSDonald Cook (DDG-75), a ballistic missile destroyer, while it was conducting operations in the Black Sea.

Later that year, the Canadian frigate HMCS Toronto was buzzed by Su-23 Fencers operating in the Black Sea.
In January, another Flanker conducted an intercept of a U.S. Air Force RC-135U Combat Sent electronic surveillance aircraft over the Black Sea.

For their part, Russian officials have complained of the uptick in U.S. surveillance flights since 2014.

“US RC-135 reconnaissance aircraft carry out flights almost daily,” Col. Gen. Viktor Bondarev, commander-in-chief of the Russian Air Force, said in late 2014.
“In 2014, more than 140 RC-135 flights have taken place compared to 22 flights in 2013.”

The following is the complete Sept. 7, 2016 statement from the Pentagon on the incident.

At approximately 11:20 a.m. on Sept. 7 a Russian SU-27 Flanker made an unsafe close-range intercept of a U.S. Navy P-8A Poseidon while it conducted routine operations in international airspace over the Black Sea. During the intercept, which lasted approximately 19 minutes, the SU-27 initially maintained a 30 foot separation distance then closed to within 10 feet of the P-8A, which is considered unsafe and unprofessional.

U.S. Navy aircraft and ships routinely interact with Russian units in the area and most interactions are safe and professional. However, we have deep concerns when there is an unsafe maneuver. These actions have the potential to unnecessarily escalate tensions between countries, and could result in a miscalculation or accident which results in serious injury or death.

Sam LaGrone is the editor of USNI News. He was formerly the U.S. Maritime Correspondent for the Washington D.C. bureau of Jane’s Defence Weekly and Jane’s Navy International. He has covered legislation, acquisition and operations for the Sea Services and spent time underway with the U.S. Navy, U.S. Marine Corps and the Canadian Navy.


 Anonymous Message To The World: Operation 9/11

In part V of anonymous’ messages to the world, about how we are essentially already in WWIII, anonymous touches on 9/11.

Anonymous discussed “melted steel”, along with building 7’s impossible predicted demise, and seems to fully acknowledge that 9/11 was a false flag operation.


If you want to start a war, the unwashed masses must be convinced to send their brothers, sons and fathers to die on the front lines. The specter of an external enemy must be etched into their collective mind through trauma, exaggeration and repetition.

History must be whitewashed, twisted and cherry picked down to a politicized nursery rhyme. At no point should the real motives or consequences of such an endeavor be discussed.




PKK Muslim demonstrators in London, hassle a British policeman, but after hearing enough of their crap, he turns around and tells them….. “This is my country, you can’t tell me what to do in my country.”

At that point they pulled out the racist card, calling the cop a racist and threaten to tell his Superintendent.

The policeman was only doing his job, walking with the demonstrators to keep the peace.

So, it seems it is now racist to say “this is my country”

What are the PKK even doing in London marching ? ! !

It’s like someone walking in your house telling you what to do.
The copper wasn’t being racist he’d probably just had enough of all the marches causing friction and tension in his city, like the rest of the non Muslim Londoners.

Enough is enough, Britain’s got more problems to deal with than Muslims protesting on its streets just adding to it.

Like invoking article 50, and finalising leaving the EU.

The Infidel Watchman is not responsible for opinions and comments made by readers and authors of news posted on this blog.

All information available on this blog are true according to our knowledge and we are not responsible for any types of errors that have occurred.



‘I feel like a stranger where I live’

As new figures show ‘white flight’ from cities is rising, one Londoner writes a provocative personal piece about how immigration has drastically changed the borough where she has lived for 17 years

Multicultural: the shops in Acton Vale, west London

The streets around Acton, which has been my home since 1996, have taken on a new identity. Most of the shops are now owned by Muslims and even the fish and chip shop and Indian takeaway are Halal. It seems that almost overnight it’s changed from Acton Vale into Acton Veil.

Of the 8.17 million people in London, one million are Muslim, with the majority of them young families. That is not, in reality, a great number. But because so many Muslims increasingly insist on emphasising their separateness, it feels as if they have taken over; my female neighbours flap past in full niqab, some so heavily veiled that I can’t see their eyes. I’ve made an effort to communicate by smiling deliberately at the ones I thought I was seeing out and about regularly, but this didn’t lead to conversation because they never look me in the face.

I recently went to the plainly named “Curtain Shop” and asked if they would put some up for me. Inside were a lot of elderly Muslim men. I was told that they don’t do that kind of work, and was back on the pavement within a few moments. I felt sure I had suffered discrimination and was bewildered as I had been there previously when the Muslim owners had been very friendly. Things have changed. I am living in a place where I am a stranger.

I was brought up in a village in Staffordshire, and although I have been in London for a quarter of a century I have kept the habit of chatting to shopkeepers and neighbours, despite it not being the done thing in metropolitan life. Nowadays, though, most of the tills in my local shops are manned by young Muslim men who mutter into their mobiles as they are serving. They have no interest in talking to me and rarely meet my gaze. I find this situation dismal. I miss banter, the hail fellow, well met chat about the weather, or what was on TV last night.

More worryingly, I feel that public spaces are becoming contested. One food store has recently installed a sign banning alcohol on the premises. Fair enough. But it also says: “No alcohol allowed on the streets near this shop.” I am no fan of street drinking, and rowdy behaviour and loutish individuals are an aspect of modern British ”culture’’ I hate. But I feel uneasy that this shopkeeper wants to control the streets outside his shop. I asked him what he meant by his notice but he just smiled at me wistfully.

Perhaps he and his fellow Muslims want to turn the area into another Tower Hamlets, the east London borough where ”suggestive’’ advertising is banned and last year a woman was refused a job in a pharmacy because she wasn’t veiled.

On the other hand, maybe I should be grateful. At least in Acton there is just a sign in a shop. Since the start of the year there have been several reports from around London of a more aggressive approach. Television news footage last week showed incidents filmed on a mobile phone on a Saturday night, in the borough of Waltham Forest, of men shouting “This is a Muslim area” at white Britons.

The video commentary stated: “From women walking the street dressed like complete naked animals with no self-respect, to drunk people carrying alcohol, we try our best to capture and forbid it all.”

Another scene showed hooded youths forcing a man to drop his can of lager, telling him they were the “Muslim patrol” and that alcohol is a “forbidden evil”. The gang then approached a group of white girls enjoying a good night out, telling them to “forbid themselves from dressing like this and exposing themselves outside the mosque”.

Worse, though, is film footage from last week, thought to have been taken in Commercial Street, Whitechapel, which showed members of a group who also called themselves a “Muslim patrol” harassing a man who appeared to be wearing make‑up, calling him a “bloody fag”. In the video posted on YouTube last week, the passer-by is told he is “walking through a Muslim area dressed like a fag” and ordered to get out. Last Thursday, police were reported to have arrested five “vigilantes” suspected of homophobic abuse.

There are, of course, other Europeans in my area who may share my feelings but I’m not able to talk to them easily about this situation as they are mostly immigrants, too. At Christmas I spoke to an elderly white woman about the lack of parsnips in the local greengrocer, but she turned out to have no English and I was left grumbling to myself.

Poles have settled in Ealing since the Second World War and are well assimilated, but since 2004 about 370,000 east Europeans have arrived in London. Almost half the populations of nearby Ealing and Hammersmith were born outside the UK. Not surprisingly, at my bus stop I rarely hear English spoken. I realise that we can’t return to the time when buses were mainly occupied by white ladies in their best hats and gloves going shopping, but I do feel nostalgic for the days when a journey on public transport didn’t leave me feeling as if I have only just arrived in a strange country myself.

There are other “cultural differences” that bother me, too. Over the past year I have been involved in rescuing a dog that was kept in a freezing shed for months. The owners spoke no English. A Somali neighbour kept a dog that he told me he was training to fight, before it was stolen by other dog fighters. I have tried to re-home several cats owned by a family who refuse to neuter their animals, because of their religion.

In the Nineties, when I arrived, this part of Acton was a traditional working-class area. Now there is no trace of any kind of community – that word so cherished by the Left. Instead it has been transformed into a giant transit camp and is home to no one. The scale of immigration over recent years has created communities throughout London that never need to – or want to – interact with outsiders.

It wasn’t always the case: since the 1890s thousands of Jewish, Irish, Afro-Caribbean, Asian and Chinese workers, among others, have arrived in the capital, often displacing the indigenous population. Yes, there was hateful overt racism and discrimination, I’m not denying that. But, over time, I believe we settled down into a happy mix of incorporation and shared aspiration, with disparate peoples walking the same pavements but returning to very different homes – something the Americans call “sundown segregation”.

But now, despite the wishful thinking of multiculturalists, wilful segregation by immigrants is increasingly echoed by the white population – the rate of white flight from our cities is soaring. According to the Office for National Statistics, 600,000 white Britons have left London in the past 10 years. The latest census data shows the breakdown in telling detail: some London boroughs have lost a quarter of their population of white, British people. The number in Redbridge, north London, for example, has fallen by 40,844 (to 96,253) in this period, while the total population has risen by more than 40,335 to 278,970. It isn’t only London boroughs. The market town of Wokingham in Berkshire has lost nearly 5 per cent of its white British population.

I suspect that many white people in London and the Home Counties now move house on the basis of ethnicity, especially if they have children. Estate agents don’t advertise this self-segregation, of course. Instead there are polite codes for that kind of thing, such as the mention of “a good school”, which I believe is code for “mainly white English”. Not surprising when you learn that nearly one million pupils do not have English as a first language.

I, too, have decided to leave my area, following in the footsteps of so many of my neighbours. I don’t really want to go. I worked long and hard to get to London, to find a good job and buy a home and I’d like to stay here. But I’m a stranger on these streets and all the “good” areas, with safe streets, nice housing and pleasant cafés, are beyond my reach. I see London turning into a place almost exclusively for poor immigrants and the very rich.

It’s sad that I am moving not for a positive reason, but to escape something. I wonder whether I’ll tell the truth, if I’m asked. I can’t pretend that I’m worried about local schools, so perhaps I’ll say it’s for the chance of a conversation over the garden fence. But really I no longer need an excuse: mass immigration is making reluctant racists of us all.

Jane Kelly is consulting editor of the ‘Salisbury Review’


Bad Blood Still Flows Between Algeria and Morocco

May 3, 2016 | 09:30 GMT
Bad Blood Still Flows Between Algeria and Morocco

A Polisario Front member shows a map of Western Sahara at a museum in the Sahrawi refugee camp of Rabouni. (FAROUK BATICHE/AFP/Getty Images)


  • Despite weakening finances, Algiers will continue to prioritize military spending, shifting the balance of power between Algeria and Morocco in Algeria’s favor.
  • Consequently, Morocco will increasingly look to its regional and Western allies to better secure its position.


Suspicion and unease are creeping back into relations between Algeria and Morocco. An undeniable shift in power has occurred between the neighboring countries, as Algeria’s military spending outpaces Morocco’s. Large-scale Algerian arms purchases in 2016 reinforce the likelihood that Algiers will continue investing heavily in its military. And as Algeria bolsters its forces, Morocco’s position in the region will only get more precarious, especially if a crisis or conflict erupts. To counter Algeria, Rabat will seek alternative strategies to retain its security. But whether Morocco chooses to do so through select military procurements or through alliances, there is no guarantee its forces can match Algeria’s new weaponry.

The modern states of Morocco and Algeria were defined by mutual mistrust. Shortly after gaining independence from France, the absence of demarcated lines along certain sections of the Algeria-Morocco border brought about territorial disputes, which eventually led to the Sand War in October 1963. The border was finally demarcated in 1972, but hostilities between the two countries persisted.

Tensions between Rabat and Algiers were further inflamed during the 1975-1991 Western Sahara War. Algeria actively backed the Polisario Front — a Sahrawi rebel national liberation movement that sought to gain independence from Morocco in the Western Sahara — to check Morocco’s expansion and regional influence. Algeria provided critical support for the Polisario Front, supplying the rebels with heavy weapons and equipment as well as sanctuary in Algerian territory. Algerian forces even clashed directly with Moroccan forces during the 1976 Battle of Amgala, almost leading to a full-scale war.

The Western Sahara War eventually ended in September 1991 with a cease-fire that left Morocco with 80 percent of the territory of the Western Sahara and the Polisario Front with the rest. However, subsequent negotiations to fully resolve the conflict have failed to make much headway, and the simmering conflict continues to poison relations between the two countries.

Weapons Superiority

Given its long-standing animosity toward Algeria, Morocco has historically formulated its strategic defense plans around a potential conflict. These plans require not only a large standing army, but also considerable investment in military hardware capable of withstanding an Algerian attack. For more than a decade after the end of the Western Sahara War, Morocco was largely able to maintain a sufficient balance of force with Algeria. But Algiers steadily began pushing ahead of Morocco around 2003, using its abundant hydrocarbon resources to invest in its military. While Morocco’s military budget largely matched or even surpassed that of Algeria’s at the turn of the century, Rabat can no longer afford to keep up.

By 2009, Algeria had surpassed South Africa as the continent’s largest defense market. In 2013, it became the first African country to spend more than $10 billion on its military, an increase of 176 percent since 2004. Algeria now spends approximately $10.5 billion a year on defense, more than three times as much as Morocco.

Because Algeria is a major energy exporter and depends on its hydrocarbon resources for public spending, the crash in oil prices beginning in 2014 severely hurt the country’s finances. Algeria’s budget deficit nearly doubled between 2014 and 2015, jumping from 6.2 percent to 11.5 percent. Nevertheless, as a number of large arms deals recently signed by Algeria indicate, the country is not planning to significantly cut back on its military spending.In January 2016, reports announced that Algeria had ordered 12 Su-34 fighter-bombers from Moscow. It will be the first country besides Russia to operate the aircraft. Then, in April, Algeria reportedly increased the number of Russian Mi-28NE attack helicopters it is buying from eight to 42. Large-scale Algerian arms purchases, including negotiations over the Su-35 air superiority fighter and a host of other equipment from Russia, will only continue.

Balance by Other Means

Military spending, or advanced weaponry for that matter, is not the only thing that defines military strength. Still, it is evident that Algeria is steadily tilting the balance of power with Morocco in its favor. And, while Morocco can make strategic investments in its armed forces, it is clear that it will also have to rely on other measures to ensure its security and interests.As in the Western Sahara War, a key part of Morocco’s strategy will depend on its Arab allies. Its close relationship with the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) will be especially important. Morocco has maintained close ties with Saudi Arabia in particular, having consistently deployed forces to the Gulf region in support of Riyadh’s goals. For example, Rabat sent fighter jets to take part in the campaign in Yemen, even losing an F-16 jet and its pilot. And the GCC has reciprocated this allegiance, firmly standing by Morocco with financial and diplomatic support. In an extreme case, Morocco could call on the GCC to send military aid, especially air power.Morocco also benefits from close ties with France and the United States. Both countries are major arms suppliers to the kingdom, and whose militaries regularly hold joint exercises with Moroccan forces. The United States designated Morocco in 2004 as a major non-NATO ally, allowing Rabat to benefit from priority deliveries of military surplus, reciprocal training, and the use of U.S. financing in purchasing specific defense equipment. Morocco will undoubtedly continue to sustain and advance its relationship with the U.S. military as a hedge against Algeria’s militarization.

As Morocco uneasily prepares for the shifting balance of power with Algeria, it will have to increasingly rely on its alliance network to counter Algiers’ military spending. Rabat will seek more cooperation with the GCC and with Western allies such as France and the United States. But even Morocco’s alliances are no assurance against potential clashes with Algeria, especially while disputes remain over Western Sahara.

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ISIS Maritime Commando Training

It is recommended that military units engage in programs which enhance internal security among enlisted and rank and file. Radicalisation or sudden changes in regular patterns of social behaviour should be noted and investigated.


Situation: potential maritime attacks from ISIS

   Focus: ports, tankers, logistics, weapons smuggling

   Threat: ISIS Navy Seal programme, attacks on ports (dirty bomb threats), weapons smuggling by ships, hijackings (ships)

   Previous similar incidents: USS Cole attack (Maritime Terrorism, 2007)


  • The region that ISIS operates in has only one exit to water (Mediterranean Sea from Syria) (BBC, 1 August 2016)
  • Syrian Navy is under control of Syrian government and consists of mainly Soviet vessels (, 2012)
  • Released ISIS Navy Seals propaganda material shows signs of lack of professionalism in training (Vocativ, 2015)
  • ISIS has access to nuclear material, therefore there is a possibility of dirty bomb construction (TIME, 2014)


  • Water is a hostile environment which requires professional engineering to construct vessels with high military capabilities
  • ISIS does not have direct access to water (Mediterranean Sea), in that region the fight for the water access is mainly between Syrian government and opposition/rebel forces
  • It is doubtful that weapons import would be of high priority for ISIS as it has proved to be effective simply relying on ‘’call for action’’ (as seen in Germany attacks), without any need of planning (such as Brussels/Paris attacks)
  • As ISIS has seemingly increased its interest in production of dirty bombs (Independent, 2016 and The Telegraph, 2016) there is a possibility of an attack on ports with the use of one of them.

Suggested Actions:

  • The best way of preventing attacks from ISIS by sea, would be to make sure that military specialist in the field do not join them (or are not captured). As Navy Seals programme requires specialised training, it will be difficult for ISIS to replicate it without professional knowledge.
  • As ISIS seems to be relying more on non-professional actors inspired through social/news media, the main threat might be coming from within. It could most likely be represented as sabotage in the maritime scenario.
  • To prevent dirty bomb attacks on sea ports, nuclear scientists must be provided security as there might be possibilities of kidnappings.




Excerpt from Unrestricted Warfare:

• When people begin to lean toward and rejoice in the reduced use of military force to resolve conflicts, war will be reborn in another form and in another arena, becoming an instrument of enormous power in the hands of all those who harbor intentions of controlling other countries or regions.

• In this sense, there is reason for us to maintain that the financial attack by George Soros on East Asia, the terrorist attack on the U.S. embassy by Usama Bin Laden, the gas attack on the Tokyo subway by the disciples of the Aum Shinri Kyo, and the havoc wreaked by the likes of Morris Jr. on the Internet {in 1988 created the first computer “worm”}, in which the degree of destruction is by no means second to that of a war, represent semi-warfare, quasi-warfare, and sub-warfare, that is, the embryonic form of another kind of warfare.