Aymenn Jawad Al-Tamimi
Aymenn Jawad Al-Tamimi
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The Life of Abu Qutayba of Bahrain: A 'Martyr' for the Islamic State

September 29, 2014 at 10:12 pm

Recently the Islamic State (IS) released a video via its media wing al-Itisam Media, which primarily targets Arabic-speaking audiences (notably producing the series 'Windows on the Land of Epic Battles'). The video, entitled 'Message to the People of Bahrain', advertised the presence of Bahraini fighters in its ranks, with predictable denunciations of e.g. the King of Bahrain Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa as a 'kafir [disbelieving] tyrant'. The Bahraini contingent has already been around for some time- for example in 'Saleel al-Sawarim 4', a Bahraini fighter could be seen destroying his passport as part of IS' rejection of the conventional nation-states of the world. The series of tweets from an IS source translated by me below relate to the life of one Abu Qutayba al-Bahraini (of Bahrain), whose real name was Ibrahim al-Awaḍi. He was killed in an American airstrike.

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Sunni Opposition to the Islamic State

Fall 2014  •  Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA Journal)

Spearheaded by the Islamic State (IS), a renewed Sunni Arab insurgency in Iraq has wrestled control of most localities in the Anbar, Ninawa, Salah ad-Din and Kirkuk governorates away from the central government over the course of 2014. While the question of exactly who controls what is still a matter of debate, it has become clear that IS has asserted its own authority at the expense of other factions in the main cities and towns, including Mosul, Tikrit and Fallujah. IS's conduct--destroying shrines, detaining and killing opponents--has provoked resentment among locals, in some cases leading to the creation of new groups to take up arms against IS.

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Bay'ah to Baghdadi: Foreign Support for Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and the Islamic State (Part 2)

September 27, 2014  •  Syria Comment

Introduction

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General Military Council for Iraq's Revolutionaries: 20 September Obituary: Translation and Analysis

September 25, 2014 at 4:22 pm

Introduction and Analysis

Following on from the previous post on the latest statement from the General Military Council for Iraq's Revolutionaries (GMCIR), it is worth noting this obituary published by the GMCIR on the same day for a renowed Iraqi general who was a mainstay on the country's military scene for decades and passed away recently in Jordan. His career included service in the Saddam-era army and Defence Ministry until the fall of Baghdad to the U.S. invasion in 2003, after which he went into exile in Jordan, where the current GMCIR network is partly based.

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General Military Council for Iraq's Revolutionaries: 20 September Statement: Translation and Analysis

September 24, 2014 at 9:47 pm

Introduction and Analysis
The General Military Council for Iraq's Revolutionaries (GMCIR), to recall briefly, is overall a joint project* between the Ba'athist-Sufi outfit Jaysh Rijal al-Tariqa al-Naqshbandia (JRTN) and Harith al-Dhari's Muslim Scholars Association (MSA). Many of the local outfits for the GMCIR- in the form of 'military councils for the revolutionaries of the tribes'- can be identified as originating as JRTN fronts, but it is also apparent the group can act as an umbrella for other Sunni insurgents including the Dhari-linked 1920s Revolution Brigades. The JRTN influence on the 'political wing' of the GMCIR is openly admitted.

(*: hat-tip in part to Kirk Sowell for this suggestion)

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