ISIS: The State of Terror

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HarperCollins, Mar 17, 2015 - Political Science - 432 pages

The Islamic State, known as ISIS, exploded into the public eye in 2014 with startling speed and shocking brutality. It has captured the imagination of the global jihadist movement, attracting recruits in unprecedented numbers and wreaking bloody destruction with a sadistic glee that has alienated even the hardcore terrorists of its parent organization, al Qaeda.

Jessica Stern and J.M. Berger, two of America’s leading experts on terrorism, dissect the new model for violent extremism that ISIS has leveraged into an empire of death in Iraq and Syria, and an international network that is rapidly expanding in the Middle East, North Africa and around the world.

ISIS: The State of Terror traces the ideological innovations that the group deploys to recruit unprecedented numbers of Westerners, the composition of its infamous snuff videos, and the technological tools it exploits on social media to broadcast its atrocities, and its recruiting pitch to the world, including its success at attracting thousands of Western adherents. The authors examine ISIS’s predatory abuse of women and children and its use of horror to manipulate world leaders and its own adherents as it builds its twisted society. The authors offer a much-needed perspective on how world leaders should prioritize and respond to ISIS’s deliberate and insidious provocations. 

 

Contents

Glossary
Chapter One The Rise and Fall of Al Qaeda in Iraq
Chapter Three From Vanguard to Smart
Chapter Five The Message
Chapter Seven The Electronic Brigades
Chapter Eight The AQISIS
Chapter Ten The Coming Final Battle?
Appendix
Acknowledgments
Index
About the Authors
Copyright

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About the author (2015)

Jessica Stern is a leading expert on terrorism and trauma. Stern is the coauthor with J. M. Berger of ISIS: The State of Terror and the author of Denial: A Memoir of Terror and Terror in the Name of God: Why Religious Militants Kill, selected by the New York Times as a notable book of the year. She has held fellowships awarded by the Guggenheim Foundation, the Erikson Institute, and the MacArthur Foundation. She was a Council on Foreign Relations International Affairs Fellow, a national fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution, and a fellow of the World Economic Forum. Stern is a research professor at Boston University. Prior to teaching, she worked in government, serving on President Clinton’s National Security Council Staff and as an analyst at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.

J. M. Berger is a nonresident fellow with the Brookings Institution and the author of Jihad Joe: Americans Who Go to War in the Name of Islam, a critically acclaimed history of the American jihadist movement. He is a regular contributor to Foreign Policy magazine and his website, Intelwire.com, has published thousands of declassified documents on the September 11 attacks and the Oklahoma City bombing.

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