Monday Headlines

“Declarations Of War Against Terror Groups Have Failed To Stem Growth

Over the last 14 years, the Bush and Obama administrations have pledged to defeat an array of terror groups, but the number of US government-designated terror groups has grown from 34 in 2002 to 59 today. The recent attacks in Beirut, Paris, and California, the issue of combating extremists’ ideology is once again at the forefront of the discussion about how to defeat radical Islamists.

“To prevent deadly terrorist attacks, we cannot solely rely on counterterrorism strategies. We must start further upstream—challenging extremists’ narratives and ideologies and addressing the conditions that create a favorable environment for radicalization and recruitment,” advise Shannon Green and Daniel Runde of the Council on Foreign Relations.

With the roots of extremism varying from the social to the political and economic, developing a comprehensive strategy can be difficult. The pair suggest the focus should not be on preventing the radicalization of every determined and vulnerable person, but on reducing “the volume of radicalized individuals and allow law enforcement officials to focus on extremists that pose an imminent danger.”

Guardian Newspaper Obtains Blueprint ISIS Using To Build Its State The Guardian newspaper has obtained a manual written sometime in 2014 as a foundation text to train “cadres of administrators” in the months after Isis’s leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, declared a “caliphate” in Iraq and Syria. The document provides guidance on how to establish government departments including education, natural resources, industry, foreign relations, public relations and military camps, the paper says.

The manual also lays out in clear terms ISIS’ intention to utilize children in its war against the West and to put them through “training on bearing light arms” and to use selected individuals “for security portfolio assignments, including checkpoints, patrols”.

Venezuela’s Socialists Suffer Blow In Elections
For the first time in almost two decades, the Socialist Party in Venezuela lost its majority in the 167-member National Assembly as voters punished President Nicolas Maduro’s government for the country’s deep economic crisis.

Maduro, who succeeded Hugo Chavez, now faces an intensified power struggle with the opposition after the power balance between the executive and the legislative branches was dramatically altered, reports The New York Times.

The opposition has also promised to pass an amnesty law to release opposition politicians jailed under President Maduro’s government, who would be able to take part freely in politics, they could pose an added political threat to President Maduro’s leadership.

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