Without the perfect-storm conditions of post-invasion insurgency, this most potent expression of al-Qaedaism yet would never have risen to dominate both the Middle East and the world in the way that it does.
The final article of our series on the historical roots of Islamic State examines the role recent Western intervention in the Middle East played in the group's inexorable rise.
The Free Syrian Army standing lookout.
On February 11 a Syrian ceasefire was signed in Munich. Few are optimistic it will hold. Why? Because, argues one Middle Eastern scholar, world leaders are ignoring key realities.
The site of an al-Qaida attack in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso in January 2016.
Western commentators tend to see ISIS and al-Qaida attacks as fueled by ideology. But in Africa, such attacks are more often turf wars in the illicit drug trade.
The unfolding information about the Zika virus and saddening images of babies infected with microcephaly should really scare us all. The disease has spread “explosively” throughout the Americas, with 32…
Lining up potential pitfalls: nonexperts and computers may misinterpret the vertical line in this image as a natural feature rather than a result of a mosaic compilation of multiple satellite images.
Expert image analysts have an important role to play, even in an age of computer interpretation and crowdsourcing.
Entrance to the gate of Nimrod, destroyed by the IS group and digitally reconstructed as part of Project Mosul.
Model by ruimx from photos at projectmosul.org
Researchers are making 3D scans, architectural plans and detailed photographic records of cultural heritage sites around the world, knowing they could be destroyed at any time.
Refugees walk through a frozen field after crossing the border from Macedonia, near the village of Miratovac, Serbia.
In contrast to what we have been taught - or teach our students - we are living in an increasingly hybrid world.
Can Turkey still straddle two worlds?
Turkey is the one of the U.S.'s most important allies in the Mideast, but recent actions such as the downing of a Russian fighter raise important questions about its reliability as a partner.
A masked face but experts still have his voice to go on.
When facial recognition isn't possible, it's time to bring in the voice recognition experts.
A Syrian refugee.
A look back at a year marked by terrorism, gun violence and clashes between police and African Americans.
A Christmas service in Manhattan.
Mike Segar /REUTERS
How should we celebrate Christmas during a time when religious extremism inspires terrorist attacks and young people are abandoning the church?
John Dryden by John Michael Wright, 1668.
Many literary greats have been religious outsiders, and reading them we can relate to our times. This is particularly the case with Dryden.
After a missile hit in Damascus.
Why there's a slender -- a very slender -- chance for working out a settlement at upcoming talks in New York.
Soldiers of the Syrian Arab Army in the town of Marj al-Sultan, Damascus.
Australia has again failed to secure an invitation to a meeting of the International Syria Support Group that is trying to find a political solution to the conflict.
Trump calls for a ban on Muslims entering the US.
Thomas Jefferson would disagree with Trump's call to bar one religious group from entering the country. But that's not to say that Trump's idea isn't anything new in American history.
Speaking to the nation December 6.
Winston Churchill famously suggested that: You can always count on Americans to do the right thing – after they’ve tried everything else. Speaking with his characteristic mix of the compassionate and cerebral…
Barack Obama speaks about counterterrorism and the US fight against Islamic State from the Oval Office.
Obama addressed the nation from the Oval Office Sunday night, attempting to steady fears after a terrorist attack in San Bernardino, California.
With drones and modern radar technology it's possible to target Islamic State's oil tankers – and strike at the heart of their income stream.
Presidents Hollande and Obama. Is it still possible for nation states to build a global alliance against organisations such as Daesh?
To save mankind from the scourge of war… These eight words drawn from the preamble to the Charter of the United Nations have been ringing in my head for the past week. Most believe that they were penned…
The Turkish Embassy in Moscow under siege.
The downing of Russia’s plane by Turkish military forces over the skies of the Syrian-Turkish border has added yet another layer of complexity to the vortex of conflict in the Middle East. Most of the…