When I went into Old Homs just days after Bashar al-Assad’s regime regained it from the rebels in June of 2014, there was not a stray cat in the streets. The historic town was all but abandoned, though a few residents had returned to assess damage to their homes and shops. They could be seen a man or two here, a couple there, this one scratching his head, the other sitting on a plastic chair by the curb staring at what used to be his life before the uprising-turned-war. It appeared as if nothing was moving, except for the dust devils.… Seguir leyendo »
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The horrendous attacks on Paris have an eerie resemblance to the events of Sept. 11, 2001, in that they seem to have caught everyone off guard.
Until perhaps Friday, the main perception among Western intelligence agencies and Washington policymakers has been that Islamic State poses “no immediate threat” to the United States or the West.
“Unlike Al Qaeda, ISIS is more interested in establishing a Caliphate and not so interested in attacking the West,” a retired CIA officer explained during a closed meeting at one of Washington’s think tanks. He was echoing a common sentiment, and insisted that “Al Qaeda remains the main threat.”… Seguir leyendo »