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While just three months ago Saudi Arabia was losing allies rapidly, now the momentum has clearly shifted. This sea of change proves how geopolitical fortune can turn around quickly. The catalyst was the election of Donald Trump as President of the United States.
Olivier Guitta, who runs GlobalStrat, a risk consultancy, said that Isis seemed to want to preserve its operatives. “There is a realisation that if they can keep their operatives alive longer then they could possibly pull off other attacks,” he said.
After the Saudi-led airstrikes on Sanaa, Yemen’s capital, on October 8, pressure on Western nations selling weapons to Saudi Arabia will be mounting. Recently, the United States Congress passed into law the Justice Against State Sponsors of Terrorism (JASTA) bill, aimed at the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA).
Olivier Guitta of GlobalStrat, a geopolitical risk consultancy, says “to do both operations at the same time is really a stretch.” In Iraq, he says, the anti-IS coalition can “count on the Iraqi army and Shi’ite militias,” but “in Syria there is a different picture.”
In his last address to the United Nations General Assembly, Barack Obama mentioned Syria in passing. It should have been the central theme of his speech but, as Laurent Fabius has said, Obama was never serious about solving the Syrian crisis.
"We've seen in the past just how a handful of jihadists coming from Libya into Tunisia have really carried out attacks that have had a huge impact on the Tunisian economy as well," Olivier Guitta, the Director of GlobalStrat, an International Security and Geopolitical Risk Firm told RFI.
“France was already in a state of emergency. Soldiers and police are already patrolling all over the place all the time. You feel like you’re in Beirut in the 1970s,” said Olivier Guitta, managing director at GlobalStrat security consulting firm
This poses an enormous challenge for police and intelligence services: French security expert Olivier Guitta has estimated that in France intelligence agencies have to keep tabs on 100 times as many people as a decade ago.
"There was a reaction after November [attacks]—most were willing to give up privacy and freedom in order for state to make them more secure," Guitta said. "For eight months, people started to feel much safer, and that may be the downfall that happened yesterday. The feeling of fake security."
“Nightclubs have been considered as easy soft targets for jihadists for a while,” says Olivier Guitta, managing director at GlobalStrat, a security and geopolitical risk consulting firm. He points out that in February, some IS followers were arrested in France for planning terror attacks on nightclubs.
The managing director of international security firm GlobalStrat said the fanzones are a lot more difficult to secure than stadiums and added that he was fearful of attacks on the thousands of supporters that will be watching the games there.
September 11 clearly revealed the existence of transnational terrorism with worldwide terror networks. Western nations were left with no choice but to closely cooperate in terms of intelligence, know-how and even, sometimes, procedures.
AQIM has regained credibility in the jihadist world with these three attacks in the past four months targeting France and its African allies. It also sends a message to the world that Sunni jihadists do not belong to the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL, also known as ISIS), but that Al-Qaeda is alive and kicking.
Olivier Guitta, managing director of international security and risk firm GlobalStrat, said the leak was a boost to security services and indicated unhappiness within the group. "This leak shows that there are dissenting voices within the ranks of IS," he told AFP.
Cette fuite de documents «montre qu'il existe des voix dissidentes dans les rangs de l'EI», a dit à l'Agence France-Presse Olivier Guitta, directeur général du cabinet de conseil GlobalStrat. «Comme dans toute organisation d'envergure, il y aura des luttes de pouvoir et on pourrait voir à l'avenir une possible implosion de l'EI en différentes factions», a-t-il ajouté.
In the course of a few days, the United States and France reportedly conducted military operations in Libya against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, known as ISIL. That is not new: Both countries have allegedly been involved in special forces operations in the North African country for the past two years.
Eerder deze week werd bij de Sudanese grens de eerste Belgische Libië-strijder opgepakt. IS'ers trekken van Irak en Syrië naar het stuurloze land, mensen-smokkelaars zullen volgen. Is het hek van de dam?
La Libye inquiète depuis longtemps les experts en terrorisme internationaux. "La Libye constitue un danger bien plus grand pour les Européens que la Syrie et l'Irak", a ainsi expliqué Olivier Guitta, CEO de la société de consultance GlobalStrat lors d'une conférence de la European Corporate Security Association.
En outre, le cabinet de conseil spécialisé dans le risque géopolitique GlobalStrat indique qu'il sera plus profitable pour une personne radicalisée originaire du Maroc ou d'Algérie et installée en Belgique ou aux Pays-Bas de se rendre en Libye.
'Zeker voor Europeanen vormt Libië een veel groter gevaar dan Irak en Syrië', zei GlobalStrat-ceo Olivier Guitta.'Naast minstens vier andere grote terreurorganisaties en talrijke gewapende milities zijn in Libië naar schatting 3000 tot 5000 IS-strijders actief. Bovendien zijn er aanwijzingen dat aanvoerders van de IS zich van Syrië naar Libië verplaatsen.'
In private, French, Italian and British and United States defence officials and diplomats have expressed their huge concern about Libya. Now that the likelihood of a military intervention has increased, 2016 may turn out to be the year of Libya.
Selon l'expert en sécurité internationale Olivier Guitta, de GlobalStrat, "Aqmi doit montrer qu'il est toujours d'actualité par rapport à l'Etat islamique et donc se positionner sur la Libye en menaçant l'Italie". "Son cheval de bataille a toujours été la libération d'Al Andalous, donc cela commence par Sebta et Mélillia, un terrain que l'organisation Etat islamique ne privilégie pas pour l'instant."
The extremists have frequently used young children in propaganda videos, said Olivier Guitta, director of the consulting group GlobalStrat.
"They are featured in various videos and interestingly are mostly sons of Western jihadists," he said. "It shows that the new generation is already part of the fight to reclaim the Caliphate."
While recent spectacular terror attacks either directed or inspired by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) have mostly taken place against the West and Russia, a new priority for ISIL could be the Gulf.
Greece is not only a route for jihadists trying to reach Iraq and Syria, but also a gateway into Europe for fighters returning home from the Middle East.
"Libya for me was the main issue, even more than Iraq and Syria, and it has the potential of being much more problematic for Europe than even Iraq and Syria will ever be, in terms of Western recruits, terrorism..."
After the worst terror attacks in the history of France, now is the time to reflect on how Western counter-terrorism strategies can be made more effective. While going after terrorists is a must, the West also needs to target their ideological mentors.
Government sources admit they are concerned about security at ferry ports over fears that terrorists - thwarted by tightened airport security - will switch attention to shipping...
The siege by gunmen of a hotel in Mali’s capital Bamako, which left at least 20 people dead on Friday, underscores a complex set of dilemmas facing France as it ramps up operations against ISIS militants a week after the deadly attacks by the group in Paris...
« S’il y avait des solutions miracles, cela se saurait », tranche Olivier Guitta, directeur général de GlobalStrat, un cabinet de conseil en sécurité. A la question de l’efficacité s’ajoute celle de savoir jusqu’où aller pour se protéger, sans sacrifier sa liberté.
The potential of an American acting as a spokesman for the terrorist group raises anew concerns about ISIS's support in and internal threat to the United States.
“Now we are talking about (ISIS) being able to pull off an attack that, until now, only al-Qaida was able to pull off,”
Indeed, when was the last time Russia send troops in a far-away foreign land in a conflict it wasn’t directly involved in?...
"Depuis le départ, cela ne fait aucun sens d'avoir seulement l'autorisation d'attaquer des cibles en Irak"...
Avec au moins huit attentats ou tentatives d’attentat en neuf mois, dont la dernière il y a une semaine, dans le Thalys reliant Amsterdam à Paris, la France est l’une des victimes les plus régulières d’actes terroristes...
While almost everything has been said and written about the consequences of the recent P5+1 nuclear deal with Iran, not much has been covered about how the deal will impact the Islamic State.
Olivier Guitta, a terrorism expert, said he had uncovered evidence of 50 terrorist attacks in Tunisia since 2013 and found reports of seven terror training camps in the country. Mr Guitta, managing director of GlobalStrat, a security consultancy, said Tunisia had failed to put in place proper protection, and it did not have the resources to guard all its beaches and all its resorts...
It was tragic, but also sadly unsurprising, that Chad's capital, N'Djamena, was hit by two simultaneous suicide attacks on 15 June 2015, killing at least 34 and injuring over 100...
While Jihad Central is located in the Syria-Iraq, area with the Islamic State (IS) gaining ground daily, other potential hotspots have been forgotten. One of them that has rarely been in the news and would surprise most people is Africa’s behemoth: not Nigeria, but rather quiet South Africa.
"Par comparaison à d'autres branches d'Al-Qaïda", Aqpa est celle qui est la mieux implantée et, "même si Wahishi est une perte, elle peut rebondir rapidement", estime Olivier Guitta, directeur de GlobalStrat, entreprise de conseil spécialisée dans l'évaluation des risques géopolitiques.
According to Olivier Guitta, managing director of security and risk consultancy GlobalStrat, Wuhayshi's death is "another huge blow not only to AQAP" but also to Al-Qaeda's central command.
Counterterrorism police are focusing on the “growing threat” of a chemical weapons attack by British jihadists returning from Iraq and Syria, The Times has learnt.
Indeed, the likelihood of a home-grown attack in the West has risen tenfold since the coalition started targeting IS in Iraq last year. Therefore, western security services are eager for anything that will help them but unfortunately, western governments are at a loss when it comes to devising an effective strategy.
When asked after the 9/11 attacks by President George W Bush what he thought about a rapprochement with Iran, French President Jacques Chirac replied: “Don’t even think about it. These people are lunatics! Don’t think there are moderates with whom you can negotiate.”
Remember Al Qaeda? Since the rise of the Islamic State, Al Qaeda as such has started to look like the Eastman Kodak of global terror: an organization that once dominated its market and the popular imagination, but failed to embrace change and now is on the road to oblivion or absorption by smarter, more aggressive competitors.
"The writing was on the wall,"said Olivier Guitta, managing director at security and geopolitical risk firm GlobalStrat. "[IS] has been garnering power and Boko needed to join the strongest group. And al Qaeda is not the strongest any longer, so it makes sense for them to get also a major media exposure to join."
«Il n’a pas été dans des territoires en guerre, il n’a pas été en prison. Très probablement il a été radicalisé par un prêcheur ou des personnes dans son entourage à l’université», observe M. Guitta qui estime que les gouvernements ne font pas assez pour lutter contre la présence de prédicateurs sur leur territoire. Il compare leur activité à celle de «dealers de drogue».
Olivier Guitta, managing director of security and risk consultancy GlobalStrat, warned the security forces lacked the resources to track all those who crossed their radar. "To monitor one person you need 30 officers, so if you have in England 1,000 people that are on your list, you need 30,000 officers. We don't have that," he told AFP.
British counterterrorism police were on alert last night after a militant Islamic group urged Muslims to attack Oxford Street and two shopping centres in London.
But Mr Guitta said that Libya was a serious security issue for Egypt.
“Strategically its one of the major countries they’ll have to look at,” he said. “The airstrikes are not going to be a one-time thing. I predict there would be an international level intervention.”
«La réalité est plus liée à une vision yéménite que globale», observe Olivier Guitta, directeur de GlobalStrat, une entreprise de consulting spécialisée dans la sécurité et qui suit de près l'évolution de ces différentes mouvances.
‘There is no doubt that al Qaeda and Islamic State are still competing against each other for the hearts and minds of international jihadis.’
—Olivier Guitta, a French terrorism analyst who advises governments and corporations
The writing has been on the wall for al-Qaeda since November, when the upstart Isis set itself on a collision course with global jihad’s established leaders.
Islamist militants who have proclaimed a new state in Iraq and Syria appear to have won the support of two major al-Qaeda groups in a game-changing power shift for global jihad.
Al-Qaeda’s north African branch pledged support to the “heroes” of Isis, the Sunni extremist group, while the Yemeni offshoot sent its best wishes.
Le chef du MI-5, les Services de sécurité intérieure du Royaume-Uni, Andrew Parker, a récemment déclaré que la menace terroriste est au plus haut dans le Royaume-Uni en 32 ans de carrière. Une surprise ? Pas vraiment.
Olivier Guitta, Managing Director at GlobalStrat, an International Security and Geopolitical Risk consultancy, has said that most of the attacks were planned, both in Belgium and Syria, with the intention to evade French security services.