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Jihadism TransformedAl-Qaeda and Islamic State's Global Battle of Ideas$
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Simon Staffell and Akil Awan

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780190650292

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190650292.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 16 January 2022

Al-Qaeda and Islamic State in Yemen

Al-Qaeda and Islamic State in Yemen

A Battle for Local Audiences

(p.89) 6 Al-Qaeda and Islamic State in Yemen
Jihadism Transformed

Elisabeth Kendall

Oxford University Press

This book chapter begins by showing how Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) speaks to local audiences at both practical and emotional levels, rather than just through religious ideology. It demonstrates how AQAP narratives resonate strongly with local tribal codes of honour and revenge, and how these can then be harnessed to serve the global agenda of militant jihad. The chapter then explores two key themes that thread through AQAP’s jihadist narratives: the celebration of death and the construction of the enemy. It shows how these themes are tuned towards local audiences and how they have developed since the “Arab spring” uprising, the emergence of Islamic State and the onset of all-out war in 2015. Lastly, the chapter looks at the relative appeals of AQAP and Islamic State in Yemen. It outlines the potential trajectories of AQAP and briefly suggests ways in which the jihadist threat in Yemen might be countered.

Keywords:   AQAP, Yemen, Arabian Peninsula, Tribes, Honour Revenge War, Drones, Poetry, Jihadist videos

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