Stratfor Threat Lens Releases 2019 Global Jihadist Forecast

Al Qaeda remains a persistent threat and though the Islamic State core has been dismantled, offshoots, remnants and grassroots militants continue to pose a hazard

Austin, Texas, UNITED STATES

AUSTIN, TX, Jan. 24, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Stratfor, the world’s leading geopolitical intelligence platform, has released its 2019 Annual Global Jihadist Forecast, now available.

In this annual risk assessment from Stratfor Threat Lens, a unique protective intelligence product designed with corporate security leaders in mind, a breakdown of the global jihadist movement in 2019 is explored in three sections: the al Qaeda pole, the Islamic State pole (including a subsection on the Taliban) and the grassroots jihadist threat.

From the Arabian Peninsula to Iraq, Syria, India, African nations and beyond, grassroots militants will continue to be a threat throughout 2019, our analysts report. The ideological struggle against jihadism is a generational battle -- and one that will not conclude for many years.

Islamic State will continue efforts to be disruptive in Iraq and Syria, “The Islamic State will attempt to replay its strategy from 2011,” the report reads, “by degrading the morale and willpower of security forces and civilians in areas it once held.”

You can read the first installment on the Islamic State here.

Stratfor’s VP of Tactical Analysis, Scott Stewart explains, “To really understand the jihadist movement, it must be viewed as a global insurgency, and not just a terrorist phenomenon. In 2019, the insurgency is being waged by a movement split into two camps revolving around the two competing poles: al Qaeda and the Islamic State. Since jihadism is a global insurgency, only a global counterinsurgency effort that addresses the two main core organizations and each of their respective franchises individually, along with the underlying grievances driving the insurgencies in the first place -- thus cutting the jihadist militants off from the local populations -- can truly end this insurgency. Until that happens, the best that can be done is to use military and security forces to limit the capabilities of the various elements of the global jihadist movement.”

The forecast includes in-depth, forward-looking analysis of the global jihadist movement -- and its constituent parts -- and will be updated with strategic analyses throughout the year, enabling businesses, non-profits, government agencies and professionals around the world to focus on what’s truly significant, anticipate risk and identify opportunities.

The key geopolitical trends highlighted in the 2019 Jihadist Forecast include:

  • Al Qaeda will exploit the downfall of the Islamic State to encourage new or returning followers to its ranks;
  • Though a divided movement, the Afghan Taliban will continue to build momentum, gain strength and make advances against security forces in Afghanistan. A drawdown in U.S. and allied troop levels will only embolden the organization;
  • Al Qaeda will remain vocal in advocating grassroots attacks on its behalf, claiming that strikes in the West have far more propaganda value and impact than those on the battlefields of the Middle East, Africa or South Asia;
  • Al Shabaab will remain a significant insurgent and terrorist force within Somalia for the foreseeable future, and will occasionally strike outside of Somali borders.

The 2018 Annual Forecast on the jihadist movement from Stratfor Threat Lens demonstrated the company's success in global forecasting. Of 15 core forecasts, Stratfor’s Threat Lens team was right on target on 14, including:

  • Ongoing insurgent and terror attacks by Islamic State in Iraq and Syria;
  • Al Qaeda’s difficulty in using Syria to launch transnational attacks;
  • Al Shabaab’s attacks in Somalia and its entrenched political power in the country;
  • The Wilayat Khorasan in Afghanistan and Pakistan would continue its attacks against Shiites, Christians and other minorities.

About Stratfor
As the world's leading geopolitical intelligence platform, Stratfor brings valuable context to global events, empowering businesses, governments and individuals to more confidently navigate their way through an increasingly complex international environment. By leveraging a deep understanding of history, politics and geography in conjunction with our unique methodology, Stratfor delivers informed perspectives on today's events and develops a more accurate view of the future. Information about individual, team and enterprise membership is available at

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