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Beyond the Pale? Exploring Prospects for Negotiations with Al Qaeda and the Islamic State


Studies in Conflict and TerrorismJournal abstract

This article argues that prospects for negotiations with Al Qaeda and the Islamic State have been undertheorized. Drawing on nearly two thousand pages of primary source material— all issues of Inspire and Dabiq magazines published at the time of writing—it examines these groups' statements about their motivations for violence, their objectives, and their views about the possibility of dialogue with the West. It finds stark differences in all three areas and suggests that assumptions that have prevented theorizing about negotiations with these groups should be revisited.

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