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The Impact of Jihadist Foreign Fighters on Indigenous Secular-Nationalist Causes: Contrasting Chechnya and Syria


Studies in Conflict and TerrorismJournal abstract

Jihadist foreign fighters have become common in civil conflicts in Muslim countries. While research exists on the impact they have upon returning home, less attention has been given to their influence on the opposition cause that they mobilize in support of. This article looks at the impact that jihadist foreign fighters on the Chechen and Syrian resistance causes, evaluating their influence on oppositional cohesion and ideology, domestic and international perceptions of the movements, and on governmental narratives regarding the conflicts the foreign fighters engage in. It is concluded that foreign fighters have overwhelmingly damaged the Chechen and Syrian opposition movements, making the likelihood of opposition success more remote.

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