ISSN 2330-717X

Russian Nationalities Chief Says No One Knows How To Counter Islamic State Ideology – OpEd


In a remarkable confession of failure, Igor Barinov, the head of the Russian Federal Agency for Nationality Affairs, says that no one knows how to counter the ideological messages of ISIS or to counter effectively its highly-developed recruitment strategies.

In remarks on the LifeNews channel, Barinov says that ISIS has a highly elaborate system that identifies what its potential recruits and supporters are most interested in – economic, political, moral and “even gender, when young women are seeking husbands” – in order to attract people to its cause ( and

He calls the North Caucasus “a problem region,” in that there are many conflicts which are well on their way to be solved but in which tensions remain that ISIS emissaries can exploit. He gives the Osetin-Ingush conflict as an example and suggests ISIS could easily provoke a new outburst of conflict there given its active recruitment program.

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Paul Goble

Paul Goble is a longtime specialist on ethnic and religious questions in Eurasia. Most recently, he was director of research and publications at the Azerbaijan Diplomatic Academy. Earlier, he served as vice dean for the social sciences and humanities at Audentes University in Tallinn and a senior research associate at the EuroCollege of the University of Tartu in Estonia. He has served in various capacities in the U.S. State Department, the Central Intelligence Agency and the International Broadcasting Bureau as well as at the Voice of America and Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty and at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. Mr. Goble maintains the Window on Eurasia blog and can be contacted directly at [email protected] .

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