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The Islamic State in Afghanistan and Pakistan: Strategic Alliances and Rivalries

Amira Jadoon with Andrew Mines
The Islamic State in Afghanistan and Pakistan: Strategic Alliances and Rivalries
ISBN: 978-1-955055-85-7
ISBN: 978-1-68585-285-6
2023/241 pages/LC: 2022043166
"Both readable and informative.... There is no other published work today with such a high level of insight into this enduring regional terrorist group."—Thomas F. Lynch III, Parameters

"A work rich in useful detail." —C. Dale Walton, Comparative Strategy

"Jadoon and Mines are two of the best researchers on the Islamic State's franchise in the Afghanistan/Pakistan region. Their first-rate book is the new authoritative source on ISK." —Craig Whiteside, US Naval War College

"A groundbreaking, in-depth treatment of a militant group that has defied the odds to carve out a resilient position in South Asia.... This thoroughly researched and clearly written book is invaluable for anyone who wants to understand ISK and the threat that it poses." —Tricia Bacon, American University


The deadly attack on Kabul's airport in August 2021 shocked the world and brought concentrated attention to the Islamic State Khorasan Province (ISK). New questions quickly arose: How did this ISIS affiliate become such a force in Afghanistan and Pakistan? And why is it now a lethal threat to the Taliban? Addressing these questions, Amira Jadoon and Andrew Mines draw on original data and newly available primary sources to dissect ISK's inner workings and explain its rise and resilience.


Amira Jadoon is assistant professor of political science at Clemson University and nonresident fellow at the Stimson Center. Previously, she was assistant professor in the Department of Political Science and the Combating Terrorism Center at the US Military Academy at West Point. Andrew Mines is research fellow in the Program on Extremism at George Washington University.


  • The Emergence of the Islamic State Khorasan.
  • Ideology and Goals.
  • Tracing ISK's Operational Capacity.
  • Surviving State-Led Operations.
  • Seeking Friends: Alliances and Mergers.
  • Making Enemies: Strategic Rivals.
  • The Persistence of ISK.