Nicholas A. Heras

Nicholas A. Heras is the Middle East Security Fellow at the Center for a New American Security (CNAS).

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    Articles by Nicholas A. Heras

    Jihadists Are Making Gains in Idlib

    The de-militarized zone (DMZ) agreement reached by Russia and Turkey in Sochi on September 17—intentended to stabilize the “Greater Idlib” region of northwest Syria (which includes all of Idlib governorate

    Turkey’s Man in Syria—Sayf Boulad Abu Bakr

    In late October, Turkish military forces conducted a series of cross-border artillery strikes against the positions of the U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) coalition in and around the northeastern Syrian

    Nicholas Heras Cited by Bloomberg Business

    Associate Fellow Nicholas Heras' article on ethnic Turkmen in Syria was cited in a Bloomberg article on a Russian jet that was shot down by Turkey but landed in Syrian territory held

    September 2015 Briefs

    SYRIAN OPPOSITION LEADER ALLIED WITH MUSLIM BROTHERHOOD POSITIONS HIS GROUP TO RECEIVE U.S. AID Nicholas A. Heras Mustapha Berro (a.k.a. Saqr Abu Qutaiba) is the overall leader of Tajammu Fastaqim

    VICE News Quotes Nicholas Heras

    VICE News talked to Nicholas Heras, an associate fellow at Jamestown, about the Islamic State's success in existing for over a year in the face of coalition airstrikes and what

    Nicholas Heras Quoted by The Arab Weekly

    Nicholas Heras discussed the Syrian government's strategy of siege warfare followed by the offer to stop hostilities and reintegrate into loyalist forces with The Arab Weekly.

    August 2015 Briefs

    HAMMOUD SAEED AL-MIKHLAFI LEADS THE FIGHT AGAINST THE HOUTHIS IN TAIZ Nicholas A. Heras Yemen’s third-largest city of Taiz, which has a population of more than one million people and

    June 2015 Briefs

    BEATING ON ASSAD’S DOOR: SYRIAN MILITIA FIGHTER ABD AL-NASR SHMEIR Nicholas A. Heras Damascus’ suburban region of eastern Ghouta is a site of ongoing and vicious conflict between the Syrian

    June 2015 Briefs

    BEATING ON ASSAD’S DOOR: SYRIAN MILITIA FIGHTER ABD AL-NASR SHMEIR Nicholas A. Heras Damascus’ suburban region of eastern Ghouta is a site of ongoing and vicious conflict between the Syrian

    May 2015 Briefs

    TRANS-SAHARAN JIHADIST LEADER DECLARES ALLEGIANCE TO THE ISLAMIC STATE Nicholas A. Heras In an audio statement sent to the Mauritanian newspaper al-Akhbar, prominent trans-Sahara jihadist leader Lehbib Ould Ali Ould

    April 2015 Briefs

    ABU ABD ALLAH AL-SHAMI: A LEADING SALAFIST MILITANT COMMANDER IN SYRIA Nicholas A. Heras The Islamist rebel campaign Jaysh al-Fateh (Conquering Army) has begun an operation called Ma’arakat al-Nasr (Battle

    February 2015 Briefs

    THREE NEW COMMANDERS COALESCE TO FORM SYRIAN REBEL AL-JAYSH AL-AWAL FORMATION Nicholas A. Heras A new component of the Free Syrian Army (FSA) was recently created. Al-Jaysh al-Awal (First Army)

    January 2015 Briefs

    JABHAT AL-NUSRA ACCUSES SHAYKH MUHAMMAD SA’AD AL-DIN AL-BARIDI OF DEFECTING TO ISLAMIC STATE Nicholas A. Heras The intra-opposition fighting within the Syrian civil war has taken a new turn. With

    December 2014 Briefs

    NEW SALAFIST COMMANDER OMAR AL-ANSARI EMERGES IN SOUTHWEST LIBYA Nicholas A. Heras Shaykh Ahmad Omar al-Ansari, the leader of the Tuareg Salafist militia Katiba 315, is emerging as one of

    November 2014 Briefs

    Leading the Fight against Islamic State: FSA Commanders Ahmad Absi Al-Su’oud and Hassan Mar’i Al-Hamadeh Nicholas A. Heras The al-Qaeda affiliate Jabhat al-Nusra (JN – Victory Front) recently conducted a

    October 2014 Briefs

    FSA COMMANDER ABU ISSA BECOMES HIGH VALUE TARGET FOR ISLAMIC STATE IN SYRIA Nicholas A. Heras On October 17, members of a Turkish criminal syndicate based in the Turkish city

    August 2014 Briefs

    FSA AFFILIATE LED BY ABU THABIT WORKS WITH OTHER GROUPS TO FREE ALEPPO Nicholas A. Heras Free Syrian Army (FSA) affiliate Kata’ib Syuuf al-Shabaa (Swords of Aleppo Brigades), one of

    July 2014 Briefs

    Hassan Aboud and Liwa Dawud Defect to Islamic State in Syria Nicholas A. Heras In early July, a powerful Syrian armed opposition group based in northwestern Syria’s Idlib governorate, Liwa

    June 2014 Briefs

    ISIS’ NEMESIS IN ALEPPO: KHALID HAYANI AND ITIHAD LIWA SHUHADA BADR Nicholas A. Heras In spite of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria’s (ISIS) success in Iraq, it is

    May 2014 Briefs

    SKETCHES OF SHAYKH SHA'BAN MAD'OUD KHALIFA HADIA AND UTHMAN MLIQTA, RIVAL LIBYAN MILITIA COMMANDERS Nicholas A. Heras  Militias operating under the name of the Libyan National Army, and loyal to

    April 2014 Briefs

    MAYSAR ALI AL-JABOURI ENCOURAGES JABHAT AL-NUSRA-ISIS SPLIT IN SYRIA Nicholas A. Heras Shaykh Maysar Ali bin Musa bin Abdullah al-Jabouri (a.k.a. Abu Marya al-Qahtani) is the amir (commander) of the

    Nicholas Heras quoted by Rudaw

    Nicholas Heras was quoted in an article about threats to Syrian Kurds by the Islamist Syrian armed opposition by Rudaw.

    March 2014 Briefs

    ABU AYMAN AL-IRAQI DIRECTS ISIS OPERATIONS IN EASTERN SYRIA Nicholas A. Heras Recent reports from Syrian activists indicate that the militant Salafist armed organization Islamic State in Iraq and al-Sham


    MUHAMMAD MAJID AL-KHATIB: A RISING LEADER IN THE FREE SYRIAN ARMY  Nicholas A. Heras  The Free Syrian Army (FSA) fired its military chief Salim Idriss on February 16 for being


    NEW OPPOSITION COALITION JAISH AL-MUJAHIDEEN ANNOUNCED IN ALEPPO  Nicholas A. Heras  Syrian rebel groups based in and around the strategic northwestern city of Aleppo announced the formation of the Jaish

    December 2013 Briefs

    EASTERN SYRIAN MILITANT LEADER ANNOUNCES CHANGE OF ALLEGIANCE FROM FSA TO AL-QAEDA  Nicholas A. Heras  Saddam al-Jamal, the former leader of the Liwa Allahu Akbar (God is Greatest Brigade) announced

    November 2013 Briefs

    SYRIA’S MOST POWERFUL OPPOSITION GROUPS UNITE  The leaders of seven Syrian militant Islamist armed opposition groups announced the formation of al-Jabhat al-Islamiya (Islamic Front) on November 22 with the stated

    October 2013 Briefs

    UGANDAN MILITARY ACCUSES DRC-BASED UGANDAN MILITANT SALAFIST LEADER OF COMPLICITY IN NAIROBI MALL ATTACKS  Nicholas A. Heras  General Edward Katumba Wamala, the Chief of Uganda’s Defense Forces, stated in September

    September 2013 Briefs

    IRAQI SHIITE MILITIA LEADER VOWS VENGEANCE FOR SYRIA STRIKE AGAINST UNITED STATES AND ALLIES Nicholas A. Heras Shaykh Wathiq al-Battat, the Secretary-General of the Iraqi Shiite organization Hezbollah-Islamic Renaissance, which

    August 2013 Briefs

    MILITARY OPERATIONS AGAINST SALAFIST INSURGENTS IN THE SINAI DRAW ATTENTION TO THE ROLE OF TOP BIN LADEN AIDE  Nicholas A. Heras  The Egyptian military has recently re-engaged in a counter-insurgency

    July 2013 Briefs

    MILITARY OFFENSIVE LAUNCHED IN THE CONGO PRESSURES M23 LEADER SULTANI MAKENGA  Nicholas A. Heras  A new military operation launched by the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) military is applying

    June 2013 Briefs

    LEADERSHIP DISPUTE ERUPTS IN SYRIAN-BACKED MILITIA DEFENDING SHIITE SHRINE  Nicholas A. Heras  Abu Ajeeb (a.k.a. Abu Ajeel) is the nom de guerre of the Syrian military commander and secretary general

    May Briefs

    SYRIAN JABHAT AL-NUSRAH LEADER WOUNDED IN DAMASCUS SKIRMISH  Nicholas A. Heras  Abu Muhammad al-Julani, (a.k.a. al-Fatih, “The Conqueror”), the leader of the Syrian Salafist armed opposition group Jabhat al-Nusra (JN),

    April Briefs

    PHILIPPINE MILITARY OPERATIONS TARGET ABU SAYYAF GROUP LEADERS  Nicholas A. Heras  Philippine security forces recently engaged in a series of operations against the militant Salafist organization Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG),

    March Briefs

    SECTARIAN ATTACKS AND RISING TENSION IN QUETTA, PAKISTAN Nicholas A. Heras Sectarian attacks and rising tension have risen in a natural resource-rich province in southwestern Pakistan over the last few

    Nicholas Heras quoted by Macropolis

    Jamestown's Nicholas Heras was quoted in an article titled "Lebanon Oil & Gas Analysis 2013: Levantine Basin Natural Gas Muggle" by Macropolis.

    February Briefs

    IRAQI AL-QAEDA AFFILIATE ISLAMIC STATE OF IRAQ INCREASES ATTACKS ACROSS IRAQ Nicholas A. Heras  The Iraqi al-Qaeda affiliate Islamic State of Iraq (ISI) has maintained a steady rate of attacks

    Jamestown’s Nick Heras interviewed by The National

    Jamestown analyst Nick Heras was recently interviewed for an article on how Syrian armed opposition groups build social capital by providing public services. It was published in The National (UAE) and is entitled "Al

    Jamestown’s Nick Heras quoted by UPI

    Jamestown's Nick Heras' article on Lebanon's offshore energy fields was extensively quoted in a January 25 UPI article titled "Lebanon's feuds 'could spark gas conflict'"