Kameal Alahamd

Kameal Alahamd

Research Topic
Saudi Foreign Fighters and Sectarian Division

Kameal Alahmad currently works as a research fellow and head of the Visiting Fellow Program at the King Faisal Center for Research and Islamic Studies (KFCRIS). He earned his B.A. in International Relations and Political Science from Saint Norbert College. After graduation, he successfully completed the Washington Semester Program at the School of Professional and Extended Studies at American University, Washington D.C. Prior to joining KFCRIS, Kameal worked as an intern at the Arab Gulf States Institute in Washington where he worked on the Saudi Vision 2030 and its impact on the U.S.-Saudi Relations. His research interest encompasses U.S. Policies towards the Middle East, U.S.-Saudi Relations, and Saudi Foreign Policy.

Kameal’s work at Columbia Global Centers | Amman examines how the Saudi government created a specially designed programs and care centers to de-radicalize and re-integrate Saudis who joined extremist militias abroad. While research on Saudi extremists and returning foreign fighters has focused overwhelmingly on Sunni Muslims, Saudi Shia radicals have attracted less attention. Efforts to de-radicalize and rehabilitate Shia extremists within the Arab Gulf countries, and particularly Saudi Arabia, offer insights into whether these programs are likely to work within a context of broader marginalization and discrimination. Kameal aims to shed light on the structure of these de-radicalization programs, the reality of their goals, and their effectiveness in persuading Shia foreign fighters to return home.


Selected Publications

  • Ellison, Samuel. “Defining the Model: Understanding Insurgency and Counterinsurgency Models to Develop a Path Forward in Afghanistan.” Small Wars Journal, 6 Apr. 2017, https://smallwarsjournal.com/jrnl/art/defining-the-model-understanding-insurgency-and-counterinsurgency-models-to-develop-a-path-.
  • Abdi, Marie. “Can the IRGC-Taliban Honeymoon Continue? (Part 1).” Middle East Institute, 30 July 2021, https://www.mei.edu/publications/can-irgc-taliban-honeymoon-continue-part-1.
  • Abdi, Marie. “Can the IRGC-Taliban Honeymoon Continue? (Part 2).” Middle East Institute, 30 July 2021, https://www.mei.edu/publications/can-irgc-taliban-honeymoon-continue-part-2.
  • Allahoum, Ramy, and Hamza Mohammed. “Taliban Enters Afghan Presidential Palace After Ghani Flees.” Al Jazeera, 16 Aug. 2021, https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2021/8/15/taliban-continues-advances-captures-key-city-of-jalalabad.
  • Dixon, Robyn. “The World Should Unfreeze Afghanistan's Reserves and Pour in Aid to Rebuild the Country, Russia Says.” The Washington Post, 30 Aug. 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2021/08/30/russia-afghanistan-taliban-aid/.
  • George, Susannah. “Afghanistan's Military Collapse: Illicit Deals and Mass Desertions.” The Washington Post, WP Company, 16 Aug. 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2021/08/15/afghanistan-military-collapse-taliban/.
  • Haqqani, Sirajuddin. “What We, the Taliban, Want.” The New York Times, 20 Feb. 2020, https://www.nytimes.com/2020/02/20/opinion/taliban-afghanistan-war-haqqani.html.
  • “The Latest: Australia Flies out 26 from Kabul, Plans More.” East Bay Times, 18 Aug. 2021, https://www.eastbaytimes.com/2021/08/17/the-latest-australia-flies-out-26-from-kabul-plans-more/.
  • Mallinson, Kate. “Afghanistan Creates Tricky New Reality for Central Asia.” Chatham House, 27 Aug. 2021, https://www.chathamhouse.org/2021/08/afghanistan-creates-tricky-new-reality-central-asia.
  • “Timeline: The Taliban's Rapid Advance across Afghanistan.” Reuters, Thomson Reuters, 15 Aug. 2021, https://www.reuters.com/world/timeline-talibans-rapid-advance-across-afghanistan-2021-08-15/.
  • “Report: The Fall of Kabul - Geopolitical Implications.” Wikistrat, 29 Aug. 2021, https://www.wikistrat.com/post/report-the-fall-of-kabul-geopolitical-implications.
  • “Russian Embassy: Afghan Leader Fled with Cars Full of Cash.” AP NEWS, Associated Press, 16 Aug. 2021, https://apnews.com/article/europe-russia-8cb3a75e8db4f4e30a011e0e826fc54d.
  • Saric, Ivana. “Thousands of Prisoners Freed by Taliban Could Pose Threat to U.S.” Axios, 15 Aug. 2021, https://www.axios.com/taliban-bagram-prisoners-release-87ec6885-6930-46d6-9e96-473a252dcf7d.html.
  • Shahzad, Asif. “Militant Fire across Afghan Border Kills Two Pakistani Soldiers, Says Army.” Reuters, 29 Aug. 2021, https://www.reuters.com/world/asia-pacific/militant-fire-across-afghan-border-kills-two-pakistan-soldiers-says-army-2021-08-29/.
  • Yang, William. “China Ready for 'Friendly Relations' with the Taliban.” The Independent, 16 Aug. 2021, https://www.independent.co.uk/asia/south-asia/china-taliban-afghanistan-b1903428.html.