From the Edge of Raqqa: Mirror Image Training August 1-5, 2016

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Participants will be divided into one of four “replicated cells” to include two cells of ISIS, one cell of Ansar al-Jebhat al-Nusra li-Ahl al Sham and one from one of the following Wilayats. Libya (Wilayat al-Barqah, Wilayat al-Tarabulus, and Wilayat al-Fizan), Algeria (Wilayat al-Jazair), Egypt (Wilayat Sinai), Yemen (Wilayat Sanaa), and Saudi Arabia (Wilayat al-Haramayn). New provinces were announced in the Afghanistan-Pakistan border (Wilayat Khorasan), Northern Nigeria (Wilayat Gharb Afriqiya),] and the North Caucasus (Wilayat al-Qawqaz). This program is a total immersion training program that consists of hardships and long hours. All food, lodging, weapons, ammunition, gear and training materials are provided. A read ahead packet will be provided upon registration.

Each day the participants will attend lectures from special guest speakers and hear from cell advisers. Members of each cell will work various positions to include a cell leader, internal security, religious leader, engineer, media and propaganda, logistics and finance among others.

Lectures will explore the forming and evolution of ISIS, how Wilayats are formed and the process for conducting operations with the blessing of the shura council and the military council. Each cell will conduct an ambush, a kidnapping, an attack on a convoy, as well as undertake a martyrdom mission. For all operations the cell will deal with smugglers, black marketeers and will put together a media and propaganda plan and gain an understanding of the Salafist ideology as well as ISIS’ leadership. Some of the previous speakers we have used have included Peter Bergen, Dr. Michael Scheuer, Gary Berntsen, Rohan Gunaratna, Nir Rosen and a number of others guest speakers who will remain anonymous until after they have spoken to the participants. This class will hear from a special guest speaker with much operational experience in the area and will watch a number of interviews with ISIS fighters.

Some of the lectures will include Kidnappings and Beheadings, ISIS Media and Propaganda, a Letter From the ISIS Intel Chief informing ISIS’ leadership of the current situation in the Levant and abroad, Finances, Operations in Europe, Operations in the Wilayats, Internal Security During Operations, Defeating the Apostate Assad, Our Current Situation, as well as other topics.

                                                           The History of Mirror Image

In 2002, I created Mirror Image: Training to Combat Terrorism after interviewing the first American who traveled to Afghanistan and trained in the Khalid Bin Walid terrorism training camp. The idea was to combine what we had learned conducting that interview as well as interviews of numerous individuals in the Middle East. By replicating a terrorist training camp and allowing military, intelligence and law enforcement to walk in the shoes of the enemy one might gain an understanding of terrorist tactics, techniques and procedures. But more importantly Mirror Image was designed to provide “understanding of the enemy” as well as the “operational methodology” of terrorist groups like Al Qaeda.

TRC has brought some of the most renowned subject matter experts to provide instruction and share their experiences. From the early days when we rented space at Blackwater, Mirror Image has been conducted at such places like Ft Huachuca, Camp Rilea, Camp Blanding, Camp Fogarty, Camp Blanding, Ft. Irwin, Camp Pendleton, Camp Billy Machen, F.E .Warren AFB, Canada, Djibouti and other unmentioned locations. Thousands of military, intelligence and law enforcement have all experienced the spider web and learned to think like a “terrorist.” Living, eating, thinking, planning and executing not like westerners but like the adversaries they would face.  Sun Tzu has been our strategic guide for every Mirror Image. As the Chinese General stated in The Art of War: If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.”
With research trips to the Middle East, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Africa and other locations we developed other unique one-of-a-kind programs like Mirror Image: Afghanistan, Mirror Image: Kandahar, Mirror Image Iraq, Mirror Image Anbar Province, Mirror Image Kunar Province, Mirror Image Pakistan, Mirror Image: Mindanao, Financial Mirror Image: Understanding the Adversary By Walking in His Financial Shoes, Mirror Image: Across the Sahel, Persian Mirror Image: Understanding the Islamic Republic, Revolution and Sacrifice, and now Mirror Image: From the Edge of Raqqa, the Evolution and Future of ISIS and their Wilayats.

 Culture, food, language, ideology and history have all added important skillsets and aided in framing the correct mindset. Exercises have included the types of operations that terrorists have conducted around the world. These have included car bombings, truck bombings, suicide bombings, assassination by motorcycles, ambushes, kidnappings, assaults on convoys, attacks on protected principals, attacks on aviation, attacks on protected compounds and FOBs, all having detailed case studies and special guest speakers who have stepped the our participants through what happened often hearing from an individual who was kidnapped and held for hundreds of days before being released, ransomed or rescued. Just as terrorists attempt to manipulate and craft a message to their targeted audience all operations include media and propaganda activities.         

No two Mirror Image programs have ever been alike. They are not a canned product like some wanted. Instead, each one is hand crafted and put together to draw teaching points that are unique for the participants. I would know since I have designed them and led every Mirror Image except one since 2002.  We have had numerous Mirror Image attendees return for a second or third program. We have conducted a special “hardship version” that was two weeks long in a special location for a client as part of their preparation for deployment. All of our Mirror Image programs have nontraditional days with students spending up to sixteen hours a day planning for the next attacks.

Very little is in the public domain about these programs and that is how we like it. I would be happy to speak with anyone from the military, intelligence and law enforcement about any of these one of-a-kind programs.

For more information regarding our upcoming Mirror Image or how you can bring this training to your location or to customize a program for your unit or agency contact Walter Purdy at (703) 801-2297 or at There is a registration sheet attached for your convience. Please mail in immediately if you are interested. Registration is limited so reserve your seat promptly in

Mirror Image: From the Edge of Raqqa, the Evolution and Future of ISIS and their Wilayats.

.                        “The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting.”

 “Victorious warriors win first and then go to war, while defeated warriors go to war first and then seek to win”

 “All warfare is based on deception. Hence, when we are able to attack, we must seem unable; when using our forces, we must appear inactive; when we are near, we must make the enemy believe we are far away; when far away, we must make him believe we are near.”

-Sun Tzu, The Art of War-


                                              COURSE REGISTRATION FORM

                     Mirror Image: From the Edge of Raqqa, the Evolution and

                                                 Future of ISIS and their Wilayats

August 1-5, 2016-New Jersey  Limited Number of Seats

Course fee covers housing, meals and all course materials.

Submit Registration and fee to:  Terrorism Research Center, Inc.

5765 Burke Center Parkway, PMB 331

Burke, Virginia 22015

Or Email to


Name/Rank to Appear on Certificate of Completion_____________________________________________
Name                                                                                  Email
Title/Organization                                                             Phone
Address                                                                            State                              Zip
Early Registration Pay by Check  by May 20th                                   $2500
After May 20th                                                                                               $2995
Other form of Payment Call for Credit Card or Purchase Order    $2995
Authorizing Signature                                        Name                                         Title

All Course Attendees must be approved by the Terrorism Research Center to verify credentials and qualifications to attend. Course attendees must be U.S. Citizens in the military, intelligence or law enforcement community and be approved to attend. As with all our Mirror Image programs this is a total immersion course with long days and hardships.  For course information contact Walter Purdy at (703) 801-2297 or at .







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