Foreign Fighter Data

This page hosts open source data referred to during blog discussions and other data that might be useful for researchers.

All of it is free to use.

Foreign Fighters:

Foreign fighters have been the thrust of my research over the past three years.  Below are some of the data I have used that might prove to be useful to others.  The end result thus far has been three articles, several appendices and a coded data set for the Sinjar Records; released in November 2007.


1) “Beyond Iraq and Afghanistan: What Foreign Fighter Data Reveals About the Future of Terrorism?”, Small Wars Journal, 2008.

2) “Foreign Fighters: How are they being recruited?”, Small Wars Journal, 2008.

3) “Countering Terrorism from the Second Foreign Fighter Glut”, Small Wars Journal, 2009.

The above articles are supported by a database and quantitative analysis.  Explanation of the data sources and further discussion of the foreign fighter records can be found here.

A) Appendix A: Data & Discussion

B) Appendix B: Discussion of Countries

C) Appendix C: City Analysis

D) Appendix D: Regression and Other Analyses


1) Sinjar Records-2007

The Sinjar Records were released in November 2007 by the Combating Terrorism Center at West Point.  To produce the above analysis, I constructed an excel database which coded the records into a usable format allowing for quantitative and qualitative analysis.  For additional information on this database, see Appendix A above.

Foreign Fighter Database in .xls

2) I also strongly recommend David Malet’s Foreign Fighter Project which houses additional data and resources related to foreign fighters including some exceptional analysis of historical foreign fighter movements.

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