Who Is the Islamic State?

Flag of the Islamic State- Creative Commons

Flag of the Islamic State- Creative Commons

You’ve heard of ISIS, but what about the new threat of the Islamic State? As ISIS gained power and territory, leader Baghdadi declared a caliphate made up of territory in both northern Syria and western Iraq.

A caliphate is an Islamic State ruled by one leader. The goal of this caliphate is to enforce their conservative Islamic traditions on as much territory as they can.

While the international arena has acknowledged the potential danger of such a group, not enough has been done to deter ISIS. Having taken the large city of Mosul in June, Iraq’s capital, Baghdad, is not the distant dream our democratic leaders thought.

Their reputation for violence sounds similar to other terrorist organizations, but is even more extreme. ISIS’s extremism even alienated former affiliate Al Qaeda, who disowned their partnership earlier this year.

An example of the lengths this group will go to for success can be found in the Mosul coup. The group kidnapped 30 families and called upon influential citizens to surrender, or “You know their destiny if you don’t let us take over the town.”

As if their violence isn’t warning enough, ISIS now controls four oilfields due to their expansion over the last month. They are selling oil and gasoline from these oilfields to finance the caliphate.

A jihadist organization that already controls so much territory and now has a sustainable income can not be permitted to continue.




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