Talk:Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham

From A Closer Look On Syria
Jump to navigation Jump to search

ISIS-Rebel Infighting

This is a huge subject I and we have not followed closely. It's said the fights between ISIS, other Islamist rebels including JAN, and others, has claimed over 1,000 lives since December. I suggested a page for it, but I suppose a section here will do. SO this is it. --

Beheading an Ahrar ash-Sham Fighter

(strangely appropriate prelude to the infighting)

One interesting story I've been catching but didn't know where to mention occurred recently in or around Aleppo. The SOHR reported on Nov. 13:

The ISIS in Aleppo city killed and decapitated a fighter and showed it to civilians, SOHR activists were present (footage). The ISIS claimed that the victim was a Shi'ite Iraqi fighter volunteer with the regime forces. It has been discerned that the victim is actually a rebel fighter who was wounded during the clashes in the 80th brigade.

They have a video, still not pulled, of the man's bearded head held aloft by one fighter as another explains in Arabic. Several people are filming this besides the SOHR activist who took this video. A comment explains "Yalla Souriya (pro-rebel) report on this: "ISIS decapitate Ahrar Ash-Sham fighter who said Ali and Hussein while under anesthesia for surgery." Given link: Headed: #Syria #ISIS - @omarsyria. Two video links are provided, seems to be all to the same footage (didn't sign in - but I've saved a copy of that just in case) Referring to Shia religious figures while in deep delirium was taken as a sign he was a a Shi'ite fighter (which should have raised a question why he was alive and being cared for up to that point in a rebel hospital) or worse a sleeper agent. --Caustic Logic (talk) 10:25, 18 November 2013 (UTC)

The New York Times on the 16th ran a story on this: Beheading in Syria Is Called a Mistake with more info from SOHR and "a spokesman for the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, Omar al-Qahtani," who gave a statement in Arabic via Twitter. The victim's name is given as Mohamed Fares Marroush. The fighters who tagged him as an enemy were also supported by a medical aide who had formed the same opinion. What's said in the video as they hold up his head:

“If they come here, they won’t differentiate between opposition and government supporters,” said one jihadist in the video, while the other held Mr. Marroush’s head in one hand and a knife in the other. “They will come and rape the men before the women, that’s what these infidels will do. They will rape the men before the women. God make us victorious over them!”

A side-story by NYT shows a video where Marroush specifically "Praises Jihadists Who Later Beheaded Him." ISIS spokesman Qahtani calls Mr. Marroush "our brother" but laments the episode as an unfortunate misunderstanding between fellow Islamist extremists; he "also recounted a religious parable from early Islamic history to urge forgiveness for the killers," the NYT adds. Ahrar al-Sham "released a wanted poster for the two men who appear in the video," but no wider rift between the two groups is likely. "The group has said the men will face a trial in a Shariah court." --Caustic Logic (talk) 10:25, 18 November 2013 (UTC)

To be fair, the ISIS guys were extra mad and looking to vent some frustration over their recent losses to infidel forces in the Aleppo area. As SOHR reported the same day they posted the video:

ISIS issues call to arms in Aleppo
Aleppo province: The ISIS in Aleppo released a statement confirming that it has lost many casualties during the clashes with regime forces by the 80th brigade base, Tal'aran town and al-Sfeira city. The statement also placed full blam for what it called the "Nuseiri Rafidi army's" retaking of the Khanaser-Sfeira road on the retreat and failure to fight by other rebel groups that it claimed "receives much media sponsorship".
The ISIS called on all factions and all muslims to head to the battle fronts to withstand the enemy, and that those who are not capable of physically fighting to support them with weapons and money, if that is not possible than at least support and advice and criticism to the "traitor regime agent sleeper cell groups in the liberated areas" and to inform the ISIS of them.
The statement threatened all those, particularly armed factions, who do not respond to this call to the front with disarmament and a trial in the shari'a court.

Also, FWIW, the sharia court doesn't always hand down the verdict ISIS wants, so they sometimes kidnap or execute judges to keep them in line. Seems pretty anarchic. (details later/elsewhere.) --Caustic Logic (talk) 10:25, 18 November 2013 (UTC)

Blowing up Rebel Commanders, Getting Disowned by Al-Qaeda

SOHR Facebook, Feb. 2:

Aleppo province : 16 Islamic battalion fighters ( including 2 commanders ) were killed, while 20 were seriously injured, when ISIS fighter detonated himself in the Islamic battalion center in a prison in Al-Ra'ii town, that was after he came to negotiates the Islamic battalions, to make a truce between ISIS and the Islamic battalions, sources reported to SOHR that this was the second time for this fighter to play the negotiator between the two sides, added that the explosion accompanied by car explosion out side the office

Reuters, Feb. 3: Al Qaeda says has no link with Syrian militant group ISIL

In a message posted on jihadi websites on Monday, the al Qaeda General Command said ISIL "is not a branch of the al Qaeda group.

"...(Al Qaeda) does not have an organizational relationship with it and is not the group responsible for their actions,"

Sorry, you guys are not just playing the bad cops now. You are. You're cut loose. We're saying you're a regime creation. We're still the good Islamist cops, Al Qaeda. Good luck. --Caustic Logic (talk) 00:47, 4 February 2014 (UTC)

"Rebel revenge"

Well-produced "revenge" video is posted on the web (youtube-with a link to 'full version') and covered by Western mass media, Mirror-UK. (Real or fake?-Don't know). --Resup (talk) 15:30, 4 July 2015 (UTC)



FarsNews mentions:

Recently, a senior Free Syrian Army commander said that British nationals in Syria make up the majority of the foreign members of ISIL.
"They are not freedom fighters. They are terrorists. We, the Syrian people now experience beheadings, crucifixions, beatings, murders, outdated methods of treating women, an obsolete approach to governing society. Many who participate in these activities are British," Free Syrian Army’s Brigadier-General Abdulellah Basheer wrote in a letter to The Times.
According to Basheer, the group is predominantly foreign, with other fighters hailing from France, Germany, and Belgium, as well as a range of countries across the Middle East and Africa.

"Majority" may well be an exaggeration, but it's a start for the topic

In UK, they try to work with non-radical imams;---success of that is not clear. --Resup (talk) 17:17, 21 September 2014 (UTC)

John Cantlie, a British journalist, presents what is characterized as the first installment of IS-produced videos. --Resup (talk) 20:06, 21 September 2014 (UTC)

Attacks in Paris. Said and Cherif Kouachi were linked to Yemen-based AQ AP (they were in Yemen in 2011), while Amedy Coulibaly is said to claim a link with ISIS, which was not independently verified (CBS). They acted with initial cooperation, than mostly indpendently Cherif Kouachi, Amedy Coulibaly interviews (BFM-TV, French, English captions). A French prosecutor told ABC News the attacks also appeared to be linked because Kouachi and Coulibaly had both been arrested in connection with a larger plot to spring another terrorist, Smain Ali Belkacem, from prison in 2010. A correspondent from BFM TV recalls talking to gunman, Cherif Kouachi, on the phone, notes he was 'serene', calm. --Resup (talk) 16:33, 10 January 2015 (UTC)

More videos: Amedy Coulibaly pledged allegiance to IS; "mosques in France are full of able bodied sporty people". Killed policeman brother, with tolerance/unity type message (killed policeman was a Muslim). --Resup (talk) 18:21, 11 January 2015 (UTC)
Victims--Resup (talk) 23:57, 12 January 2015 (UTC)

Saudi Recruit Speaks

  • MEMRI Video, March 6, from Saudi Arabia, Channel 1: Saudi Internet Celebrity Returning from Syria Jihad: The Factions Fight One Another, Not the Regime A so-called celebrity fighter for al Qaeda speaks on Suadi state TV to encourage the youth to not go to Syria and fight, at all. I hear this was recently enshrined in law, or the law actually announced to be enforced. This guy first had a brother go, using his passport, and died. He was forbidden to go, but found a passport he could use (in a family member's glove box - ?) and went to Turkey. Smuggled into Syria, he was chosen to join ISIS, which he knew nothing about. They used his growing Twitter account, he says, to recruit young men and then to denounce clerics and rulers in the Kingdom and elsewhere for heresy.

These had likely had thought like that before, and perhaps it was known. One way to use ISIS, if it were as some suspect a throwaway operation for achieve other goals, is to absorb Ikhwan spawn and other misfits of the Osama bin Laden or Juayman al-Uteybi sort (in fact, a few Saudis named Uteybi have surfaced in Syria). These are radicals too pure in their religion to tolerate the House of Saud's hypocrisy - an embarrassing side-product their culture keeps turning out, and often sending out to cause problems elsewhere, not at the source. Like the death-row inmates the kingdom has reportedly sent, partly from the same class, it's hoped they'll die there but in a useful way, causing other deaths along the way.

Saudi support to al Qaeda had been perhaps to the good-cop bad-cop sort, boosting Al-Nusra ultimately, and ISIS mainly to make the former look good in comparison. But now they espouse a line of no traveling to Syria, and the unclear number already there are left for Syria to pack up and send home, with what should be increasing ease. The infighting too had looked to solidify JAN's role as the okay al-Qaeda. But one other effect, as this reformed recruit relates (in a pretty vague way, actually) - it became Saudis fighting Saudis, going out of the country to kill each other, when they'd been total strangers before. Each death is one less awkward Syria vet to deal with at home. It's like partial 'self-destruct button' for the whole Jihadists-to-Syria project. --Caustic Logic (talk) 11:57, 13 March 2014 (UTC)

Until we have a better spot, on the new Saudi anti-Terror laws:

This praises an unexpected new law enforcing rules against fighting in Syria, and for that matter declaring the Muslim Brotherhood a terrorist group, something even Obama hasn't done, I believe, with his numerous "Ikhwan" advisers and such... One passage deals with the fighters in Syria:

Before the new law is fully enforced, the Ministry of Interior is giving Saudis fighting in Syria an escape hatch to “rethink their position and return immediately home” within 15 days. Once the grade period ends, Saudis could face three to 20 years in prison if found guilty of engaging in terrorist or extremist activities.

--Caustic Logic (talk) 13:34, 14 March 2014 (UTC)


As I wrote in the Assault on Kobane article:

At a September 20 press conference in Turkey's parliament, MP Demir Celik claimed that the recipients of the material on the trains were veteran Turkish Special Forces fighting with "the group presented to us as ISIS". He claims to have reliable information that they are the backbone of ISIS' strategical moves from the taking of Mosul to the ongoing attack on Kobane, numbering not less than 2,000 officers "who in the 1990s were cutting off the noses and ears of Kurdish (PKK) fighters".[1]

If I read the whole article correctly, he claims that these are veterans now working as mercenaries with a helping hand of state forces in Turkey, satisfying their old hatred of Kurds by slaughtering them left, right and center under the guise of "ISIS" madmen. I must say that this isn't implausible, as far-fetched as it may sound at first - because if his numbers of 2,000 trained fighters are right, they are a very significant, maybe even the core part of the military success of "ISIS". --CE (talk) 14:27, 20 September 2014 (UTC)

This came to my mind again when I read about the "Turkish Invasion" into Iraq to the doorsteps of Mosul. b speculates that they are going to "annex" Mosul. What if it is already annexed and this is just a new supply line after YPG cut the line between Mosul and Raqqa while the Russians bomb further west at the Turkish border? Or even an evacuation line? The link to the article wasn't working anymore, had to go to Kurdish Question where I found it under a differently structured URL. Created a copy on the wayback machine,[1] one never knows. While on KQ I found this interesting collection of summaries of Turkish articles about the topic:
--CE (talk) 04:32, 7 December 2015 (UTC)
Those engaged in organisational activities for ISIS, Al-Nusra and Ahrur-u Sham gangs in Bingöl are composed of primarily JITEM (Gendarmerie Organisation for Intelligence and Counter-Terrorism) and some front organisations of the AKP; including Haksöz, Bingöl Association of Knowledge and Thought (Bingöl Bilgi ve Düşünce Derneği), Bingöl Society for Dissemination of Science (Bingöl İlim Yayma Cemiyeti) as well as former members of Turkish Hezbollah.

--CE (talk) 16:28, 27 October 2015 (UTC)

Russian intelligence report about support to ISIS by Turkish entities as presented by Vitali Churkin to the UN Security Council, February and March 2016. --CE (talk) 16:58, 9 April 2016 (UTC)

ISIS emir who surrendered to the YPG says the most important people in ISIS are Turks (MIT) and they are out to get the Kurds. This according to Firat News Agency which is close to the Öcalan Kurds. Many details. --CE (talk) 18:54, 13 October 2016 (UTC)

State Dept.

This is just too funny: Rita Katz of SITE complains about the twitter activities of the State Department who run an account with anti-ISIS propaganda, also addressing "prominent Jihadis". She complains about the State Dept not realizing that they don't have the moral highground (as they are reminded of things like Abu Graib in return all the time) and about them having no clue about the ins-and-outs of Jihadistan - f.e. showing an Al Qaeda guy a pic of Baghdadi with his "Rolex" watch to illustrate hypocrisy of ranting against capitalism. All very counter-productive and embarrassing, she feels. One-LOL-per-minute must-read article:

--CE (talk) 15:27, 21 September 2014 (UTC)

Rita Katz: "I would much rather see the State Department’s online ventures involved in projects that explain the great things American policies have achieved."
Me too (but is there something like that, which is also recent ? A single Elon Musk-type cannot fill in for everybody else. And just the money is not a strong competition to ideas).
There are technological advances (like processor chips and everything on top of that, twitter and youtube included); but in terms of human society, it appears to be not that much (immediately obvious to a young male) progress in the last 1,500 or so years. --Resup (talk) 17:27, 21 September 2014 (UTC)
Cultural values and achievements aside, I think the most useful thing for the US to do to battle ISIS is to just STFU and let real people from the area, language, and background really fight them on all the different levels. Otherwise, they'll have a CG Nancy Reagan saying how they should "just say no" and be non-violent real Muslims like her cleaning lady, who actually might be a Filipino Catholic, but whatever.. Everything Washington does is fake now ... it's the background of fakery that (partly) bred ISIS and Al Qaeda. Clearly these counter-efforts just add to it. --Caustic Logic (talk) 00:04, 22 September 2014 (UTC).
Well, if somebody tries to recruit Americans, and those Americans may do harm in the USA, it is fairly natural for the USA to get concerned about it. --Resup (talk) 11:45, 22 September 2014 (UTC)
When they're addressing real concerns like that, they'll do real things like watch those guys close and arrest them if it seems warranted, etc. And they do. The thing that gets people uninterested in an exciting jihad is if they think they'll just die and lose and it'll all be a big failure. Prepared to die, sure, hopefully not ... but definitely not for nothing. Victories and momentum in Syria and Iraq are the biggest recruiters yet, and real actions are the only kind that'll stop that. Syria, for example, has had to be extremely real about it. Stragely, the "world comunity" has thwarted them at every turn in favor of the West's fake version of events.
Conversely, if they're motivated to drag out and use the threat by responding selectively to achieve other goals, they might do stupid stuff like this "Twitter war," or making sure it's American "Hellfire" that thwarted "God's wishes," or continuing to refuse cooperation with Syria, or Iran, and instead falling back on the same Gulf Arab states and Turkey who created the problem, to see if they can work out whatever solution they might have had in mind as they created the problem.... --Caustic Logic (talk) 09:19, 23 September 2014 (UTC)
USA did create some problems at will,---- but not the Sunni-Shiite schism or the Iran nuclear program... --Resup (talk) 14:06, 23 September 2014 (UTC)


They didn't reveal his full identity, but got the right guy. @ShamiWitness was a major helper for ISIS recruitment and propaganda in English, credible source for HRW and western journalists. It seems he was outed further, fully identified now, and arrested by Indian authorities, just after shutting down his own account. --Caustic Logic (talk) 11:59, 13 December 2014 (UTC)

Staged Executions?

Group "KiberBerkut" claims ( article, video) to have found a video (here on youtube) of a hostage 'execution' by an IS militant in the process of being staged at a film pavilion studio. The hackers said they found the video in the electronic device supposedly one of the staff of the US Senator John McCain (who visited Ukraine around June 23 making a case for modern US weapons). Released video quality is rather poor, faces not clearly seen. --Resup (talk) 10:01, 11 July 2015 (UTC)


Caliphate may mean the 'highest' and 'true' Islamic authority, which other devotees must obey. The last clear-cut Caliphate was Ottomans (abolished by Ataturk in 1924). There is currently a peaceful and apparently fairly reasonable Ahmadiyya Khalifat, with the main base in London; it is rarely in the mass media news. A-Q was reported to have a Caliphate as a future goal, but did not actually declare it. On June 29, 2014, it was reported that IS declared a Caliphate, and that according to IS spokesperson "The legality of all emirates, groups, states, and organizations, becomes null by the expansion of the caliph's authority and arrival of its troops to their areas."

According to quoted by WSJ expert, "This is more about inter-Islamic things. It doesn't have to do with the West," said Mr. Zelin. "I think that there's a likelihood that you'll see more infighting than we would have before. Not necessarily in Syria." .--Resup (talk) 11:45, 22 September 2014 (UTC)

Name Variations

Contrary to AP and others, Washington Post sticks to ISIS citing Hassan Hassan's arguments among others.

Please change topic title

It's ash-Sham not al-Sham in English transliteration and Arabic pronounciation. It's spelled in Arabic (English) as al-Sham but the rules say the laam is dropped and the following consonant doubled when spoken, hence ash-Sham --Charles Wood (talk) 08:01, 23 June 2014 (UTC)

I'll add that it's often called in Western Media "Islamic State of Iraq and Syria" (ISIS) and less often "Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant" (ISIL). In Arab media it's DAESH from the transliterated initialisation of the Arabic name. See Origin of name DAESH --Charles Wood (talk) 08:08, 23 June 2014 (UTC)

Hey Charles! That's a hot topic on the web at the moment. I moved it here, see above. Just last night I pointed out somewhere else to some know-it-all who insisted that ISIL was the proper English acronym, that in their own propaganda, they call themselves "The Islamic State of Iraq and Sham", with the Sham untranslated and without either al- or ash-. Same in German, their propaganda says "Der Islamische Staat von Irak und Sham". So if we change the topic title, I would propose to drop the "al-" and fulfill their wishes (could be better for our health anyway ;o)). Other opinions? --CE (talk) 10:57, 23 June 2014 (UTC)
The al in front of names is very often ignored in general Arabic usage. It's simply assumed to be there but not enunciated. However place-names often have it in some form. e.g. Deir Ez-Zour (Deir al-Zour). Most of the references to Sham I've seen have ash-Sham e.g. Ahrar ash-Sham (when not misspelled by the author). My Arabic teacher would say that either is correct in general usage but ash-Sham can never be incorrect as it is more formal and complete. --Charles Wood (talk) 11:15, 23 June 2014 (UTC)
The main page says "الدولة الاسلامية في العراق والشام‎ ad-Dawla al-Islāmiyya fi al-'Irāq wa-sh-Shām". As a wannabe Arabic speaker I point out wa-sh-Shām wrong. It's literally "wa (and) ash-Sham (the Levant)" so it should be "الدولة الاسلامية في العراق والشام‎ ad-Dawla al-Islāmiyya fi al-'Irāq wa ash-Shām" or "Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant" --Charles Wood (talk) 11:38, 23 June 2014 (UTC)
Your linked article by Pieter Van Ostaeyen, who's a pro, has it as "as-Shām" in the "English" name, and in the separated transliterated form as "(wa’s-) Shām". I'd say from observation as a non-Arabic speaker that it really doesn't matter much and the habits of transliteration vary wildly, without one objectively correct one. I forgot where I copypasted the stuff on the front page from, but it was a source that appeared knowledgeable to me. --CE (talk) 12:16, 23 June 2014 (UTC)
Agreed - Charles is right enough but it's not too important. The consonant pick-up I'm aware of, though it never seemed a hard rule but more a phoenetic convention (I've seen Al Zawiyah instead of Az, etc.) - it's maybe as important as a page in english with "a" instead of "an" - not worth a page move, which a title change requires. --Caustic Logic (talk) 22:28, 23 June 2014 (UTC)
The interview with Salih Muslim I linked yesterday uses it exactly like our article is titled now, with "al-". Also the article it links to under that name. Al Monitor is a site that specializes in English translations of Arabic media. So it may not be 100% accurate from some points of view, but it certainly isn't seriously wrong. Therefore I say we keep it as it is. Thanks anyway, Charles. --CE (talk) 15:16, 25 June 2014 (UTC)
I just happened to read this interview with an ISIS fighter. He doesn't care much even about ISIS or ISIL, but uses the short form "Dawla" (State) for his org. As Ostaeyen points out, Da'esh seems to be derogatory. --CE (talk) 12:44, 23 June 2014 (UTC)

Alternate Sponsorship Theories

The accepted sponsorship theory being, like any terrorist organization, IS/Daesh gets its support from ideologically-aligned private donors and volunteers, and other non-state sources. Presumptively, no sane government on the face of the Easrth could embrace something this vile, and none step up to acknowledge supporting them. So, the "alternate" sponsorship theories will be mainly or totally accusations that certain governments or blocs of them are in fact consciously behind the group or at least its curious success. --Caustic Logic (talk) 11:45, 22 May 2015 (UTC)

Disgruntled Iraqi Baathists?

  • Beforeitsnews, April 19: ISIS’ Strategy Leak Reveals Syrian Takeover Plot, US “Created A Group Of Very Intelligent Enemies” Sounds like a bunch of disinfo to me. The whole thing was planned out back to 2003 as some Islamist stasi state by unemployed Saddam Baath party loyalists (Baath is Arabic for bwahaha!). The plan sat quiet for years, took root after the DIA realized in mid-2012 everyone wanted an Islamist principality on the Syria-Iraq border ... and all the plans revelealed when an ISIS Baathist was killed in Jan. 2014 and he had these notebooks going back a decade - he was the one running it. Spiegel et al. are getting these scoops I missed, and this article collects them. Like I said, it sounds like fake notebooks and supporting disinfo. --Caustic Logic (talk) 12:13, 7 June 2015 (UTC)
But who would create such dis-info and why? --Resup (talk) 13:16, 7 June 2015 (UTC)
Whoever's really behind Daesh would have the motive to blame someone else. I don't know who that would be - this case might shed some light on it. Pinning it on Baathists lets it seem like they're the main problem and just need to be wiped out, in Iraq and in Syria. Was it Iraqi troops who found the documents? I wouldn't think they'd have such a motive. --Caustic Logic (talk) 05:13, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
They may well have ex-Iraqi military joining (what else they are supposed to join, a human rights watch?) Baath is pan-Arabic socialism party with Assad in Syrian branch of it. The source says : "Though presumably a coincidence, the stationery was from the Syrian Defense Ministry and bore the letterhead of the department in charge of accommodations and furniture". Organisational charts appeared in the West (for corporate use, in early 20 century). Whoever draw this, would be quite well versed in Western ways,- FWIW --Resup (talk) 07:53, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
Iraqi and Syrian Baath parties have parted ways several decades ago. Massive fall-out over I can't remember what. --CE (talk) 08:21, 8 June 2015 (UTC)

More on the same topic: -- Petri Krohn (talk) 15:24, 8 June 2015 (UTC)

ISIS’s roots in Saddam Hussein’s Baath Party are deep — many of the group’s most devoted commanders, advisers and fighters started out as Baathists. The ex-Baathists essentially run ISIS, and their past is evident in the tactics they are using now.

Anti-Assad Alliance Behind Daesh

...The document shows that as early as 2012, U.S. intelligence predicted the rise of the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL or ISIS), but instead of clearly delineating the group as an enemy, the report envisions the terror group as a U.S. strategic asset.

The leap to ISIS however is not clearly called for - their predecessor, Jabhat al-Nusra, appeared within a few months, by late December 2012, soon establishing "salafist principalities" in northern and eastern Syria. These were more of the emirate type than the caliphate type like ISIS does, but the plotters don't seem to specify here which they preferred. But I think this probably goes more under JaN sponsorship.

The suggested link is still there, I think, in this form: whoever creates JaN knows "al Qaeda" looks bad. So, whoever creates the even-worse group that makes the al Qaeda group look tasty in comparison ... may well be the same people who want their Islamist horse to win in the long run. Countries with surpluss produce that's too-Salafist, too-extreme, locked-up uselessly, that they'd rather dump somewhere useful, will also be interested in the "bad cop" project and will help on the staffing end (KSA releasing prisoners to go join whoever in Syria, promising harsh punishments to any who survive and try to come back, etc.) --Caustic Logic (talk) 11:45, 22 May 2015 (UTC)

One Q: did these parties think establishing Salafist principality near the border with Iraq's somewhat restive Sunni areas would not also lead to trouble bleeding over in Iraq? --Caustic Logic (talk) 11:45, 22 May 2015 (UTC)

There are more documents. b shines at connecting the dots, as always. They even predicted the fall of Mosul and Ramadi, not only "trouble" in Iraq. But they didn't exactly predict the entity ISIS, just "an" islamic state (knowing about what was defeated in 2007 of course). The fact that this group is now literally called the "Islamic State" some say isn't a coincidence, though, and aims to discredit the whole idea (Kevin Barrett et al). --CE (talk) 14:58, 22 May 2015 (UTC)
2012 document-released under freedom of information act -but after a lawsuit (which appears to be about Bengazi, Libya). There are parallel studies on Ukraine, but real documents seem to end in Bandera and Lebed era -released under Nazi crime disclosure act. --Resup (talk) 13:47, 27 May 2015 (UTC)

Syrian Government Behind Daesh

(didn't we have a section of this? Or was that only with JaN?) --Caustic Logic (talk) 08:57, 13 July 2014 (UTC)

- Sipan Hemo, Rudaw interview: Intrigues with intel and cynicical realism to conclude everyone but the Kurds is behind ISIS, but mainly...

ISIS was shaped by some powers about a year and a half ago to carry out their plans in Syria. ISIS isn’t a random Al-Qaeda organization. We have intelligence on them. There are documents that we acquired. There are also the statements taken from members we captured. When we put all these pieces together, we reached to the conclusion that ISIS was directed under the command of some intelligence services and their agents to implement the policies of certain states in Syria. The most recent developments, as well as what occurred earlier, prove that our theory is correct.  
Ooh! States, interests! Intriguing! We know who, but how does he say it?  
... what seems clear from their actions on the ground is that this organization is at the service of several intelligence agencies and it acts in accordance with their interests. Specifically, there are some western countries — along with the Turkish state on one side and Iran, Iraq and Syria on the other — that have their own plans and calculations over ISIS. In a way, ISIS was merely turning itself into a stick made of fire and everybody was willing to use this stick against one another. They were taking steps in this direction. In other words, these intelligence services have attempted to use this cruel, terrorist structure — created by those who don’t know anything about humanity, leave alone civil law — against one another and against the people in the region. 
Ah, impressively even-handed realpolitik cynicism. Some will find that convincing.  
... I want to state my views without lending credence to conspiracy theories: Iran, Iraq and Syria are parts of this plan. On the other hand, Turkey and other powers that are working together were also aware of this plan; they even took part in it in one way or another. Iran believes that the more the Middle East is dragged into a quagmire and chaos, the better their chances of ... (some alleged motive given)
Not remotely explained: how the Shia and allied villains maneuver Turkey, KSA, Jordan, France, etc. to keep helping these groups move in and out of Syria and Iraq, buying their fleets of white Toyota ratmobiles, and maintaining the chaos they need to function, withholding/denying the air power ISIS could hardly live with (consider: delaying and threatening to stop Iraq's acquirement of fighter jets at this time, while supplying allied rebels in Syria more weapons to take down aircraft in either country, really. How does Iran, Iraq, and Syria team up to get these things done and get their (fake? Acting?) Sunni extremists on the fields... They're so ebull they can defy the laws of reason and even physics probably! This Hemo clown preceded his transparent nonsense with: "I want to state my views without lending credence to conspiracy theories." No credence lent, IMO. --Caustic Logic (talk) 08:57, 13 July 2014 (UTC)
I'm not sure if you don't interpret too much into what he says. To me it seems to end at "for some goals of Iran, Iraq and Syria, ISIS is a convenient tool, while others drive them". Which isn't far-fetched. But the CT you seem to read certainly has some proponents. Just came across a debunking of it: Iran And ISIS – Convenience Is The Enemy Of Research
This is symptomatic of a growing movement within some analysis circles—most notably in a much shared think-piece by Pinhas Inbari for the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs entitled "ISIS: Iran's Instrument for Regional Hegemony?" published but four days before the FP piece—pushing for acceptance of some vast regional conspiracy, led by Iran to seed discord within the Middle East using ISIS as a knowing or unknowing agent to fulfill Iran's secret master-plan.
Stopped reading around when he also dismissed the Turkey connection, but for the record... --CE (talk) 21:30, 14 July 2014 (UTC)
That could make sense, but it seem he's not talking hypotheticals. Paperwork proves certain states, he says, and Iran Iraq and Syria ARE part of it (I'd love to see these papers!), implicitly the original ones, with the others just tagging along and using it a bit. Glad Tamimi dismisses it, but that just shows it is to Syria studies what "TV fakery" is to 9/11. Obviously he's not to be trusted just because he can dismiss the dumbest of the dumb. He'll follow it saying Turkey's not involved or something lame. --Caustic Logic (talk) 22:29, 14 July 2014 (UTC)

Why Assad No Longer 'Has to Go' By Adam Chandler, the Atlantic vis Yahoo News.

On Monday, The New York Times reported that the State Department had signed off on two separate diplomatic initiatives ...Neither contains the prerequisite for the end of Assad's rule. ... How ... rise of ISIS ... As Dominic Tierney explained back in July, Assad has ensured his survival (at least temporarily) by strategically enabling extremists and, more tragically, killing off any palatable opposition" ... "The Syrian president’s forces have allowed ISIS to consolidate a rump caliphate in northeastern Syria as a visible warning about what the alternative to his rule looks like. Indeed, Assad’s troops rarely battle ISIS, saving their fire for more moderate enemies."


Assad has since received a de facto coalition partner in the form of the United States itself, which has not only launched strikes against Islamic State targets within Syria, but also targeted other groups battling the Assad regime like the Khorasan group.

Double duh. So tearing apart his buddies' rump caliphate example makes us now allied with him? I though he was allied with ISIS and al Qaeda? Was this article written from one single human brain?--Caustic Logic (talk) 14:51, 21 January 2015 (UTC)

As I recall, it was another guy allied with AQ. Assad used to be "brutal dictator who kills with chemical weapons" . Not sure what is present official US view.--Resup (talk) 15:07, 21 January 2015 (UTC)
In a three-part series, Pulitzer Prize winning reporter Roy Gutman relied on a list of Syrian opposition sympathizers to make the central claim that “the Syrian regime’s collusion with the terrorists of the so-called Islamic State goes back a decade”. While this is not the first time such a claim is made, Mr. Gutman and his sources are clearly worried that Donald Trump’s anti ISIS strategy will “shift policy in the Syria conflict from one of support for the moderate opposition to collaboration with the regime of President Bashar al-Assad”.

--CE (talk) 22:09, 5 December 2016 (UTC)


There are many conspiracy explanations with somebody behind; well maybe somebody is behind, but ideological reasons may be prevalent -:: (By popular account, that ideology was fueling later stages of insurgency in Chechnya. Akhmat Kadyrov (father) was a mufti who changed sides ... ) -Resup (talk) 21:25, 15 November 2015 (UTC)

Clarion Project

Argues that the "anti-Islamic" Clarion project (promoters of the infamous "innocence of Muslims" movie) has increased the profile of the ISIS magazine Dabiq, and has likely increased their flow of recruits, etc. --Caustic Logic (talk) 06:48, 12 September 2016 (UTC)

Sheikh Nabeel Naiem interview

After Osama Bin Laden’s death Al-Qaeda was bought by the Qatari Intelligence, and I tell you during the International Conference of Ikhwan (Muslim Brotherhood) in Istanbul, Qatar decided to create a fund to sponsor Free Egyptian Army and paid 1 billion dollar for it, and the person in charge of this fund is Ali Kurrah Zadah, Muslim Brotherhood official in Turkey, this is the finance.
Genghis Khan used to enter a village and annihilate all living in it, even animals he’d slaughter it, and burn down the houses, so the next village hears that Genghis Khan is coming they flee away and this is what ISIS is doing in Iraq, and what’s the goal of ISIS? When ISIS entered Samerra they killed a thousand Sunni, and now killing Shiites, and this is the American policy.

ISIS Atrocities in Syria

Mass execution of members of uprising tribe

Main article: Massacre of the Sheitat Tribe

IS Executes "700" of al-Sheitaat tribe in Deir ez-Zor province. Huff Post, August 16, 2014

Baldur (talk) 01:33, 20 August 2014 (UTC)

Thanks. See also (Huffy, bah) Massacre of the Sheitat Tribe page which is woefully behind considering the gravity of this act os mass terror (with SOHR numbers, however, hopefully inflated...) --Caustic Logic (talk) 09:34, 20 August 2014 (UTC)
Syria in a nutshell: Meet Saddam Jamal, Drug dealer, turned FSA commander with claimed CIA connections, turned ISIS big wig and child mass murderer. The kids had the misfortune of being born into the Sheitat tribe. Witnessed and reported to the Telegraph by his fled bodyguard. Surprise, surprise: He cares more about Power than about Islam (or bringing democracy to Syria, for that matter). --CE (talk) 09:44, 11 November 2014 (UTC)
What a story ... as for "in a nutshell," they're not all this ambitious and destructive as this sick opportunist, but a crowd of lesser versions has been the bread and butter of the uprising, at least its getting things done (and getting Assad blamed) end. Didn't even take ISIS to do the Houla Massacre - but it take ISIS to openly slaughter dozens of enemy children at a time without letting anyone else take the glory. --Caustic Logic (talk) 12:58, 11 November 2014 (UTC)
An extreme case for sure - one less familiar with the scene than us could even suspect propaganda, given the source -, but it indeed fits the picture. Got the link from an Edward Dark tweet who expressed - and had to defend - a similar characterization. --CE (talk) 13:08, 11 November 2014 (UTC)
It's clearly being used as propaganda. And it could well be untrue, but not from implausibility, just maybe by coincidence. :) --Caustic Logic (talk) 13:49, 11 November 2014 (UTC)
You're right. I hate it that I always have to explain that propaganda doesn't have to be untrue. And now that. Sloppy. ;o) --CE (talk) 14:20, 11 November 2014 (UTC)

More atrocity videos

A new Syrian Girl account has posted two more atrocity videos on YouTube.

-- Petri Krohn (talk) 01:18, 13 February 2014 (UTC)

Both saved over here if needed. The second one, a beheading, fierce but different than usual - hard hits with a sword, from the back. Pretty quick, considering. Usually we see a knife, sawing throat-first, and getting slowed down at the spinal cord. Brutal. This I think is more professional. Nine strokes, 8 seconds, for anyone keeping tabs. I saw this recently on the Twitter feed of "Prez Jarba." He said it was from Libya, but made some snarky point about Syria, and I thought it was Libya, partly by being different. Derna it said, and could be Al-Bayda or maybe Derna (a pretty green strip). I'm out of touch with Libyan beheading styles. But of course that's joke account and if anything else says Syria, it's probably so. --Caustic Logic (talk) 14:47, 13 February 2014 (UTC)
First video, strangulation, oh my. That is very sad to watch and not necessary for many. So pathetic. I guess they have some kind of cord around her neck, as she kneels. One guy holds it tight and jerks her around a little as she strains and slowly suffocates. A poor, slight woman, her hands aren't tied but somehow she doesn't resist. Her hands go up slightly once, then she forces them back down and just waits as passively as possible. The first jerk of being choked, I think, is at 0:09, last faint movements at about 1:10. Did they tell her her children would die if she resisted? Jeez I have a dark imagination, possibly even adequate to comprehend this stuff as it is. --Caustic Logic (talk) 14:47, 13 February 2014 (UTC)
Hmmm... The fact is, that your verbal description of the video is more disturbing than watching the video. (Having seen the video two days ago.) -- Petri Krohn (talk) 00:34, 15 February 2014 (UTC)
The one part, yeah (see below). Otherwise, I found it pretty disturbing in a way that's hard to overstate. Dead bodies are just things, but seeing a living person struggling with the dying process, or with a grave injury, is what upsets me. --Caustic Logic (talk) 09:23, 15 February 2014 (UTC)
That said, with a little more thought, simple futility could explain her hands going back down. Why prolong it? It takes a full minute as it is. --Caustic Logic (talk) 13:59, 14 February 2014 (UTC)


Deir Ezzor Province: The Islamic State executed a Kurdish man arrested earlier by the Sharia Body which is affiliated to Jabhet Al Nusra before IS control over the city of Al Bo Kamal. He was killed on charge of belonging to YPG, where it crucified in the city center. the Islamic State declared that it is going to keep the body crucified for 3 days.

Beheading Westerners

We haven't bothered here covering the much-discussed beheadings of American journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff and British aid worker David Haines. Apparently there are details worth pursuing, as Denis O'Brien (Murder in the SunMorgue) has teased out in a new report "I Wish I was an American." He goes into serious detail on video edits, dialog, solar angles and location, every little detail. One interesting conclusion, headlined on the PDF download page:

In this in-depth analysis of the James Foley "decapitation" video, I show how Foley twisted the scripted dialog he was supposed to read. Instead of a denunciation of America, Foley turned it into an affirmation of his patriotism -- possibly the last words he ever spoke.
This story points out why ISIS cannot win. They are too freaking stupid to have even a vague idea of what they are up against.
We cannot allow this hero's memory to fade before Americans understand the extent of his courage.

--Caustic Logic (talk) 00:08, 10 November 2014 (UTC)

Executing 200 children

Here's a shocking alleged episode from some time ago only just now becoming known. In lieu of a better source, New York Daily News reports on this, back on October 10.

Footage of Islamic State militants mass murdering what appear to be 200 Syrian kids was posted online Monday by anti-ISIS group based in Yemen.
How did they get the video, and why didn't anyone else? Or did we all just miss a video of ISIS executing 200 children in Syria?) --Caustic Logic (talk) 07:02, 13 November 2015 (UTC)
Believed to have been filmed in August 2014 when ISIS captured the Tabqa airbase from Syrian government forces, it shows the militants executing the helpless victims as they lay on the ground with their faces in the dirt.

Here's their posting of the video (was graphic, but the kids are all pixelated) --Caustic Logic (talk) 07:02, 13 November 2015 (UTC)

Gotta check VDC. No clear sign of such a massacre, but maybe bits of it. all boys from Raqqa province killed in August - total 13, 11 killed by regime's warplane shelling," two by "the explosion of bullets casings remnants of the regime." All Raqqa girls killed in August = 5, same listed death causes. Did ISIS not kill a single child? Locations: August 10 deaths in Kesra (by Arabic spelling) is a ways north, by Manbij (Wikimapia). Earlier deaths,location unclear. Most likely matches are Aug. 29 in Mansoura (3 boys, 2 girls, all "unidentified") and 31 in Raqqah city, "Sbahieh neighborhood."4 boys, 1 girl), all killed by jets They say. Mansoura is about 16 km NE of the Taqba base (Wikimapia). Raqqah, 43 km in the same direction. --Caustic Logic (talk) 07:15, 13 November 2015 (UTC)

Rusvesna denied the report, citing the original video, published more than a year ago. It shows brutal crime, Chechen militants shot soldiers of the Syrian army. "The Chechen mujahedeen shot infidels at the captured Tabka airbase"- that was the name that video posted September 2, 2014 on the" Jihad TV ". The man on the video (linked in the article) is a Russian speaking Chechen (or Dagestani, as readers pointed out), praising their cause. --Resup (talk) 10:50, 13 November 2015 (UTC)

al-Baghiliyah Massacre

Jan. 16, 2016: ISIS executed 280 civilians and abducts a reported 400 from the al-Baghiliya district of Deir Ezzour (north of the city, here on Wikimapia. Reporst say victims were beheaded and crucified, and included family of soldiers stationed in the ISIS-surrounded area. --Caustic Logic (talk) 06:34, 18 January 2016 (UTC)

ISIS Atrocities in Iraq

forthcoming - maybe - a big subject and we're only sworn to Syria, and that not as fully as I'd like. --Caustic Logic (talk) 10:21, 15 May 2015 (UTC)

Rescue missions

American serviceman killed as hostages rescued in Iraq, Pentagon says -CNN.

About 70 hostages, including more than 20 members of the Iraqi Security Forces, were liberated in the helicopter assault, which involved U.S. special operations troops as well as Kurdish and Iraqi forces, U.S. officials said.

--Resup (talk) 18:36, 22 October 2015 (UTC)

ISIS Advances

Daeshbags reach Palmyra

First I heard was an urgent report to Australian activist Susan Dirgham posted here from locals that Deash/Islamic State forces were on the verge of overrunning Palmyra, in the desert center of Homs province - a major strategic site and crossroads between Iraq and Syria's Homs and Damascus. The word has gotten out more widely now. They're "at the gate," and everyone's worried about the antiquities (above link has some historical info on the ancient sites there, a world heritage site). Not knowing for sure, context makes it sound like people aren't really in danger, nor even removable artifacts, just fixed structures. The city's been vacated, apparently and hopefully. In that light, I'm not as worried as I was at first. But some news reports I'm skimming:

I don't really think the authorities should irradiate the ruins, sicken the thieves, and track their marketing with radiation detectors. But that occurred to me as sort of clever. But as a student of history who knows nothing lasts forever, if they can't be kept out of the city and the sites, as seems likely, the SAA, SAF and maybe Iraqi counterparts helping should blow up whatever they need to, to punish and bleed Daesh in a blazing hell so they never even want try this again. --Caustic Logic (talk) 10:21, 15 May 2015 (UTC)

Ooh, not vacated. Not good. Doesn't even sound like it can be done fully, in time, in all eventualities. From NYT report: "People in Palmyra described a state of anxiety and chaos, with residents trying to flee the northern neighborhoods. Shelling could be heard in the background as they spoke over Skype. According to residents and one government soldier, fighting elsewhere, scores of soldiers and pro-government militiamen fighting in the east and north of the town had been killed by Islamic State fighters since Monday." One resident still there says "If the roads were safe, we would leave the town, but pray for us, and pray for peace." A soldier and the SOHR agreed "that civilians had also been killed, some of them beheaded, in the town of Soukhna several miles outside Palmyra."

Soukhna and Palmyra on Wikimapia 60 km of desert and zero towns lay between them. All around, the Sukhna gas field, established pipelines, under their control at the moment. Today's Zaman on Sukhna fighting and killings - city hadn't fallen totally

RT report: ""Palmyra is under threat," warned Rami Abdel Rahman, the Observatory director. "IS has taken all the army posts between Al-Sukhnah and Palmyra," moving from its stronghold in the Euphrates valley to the east, he added." --Caustic Logic (talk) 10:44, 15 May 2015 (UTC)

AP/Yahoo News: "Provincial governor Talal Barazi said that 1,800 families who had fled the advancing jihadists were being sheltered in reception centres in the nearby modern town of Tadmur." Nearby = inextricably adjscent to. Tadmur is the local name for Palmyra. They haven't really left. Wikimpaia shows the ancient city everyone's worried about (people probably do live there like in Homs' old city) is in the south, and modern Palmyra/Tadmure is the northern 2/3 of the same place Daesh has surrounded to the north and east, and west probably. They've been shifted a bit north instead of southeast out of the area. Last town that was overran, Sukhna, "IS executed 26 civilians -- 10 of whom were beheaded -- for "collaborating with the regime," the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said." --Caustic Logic (talk) 13:17, 15 May 2015 (UTC)

AP/US News:

Maamoun Abdulkarim, Syria's director-general of antiquities and museums, told The Associated Press by telephone that the U.S.-led coalition, which has been striking the extremists in Syria since September, should expand its raids to hit IS fighters battling government forces at the gates of Palmyra.

What's wrong with Syria's air force?


"Islamic State group jihadists are now one kilometre (less than a mile) from the archeological site of Palmyra," Rami Abdel Rahman, director of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, told AFP. “The regime sent reinforcements and the army is bombing the surroundings of Tadmor from the air,” he said, using the Arabic name for Palmyra.


According to Barazi, the inner city houses about 35,000 people, including displaced Syrians who fled there after their hometowns were engulfed in violence, and the suburbs host roughly another 35,000.


The Army pursued remnants of ISIS terrorists who escaped from many directions to the east of Palmyra, destroying their dens in the surrounding of al-Sikhneh in Homs countryside.
Earlier, the army air force destroyed a convoy of vehicles belonging to the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria(ISIS) on al-Sukhna/ Helihela axis in Palmyra countryside, While gatherings of ISIS in Jabal al-DHahek, Jabab Hamad and Twinan in the eastern countryside of Homs were also destroyed by air force.

They claim to be mopping up around the Sukhna oild field as well, and

SANA reporter in Palmyra city said an army unit clashed with ISIS terrorists in the area around Fakhr Eddin al-Maani castle in the western side of Palmyra city, killing and injuring many of the terrorists.
ISIS confirmed on its social media pages the death of dozens of its members, including teh Saudi Anas al-Nashwan, one of ISIS prominent “Sharia” leaders who recently appeared in a video tape showing the execution of 30 Ethiopians in Libya.

IS 'seizes part of Syria's Palmyra' BBC (breaking news), TASS --Resup (talk) 12:40, 20 May 2015 (UTC)

May 20 IS captures Palmyra, and take the Jazl oil field. RFERL They took the northern district first. Everyone's worried what happens when they get to the ruins in the south. "I am terrified," said Maamoun Abdulkarim, Syria's director-general of antiquities and museums. To read this no one's worried who they'll let out of the prison with 1,000 inmates, since " Syrian dissidents have been imprisoned and tortured," any breakout of the 1,000 prisoners must be good. No one's worried about a massacre, although "Assad's" forces are sure to start killing civilians soon, if not already. "Residents still left in Ramadi told The Associated Press by telephone Wednesday that Islamic State militants were urging them over loudspeakers not to be afraid and to stay in the city. However, they were not preventing those wanting to leave the city to go, the residents said, speaking on condition of anonymity for fear for their safety." --Caustic Logic (talk) 22:59, 20 May 2015 (UTC)

If it's not true, Ziad Fadel/Syrian Perspective would have the scoop from military sources. Here's his claim that it's not true. Even alternative and pro-Hezbollah sites were getting in on the lie that Plamyra had fallen, he says. The truth is yes, they infiltrated into the north, but the battle for city center isn't over. And that infiltration was a fluke, because "the mistake was to assume that the ISIS threat was gone and to withdraw many troops from the city in order to protect other sites." Bad timing if so. Good news, "All, I repeat “all”, corridors into the city are under the control of the SAA" and just in case that still lets some Daesh mill around inside, "all inhabitants of the town have been evacuated, just like Idlib. The rats won’t have anyone to behead here unless they can capture a soldier or militiaman." Meanwhile, nine men in civilian clothes seen executed on the street, half of them beheaded. And "The U.N. human rights office in Geneva said a third of Palmyra's 200,000 residents may have fled the fighting in the past few days," although "U.N. human rights spokeswoman Ravina Shamdasani also said there were reports of government forces preventing civilians leaving" (HuffPost) --Caustic Logic (talk) 23:37, 21 May 2015 (UTC)

Franklin Lamb at Counterpunch has some interesting news from sources at the UN. Apparently the Obama dministration and especially John Kerry are super-focused in saving "our" architectural heritage, and with S. Power, Kerry already drafter a plan "as reported by two Congressional staffers on 5/20/2015, is that with the White House imprimatur, the UN Security Council will be strongly urged to etch a Chapter 7 ‘red-line’ around Palmyra’s archeological sites and defend them with whatever force and whatever cost required." It's a bit late for some people, and not specified as designed to help people, just to protect old stuff. Lamb reports "If required, the following coalition partners operating now only in Iraq have agreed to enforce the Palmyra red circle: Australia, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom." --Caustic Logic (talk) 09:11, 22 May 2015 (UTC)

Some media from Palmyra, 22.05.15

24.5.15 Report: more than 200 executed (quoting SOHR).--Resup (talk) 02:57, 25 May 2015 (UTC)

"By last Sunday at least 295 people had been killed in the assault, including 123 regime troops and allied militiamen and 115 IS militants (including three "leading figures"), SOHR reports." Includes "67 civilians -- including 12 women and 14 children -- as well as 150 government troops taken prisoner in and around the ruins." The civilians include 5 nurses, and people killed for sheltering soldiers. And they have another estimated 600 soldiers captured, SOHR reports, expected to be executed as well. --Caustic Logic (talk) 23:28, 25 May 2015 (UTC)

25.5. Russian FoM "Reiterates its urgent appeal to the international and regional parties to renounce the vicious practice of applying double standards in the fight against terrorism and to start effective interaction with the governments of Middle Eastern countries, directly opposing the onslaught of ISIS " TASS (Russian) --Resup (talk) 18:54, 25 May 2015 (UTC)

Nadim Houry tweets just now "Unconfirmed reports that ISIS executed some detainees in ancient ruins of Palmyra. Their sick imagination for the macabre knows no limits" --Caustic Logic (talk) 14:40, 27 May 2015 (UTC)

Other reports agree ISIS killed people and got blood on the ruins, as people feared. Newsweek "on Wednesday ISIS militants used Palmyra’s ancient amphitheater as the location for an execution of 20 men it accused of supporting the government, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights." The good news, good enough for most it seems, is that Daesh says they have no plans to ruin the ruins. As reported at the Guardian and elsewhere, and as makes sense, they plan to smash idolatrous stuff, statues of gods, etc. But these are few, likely already removed. They have no problem with columns and theaters and such, the large fixed items that can't be hauled away. Of course, they also probably have no problem selling off parts of it, but they won't just waste it on senseless smashing, as they have no reason to. Unless they just want to piss people off. --Caustic Logic (talk) 03:39, 1 June 2015 (UTC)

IS may leave Palmyra due to upsets near Raqqa -media reports--Resup (talk) 14:23, 24 June 2015 (UTC)

Executions in Palmyra photos, video -Daily Mail, UK. --Resup (talk) 17:39, 4 July 2015 (UTC)

The images are apparently new and show Daesh loves the old amphitheater and they believe "children are the future" (so they get to shoot the soldiers). But just to clarify, the incident seems to be the same execution of soldiers already reported. SOHR makes it sound that way "Civilians from the area reported to SOHR that the IS executed soldiers in regime forces in the theater in the May 27, 2015, by shooting them with guns." (and the number reported was over 20) And over here it's said "The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said these shootings took place on May 27," after they were taken from the Tadmur prison (captured there? Jailed there after capture?) and then marched to the amphitheater. What might be new (to us) is another execution mentioned in the SOHR report but not the news reports Ive seen: video of them beheading one soldier in the Tadmur prison before they blew it up (which happened May 30)--Caustic Logic (talk) 01:43, 5 July 2015 (UTC)

Syrian Army takes control of areas around Palmyra, and other updates --Resup (talk) 23:00, 9 July 2015 (UTC)

Daeshbags Take Ramadi

May 17, various reports agree Iraqi forces withdrew under assault and Islamic State took the important city of Ramadi. Not sure which links are best, but here's a space. --Caustic Logic (talk) 11:29, 18 May 2015 (UTC)

Opinions differ on who screwed up here. Washington Post reports Fall of Ramadi reflects failure of Iraq’s strategy against ISIS, analysts say and a bloc of Sunni MPs also say - Iraq didn't support Sunni fighters or pay the police, etc. Nancy Youssef writes for the Daily Beast Iraqis Now Blaming U.S. for Losing Ramadi to ISIS - the Army was spread out too thin, and worse Prime Minister Abadi listened to Washington's advice to not send Shia militias in, when the militias members swear they would have stopped the takeover if they'd been there. Some are more direct in their blame, saying Daesah is a US creation to sow chaos and "require" another invasion. --Caustic Logic (talk) 10:31, 22 May 2015 (UTC)


August 6, 2015: Further in the direction from Palmyra deeper into Syria, 100 km southwest, AP reports Qaryatain, Homs province, was just taken by Daesh. [Al Qaryatayn Here on Wikimapia,] it's right next to Mahin city, 65 km from Homs city. It's described as heavily populated, at least with all the displacement around - 40,000 plus thousands. "The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the IS group seized the town Thursday," the report says, "after three suicide bombers targeted army checkpoints at the entrance the day before, setting off a fierce battle."--Caustic Logic (talk) 22:47, 6 August 2015 (UTC)

The destiny of 230 civilians of the displaced and people of the city of al- Qaryatayn kidnapped by “Islamic State” is still unknown, including dozens of Christians, 45 women, 19 children and 11 families, while hundreds others are missed. The reliable sources informed SOHR that IS kidnaped them according to name lists, and that some of them were arrested Dar Alyan monastery in the city of al- Qaryatayn, where unknown militiamen kidnapped the pontiff Jack Mrad, who is the head of monastery, was kidnapped from the monastery 10 weeks ago.


Report: IS formed an alliance to capture Aleppo, Rusvesna (translation link); heavy fighting reported (aljazeera), (bbc) --Resup (talk) 16:34, 3 July 2015 (UTC)

From all the information I have, Daesh (IS) has nothing to do with it, it's "just" the latest of the People's Fronts of Judea, the "moderate" Islamists including Al Nusra the Empire is backing. Strong attacks, but so far it seems like the defenses are holding. --CE (talk) 22:08, 3 July 2015 (UTC)


ISIS columns heading from Syria toward Jordan, first targeting the border crossing (similar news referenced in Iranian sources)--Resup (talk) 02:28, 26 May 2015 (UTC)


  • Making inroads in Afghanistan - reports --Resup (talk) 12:46, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  • ISIL and the Taliban, Aljazeera, Nov.1, 2015 --Resup (talk) 14:55, 6 December 2015 (UTC)

    Employing violence and brutality to impose its will , Wilayat Khorasan, (the ancient name ISIL has chosen for the region made up of Afghanistan, Pakistan and parts of neighbouring countries), has emerged in seven different areas and vowed to step up operations, where the veteran fighters - the Taliban - once held sway. Fighting to reconstitute the historical Khorasan into the so-called "caliphate" of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the group says it has grand plans for the region, starting with uprooting the Taliban and the government of President Ashraf Ghani. ... (Of course, the $700 each fighter receives each month from the burgeoning ISIL coffers might have had some influence too. An average Taliban fighter receives less than a tenth of this)....

There seems to be a bit lost in translation/formatting in this originally Russian article. Apparently they first quote The Times which claims that 1600 ISIS fighters have taken over large chunks of four provinces and the conversion of Taliban into ISIS is in full speed going on, and then call these claims exaggerated, and assess the real danger for Russia, which is still considerable.
Yes, original Cassad article starts with news--Western media review--and is a copy of News article, which he links. His own commentary apparently starts with (as translated) "Khalifate activization in Afghanistan is no secret." --Resup (talk) 14:55, 6 December 2015 (UTC)
Here's what the Taliban say:

Recently, the surrogate Kabul administration has been trying to involve (an important country like) Russia in Afghanistan under the pretext of threat posed by ISIS. They are cashing in on the name of ISIS and showing their strength many folds greater than what it actually is. They consider them a serious threat to entire region especially to our northern neighboring countries. Hence, they want to garner Russia’s military and logistical assistance for their personal and party interests. But, in fact to a great extent ISIS is merely propaganda project in Afghanistan. It is an open fact that the emergence of ISIS in our country is a joint project of Kabul administration and other foreign intelligence agencies. [...]

--CE (talk) 11:11, 6 December 2015 (UTC)/--CE (talk) 13:20, 6 December 2015 (UTC)

Gaza Strip

Islamic State threatens to topple Hamas in Gaza Strip in video statement, The Guardian, 30 June, 2015 -Resup (talk) 15:27, 6 December 2015 (UTC)

Islamic State insurgents have threatened to turn the Gaza Strip into another of their Middle East fiefdoms, accusing Hamas, the organisation that rules the Palestinian territory, of being insufficiently stringent about religious enforcement.


CNN report, -in particular describes a role of social media--Resup (talk) 12:46, 5 June 2015 (UTC)

Killing of Oil Minister

Was it "Abo Sayyaf" killed and his wife "Om Sayyaf" captured by US special forces, or was it "Abu al-Teem al-Saudi"? Clearly neither is a real name. Or is that the same person, and if so who killed him? One detailed source on the conflicting claims out of Washington and Damascus: Zero Hedge --Caustic Logic (talk) 11:35, 18 May 2015 (UTC)

SOHR mentions the same name describing an earlier video (now removed). --Resup (talk) 00:44, 19 May 2015 (UTC)
Hm, a rebel leader "Abo Sayyaf" so brutal even his men beg him to stop bayonetting the poor guy. No visual ATM to compare to the picture said to be of him: CBC report shows a photo of "Mohammad al-Shalabi, better known as Abu Sayyaf, a Jordanian militant leader linked to al-Qaida, addresses supporters outside the Prime Minister's office in Amman, Jordan, Sept. 9 2012. (Raad Adayleh/Associated Press)." It could be two guys with the same nom d'guerre making news at just the same time, odd as that would be. Washington says it killed him in the desert east near Iraq, and this guy, in a video that's purportedly recent, was stabbing people south of Damascus instead of running oil fields. So I'm guessing this is coincidental and the guy's don't match. --Caustic Logic (talk) 10:07, 19 May 2015 (UTC)
  • May 18, 2015 by vovworld "Rami Abdel Rahman, SOHR director, said that the 4 senior IS leaders included IS oil chief Abu Sayyaf, the deputy IS defence minister, and an IS communications official. According to Rahman, three of the four officials killed in the raid were from North Africa, but the IS communications official was Syrian." According to CBC the top one was Jordanian, but some have said Tunisian. --Caustic Logic (talk) 10:07, 19 May 2015 (UTC)
  • This analysis (Moon of Alabama via Information Clearinghouse) speculates it was somehow a joint US-Syrian operation mediated by the Iraqis. The US says it has not and never will cooperate with Damascus on anything against terrorism, and Syria had better not "interfere" with any US incursions into Syrian territory. This notes how both competing claims cite the same oil field (US says an oil field near al-Amr, Syria says al-Omar oil field - almost surely the same place, apparently the one here on Wikimapia - in Deir Ezzor province, across the Euphrates from Mayadin). It also notes SOHR saying around 19 IS members were killed in an air strike on the oil field. Syria claims it launched an air strike there, while the US claims a special forces ground raid, but likely with air strikes helping. --Caustic Logic (talk) 10:07, 19 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Someone's wrong on the name: CBC has Mohammad al-Shalabi, from Jordan, as the guy's real identity. This HuffPost piece has US claiming his real name is Fathi ben Awn ben Jildi Murad al-Tunisi, Murad being the real family name, Tunisi added to say Tunisian. Two bens (son of) is unusual. "Murad had a number of aliases, the U.S. official said, but officials believe that Murad is his real name. Murad is believed to be the Islamic State's head of oil operations." The article aslo mentions he may have held Kayla Mueller, the American hostage possibly killed in a Jordanian airstrike. --Caustic Logic (talk) 23:28, 19 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Mirror shows a photo of a different Abu Sayyaf than the Jordanian one - maybe Tunisian, chubby, shaved chin, long hair - may not look that way now.
  • Various sources mention the Jordanian Abu Sayyaf as a home-side commentator - he has opinions on the Syria conflict, including once pro-IS sympathies, but I see no sign he went there and commanded anything, ever. So from this I'm guessing we have three Abu Sayyafs - and it is a common nom d'Guerre, meaning father of/bringer of the sword:
    • The Tunisian one snatched in the north
    • The Jordanian one in Jordan
    • The one brutalizing Syrians in the south --Caustic Logic (talk) 23:08, 20 May 2015 (UTC)

Connection to the west

Is there any serious investigation on ISIS' connection to western intelligence or politicians?

Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi (Ibrahim ibn Awwad ibn Ibrahim ibn Ali ibn Muhammad al-Badri al-Samarrai)

At the moment the speculations don't stop that he took part in John McCains 2013 terrorist meeting in Syria. While others say the guy on the pictures is not him. Has anybody here a good source on who the guys on the McCain picture are? If not, this topic could be opened in this Wiki. One day it will be needed.

Voltaire Newtork: John McCain, Conductor of the "Arab Spring" and the Caliph

I haven't checked this yet, sorry, but thanks for bringing it up. Without checking, I can say Meyssan/Voltairenet gets a lot of things wrong. If their case is that John McCain was seen in the same room with the well-known leader of Al-Qaeda in Iraq, my guess is that's another one. Even the buddy of mid-level pilgrim-snatchers and his staff would be able to sniff out and avoid that one. --Caustic Logic (talk) 09:26, 29 August 2014 (UTC)

Abu Omar al-Shishani (Tarkhan Batirashvili)

see here

Gulmurod Khalimov

After the death of Omar al-Shishani, in early September 2016 Iraqi sources report that the new chief military commander is 41 year old Gulmurod Khalimov from Tajikistan. A week earlier the US put a bounty of $US 3 million on his head, considering him "a threat to national security" due to his background.

  • Before defecting to ISIS last year, Khalimov was a former Tajik special operations (OMON) colonel, police commander and military sniper. [...] After disappearing in April 2015, he emerged a month later in a 10-minute video address where he vowed to bring jihad to Tajikistan, Russia and the US. [...] The 41-year-old admitted that from 2003 to 2014, he participated in five counterterrorism training courses in the United States and in Tajikistan, through the US State Department's Diplomatic Security/Anti-Terrorism Assistance program. Part of the training, according to the Tajik commander, was conducted by the private American military consultancy previously known as Blackwater. During his police career in Tajikistan, Khalimov also took several training trips to Russia.


Members of the terrorist organization, ISIS, which killed thousands of people in Iraq and Syria, are alleged to be trained in the US İncirlik Base in Adana, Turkey.
According to Turkish media sources, it has been discovered from Washington that ISIS members received their training in Turkey, and that the Riyadh administration is funding $3 billion for this terror organization. A senior official from Iraqi government confirms that one of the training camps of the ISIS is located near the Incirlik Air Base in Adana Turkey.
Last week, the main opposition party, the CHP’s MP Sezgin Tanrikulu, brought to the agenda the fact that four Turkish intelligence officers trained the insurgents linked to the ISIS terror organization in Iraq. These four Turkish intelligence officers were taken into custody by the Iraqi soldiers, and their confession brought to the agenda of the assembly by Tanrıkulu.

Heroin, Human Heart Supply

  • ISIS traffics human organs, moves them into Saudi Arabia and Turkey. Dec. 20. Cites Daily Mail, citing Al-Monitor and Assyrian International News Agency. Sub-sources later.
The Daily Mail also referred to drug smuggling is one of ISIS most lucrative revenue streams another, citing Al Monitor’s report as saying that ISIS traffics Afghan heroin into Europe from the city of Nineveh, with this drug business becoming so successful in recent months that reports claim that ISIS now supplies half of Europe’s entire heroin market.

Wouldn't Michael Ruppert have said that makes them indispensable to the global economy? As headlined, they also now have a massive handle on oil, the human trade, and human organ trade, including, it's said from "living hostages – including children – snatched from minority communities in Iraq and Syria.” Sadly that makes sense. Killing the captive first only makes economic sense if you can sell one of everything right then. --Caustic Logic (talk) 10:31, 23 December 2014 (UTC)

DIA predicts Islamic State, Washington stays course

Following the declassified DIA report from 2012 that assesses that the main forces fighting against Assad are hardcore Islamists and continued support could lead to the formation of an entity like Islamic State, we now have the then-DIA chief Michael Flynn (retired) telling Al Jazeera that he thinks Washington didn't just pay no attention, but "willfully" stayed on that course. --CE (talk) 11:36, 11 August 2015 (UTC)

From the RT article:

Author for the Levant Report, Brad Hoff says hours after he published a rebuttal to the Daily Beast [attempted DIA report scandal-debunking] article, he was contacted by a personal friend, a high level official with CIA Public Affairs, who urged Hoff to drop his comments regarding the IS issue, insisting the Daily Beast article had been “written insightfully.”

Scott Horton did a radio interview with Brad Hoff yesterday. Half an hour worth listening to. This should be all over the news. --CE (talk) 21:46, 11 August 2015 (UTC)

I'd say, been like that for a while (after 1978, US supported Mujahideen in Afghanistan against the Soviet Union, with unintended consequence of Taliban and AQ emerging, and eventually the latter attacking the US)--Resup (talk) 06:43, 12 August 2015 (UTC)

Follow-up: A Critical Examination of the 2012 DIA Document Predicting the Rise of the Islamic State, Brad Hoff, Levant Report, November 16, 2015 --CE (talk) 18:04, 5 December 2015 (UTC)

Will ISIS Finally Spark A Western War in Syria?

Many now, in late August, say the West needs to strike ISIS hard, inside Syria as well as Iraq, risking war with Syria's government - who have been trying to fight ISIS and being hamstrung by "us" and allies. Why now and why there? Consider: back when we were turning a blind eye to our allies' creating of various Islamist menaces inside Syria, and there was a very real danger they could turn on "us," instead of just Syrians as planned. The attitude seemed to be "oh well, seems worth it to give Syria and Iran and maybe Maliki more troubles." But as soon as the danger proved real and one American dude was beheaded in Syria (not that I lack sympathy for Mr. Foley, but it's not 700 like the Sheitat tribe had beheaded or otherwise killed by ISIS right before that) ... all of a sudden it's “If you come after Americans, we’re going to come after you, wherever you are,” as Obama's press secretary Ben Rhodes said. We have no choice, we're locked on course, some hoped. Man, would that have been easy. Rhodes did not add "if you're passing through Libya or Turkey or Jordan on your way to Syria, we'll wait until after you've crossed the border with the assistance of our allies, and then we're coming to get you, punk." This is just how easy it could be, by precedent. We can only thank Obama's mysterious whims (and the air defenses and whatever else might underly it...) --Caustic Logic (talk) 09:26, 29 August 2014 (UTC)

So to mark 13 years since 9/11, Obama has announced he's authorized airstrikes in Syria, plus more in Iraq. This will of course be going to war with Syria, on some level and quite possibly other levels right after that. 10th anniversary of 9/11 (2011) passed up - going to war on the same side as Al Qaeda just as Christopher Stevens was killed in Libya, not taken. The anniversary in 2012, no luck even with Houla Massacre. 2013, a war against Syria on about that date was barely avoided. The 13th anniversary? Lucky 13, should be perfect. --Caustic Logic (talk) 12:57, 13 September 2014 (UTC)

Intelligence Alterations

I've seen it said IS intel was sexed-up. Who said that? Ah, the Daily Beast, on August 25, but citing the New York Times. "the Pentagon’s inspector general is investigating allegations that military officials altered intelligence reports on the progress against ISIS to convey a more optimistic outlook on the war..."

The Daily Beast has 2 more installments, both exclusives: had reported September 9 that the intel was "cooked":

More than 50 intelligence analysts working out of the U.S. military’s Central Command have formally complained that their reports on ISIS and al Qaeda’s branch in Syria were being inappropriately altered by senior officials, The Daily Beast has learned.

It was called a "cancer" in the "senior level of the intelligence command." September 20 the Beast reports that it was "dumbed down."

Some analysts have also complained that they felt “bullied” into reaching conclusions favored by their bosses, ... (and some) accused their bosses of changing the reports in order to appeal to what they perceived as the Obama administration’s official line that the anti-ISIS campaign was making progress and would eventually end with the group’s destruction.

So, real analysts feel the strategy is not working, bosses pretend otherwise, and issue reports bolstering Obama's plan. This might suggest a fake strategy ("we thought it was working") in pursuit of a real strategy (??) --Caustic Logic (talk) 22:06, 21 September 2015 (UTC)

Russian Diplomacy

Russia tried to convince Saudis to support a broad coalition. However Saudis continue to insist that there is no future role for Assad. One of several similar reports below. --Resup (talk) 23:52, 11 August 2015 (UTC)

'Al-Jubeir insisted that the Saudi stance on the Syrian conflict has remained unchanged, adding that while the Syrian military and other government structures should be preserved, Assad should have no role in a future Syria.

On a conciliatory note, he said he and Lavrov agreed on the importance of uniting the Syrian opposition so that they go united to the peace process. "Terrorism threatens the whole world and we discussed ways of confronting it," Al-Jubeir said. He added that Saudi Arabia is also considering the purchase of Russia's Iskander missiles and other weapons systems' -US news report

Yarmouk Camp

Main article: Talk:Yarmouk Camp

ISIS captures the Yarmouk Camp on April 1, 2015

Daesh in Mexico and US?

  • Detailed reports uncovered by Judicial Watch (like to make problems for Obama admin) with lots of details - two known camps in Mexico near the border, local cartels take money to smuggle people into the US - agents kept away from the same areas because fear of an episode - spotters and agents on both sides, scoping out targets in the area (not to attack, I presume, but maybe to use - why, when you're inside the big house, would you look for the nearest wall to smash when you could creep all the way to any of the rooms where the good stuff is?) --Caustic Logic (talk) 12:27, 2 June 2015 (UTC)

Foreign military advisors?

  • Iraq Arrests ISIL's US, Israeli Military Advisors in Mosul - FARS News Agency, March 7, 2015
    Iraqi Special Forces said they have arrested several ISIL's foreign military advisors, including American, Israeli and Arab nationals in an operation in Mosul in the Northern parts of the country.
    The Iraqi forces said they have retrieved four foreign passports, including those that belonged to American and Israeli nationals and one that belonged to the national of a Persian Gulf Cooperation Council (PGCC) member-state, from ISIL's military advisors.
    The foreign advisors were arrested in a military operation in Tal Abta desert near Mosul city.
  • US, Israeli Military Advisors Accused of Aiding ISIL Arrested in Iraq - Sputnik, March 7, 2015
    Iraqi counter-terrorism forces arrested four foreign military advisors from the United States and Israel who were aiding the Islamic State, Iranian Tasnim News Agency reports. Fighters of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL)
    Three of the arrested military advisors are dual citizens of the United States and Israel, while the fourth advisor is from a Persian Gulf country, Iraq’s Sarma News Agency said.
    The foreign military advisors were captured in a headquarters, from where the Islamic State organized its military operations in Iraq’s Northern Province of Nineveh.
No verifiable details, from not exactly the most reliable source. (Very wise to travel over there with an Israeli passport in hand btw; or did they take their both passports, just to make sure?).- There are a number of instances when Americans trying to join an extremist group are arrested somewhere, handed back to the US; that could well pass as 'military advisers' arrest in hostile media. --Here is an earlier report like this from Mosul, aljazeera quoting Mosul governor, back in 2010. --Resup (talk) 00:39, 11 October 2015 (UTC)
  • EXCLUSIVE: Israeli Colonel Leading ISIL Terrorists Arrested in Iraq - Fars News Agency, Oct 22, 2015
    "The security and popular forces have held captive an Israeli colonel," a commander of Iraq's popular mobilization forces said on Thursday.
    "The Zionist officer is ranked colonel and had participated in the Takfiri ISIL group's terrorist operations," he added.
    Noting that he was arrested along with a number of ISIL terrorists, the commander said, "The Israeli colonel's name is Yusi Oulen Shahak and is ranked colonel in Golani Brigade of the Zionist regime's army with the security and military code of Re34356578765az231434."

Do not see this in independent sources, apart from others rebroadcasting the item. -Do not see a reaction in Israeli or US sources in particular. Unknown whether true-one can say (and print) anything. This is very much part of long standing lore , circulating well before any evidence, and maybe now attempting to make it appear solid. Iran will be the main beneficiary of such news. It will present Israel in bad light in the West (drawing popular attention away from their own practices, including decades of Iranian support of Hesbollah and promises made that Israel will not exist in 25 years, etc); and also may be aimed to de-motivate Sunni resistance to join there most battle-worthy adversaries.

  • Israel stated that it does not support any side [in Syria], as neither side recognizes the State of Israel (Alex Goldman-Shaiman, charge-de-affairs in Russia,, 16.10.2015). What they really need is for it to be quiet at home, -so that they will live as they want to,- and to prevent weapons transferred to Hezbollah, Hamas, and smuggled into the territories. (Most countries in the Arab league or Islamic Cooperation do not recognize Israel -including Iran, Syria, Iraq; that means a state of inactive war, lasting for decades).
  • It is not the job of Golani brigade to train anybody at all. This is a regular infantry unit. But all in Israel serve in the army, and retire at a certain rank. For an officer, the rank at retirement is often a colonel (this is the case in Russia, and that's why Strelkov and Khmuryi are colonels--in reserve). What they do for while they are pensioners is not controlled by a state.
  • There is plenty of opportunity for Iranians to get hold of details on some Israelis (if any of that is genuine at all); e.g. somebody MIA or KIA in Lebanon, or anywhere else. There is an adversary between the two, going long way.
  • It may be true that in Israel IS is viewed as a weaker threat than Iran. But in ME, an enemy of your enemy does not become your friend.

--Resup (talk) 20:20, 23 October 2015 (UTC)

I read about this elsewhere today, but forgot where. Had more about what the guy allegedly told after interrogation, but the story didn't convince me much so I went on. This one I have no problems believing, though: Jailed ISIS member: MİT gave us arms at Tal Abyad border --CE (talk) 21:06, 23 October 2015 (UTC)

Airdrops of weapons and supplies

Baiji oil refinery

Moved to Baiji oil refinery


At the beginning of the uprising in 2011, the monthly minimum wage for public sector employees in Syria ranged between 9,765 and 14,760 Syrian pounds ($176-$266).64 By 2013, the steep drop in the value of the Syrian pound reduced public sector wages by about 60% to an equivalent of $68-$103.65 By contrast, the Islamic State is estimated to pay approximately $400-$600 monthly to each fighter, with married fighters receiving an extra stipend per wife and child. Some Nusrah Front fighters reportedly claimed in 2013 that their siblings and cousins fought for the Islamic State because the pay was better.

makes a point on financing operations...
--Resup (talk) 01:24, 24 October 2015 (UTC)
  • AP on oil smuggling: estimated at $50 mln per month, said to be via Turkey

ISIS Terrorist Attacks Globally

(directed outside their "caliphate")

November, 2015 Paris Attacks

Passports: Many found it odd the killers would bring these along, and it was suspected they were maybe planted. One was said to show a perpetrator was among the Syrians allowed into France as a refugee.

A New York Times reported at the time "the passport bore the name of Ahmad al-Mohammad, a soldier in the Syrian Army who was born in 1990 and died months ago." Simply died, and had his identity stolen? Or was killed and had his passport stolen and used as a template for a fake? This also mentions a smart-sounding thought:

Thomas de Maiziere, the German interior minister, said that that would be unusual for a bona fide migrant, and he suggested on Tuesday that the passport found at the bombing scene might be a “false trail” placed deliberately by the Islamic State attackers to turn public opinion against Syrian refugees.

German Daily Welt Am Sonntag recently broke a report that thousands of blank passports were stolen by Daesh (ISIS) in areas it conquered. --Caustic Logic (talk) 06:55, 4 June 2016 (UTC)

  • original link(s)/notes forthcoming
The Syrian government provided European security agencies with information about the organizers and perpetrators of the Paris terrorist attacks on November 13, 2015, and of nearly 4,000 blank Syrian passports stolen by Daesh jihadists, German newspaper Welt am Sonntag wrote.
Acording to the newspaper, the Syrian authorities alerted the Damascus office of Interpol about the stolen passports as early as in 2014.
  • Al-Arabiya also commented on the report, saying "The Welt am Sonntag cited Western intelligence sources as saying that ISIS could have acquired the stolen travel documents in areas of Syria, Iraq and Libya it now controls." They make no mention of certain and actionable knowledge, nor about Syrian sources. It does use a fascinating photo to illustrate the plight of the refugees.



I am not sure. It was clear they will loose their territory and cities once major powers start to get more serious about this; but they can exist as a guerrilla force long past that, depending on motivation (also degree of support by locals). E.g. Taliban is still around (and Chechen resistance, etc). Whenever there is future chaos or lack of strong authority, it may be back in force. As for Bagdadi, it seems there are no new solid facts; change of boldness of presentation may be an attempt to have them confirm or deny themselves, or else score psychological points, all with obvious benefits. --Resup (talk) 15:58, 22 June 2017 (UTC)

End of "Islamic State" as something resembling a state, just a matter of time (I predict collapse likely rather sooner than later). Of course the people and the ideology won't disappear. I think blowing up the mosque shows pure desperation (and everybody how "Islamic" they really are) and makes it very likely that the boss is indead dead. --CE (talk) 16:22, 22 June 2017 (UTC)
Mosque, for them to explain, but this may have mythology along the lines of last (suicide/shahid) attack ending the last stand, with any building not too significant (non-idolatry/non-shirk). What matters most is how this is interpreted by followers; can go both ways but some heroic-type mythology is not excluded. --Resup (talk) 17:15, 22 June 2017 (UTC)


  1. 1.0 1.1 Two Thousand Turkish Special Forces in ISIS, Kurdish Question, September 20, 2014 (archived)
  2. The State Department’s Twitter War With ISIS Is Embarrassing, Rita Katz, Time magazine, September 16, 2014

ISIS videos


Not really, but they are good and serve a spiritual need that no other media can fulfill.

  1. They have good music. The chant is almost hypnotic.
  2. They promise justice and retribution, like no Kangaroo Court in The Hague will ever deliver.
  3. They totally reject American individualism, there is no protagonist, no Good Guy or hero. There is no one the viewer can identify with.
  4. They do not glorify the protagonist nor dehumanize the enemy.
  5. They have no happy ending. They rejoice in sadness and melancholy. War is sad and they assure you that there is no end to the sadness, not in your lifetime.
  6. They give meaning to the meaningless. No, actually no one has any meaning. The mujaheddin and the infidels are all meaningless victims, like cogs in a machine of violence.
  7. The only meaning comes from the collective. No, actually the collective is meaningless and will be wiped out by the next American bomb strike or attack.
  8. The individual in meaningless. The collective in meaningless. The only meaning comes from acting as a tool of God's work. Allah is the only one with agency. Mujaheddin and infidels alike are all meaningless. Their only solace is being witness to God's great work.

(* So that no one gets me wrong, I love Russian MoD bombing videos even more.)

-- Petri Krohn (talk) 19:23, 17 December 2017 (UTC)

Islamic chant, Nasheed, is quite beautiful indeed but it is general style, not ISIS (has to do with musical instruments ban, but not men singing- both debatable). Videos, quite professional, of videogames/youtube sort, not too different from Hollywood visually, despite different individualism of plots; still quite generic or news-borrowed imagery. But advances in murdering on camera, etc, nothing to love. I do not know whether there are English texts, or easy translations, but they got a song in one of their videos in Russian (here), promising to pillage, and either kill or enslave all kafirs, that is pretty much everybody. Ultra-violent conquest, nothing to love; possibly un-Islamic, despite common themes; but not aware of an authoritative opinion. --Resup (talk) 21:15, 17 December 2017 (UTC)

My favorite Nasheed is Sanakhudu, it has this otherworldy pure innocent vessel sound in perfection, as Petri says without agency. Very cult-like and must be impressive if you participate in it. But on the other hand you'll run very fast if that robust YPJ war-cry is heard from the mountains and they are coming to free your sex slaves. --CE (talk) 21:37, 17 December 2017 (UTC)

DNA testing?

According to reports, Bagdadi blew the vest; ID method was not made explicit. Widely available DNA tests provide quickest results in a day. According to NYT, portable Rapid DNA devices give results in some 90 minutes. Media reporting was confusing, it was reported (somewhere) that ID was confirmed 'immediately', and other reports saying that DNA identification still needs to be completed. (+ also, probably media can be herded into reporting pretty much anything...) 00:24, 30 October 2019 (UTC)--Resup (talk)

US Centcom claims DNA match, in a twitter message dated 2:07 PM - 30 Oct 2019 (Expressed in a pain in the butt manner, this must be saying that chances of accidentaly having such match--false positive--is 1/(1.04*10^26) ie very low) --Resup (talk) 23:00, 30 October 2019 (UTC)

IS media message expected .... --Resup (talk) 10:23, 31 October 2019 (UTC)