Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant
Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), or Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS), or Islamic State, (IS) is a Sunni jihadist militant group. In Arabic it is often called "Daesh". It operates in Libya, Nigeria, Syria and a small part of northern Iraq. It is influenced by the Wahhabi version of Islam. It claims the status of independent state for the territories under its control in Iraq, Libya, Nigeria, and Syria. It is opposed to Shiism and has been described as "Shiaphobic".
The group was started in the early years of the Iraq War and associated itself with Al-Qaeda in 2004. ISIL was composed of different insurgent groups. Its aim was to establish a caliphate in the Sunni majority regions of Iraq, later expanding this to include Syria. In February 2014, after an eight-month power struggle, Al-Qaeda cut all ties with ISIL.
ISIL is millenarianist, meaning it believes that society is going to change a lot over the course of 1,000 years. The group recruits new members by promising them sex slaves or cheap marriages.
At the height of the Iraq War, ISIL was in the Iraqi provinces of Al Anbar, Ninawa, Kirkuk, most of Salah ad Din, parts of Babil, Diyala and Baghdad. It claimed Baqubah as its capital. In the ongoing Syrian Civil War, the group has a large presence in the Syrian governorates of Ar-Raqqa, Idlib and Aleppo.
The group has attacked government and military targets. It has claimed responsibility for attacks that killed thousands of Iraqi civilians. During the time coalition forces were present in Iraq, the group suffered some setbacks. By 2012, it was thought to have regained most of its strength and more than doubled the number of its members to about 2,500.
In 2013, a letter and an audio recording of Ayman al-Zawahiri, the leader of al-Qaeda, was leaked to Al Jazeera. In it, al-Zawahiri disbanded the Syrian faction of ISIL. The group's leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, opposed this ruling on the basis of Islamic law. The group has since continued to operate in Syria. Starting in April 2013, it made rapid military gains in large parts of Northern Syria, where the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights described them as "the strongest group". They have sought publicity by releasing videos of the decapitation (beheading) of journalists and other prisoners of war mainly done by member Jihadi John. He was killed in November 2015.
In June 2014, it announced a worldwide caliphate. In 2014, ISIL successfully fought in a large-scale offensive in Iraq. After this offensive, ISIL is reported to have seized control of most of Mosul, the second biggest city in Iraq, its surrounding Nineveh province, and the city of Fallujah. In the spring of 2015 ISIL fought for control of Tikrit, the administrative center of the Salah ad Din Governorate.
In spring of 2016 the Army of Iraq took back Fallujah. At the end of 2016 the army took back Ramadi in Al Anbar Province, and in early 2017 Iraqi government forces retook Mosul. In October Raqqa, the former headquarters, fell.
The 2014 film The Blue Man, which is related to The New York Times article titled "Uncovering Iraq's Horrors in Desert Graves" written by John F. Burns, also mentions mass killings of Shia Muslims by the Islamic State between 2003 to 2006.
- "Isis flag: What do the words mean and what are its origins?". The Independent. 7 July 2015.
- Pool, Jeffrey (16 December 2004). "Zarqawi's Pledge of Allegiance to Al-Qaeda: From Mu'Asker Al-Battar, Issue 21". Terrorism Monitor. Vol. 2 no. 24. p. The Jamestown Foundation. Archived from the original on 30 September 2007. Retrieved 30 July 2014.
- "Al-Qaeda disavows ISIS militants in Syria". BBC News. 3 February 2014.
- Holmes, Oliver (3 February 2014). "Al Qaeda breaks link with Syrian militant group ISIL". Reuters.
- Laskar, Rezaul H. (29 January 2015). "IS announces expansion into AfPak, parts of India". Hindustan Times.
- "IS welcomes Boko Haram allegiance: tape". Agence France-Presse. 12 March 2015 – via Yahoo! News.
- Elbagir, Nima; Cruickshank, Paul; Tawfeeq, Mohammed (7 March 2015). "Boko Haram purportedly pledges allegiance to ISIS". CNN.
- Gambhir, Harleen (23 June 2015). "ISIS Declares Governorate in Russia's North Caucasus Region". Institute for the Study of War.
- "Islamic State". Australian National Security. Australian Government. Retrieved 22 July 2014.
- "The Islamic State". Mapping Militant Organizations. Stanford University. 23 January 2015.
- Saltman, Erin Marie; Winter, Charlie (November 2014). Islamic State: The Changing Face of Modern Jihadism (PDF) (Report). Quilliam Foundation. ISBN 978-1-906603-98-4. Archived from the original (PDF) on 26 February 2015.
- Crooke, Alastair (5 September 2014). "You Can't Understand ISIS If You Don't Know the History of Wahhabism in Saudi Arabia". HuffPost.
- Rubin, Alissa J. (5 July 2014). "Militant Leader in Rare Appearance in Iraq". The New York Times.
- Al-Tamimi, Aymenn Jawad (24 January 2016). "An Account of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi & Islamic State Succession Lines". Aymenn Jawad Al-Tamimi's Blog.
- "Abd al-Rahman Mustafa al-Qaduli". Rewards for Justice. U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Diplomatic Security. 5 May 2015. Archived from the original on 18 May 2015.
- Schmidt, Michael (25 March 2016). "A Top ISIS Leader Is Killed in an Airstrike, the Pentagon Says". The New York Times.
- Laghmari, Jihen; Alexander, Caroline; Follain, John (16 March 2016). "Islamic State Spreads in North Africa in Attacks Ignored by West". Bloomberg.
- Jawad Al-Tamimi, Aymenn (January 2016). "An Account of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi & Islamic State Succession Lines". Aymenn Jawad Al-Tamimi's Blog.
- "ISIS Leadership". Frontline. PBS. 2015. Retrieved 14 August 2015.
- Chulov, Martin (31 August 2016). "Abu Muhammad al-Adnani's death does not signal the demise of Isis". The Guardian. Retrieved 31 August 2016.
- Lister, Charles (2014). "Islamic State Senior Leadership: Who's Who" (PDF). Brookings Institution. Archived from the original (PDF) on 28 March 2016.
- "Here's What We Know About the 'Caliph' of the New Islamic State". Business Insider. Agence France-Presse. 29 June 2014.
- "ISIS Spokesman Declares Caliphate, Rebrands Group as Islamic State". Jihadist News. SITE Intelligence Group. 29 June 2014.
- "Pentagon Confirms U.S. Strike in Syria Killed ISIL Leader". DoD News. 12 September 2016.
- Garland, Chad (14 July 2016). "Islamic State says top commander is dead; Pentagon unsure". Stars and Stripes.
- Worley, Will (13 July 2016). "Isis confirms death of hugely popular 'minister of war' Omar al-Shishani". The Independent.
- Starr, Barbara (15 March 2016). "U.S. assesses ISIS operative Omar al-Shishani is dead". CNN.
- "Tarkhan Tayumurazovich Batirashvili". Rewards for Justice. U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Diplomatic Security. 5 May 2015. Archived from the original on 18 May 2015.
- "Isis: US-trained Tajik special forces chief Gulmurod Khalimov becomes Isis 'war minister'". International Business Times. 6 September 2016.
- "Isis's propaganda chief, Dr. Wa'il, killed in airstrike, Pentagon confirms". The Guardian. 16 September 2016.
- "ISIS 'essentially moved' its Syria HQ from Raqqa to Deir ez-Zor province". RT. 23 April 2017.
- "Syrian army captures Mayadin from ISIS near Deir ez-Zor". Rudaw. 14 October 2017.
- Sarah Benhaida & Ahmad al-Rubaye (26 October 2017). "Iraq forces launch 'last big fight' against IS". Rudaw.
- "Anti-IS forces converge on Syria border town". Agence France-Presse. 4 November 2017 – via Yahoo News.
- "Syrian army & allies capture last major ISIS held town in Syria". RT. Russia: TV-Novosti. 4 November 2017.
- Francesco Bussoletti (29 June 2018). "Syria, the Isis pockets of resistance at Deir Ezzor are reduced to two". Difesa & Sicurezza. Retrieved 6 July 2018.
- Aboufadel, Leith (13 December 2018). "Breaking: SDF captures Daesh's de facto capital in Syria".
- "US-backed fighters seize east Syria village from ISIS". The National.
- Leith Aboufadel (24 January 2019). "ISIL's reign over eastern Euphrates nearing its end – map". Al-Masdar News. Retrieved 25 January 2019.
- Rukmini Callimachi (24 January 2019). "Down to Its Last 2 Villages in Syria, ISIS Still Fights Back". The New York Times. Retrieved 25 January 2019.
- Leith Aboufadel (7 February 2019). "ISIS squeezed into last areas as SDF troops capture 2 villages east of the Euphrates (MAP)". Al-Masdar News. Retrieved 15 February 2019.
- Rikar Hussein (9 February 2019). "US-backed Fighters Launch Final Push to Defeat IS in Syria". VOA News. Retrieved 15 February 2019.
- "US-allied Syrian force declares victory over Islamic State". The Washington Post. 23 March 2019.
- Cockburn, Patrick (16 November 2014). "War with Isis: Islamic militants have army of 200,000, claims senior Kurdish leader". The Independent.
- Gartenstein-Ross-ROSS, Daveed (9 February 2015). "How many Fighters Does the Islamic State Really Have?". War on the Rocks.
- "Saddam's former army is secret of Baghdadi's success". Reuters. 16 June 2015. Retrieved 1 July 2015.
- "Operation Inherent Resolve and other overseas contigency operations" (PDF). media.defense.gov. Retrieved 11 May 2019.
- "Briefing With Special Representative for Syria Engagement and Special Envoy for the Global Coalition To Defeat ISIS Ambassador James Jeffrey". state.gov. Archived from the original on 7 May 2019. Retrieved 11 May 2019.
- Paul D. Shinkman (27 December 2017). "ISIS By the Numbers in 2017". U.S. News. Retrieved 1 April 2019.
- Seth G. Jones; James Dobbins; Daniel Byman; Christopher S. Chivvis; Ben Connable; Jeffrey Martini; Eric Robinson; Nathan Chandler (2017). "Rolling Back the Islamic State". RAND Corporation. Retrieved 1 April 2019.
- Zelin, Aaron Y. (June 2014). The War between ISIS and al-Qaeda for Supremacy of the Global Jihadist Movement (PDF). Research Notes (Report). 20. Washington Institute for Near East Policy.
- "OKRA Home". Global Operations. Department of Defense – Government of Australia. Retrieved 25 October 2017.
- Romero, Simon; Schmidt, Michael (1 August 2016). "As ISIS Posts in Portuguese, U.S. and Brazil Bolster Olympics Security". The New York Times.
- "Operation IMPACT". National Defence and the Canadian Armed Forces. Retrieved 6 March 2018.
- Osbourne, Samuel (1 March 2017). "Isis threatens China and vows to 'shed blood like rivers'". The Independent.
- "Fiji Joins US-Led Coalition Against Daesh – Spokesperson". sputniknews.com. Retrieved 12 September 2018.
- Nikoleta Kalmouki. "Greece Brings War Against the Islamic State". Retrieved 17 March 2018.
- "L'Italia pronta a bombardare Isis in Iraq. La Difesa: ipotesi da valutare". Corriere della Sera. 6 October 2015.
- correspondent, Hannah Ellis-Petersen south-east Asia (20 July 2018). "Malaysia launches crackdown on Isis after threats to kill the king and prime minister" – via www.theguardian.com.
- Trouble in Paradise: Mauritius Tries to Ward Off Islamist Radicalization
- "México aparece entre los países amenazados por el ISIS". El País (in Spanish). Madrid: Prisa. 25 November 2015. Retrieved 12 April 2019.
- Dearden, Lizzie (17 February 2017). "Pakistan 'kills 100 terrorists' in crackdown after Isis shrine bombing". The Independent.
- "Sri Lanka bombings: Isis claims responsibility for deadly church and hotel attacks on Easter Sunday". The Independent. 23 April 2019.
- Johnson, Bridget (30 December 2018). "Barcelona Terror Alert Coincides with New Spanish-Language ISIS Threats". Homeland Security Today.
- Callimachi, Rukmini; Kramer, Andrew E. (31 July 2018). "Video Purports to Show Tajikistan Attackers Pledging Allegiance to ISIS". The New York Times.
- "Badr Organization Destroys ISIS Car Bomb". Military.com. 5 June 2015.
- Illingworth, Andrew (22 December 2017). "Combat footage: Iraqi forces battle ISIS in east Syria". Al Masdar News.
- Musa, Rami (10 June 2015). "Al-Qaida-linked militants attack IS affiliate in Libya". Military Times.
- Arabic: الدولة الاسلامية في العراق والشام ad-Dawlat al-Islāmiyya fī’l-‘Irāq wa’sh-Shām
- Lizie Dearden (23 September 2014). "Isis vs Islamic State vs Isil vs Daesh: What do the different names mean – and why does it matter?". independent.co.uk. Retrieved 24 September 2014.
- Ian Black (21 September 2014). "The Islamic State: is it Isis, Isil – or possibly Daesh?". Guardian News and Media Limited. Retrieved 24 September 2014.
- Iraq in Crisis - Page 175, Anthony H. Cordesman, Sam Khazai - 2014
- "ISIS accepts Boko Haram pledge, says would-be recruits can go to Nigeria - CBC News". CBC. Associated Press. 13 March 2015 [last update 2:43 AM ET].
- therearenosunglasses (18 May 2014). "The dangerous spread of Wahhabi "Holy Fascism" | ThereAreNoSunglasses". Therearenosunglasses.wordpress.com. Retrieved 14 June 2014.
- "Profile: Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIS)". 7 January 2014. BBC. 6 January 2014. Retrieved 6 February 2014.
- Ashraf, Afzal (16 September 2014). "Viewpoint: Why Islamic State will not endure" – via www.bbc.co.uk.
- Rise of ISIS: a threat we can't ignore - p 8, Jay Sekulow - 2014.
- Cockburn, Patrick (9 June 2014). "Battle to establish Islamic state across Iraq and Syria". The Independent. Retrieved 12 June 2014.
- Liz Sly (3 February 2014). "Al-Qaeda disavows any ties with radical Islamist ISIS group in Syria, Iraq". The Washington Post. Retrieved 7 February 2014.
- Wood, Graeme C.A. March 2015. The Atlantic What ISIS really wants
- "Millenarian-Oxford Dictionaries". Oxford Dictionaries. Retrieved 6 July 2015.
- Kibble, David G. "Dabiq, the Islamic State's Magazine: A Critical Analysis." Middle East Policy 23.3 (2016): 133-143
- Situation called dire in west Iraq. The Washington Post, 2006-SEP-10.
- "Anbar Picture Grows Clearer, and Bleaker". The Washington Post, 28 November 2006
- "Reporting under al-Qaida control". MSNBC. 27 December 2006. Retrieved 28 October 2009.
- Engel, Richard (17 January 2007). "Dangers of the Baghdad plan". MSNBC. Retrieved 28 October 2009.
- "Iraq jailbreak highlights al-Qaeda affiliate's ascendancy". The Washington Post. 23 July 2013.
- "Islamic law comes to rebel-held Syria". The Washington Post. 23 July 2013.
- "Al Qaeda tightens grip on western Iraq in bid for Islamic state". 11 December 2013. Retrieved 2 June 2014.
- Uppsala Conflict Data Program Conflict Encyclopedia, Iraq, In depth, Continued armed conflict after USA's troop withdrawal from Iraq, http://www.ucdp.uu.se/gpdatabase/gpcountry.php?id=77®ionSelect=10-Middle_East#
- "Zawahiri disbands main Qaeda faction in Syria". 8 November 2013. Retrieved 8 November 2013.
- "Iraqi al-Qaeda chief rejects Zawahiri orders". Al Jazeera. 15 June 2013. Retrieved 15 June 2013.
- Gul Tuysuz, Raja Razek, Nick Paton Walsh (6 November 2013). "Al Qaeda-linked group strengthens hold in northern Syria". CNN. Retrieved 3 December 2013.CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)
- "Sunni militants drive Iraqi Army out of Mosul". The New York Times. 10 June 2014.
- "Iraq city of Tikrit falls to ISIL fighters". Al Jazeera. 11 June 2014.
- "The Blue Man" – via www.imdb.com.
- Burns, John F. (6 June 2006). "Uncovering Iraq's horrors in desert graves". The New York Times.