Tag Archives: Islamic State

Iraq: Dozens dead in Baghdad suicide attacks

Source: CBS News

“Two suicide bombers blew themselves up at a busy street market in central Baghdad on Monday, in back-to-back explosions that killed at least 38 people, Iraqi health and police officials said. The attackers struck during rush hour in the city’s Tayran Square, which is usually crowded by laborers seeking work. The twin explosions also wounded at least 105 people, the officials said, speaking on condition of anonymity as they were not authorized to talk to the media. … No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack but it bore all the hallmarks of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), which has claimed many such attacks in the past.” (01/15/18)


Egypt: Islamic State declares war on rival Hamas with video execution

Source: Washington Post

“The extremist Islamic State group’s branch in Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula has taken a simmering dispute with the Palestinian Hamas group based in nearby Gaza to new levels, releasing a 22-minute video in which it calls on its followers to attack the group and shows the execution of a man it said was a collaborator. Analysts say the escalation has the potential to destabilize an already fragile security situation in Gaza, the Palestinian enclave that Hamas has controlled for the past decade. … The confrontation between the two militant groups has been building for more than a year, as Hamas has cracked down on Islamic State supporters in Gaza and hardened its border with the Sinai region in an attempt to repair relations with Egypt.” (01/04/18)


Pentagon identifies Afghanistan occupation troop killed in likely Islamic State firefight

Source: CBS News

“The U.S. military has identified an American soldier killed fighting likely ISIS militants on New Year’s Day in eastern Afghanistan. In a statement released Wednesday, the Pentagon said Sgt. 1st Class Mihail Golin, 34, of Fort Lee, New Jersey, was killed, ‘after being engaged by enemy small arms fire while on a dismounted patrol.’ Golin was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 10th Special Forces Group (Airborne), based at Fort Carson, Colorado, the statement said. … The United States formally concluded its combat mission in Afghanistan at the end of 2014 but still carries out operations against the Taliban and the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) affiliate, known as ISIS Khorasan.” [editor’s note: In other words, “formally concluded” means “lied about concluding” – TLK] (01/03/18)


Egypt: Gunman kills 11 in attacks on Coptic church, Christian-owned shop

Source: Reuters

“A gunman killed at least 11 people on Friday in attacks on a Coptic Orthodox church and a Christian-owned shop near Cairo before he was wounded and arrested, the Egyptian interior ministry and church officials said. Islamic State claimed responsibility for the attacks, in a statement carried out by its Amaq news agency, though it provided no evidence for the claim. Police have stepped up security measures around churches ahead of Coptic Christmas celebrations on Jan. 7, deploying officers outside Christian places of worship and setting up metal detectors at some of the bigger churches.” (12/29/17)


Afghanistan: Islamic State claims Kabul blast

Source: Reuters

“Islamic State claimed responsibility for a suicide attack on Monday on a compound of Afghanistan’s national intelligence agency in Kabul, which killed at least five people and wounded two. The blast comes a week after the group claimed responsibility for an attack on a training facility of the same agency, the National Directorate for Security, in Kabul that ended when the attackers were killed before causing significant casualties.” (12/25/17)


Mosul battle: Iraqi regime and US coalition troops killed ten times more civilians than they claim

Source: Newsweek

“The number of civilians killed by the U.S.-led coalition’s campaign against the Islamic State militant group (ISIS) in the northern Iraqi city of Mosul was almost ten times higher than the coalition claims, a new investigation has found. According to an Associated Press count, which cited the reports of grave diggers, morgue workers and volunteers, between 9,000 and 11,000 Mosul residents were killed in the nine-month battle to liberate the city that ISIS held for three years. Of those killed, Iraqi or coalition forces were responsible for at least 3,200 civilian deaths in airstrikes or ground fire conducted from the beginning of the offensive in October 2016 to July 2017. The coalition says it is responsible for only 326 of the deaths, but also claims that it does not have adequate resources on the ground to investigate the total number of deaths.” (12/20/17)


Tracing the Islamic State’s weapons supply chain — back to the US

Source: Wired
by Brian Castner

“[Damien] Spleeters is also constantly searching for new weapons that show how ISIS engineers’ expertise is evolving, and with this trip to Tal Afar he has set his sights on one promising new lead: a series of modified rockets that had appeared in ISIS propaganda videos on YouTube and other social media. Spleeters suspected that the tubes, trigger mechanisms, and fins of the new rockets were all the work of ISIS engineers, but he thought the warheads likely came from somewhere else. After discovering similar weapons over the past six months, he has grown to believe that ISIS may have captured the warheads from anti­government militias in the Syrian civil war that had been secretly armed by Saudi Arabia and the United States.” (12/12/17)


The collapse of the Islamic State and the rise of the “fail-bomber”

Source: The Intercept
by Murtaza Hussain

“Several years after it first launched its insurgency in Iraq and Syria — an uprising that the group’s leadership attempted to internationalize through acts of global terrorism — the Islamic State has seen its territorial holdings and leadership structure decimated by a military campaign led by an unlikely alliance of U.S.- and Iranian-backed forces. In the short term, however, the net result of destroying the Islamic State as an actual organization may be an increase in so-called fail-bombers — lone individuals of questionable competence. … By all accounts, these do-it-yourself terrorists do not seem capable of carrying out complex attacks like those that shut down Paris and Brussels.” (12/11/17)


The pundits were wrong about Assad and the Islamic State. As usual, they’re not willing to admit it

Source: Cato Institute
by Max Abrahms & John Glaser

“The Islamic State is a shadow of its former self. In 2014, the extremist group seemed to make substantial inroads in achieving its stated goal of a caliphate. It boasted tens of thousands of fighters and territorial control over an area roughly the size of South Korea. By almost every metric, Islamic State has collapsed in its Syria stronghold, as well as in Iraq. As a former foreign fighter recently admitted, ‘It’s over: there is no more Daesh left,’ using an Arabic acronym for Islamic State. The rollback of Islamic State must come as a shock to the chorus of journalists and analysts who spent years insisting that such progress would never happen without toppling the regime of Bashar Assad — which is, of course, still standing.” (12/10/17)


Iraq: Regime declares complete victory in war against Islamic State

Source: Washington Post

“Iraq’s prime minister declared an end Saturday to the war against the Islamic State, more than three years after militants overran and captured one-third of the country and imposed a violent and austere rule over millions of Iraqis. Haider al-Abadi announced that the rugged, sparsely populated desert region bordering Syria has been ‘cleansed’ of Islamic State fighters and that the porous border that had underpinned the self-declared caliphate that straddled both countries has been fully secured. … Saturday’s declaration caps a war that has killed thousands of Iraqi troops in fierce battles for such cities as Tikrit, Ramadi and Beiji since 2015.” (12/09/17)