The message about the death of the Caliph of ISIS (an organization banned in Russia — approx. transl.) Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi (Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi) should be happy with caution. Ultimately, al-Baghdadi over the years have repeatedly died, and none of those reports have been confirmed.
This time the news came from the head of a UK-based Syrian Observatory, which holds in Syria, a network of informants. According to this vantage point this information was obtained from senior members of ISIS in the province of Deir ez-Zor. However, according to later, it is unclear when and how was killed al-Baghdadi.
Until now, the death of the leader of ISIS could not confirm neither the Kurdish nor the Iraqi government. And the Pentagon says has no information on the death of al-Baghdadi. However, this has not deterred the President of the United States Donald trump from after receiving the news to Express via Twitter their joy. Trump tweeted: “Great victory in the fight against ISIS!”, and it was unclear whether he had in mind the death of al-Baghdadi or the capture of the former capital of the Caliphate of Mosul, Iraqi and international forces.
Al-Baghdadi, who for many years lived in hiding, and from there led both military and political Affairs of the “Islamic state”. His only public appearance was in July 2014 in Mosul, when he after a victorious campaign of ISIS in Northern Iraq and Syria declared the creation of a Caliphate on the captured ISIL territory.
Thus, ISIL has taken the place of al-Qaeda (organization banned in Russia — approx. transl.) at the top of the Islamist-terrorist hierarchy. Suddenly just stopped talking about al-Qaeda, which since the attacks of 11 September 2001 on the United States became a “star” of the extremist scene. Its leader, Osama bin Laden (Osama bin Laden), was eliminated by Americans in 2011. And now al-Baghdadi has a new leader, who claimed the crown of Islamic extremism.
ISIS has also become a thanks to modern and effective propaganda machine the new “pop phenomenon” of radical Islam and received the influx of extremists from around the world who wanted to help protect and expand the Caliphate.
The Parallels with Osama bin Laden
However, this project after some time has stalled and the international coalition under the leadership of LIH Americans managed to slowly but surely push back. And yet there are significant Parallels between bin Laden and al – Baghdadi. In the end, American pressure and pursuit, al-Qaeda made it all the more minor, before it was destroyed bin Laden. His death was in fact only a symbolic confirmation of the demise of al-Qaeda.
Looks like the situation with al-Baghdadi. It doesn’t matter whether he died actually or was hiding somewhere in Syria or in Northern Iraq: the Caliphate was already on the verge of collapse. Mosul, a major city in Northern Iraq, with the exception of a few pockets of resistance is again in the hands of the Iraqi government. And it’s only a matter of time when will fall and the Syrian fortress of ISIS in raqqa. According to the secret services of the USA in recent years in fighting ISIS lost 60 thousand men and two-thirds of its territory. And thus more disappears base for the business where al-Baghdadi was once proclaimed the Caliphate.
And the new threat of ISIS was that she was not trying, as al-Qaida to attack the West and to overthrow or destabilize moderate Arab governments. ISIS went a step further than al – Qaeda that Afghanistan was only a guest of the Taliban (organization banned in Russia — approx. transl.), and created as if the state structures on the territory, where it represented only the government.
It had great attractive influence on radical Muslims worldwide, they believed the propaganda of ISIL, which is supposedly is the place where there can be an Islamic utopia, which would allow them to live, maintaining their faith in its purest form. However, this utopia in the foreseeable future, the end will come, when all the important captured ISIS population centers will be reclaimed back.
However, neither the possible death of al-Baghdadi, nor the loss of further territories in Syria and Iraq do not mean the imminent end of the LIH. More likely that this terrorist organization has for some time entered a new phase, which for the West and its allied Islamic countries can be even more dangerous.
Because there is a Caliphate, which brought together most of the ISIS militants, the fight against this organization would be in a relatively limited area. With the fall of the Caliphate, we should expect transformation in ISIS 2.0, Some come from Europe militants coming back to their countries, while others hide in the Arab countries and will operate from underground.
Terrorist attacks in Europe dreaming of
A growing number of terrorist attacks in Europe in the past months gave the first idea of what to expect. And still have enough disputed territories in the Muslim world, or areas without an effective government which can settle down the ISIS militants. This applies, for example, parts of Afghanistan and Libya, Yemen or West Africa. And the civil war in Syria still continues and gives ISIS a chance to break in those regions where there is a power vacuum.
ISIS is not prepared for the eventual fall of the Caliphate and founded branches in many countries of the Muslim world or contacted local extremist organizations. Although the death of al-Baghdadi and would be a significant blow to ISIS, and it could be followed by a race for Governor. And the inning ISIL territories in Iraq and Syria means that the organization is losing an important space for respite and retreat.
However, this does not mean that this will destroyed posed by the ISIS danger. It is not enough to expel the terrorists from the occupied areas. “Even if ISIS will be beaten militarily, it is still political and economic conditions that contributed to its ascent — which was partly caused by the invasion in 2003 — will continue to pose a danger,” writes, for example, former US Deputy Secretary of state Tony Blinken (Blinken Anthony) in the newspaper “New York Times”.
Back to your roots
In 16 cities in Iraq and Syria, ISIS has been able, even after their release to make approximately 1,500 terrorist attacks. Thus, the organization returns to its insurgent roots. And it also means that after the military mission should be the stabilization mission in Iraq, a Shiite government must reach a compromise with the Sunnis, to prevent that disillusioned Sunnis could again fall into the hands of radicals.
We must not forget also that ISIS continues to wage a successful propaganda war on the Internet and in social networks. “We spend a huge amount of time and resources, both in the US and their partners to try to defeat not only ISIL and its control over the physical Caliphate, but also of the virtual space that they own,” said recently Thomas Bossert (Bossert Thomas), adviser to trump issues of national security, in an interview with ABC. They continue to recruit young people. It is alarming”. That should mean: this struggle is far from over, and the ideology that drives extremists, continues to be fruitful and dangerous. No matter really dead al-Baghdadi or not.