That's what US President Donald Trump said Tuesday. But fast until today and we hear reports that are far from…
That’s what US President Donald Trump said Tuesday.
But fast until today and we hear reports that are far from being defeated. The Islamic state has captured 700 hostages this year and says it will kill 10 of them a day unless the Group’s requirements are met.
It is understood that members of IS attacked a refugee camp last week, which led to the hostage being taken. Among them are Europeans and American citizens.
It is estimated that 5000 IS soldiers end up in Hajin city in eastern Syria, close to where hostage is believed to be held. It is believed that the leading IS leaders can be among the bloodthirsty fighters in the city.
It’s a chilling picture and one can only imagine the fear of hostage being held.
does it sound like a group that has been defeated?
Whatever the US president says, if IS can handle this, the group is far from being wiped out. In fact, it’s quite the opposite.
This development is a reminder that the terrorist group and those who sympathize with it remain an intelligence and security threat not only in Syria and Iraq’s battlefields, but around the world ̵
1; here in Australia.
appears as a militant group that grew in infamous 2014 after being in control of important territories in Iraq and Syria. The group’s goal was to establish itself as a caliphate, referring to the Islamic state. However, internationally, IS was designated as a terrorist organization by the UN and many of its members. Although the group became more prominent in the past five years, its roots are back two decades. Membership grew in numbers as part of a rebellion after the Iraq war in 2003.
Ironically, there was another conflict where the “mission” could also have been claimed a little too early.
MORE: “We’re killing 10 hostages one day”
President Trump, is among several world leaders who have claimed victory over IS. Even the Iraqi prime minister declared a final victory a year ago.
They have done so, has given us a false belief that the threat of the group, who made international headlines with their smelly videos of haunting, executions and taking over large areas of Iraq and Syria is over.
There is of course some truth that the group has weakened in the last 18 months. A year ago, Raqqa, the so-called capital of the caliphate, was taken back from IS.
Major cities like Mosul also came under the control of US backed forces. But even if the territory that the group held may have decreased, they do not sympathize with it.
The weakening of the caliphate was the fear that jihadians who had traveled to the battlefield to join IS would now fly to their homelands to make havoc. It is certainly a threat, but the news of the 700 hostages taken this week shows that even though the group may weaken in the Middle East, it is still capable of extraordinary violence there.
The solution to the issue of growth of jihadi groups is a complex. It’s far more complex than bombing them for submission, a tactic that has not managed to deliver a final battle over the next 20 years of terrorism.
Bradford University Professor of Peace Studies Paul Rogers has previously written about the fight against IS that “military response may seem to work in the short term but does not change much”.
According to Prof Rogers, the only real way to handle groups like IS and Al Qaeda is to address the underlying socio-economic and environmental factors that are so helpful for these movements. “
“This is not a message that Western elites want to hear and so the war will continue.”
And of course, while warriors continue to threaten the ongoing existential threat to IS, it is not only that it can expand its territory yet once in the Middle East. The extra worry is that these battlefields can challenge their fans around the world, including those who have returned to their country of origin.
Britain and nations in Europe too know the terrible effect of IS-inspired attacks.  In Australia, we have also had violence, and threats to it, also visited us. Thanks to our intelligence, security and police forces, many planned attacks have been counteracted.
Among all this is the bottom line that IS is not defeated. It is active and is still a threat. It can expand and come over time, but its existence and defeat is more complicated than a battlefield war that can be won or lost. This is not a territorial war, but an ideological one.
Chris Urquhart is a contributor to news.com.au. Follow him on Twitter: @chrisurquhart