In 2017, there was a remarkable push back against the Islamic State in the Middle East. The Push Back led to the loss of several territories by the Islamic State. The Islamic State had to lose its territories because of the entry of troops from the US, and other countries that the Islamic state had been fighting. They lost several territories including those considered to be strongholds of the caliphate. Later that year (2017), Iraq said to have defeated the Islamic state. This was followed by a similar declaration from the President of The United States
Despite of that, a terror attack was reported on a mosque in Egypt on November 24th of the same year. Militants were said to have detonated a bomb inside the mosque. As if that was not enough, the terrorist gunned down several survivors of the attack who were trying to flee. A group of between 25-30 militants carried out the attack. Over 300 people were reported dead, a good fraction being children, with several suffering serious injuries. The attack was a clear indicator that the Islamic State was still a threat.
Bombing in Iraq
Three days after the attack on the mosque in Egypt, terrorist attacked outskirts of Baghdad in al-Nahrawan district in Iraq. It is reported that a suicide bomber detonated the market killing about 30 people with over 20 suffering injuries (Garda World, 2017; Reuters Staff, 2017; United Staes Embassy, 2017). The attacks were so close that the first one received much attention than the second one. It was a hard time as the IS had killed over 300 people in a matter of days leaving several others with serious injuries. The second attack came weeks after Iran together with the US, had announced victory over the Islam State. The attack came as a call to them to work their strategies right.
It is evident that most attacks by the Islamic State had religious connections. The Islamic State does not want any interference of their lifestyle by the west, the United States in particular. As such, they will do all it takes to ensure that no country interrupts their lifestyle. The Islamic State's number one strategy to avoid interference is through attacks on countries. They are so strategic in their planning that every attack will leave the world talking and counting serious loses.
The media plays an important role in informing the world of attacks by the Islamic State, remember this is their ultimate goal. They want to capture the attention of the world and can only do so through attacks. According to their belief is that will save them from interference with the westerners. Every attack will lead to several losses including loss of lives.
Normally, the attacks turn the world's focus and attention on the IS. Additionally, if there were an on-going planning on how to counter them, their attacks bring an element of disorientation. The attacks also create fear and anxiety among people of a possibility of a future attack. Ordinarily, the attacks serve to disorganize the fight against the IS. The attacks also serve as a warning to people to either join them in serving Allah or be against them. By way of a summary, the attacks serve to bring disorientation, fear, and anxiety among the people of future attacks (Reuters staff, 2017; Michael, 2007)
The hierarchical structure is in such a way that no approval is taken from the leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi,/ before any attack is done. It only requires the knowledge to make a bomb or have access to someone who can make a bomb and an opportunity to carry out an attack. The Islamic state ranks consist majorly of former soldiers.
According to Bruce Hoffman (2009), this type of attack is called, "New Terrorism. This type of terrorism is also seen with Al Qaeda. Islamic State, just like Al Qaeda uses a structure called Cellular Structure. With this structure, there is no need for a permission from the leader before an attack is carried out. The cells are composed only of those who are willing to carry out the will of Allah. With the new technology, the members of the cells need not know how to make bombs. Such information can easily be accessed from the internet (Drake; Hoffman, 2009).
The Islamic state has lost a lot of its territories and fighters but it still exists possibly due to the recruitment of new members. The recruitment of new members and absorption of the children of those killed make the organization to stand. Like with any terrorist organization, the IS could be recruiting those close to them, mainly the young. Possibly this is informed by the words of one, Albert Einstein who said that it is old men who start wars, but it is the younger men who fight them. The Islamic State has perfected the art of disorienting those fighting them. The war is getting even more complicated with time. Currently, the United States is fighting the IS. The Islamic State is also at war with Syria and Russia with who the US is at odds with. The Islamic State is not coming to an end soon. At least, not when some are still willing to fight and die in the name of Allah (Michael, 2007).
United States Embassy. The U.S. Embassy in Baghdad Condemns the November 27 Terrorist Attack in Nahrawan Retrieved from https://iq.usembassy.gov/u-s-embassy-baghdad-condemns-november-27-terrorist-attack-nahrawan/
Drake, C.M.J. (1998). Terrorists' Target Selection (1998) Capabilities p73-97. Decision Making p163-174
Howard Hoffman. (2009) Terrorism and CounterTerrorism. Understanding The new security Environment. Readings and Interpretation. The New Terrorism p 143- 234
The Baghdad Post (2017) Toll from Baghdad's suicide attack jumps to 45 Retrieved from http://www.thebaghdadpost.com/en/story/20198/Toll-from-Baghdad-s-suicide-attack-jumprs-to-45
Garda World.(2017) Iraq: Islamic State claims Nov. 27 suicide attack in Nahrawan Retrieved from https://www.garda.com/crisis24/news-alerts/79881/iraq-islamic-state-claims-nov-27-suicide-attack-in-nahrawan-update-1
Ahmed Aboulenein Mostafa Hashem in Cairo; Editing by Catherine Evans Reuters Staff (2017). Suicide attack targets area southeast of Baghdad. Retrieved from https://www.reuters.com/article/us-mideast-crisis-iraq-attacks/suicide-attack-targets-area-southeast-of-baghdad-idUSKBN1DR2BW
George Michael (2007) Defence Studies, Vol. 7, No. 3 (September 2007), pp. 338-357 Retrieved from EBSCO host. The Legend and Legacy of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. http://web.a.ebscohost.com/ehost/pdfviewer/pdfviewer?vid=5&sid=f5c27529-2ffd-4d88-a7f2-87ff26140302%40sessionmgr4010
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