February 12, 2019

IntelBrief: A State Without Territory

FILE - This Tuesday, July 22, 2014 file photo shows a motorist passing by a flag of the Islamic State group in central Rawah, 175 miles (281 kilometers) northwest of Baghdad, Iraq. Iraq’s Defense Ministry said Friday, Nov. 17, 2017 Iraqi forces have retaken the last IS-held town in the country, more than three years after the militant group stormed nearly a third of Iraqi territory.(AP Photo, File).
  • On February 10, U.S.-backed forces surrounded the Syrian town of Baghouz Al-Fawqani, the ‘last’ remaining stronghold of the so-called Islamic State.
  • President Trump expects to make a formal announcement declaring the ‘official defeat’ of the Islamic State, which could come as early as this week.
  • Declaring victory over the Islamic State could backfire, as resources are shifted elsewhere, the militant group will seek to rebuild in Iraq and Syria.
  • Only with effective and fair governance and an inclusive society that respects minority rights can groups like the Islamic State be defeated in the long-term.