Is it Already Too Late to Stop the Islamic State?
Nobody wants to lose hope. It’s through hope that change happens, that wrongs are made right, and that people are able to rise above the challenges we face in this life. Despite hope, is the Islamic State already in a position that cannot be realistically defeated?
News of the beheading of 21 Coptic Christians in Libya has done more than add to their list of atrocities. It points to a fact that few Americans realize: the Islamic State is not isolated to Syria and Iraq. Their influence is growing at a rate that nobody fully knows but that most experts agree is very dangerous. Here are three reasons why it might be too late to stop them.
They Are Way Beyond their ‘Junior Varsity’ Days
If United States intelligence felt that ISIS was the “junior varsity” of terrorism in early 2014, they were the Michael Jordan version. Even MJ barely made the team as a sophomore in high school before becoming the greatest basketball player of all time. ISIS has graduated as well. They have a supply chain that is slippery but ever-present. What makes this fact the most challenging is that they’re receiving supplies and weapons from such a diverse range of supporters that it’s impossible to stop it without a massive number of boots on the ground with a rolling chain of checkpoints. Air strikes simply cannot stop them because there’s no way to know what vehicles to bomb from the air.
They are well-funded from the outside and apparently generating their own funds from the inside. Again, it’s the subterfuge that makes cutting off the funds the most challenging. Nobody knows who is sending the money, how they’re receiving it, or what they’re selling to generate their own, though oil is a distinct possibility.
They have American weapons, modern technology from other sponsors, and they grow every time they win a battle. They are sophisticated in their attacks and the way they’re able to hold their gains. Seeing everything that they’re doing, one might come to the conclusion that they’re guided by a powerful force of evil rather than a ragtag group of angry Muslims.
Each Atrocity Draws Countless Supporters
It’s human nature to want to be on a winning team. ISIS represents the first real winning team to militant Muslims. Those who want to fight for Islamic domination no longer have to choose between which group is losing the least. Here’s a team that is making gains, so the recruits continue to pour in.
It isn’t just fellow Muslims, either. Their mastery of social media and the reports of their victories are appealing to a new generation of people who are growing disenchanted with their cultures or forms of government. This allure is apparently very powerful; last year, three teen girls from Colorado were attempting to join ISIS. They were almost certainly joining an organization that would use them as sexual pastimes for ISIS fighters, but that didn’t phase them at all. This can be shocking to those who would never consider it, but the lies that the organization uses to lure people to their side are extremely powerful.
While the vast majority of Muslims want to live their lives in peace, there is a silent admiration by many for ISIS. Some will argue against this, but even if the number is 5%, that’s still 80 million people worldwide who would support ISIS if it were possible. As the Islamic State grows and when they start to establish stronger footholds across the world, those 80 million people will be more emboldened to support the group.
Despite Their Size, They’re Still Ghosts
We see the gains they make on the battle ground, the cities that are under their control, and the murders they release to video, but that’s the tip if the iceberg. The rise in attacks in Europe may seem to be isolated, but they all link back in some way to the Islamic State. They have emboldened their supporters and we’re seeing the results in France, Australia, and Denmark. Of course, mainstream media wouldn’t dare to draw a connection, but it’s apparent to those with their eyes open.
Before the attack in Libya, most in the west would have said that ISIS is limited to Iraq and Syria. That’s the narrative that the mainstream media wants us to hear, but the truth is that they aren’t just picking up recruits. They’re gaining support and affiliations from long-existing militant Islamic groups across the globe. It is truly shocking to many people, as can be heard in this commentary from our sister site:
The Islamic State may still be defeated, but it won’t happen through the miniscule efforts the world is putting forth today. It will take a concentrated effort, one that goes beyond the Iraq war, one that is reminiscent of World War II when the people of the world fought against atrocities coming from the Nazis.
ISIS may be even more difficult to defeat than Hitler’s regime because they have no boundaries other than the ones they create.