Thursday, October 30, 2014

Has The Islamic State's Miltitary Advances Been Stopped?

(Institute for the Study of War)

A Month Ago, ISIS’s Advance Looked Unstoppable. Now It’s Been Stopped. -- Zack Beauchamp, VOX

Watching the news, you could be forgiven for thinking that ISIS is an unstoppable juggernaut, sweeping Iraq and Syria in an unending, unstoppable, terrible blitzkrieg.

But you'd be wrong. The truth is that ISIS's momentum is stalled: in both Iraq and Syria, the group is being beaten back at key points. There are initial signs — uncertain, sketchy, but hopeful — that the group is hurting more than you may think, and has stalled out in the war it was for so long winning. ISIS isn't close to being destroyed. But they are reeling.

In mid-October, ISIS advanced to within 16 miles of the Baghdad airport. Many observers (and many Iraqis), fearing an ISIS assault on Baghdad itself, understandably panicked. But to Michael Knights, the Lafer Fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, the ISIS advance meant something else.

"The threat posed to Baghdad this autumn is emerging less because [ISIS] is winning the war in Iraq," he wrote in Politico Magazine, "and more because it might be slowly but steadily losing it."

Read more ....

My Comment: I would not count them out right now .... their Arab enemies are just as weak as they are, and there is no political will in the West to put combat troops on the ground to finish them off. My prediction still holds .... a stalemate with the Islamic State consolidating it's gains.

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