A new jihadistera has risen in the wake of the rise of the self-proclaimed Islamic State inIraq and Syria. It is also known as the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.It has been the known that the Islamic State has declared a long term goal ofestablishing an Islamic State or a caliphate on the basis of an extremistinterpretation of sharia. This makes it more than just a terrorist groupdespite it being an offshoot of al-Qaeda in Iraq. ISIS has adopted the radicalIslamist ideology of al-Qaeda and also has a centralized command model of theparamilitary Hezbollah and some tactics from the Taliban.
This makes theIslamic State a hybrid jihadist organization. The group has depended on anumber of strategies to survive and grow. These strategies involve pragmatismregarding the Syrian regime, controlling and developing territories as a methodof controlling local populations and attracting foreign fighters, the use ofideology social media as a tool to control populations, recruit fighters, raisefunds and a centralized military strategy.Since theinsurgence of the Islamic State into Syria in 2013, they have been in anexistential battle with the Sunni extremist group. In the face of all thestrategic tools, the Islamic State unveils itself as the real al-Qaeda andasserts that it is going to make the al-Qaeda’s ideology of an Islamic State areality.
This will authenticate their existence and an appeal to donors andrecruits.Even thoughideology is an important feature of the operations of Islamic State, thegroup’s strategic objectives are not propelled by ideology, rather it entailsthe acquisition of money, resources and power.1 The ability to establish a caliphate in Syriaand Iraq is only the beginning, not the end, for the group. This clue is drawnfrom the ISIS’s slogan; “lasting andexpanding”2 (baqiyawa tatamaddad)3. Nonetheless, this does not simply mean thatthe caliphate will geographically expand indefinitely beyond physicalboundaries, but to also expand its worldwide influence so that its viabilitywill be supported.
The declaration of the establishment of a caliphate in June2014 following the Islamic State’s advances in Iraq drew internationalintervention in the form of a U.S led coalition to fight against the group. Theexpansion and sustainability of the Islamic State have been curtailed by US ledair strikes. However, the intervention efforts have been limited in scope andface numerous challenges. This is as a result of the fact that these attacksare carried out taking the political, social and economic components of ISIS’strategy into perspective.
In themeantime, the Islamic State is facing quite a number of challenges pressuringit modify in modus operandi. The militant group is now turning inward based ontheir methods of governance and its current strategy to unify members fromdiverse ethnic backgrounds under a common leadership. This will create a newgeneration of loyalist who will constitute the first indigenous citizens of thecaliphate. In attempt to do so, ISIS hasnow shifted its attention from proactive operations to those that capitalize onthe weaknesses of their enemies.ISIS’s advances this summer have made Iraq andSyria part of the same battlefield, erasing the international border andturning the regional struggles for power into a substantial threat tointernational peace and security.
4The weaknesses inquestion are the absence of both a lasting solution to sectarian conflicts inIraq and a complete solution to the Syrian conflict. So far as these weaknessesexist, the Islamic state is more likely to continue and expand. The world hasbeen shocked in recent years by acts of cruelty committed by the Islamic state(ISIS) in Iraq and Syria. This organization is deeply rooted to the directivesof the Sunni faction of Islam. Their aim is to bring most Muslim inhabitedStates – besides Iraq and Syria – under its control.
Countries such as Jordan,Israel, Lebanon, Southern Turkey, Cyprus and Palestine have all been threatenedby ISIS. The organization funds its operations by gaining control of oil fieldsin the eastern province of Deir-al-Zour in Iraq. Theyhave also taken control of bank and make a sizeable amount of money. Moreover,they receive much funding from wealthy donors in predominantly Sunni countries.It has managed to lure thousands of foreign volunteers across the globe,including United Kingdom and United States.
The organization has embarked onnumerous terrible attacks in order to achieve their political objectives. Themain purpose of this essay, which would be examined subsequently, is to examinethe legal and military actions that can be taken by the international communityto overcome the threat posed by horrible attacks perpetuated by ISIS. However,the existing norms of Jus ad bellum donot permit an unlimited usage of military action across national borders atISIS strongholds. The good news is that international humanitarian law ismaking a law that will allow military action against terrorist groups in StateB by State A when the government of the former is unable or unwilling to avertits territory being used as a place of launching terrorist attacks.
Thus, thiswill be known as the ‘unwilling or unable’ paradigm.51 UN (United Nations), Report of the Secretary-General on the ThreatPosed by ISIL (Da’esh) to International Peace and Security and the Range ofUnited Nations Efforts in Support of Member States in Countering the Threat,Report of the Secretary-General, New York, UN Counter-Terrorism Committee,2016.2 Ibid3 Ibid4 Reuter, C. (2015) “The Terror Strategist: Secret Files Revealthe Structure of Islamic State”, Spiegel Online International, 8 April 2015 5 Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Syrian ArabRepublic, “They Came to Destroy”: ISIS Crimesagainst the Yazidis, UN Human RightsCouncil, 15 June 2016