This post and infographic look at where ISIS is spreading and where is ISIS active to counter the narrative that the world is winning in the war against this violent and brutal terrorist organization.
On Sunday a band of fanatic terrorists pledged their allegiance to ISIS and initiated a series of coordinated suicide bomb attacks across Sri Lanka killing more than 350 people.
Sri Lanka is a majority Buddhist country with no significant history of Islamic extremism. As a result, ISIS was not included on the short list of suspects in the immediate aftermath of the terrorist attacks. On Tuesday ISIS claimed credit for the attacks and released video of several suicide bombers involved in the Easter Sunday terrorist acts pledging their allegiance to Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.
- ISIS Intelligence Brief – Read my book on the origins of ISIS if you are interested in learning more about this organization.
Once again, the reach and limits of ISIS seem to have almost no limit or discernable logic. ISIS claimed this attack was in response to the White Nationalist attacks in New Zealand on March 15, but that claim is dubious at best. The complexity and planning that went into the Sri Lanka terrorist attacks suggest they have been in planning for some time.
The shock of the attacks on Easter Sunday in Sri Lanka is only a glimpse of the growing stretch and spread of ISIS throughout the world. Consider these facts that have received far less coverage in the news since the bombings in Sri Lanka:
- Only days earlier ISIS claimed its first attack in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Eight people were killed and a terrible prospect now faces the nation that is already riddled with violence and tragedy in its border regions.
- On the same day as the attacks in Sri Lanka another ISIS attack struck north of Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
- Also on the same day as the attacks in Sri Lanka, a separate ISIS attack on an Afghanistan government building killed at least 7 people.
From Africa to the Middle East, to Central Asia, ISIS claimed victims within the span of a few days that was barely noticed due to the fact of being overshadowed by the enormity of events in Sri Lanka.
President Obama underestimated ISIS and allowed the organization to grow under his watch. President Trump claimed victory over ISIS in Syria but may have underestimated the extent to which this group is now spreading to the rest of the world after losing its territory in Iraq and Syria.
It may be time we stop pretending victory has been secured over ISIS and recognize the growth and spread of this violent extremist group is far from being contained. ISIS is a global threat and as its reach and notoriety expand like-minded sociopaths continue to be drawn to the banner and mission of ISIS.