Tactically ISIS is leading a semi-conventional1 fight; when in combat they fight in battalions and use conventional weapons while employing asymmetric tactics. The asymmetric tactics ISIS exerts include the strategic use of violence and manipulation. In order to effectively eliminate their highly trained fighters, the US must commit ground troops and help in the training of Iraqi and Kurdish forces. It is estimated that ISIS currently possess around 20,000 - 25,000 militants2, maintaining around the same amount of militants they were estimated to have back in 2014. Although the US is currently executing airstrikes against ISIS, there is a greater need for an infantry that can weaken the organization’s army.
ISIS relies heavily on foreign fighters3; this is a key disadvantage that the US can exploit in order to limit ISIS’ impact. A large number of foreign fighters travel to join ISIS, they are coming from a number of places including Africa, Asia, and Russia4. Yet their army is also made up of people that are forced to join due to the inability to live sufficiently under ISIS’ control5. The disadvantage of having foreign fighters is: as the death toll rises, ISIS’ capabilities decrease. In...
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...14 will unquestionably reduce. Also troops can help with the eradication of oil fields and refineries that cannot be reached through airstrikes. By limiting their monetary intake, ISIS will be forced to make pay cuts. Not having reasonable pay or promised support for their families, might discourage some desperate civilians from joining ISIS.
In addition to infantry, experts are needed to help with the gathering of financial intelligence. Gaining a better understanding of ISIS’ finances, will open doors to more possible solutions in defeating them. Intel on exactly how ISIS is trafficking artifacts and who is buying them, gives the US and other countries the opportunity to implement better laws to prevent trafficking and impose sanctions on those that violate said laws. It is vital to gain information on whomever is supporting ISIS through their illicit trades.
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