The international coalition against ISIS announced today that it believes there are fewer than 1,000 ISIS jihadists remaining in Syria and Iraq. That represents one-third of the coalition’s estimate from just a few weeks ago.
“Due to the commitment of the Coalition and the demonstrated competence of our partners in Iraq and Syria, there are estimated to be less than 1,000 ISIS terrorists in our combined joint area of operations, most of whom are being hunted down in the desert regions in eastern Syria and Western Iraq,” the U.S.-led coalition told Reuters.
Of course, it could very well be that many of those disappeared jihadists remain alive and free, having fled towards foreign countries. Such fighters continue to pose a major threat everywhere, including Europe and the United States.
However, the coalition says that everything is being done to minimize this risk: “We can tell you that we are working with our partners to kill or capture all remaining ISIS terrorists, to destroy their network and prevent their resurgence, and also to prevent them from escaping to bordering countries,” the coalition said today.
Both Iraq and Syria have declared victory over ISIS in recent weeks. Although those declarations are technically premature — you haven’t truly beaten your enemy until he is completely destroyed — the 1,000 or fewer remaining “Islamic State in Iraq and Syria” jihadists are running out of time to use that acronym.
That is incredibly good news. ISIS is one of the most brutal, horrific organizations the world has ever seen, on par with the Nazis. ISIS never achieved the power the Nazis did, but is as evil and as ambitious as were Hitler and his henchmen.
Thankfully, they were crushed much more rapidly than Hitler was. Now it’s up to the Iraqi and Syrian governments to rebuild their countries and to ensure that no successor to ISIS can form — the region is still rife with other Islamic terror groups.