American Foreign Policy Problem #1: ISIS

American Foreign Policy
Problem #1: ISIS
Mr. Patten and Ms. Dennis
Fall 2014
ISIS in 2 minutes…
ISIS: Territory
• ISIS holds roughly 1/3 of Iraq and Syria
including strategically important cities like
Fallujah and Mosul in Iraq
• It controls many roads linking its
conquered communities
• Has its own system of civil administration
and judiciaries
ISIS: Territory
ISIS: Financing
• They control oil fields,
power plants, dams,
and factories in Iraq
and Syria
• It is estimated that they
bring in $2 million a
day just on the sale of
• Also generate cash
from extortion,
kidnapping for ransom
and other criminal
ISIS: Governing
• When ISIS seizes a city:
– Keeps select services (gas stations,
bakeries and markets) operating
– Uses brute force to impose its vision of
a fundamentalist state
ISIS: Governing
– Shops closed during
Muslim prayer
– Women cover hair
and faces in public
– Public spaces walled
off with heavy metal
fences topped with
black flags of ISIS
– Those accused of
disobeying their laws
face public execution
or amputations
ISIS: Military
• Far more superior threat than al-Qaida was in
They are richer
Operate a modern, effective media campaign
Highly centralized command
CIA believes they have between 20,000 – 31,500
fighters in Iraq and Syria
• 15,000 of them are estimated to be recruits
• Largest bloc of foreign fighters come from Tunisia and
Saudi Arabia
• Smallest contingents from Belgium, China, Russia and
the U.S.
ISIS: Weapons
• ISIS has stolen
hundreds of millions
of dollars' worth of
weapons and
equipment from Iraqi
and Syrian military
• Small arms and
rockets used by ISIS
appear to have been
provided to other
combatants by Saudi
Arabia and the United
ISIS: Weapons
• Among the weapons that Conflict
Armament Research examined were M16
and M4 rifles stamped “Property of U.S.
• Such weapons are also in the hands of
irregular Shiite forces in Iraq, where the
United States provided hundreds of
thousands of small arms to supportive
forces during its long occupation.
ISIS: Threat to West
• Shown little desire or capability to launch major
terrorist attacks in the U.S.
• That could change
• They still hold American hostages and have
threatened the west
• Western officials are concerned about sympathizers
who may be inspired by ISIS to act as “lone wolves”
What are we doing about ISIS?
Working with your campaign team, take a
look at what the current administration is
doing by ISIS.
What do you agree with?
What do you disagree with?
What should be done?

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