ISIS leaders are seeking to turn ISIS-held territory in Libya into a base for launching ISIS's own navy. The goal is to attack cruise ships from Europe. ISIS already has claimed responsibility for terror attacks against European tourists vacationing in the neighboring nation of Tunisia in June 2015. If implemented, this latest, audacious plan would allow the militant nation-state to deploy a navy to support its armed operations on land. These have overrun much of war-torn Libya and terrorized other parts of Africa as far south as Nigeria.
From the "at least they're fiscally prudent" file: As part of recent budget austerity measures, ISIS leaders have cut the wages of its fighters in half.
ISIS is officially in the immigration business. Taking advantage of Syria’s 500-mile-long border with Turkey, which Turkish officials admit they cannot secure, ISIS has run a “sophisticated immigration operation” through the Syrian border, newly obtained records show. Kurdish forces recently captured the border town of Tel Abyab. There they took possession of passenger manifests showing ISIS’s own “department of transportation” issuing stamps to emigrants leaving ISIS-held parts of Syria for Turkey and Europe. Many of these individuals came from Tunisia, a hotbed of ISIS recruiting and organizing in north Africa.
The documents are the latest proof that ISIS is fulfilling its pledge to flood the West with ISIS supporters by exploiting immigration into southeastern Europe. President Barack Obama has said he has had “repeated conversations” with Turkish officials “about border security,” adding, “We’ve seen some progress on that front, but there are still some gaps.” It is unclear if the Turkish prime minister urged Obama to follow his own counsel, as the U.S. border remains similarly open to infiltration.
A Western journalist who managed to embed himself among ISIS and its leaders, survive, and emerge to report his findings brought forth a fascinating fact. He says ISIS leaders fear only one nation.
It is not the United States or any of its European allies. Nor is it Russia. It is Israel.
ISIS leaders respect Israeli forces, whom they view as “very tough” in fighting “guerrillas and terrorists.” In contrast, ISIS doubts the ability and willingness of U.S. and European powers to remain engaged in urban combat effectively for the long haul. ISIS grand strategy reflects this fear, as ISIS leaders seek to avoid provoking Israel at this time.