The Islamic State of Iraq and Levant’s violent sweep through Iraq did not begin with the capture of Mosul earlier this month: It’s been years in the making, helped by a concerted campaign to win the hearts and minds of Sunnis who feel wronged or marginalized in a Shiite-led Iraq.
“ISIS control in Mosul is contingent on political alliances they have made with the Baathists and the tribal groups,” New America Foundation counter-terrorism expert Brian Fishman told the Daily Beast.
A Shillman-Ginsburg fellow at the Middle East Forum, Aymenn J Al-Tamimi, collects photos from ISIS and other Sunni groups like the Sufi-Ba’athist militia and Dulaimis and posts them on his own twitter feed with context.
On his personal blog, Al-Tamimi says that the complexity of intra-insurgents dynamics is beyond rivalries that the ISIS has with other rebel groups, “further eroding any government hopes of making gains against ISIS and the…
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