Salient to Investors:

Dr Afzal Ashraf at RUSI writes:

  • The threat of IS appears greater and the situation more pessimistic than it is.
  • IS is militarily weaker than it appears, and its ideology has received a potentially fatal wound.
  • The US has decapitated almost all of al-Qaeda’s leadership and most of its core operatives and reduced it to producing out-of-date internet propaganda.
  • Power lust has virtually broken the already tenuous link between IS ideology and religion.
  • The territorial gains of IS were not so much due to its strength as to the spectacular failure of the Iraqi army to stand and fight.
  • The demise of IS will not be quick or easy, but is inevitable if done without creating new grievances and new ungoverned spaces.
  • As with al-Qaeda, military attrition will contain the IS threat but not directly kill its ideology.
  • Political success cannot be achieved through unrestrained violence devoid of human compassion.

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