originally posted by: Domo1
Am I the only one that feels like one day IS just popped up out of nowhere and suddenly it had been known about for a long time? ... The whole thing
feels like it went 0-60 way too freaking fast for my comfort.
This was the feeling I've had as well. I think that perhaps it could be understandable for one reason: the US presence in Iraq. It is plausible that
they did not wish to launch their operations while US troops were present, as then the US could easily stay and fight against them, whereas if they
allowed the US to leave before launching their offensive, it is much less likely that the US will recommit resources to Iraq. So there is less chance
for opposition if they wait until the US leaves.
Therefore they could have been building up their funding and resources secretly, attempting to fly under the radar of US intelligence, basically just
waiting for the best moment to strike. This is not a really advanced strategy by any means, and I am quite convinced that such a thought could have
entered into the head of the ISIS military leadership. So I don't think they really wanted to face US forces at that time, but rather would like to
spread as far as possible as quickly as possible, recruiting more fighters along the way. It is much easier to replenish your fighters when you have
started making gains, as more people are likely to join because of that success. If they had launched their offensive while the US was still present,
the US military would have had an easier time stopping that offensive at the outset, which would have translated into fewer gains and fewer new
recruits. They would much rather face the Iraqi military as opposed to the US military, as the Iraqi military has fewer resources.
What seems a bit more implausible to me is how they could equip and finance themselves right under the nose of the ever-watchful military intelligence
apparatus of the United States, and how the US didn't find out and attempt to destroy them before the threat level increased. I think a plausible
explanation is that ISIS kept their presence and resources out of Iraq, or in isolated parts of the country that were not heavily monitored by the US.
They could have been in Syria for instance, out of the reach of US troops. Meaning they entered Iraq after the US military withdrew their forces. And
ISIS would have been correct in doing it this way, because they have proven capable of defeating Iraqi military forces on a number of occasions.
To me the biggest question is just where they are getting all this money. Such funding would have to come from multiple sources, and there are a
limited number of people or organizations who could contribute so much money. And ISIS seems to have had money before raiding banks and acquiring the
spoils of war, so to speak. The biggest haul that I have read about came from a bank in a conquered city, although I do not recall which city that
was, and if my currency conversion is correct then they netted about $300,000 dollars, which is nothing at all considering they were well-financed
before this point.
As far as an ISIS presence in Mexico it is possible, although it seems highly improbable to me. I do not understand why the cartels themselves would
tolerate an ISIS presence, and the only answer could be that they are being well paid. But it still would seem like a bad trade-off for the cartels,
as ISIS is simply bad for business. And the cartels make plenty of money, and likely have billions themselves. It is a huge risk for their overall
drug operations because ISIS will definitely bring the heat of US intelligence and the US military. The cartel leaders, the ones making the decisions,
have to know that the US might blacklist and come after them personally, rather than attempt to defeat the cartels outright, as this is a much more
achievable objective. So they could personally be placing themselves in danger. It doesn't make sense to me, but perhaps these leaders do not really
Or perhaps they do not know of the ISIS presence themselves. And maybe they did not strike some sort of deal with ISIS at all. Would they attempt to
drive out ISIS if they discovered them, or would they not bother them at all? These are important questions in my opinion, and the cartels must play a
pivotal role in this discussion precisely because they are similar to a government themselves in that they control vast resources and can make
decisions that have a large impact on their particular regions, and the entire country of Mexico as a whole.
It would be smart of ISIS to enter the US through Mexico if their intention is to enter the US. What does not make much sense to me is why they would
be expending manpower and resources on such a plan. They seem to be much more goal-oriented than any previous terrorist group, and they are bent on
creating an actual state. It is precisely because of this objective that it makes more sense for them to use all the resources at their disposal close
to home, to first establish and/or secure that state before branching out into larger operations involving more nations. Militarily it makes no sense
whatsoever to essentially waste resources by attempting to launch small offensives in all these different regions, as opposed to concentrating forces
on a single, or a few, different objectives. They wouldn't want to put all their fighters in one place, as that means it is easier to destroy them
with airstrikes, but spreading them out too much causes these independent units to lose their effectiveness in my opinion.
Force allocation, or in military terms what is called economy of force, involves making decisions that could cause the overall operation succeed or to
fail. You want to use the minimum amount of resources necessary to achieve the objective. You waste resources if you commit too many to a single area
or goal when fewer of those resources would have sufficed, and you waste resources by committing too few of them to an objective or area when you
needed more to achieve success. It is a balance, and is one of the intangibles of military strategy. It is for reasons such as this that military
strategy is an art moreso than a science, and I highly doubt ISIS has military decision makers who are experienced or knowledgeable enough to perform
their strategic duties appropriately, which is good news for everyone who is not ISIS.
This basically means that if US reports are accurate, and ISIS really is in Mexico, launching small terrorist attacks against the US, while it will
terrify US citizens to a certain degree, will not do anything to alter the bigger picture. It will not help them strategically, and in fact is likely
to harm them in the long run. You can have a successful military operation, meaning you achieve your objectives, but that can turn out to be a
negative thing. If their objective was simply to terrorize, sort of like what we've seen with other terrorist groups who never really approached
achieving long-term military successes, then such small attacks in the US would probably suffice for them. But considering what ISIS' stated goals
are, such attacks in the US will not help them achieve those goals one bit. And to elaborate on what I said about a successful operation hurting you
overall, take 9/11 for instance. Al-Qaeda was successful in their operation, but it ultimately caused their destruction.