ISIS In The Middle East by Xan Daven-Thomas

The head count is now at two.Two journalists covering the Middle East are now dead because ISIS beheaded them. ISIS is a militant jihadist group in the Middle East who are attempting create their own country out of Iraq and Syria, and turn it into an extreme Islamic state. ISIS is killing journalists they are Westerners and ISIS rejects Western values and ideals.

The most recent killing was of journalist Steven Sotloff, who was killed on  September 2nd. His executioner said, “as your missiles keep striking our people our knifes will keep striking yours.” Soon after that statement was made Sotloff was killed.  The missiles that Sotloff’s killer was talking about are the missiles that the U.S has been firing against Northern Iraq, where ISIS is located.

The news broke days later that Sotloff had held both an American and Israeli citizenship, and had spent several years in Israel working and studying at the Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya in in Israel to get closer to his Jewish roots. The Israeli and U.S governments tried to keep these facts private because they believed that if they came to light it would put him in more danger. After his death was confirmed, both government’s believed that it was safe to tell the world.

With these new facts brought to light, the Israeli people noticed and began to protest, because now one of the victims was one of their citizens. And now they are calling for more action against ISIS.

Another recent journalist victim of ISIS was James Foley, his execution brought ISIS to the eye of the U.S public. With his death suddenly ISIS was a household enemy.  Foley was held captive for a number of years by ISIS, Foley’s death was, as told by the killer, was because of U.S military action in the Middle East. The killer claimed “ Any further action will cause further bloodshed of your people.”

Foley was not the first journalist killed while covering the war against Islamic extremists. It is estimated that about 70 journalists have been killed in recent years in the area that ISIS is active. Before they were just another militant group, but with their recent string of brutal executions they have become much more well known.

ISIS stands for Islamic State in Syria and Iraq. Their goal is to create a Islamic country out of Iraq and Syria, but contrary to popular belief they are not one of the rebel groups fighting against the regime in Syria. They are a Jihadist group who are fighting for extremist Islamic goals.

ISIS is making the headlines because they are near constantly beheading people and they are still gaining ground. It doesn’t look like they will go away anytime soon and they are already collecting taxes from individuals and companies in the areas they have defeated. ISIS also has a government set in place, they are making already laws for the territories that they already have. The amount of land they control is currently the size of Britain.

ISIS currently holds most of the area of northern Iraq, but their ideal country would be both northern Iraq and Syria. Within the parts of land that they already have control of, they have created a large following. Quite a few of the people that they have in their captured land believes in what they are doing and supports their ideals. ISIS is a Sunni militant group that wants to take over the predominantly Shia country of Iraq and the mainly Sunni Syria.

The ISIS army has an estimated 10,000 soldiers who are willing to fight and die for their cause. ISIS has generated more than 2 billion U.S dollars, primarily through criminal activities. They sell captured oil, hostages, and anything else of value that they can get hold of through illegal means. It is estimated that they are making around 1 million dollars daily through their selling of oil and hostages. If peace is a goal for the Middle East, groups like ISIS must be stopped.

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