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John Farnham provides an “ISIS Update, from a friend in the System” [via]

“We review all ISIS/AlQaed a documents, publications and videos here. Key learnings:

1) They go to great lengths to identify and recruit potential jihadis from Western cultures. Their literature provides detailed schematics with regard to building bombs from local materials, and detailed instructions on how to smuggle them through security checkpoints. Mostly low-tech, but effective . . .

Their literature, once rude and crude, is now polished and professional. They obviously pay big money to get good and experienced editors, as well as technical people. Well written articles, features, and interviews. All slanted to appeal to young Westerners.

2) They are no amateurs. I have watched countless videos of ISIS fighters aggressively confronting Iraqi Army troops. Here are my take-aways:

– High, almost reckless, degree of aggressiveness. They will come right after you, without hesitation. They display no fear of fixed, defensive positions, no matter how formidable. – They nonchalantly accept a high level of casualties. Inflicting heavy casualties does not slow down the rest.

– They are extremely competent with satchel-charges and RPGs and dependably employ them in significant numbers.

– They have good individual gear. Rifles are a mixture of Kalashnikovs and M4s. Mostly iron sights. I see most employing good cheek-welds, competent finger discipline, and using cover appropriately. They’ve obviously been exposed to some degree of Western training. Most are wearing new, camouflage uniforms, new web-gear, sidearms, and knives. Lots of Draganov/PSL variants. In fact, these are the only long guns I see equipped with optics.

– They are well practiced in small-unit tactics. PKMs provide a base of fire, while maneuver elements aggress the objective. The Soviet 7.62x54R round is amazingly effective in unceremoniously converting ‘cover’ to concealment. Oh, that our SAW did anything similar!

– No body armor, nor helmets on the bulk of ISIS fighters

3) Their cruelty and brutality know no bounds. They delight in inflicting pain on helpless people. No hesitation, no lamentation, and no mercy. When captured, you’re finished!

Obviously, many of these videos are edited, and chosen for their message, but ISIS fighters I’ve seen appear mostly well trained, very well armed, and well motivated.

It is clear to me that these people are not vulnerable to reason, nor negotiation. They believe they are living in ‘end times,’ and that it is their sacred duty to exterminate all of us. And, they mean to do it.

Expecting them to shoot themselves the moment police show up, the way a typical ‘active shooter’ does in the country, represents delusional thinking. They are not afraid, and they are able to plan well, move well, communicate well, equip well, organize well, and fight well as a team. They have no concern, nor reverence, for human life, even their own.

For one, I’m frightened. And for one, I’m always armed, and I constantly keep an M4 in my car, and another next to my bed.”

About John Farnam & Defense Training International, Inc

As a defensive weapons and tactics instructor John Farnam will urge you, based on your own beliefs, to make up your mind in advance as to what you would do when faced with an imminent and unlawful lethal threat. You should, of course, also decide what preparations you should make in advance, if any. Defense Training International wants to make sure that their students fully understand the physical, legal, psychological, and societal consequences of their actions or inactions.

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  1. This article would be better if it had more exclamation points! Really! Because I saw a couple of sentences that ended with periods!

  2. If these poor people were gainfully employed, this would clearly be a non issue. /sarc/

    • That’s right. We need give middle class ISIS volunteers more lucrative jobs. That’ll make ’em quit ISIS. We know this because Howard Dean assured us that ISIS is “not Islamic”.

    • They are employed…in the service of their new state, which raked in two billion dollars just last year. They are like any soldier now, except unrestrained by the laws of war. I have a buddy from Syria, and he is just as afraid of these people as you are. Thankfully he decided to become American and he is on his way. They follow no logic, but are trained very well and are brutal, just like the article says. We were promised no boots on ground, but it’s obvious that infantry is required to take and hold ground. Airstrikes just soften targets. It’s the hope of the administration that the Iraqi soldiers and a few of our “advisers” will take care of it. We will see. Probably the Sunni in controlled areas will be killed once they “liberate” them. It’s going to be ugly for a few years there, and Syria will continue to burn.

      • JA – You’re not keeping up, Obumster’s solution is that the US needs to find/make jobs for the SOB.

        WFT is John Farnam, doesn’t sound like he knows diddly squat?. YES, the terrors have plenty new combloc equipment – Uncle reequipped the entire Iraqi army with new Warsaw pact shit. Purchased with US $ from Moscow Inc. We couldn’t transfer them old M16/M4 (and buy new rifles for the US Army). Couldn’t tie the Iraqis to the US with US $.

  3. With a zillion bucks for the NSA to spy on everyone, how did we not see “ISIS” coming? Something smells like a Trojan Horse, here. Smell seems to be coming from the rear end. Some kind of fake terror outfit or something being run by western intel. The videos are too frequent, too well-produced and, most of all, get a LOT of attention in the mainstream media. The media could just ignore these psycho ***heads and we wouldn’t know them. But they’re front and center. My Spidey sense is tingling on this lot… something’s fishy.

    • never attribute to conspiracy what is more easily described by the incompetence of political appointees.

      How did we miss ISIS? The administration abandoned Iraq and didn’t WANT to see ISIS, otherwise known to the administration as the “JV”.

    • The CIA saw ISIS coming, maybe gave em start up money to buy their first camera. Getting the USA frothing at the mouth for “boots on the ground” has never been easier. John Farnam saw how effective the government marketing was and decided to not be left behind, all aboard the fear train.

    • ISIS is no conspiracy, they’re the real deal. I know this because they’ve been making the news long before last year, just not American news. BBC has been following them since they were still an offshoot of Al Queda in 2012, and back then the big conspiracy was that they were hired by Assad and Putin to whipe out the FSA and hand control back to Assad. Needless to say, that certainly didn’t happen. What we now know as ISIS has been around quite some time, it didn’t just spring into existence suddenly, as the conspiracy theorists say, “all the sudden ISIS just comes out of nowhere.” For those of us who pay attention their blitzkrieg into Iraq wasn’t even a suprise because that whole province has continued to be the weakest point in Iraq, and many figured the Syrian civil war would start to spill over into neighboring counties. What was a suprise was badly the Iraqi Army preformed. Everyone has known the IA certainly wasn’t up to the task to defend itself from a major offensive, however, the whole stripping naked and throwing down their weapons by the tens of thousands when they out numbered ISIS 3-1, that was a surprise.

      • Technically the conspiracy was the double-cross pulled on the region at the end of WWI. The tribes were promised a new caliphate, in Greater Syria and the Lavant, if they would rise up and help a fellow named Lawrence attack the ailing Ottoman Empire from the flanks and within. They didn’t get it, but instead the region broken into the borders we know today. This has burned in the hearts and minds of the Islamic nationalists ever since, just under the surface. All it too was to destabilize the region by knocking out the secular dictator “strong men” to allow an opening. I’m amazed at the preponderance of western “yutes” involved though. I can only chalk it up to a bunch of kids, raised on Call of Doodie and Hollywood, trying to find something meaningful to do in this plastic world we live in. And along comes a “Jihad all you can Jihad” recruitment video.

      • Quite a lot of the Sunnis in the Iraqi army had more sympathetic leaning for ISIS than for Maliki.

    • How can you take any one seriously when they have a Twitter account Sheesh. Pros don’t Twitter they just act.
      Their just another spook created boogeyman to justify the police state. Fear is our guberments M.O. Without fear we couldn’t be manipulated into allowing the destruction of our liberties.
      Take that to the bank.

    • “With a zillion bucks for the NSA to spy on everyone, how did we not see “ISIS” coming?”

      The President assured us they were nothing to worry about, ISIS being just the ‘JV’ squad…

    • I hate to agree with a conspiracy theory but it’s starting to look like we created these guys.
      Someone in the west took the joke of “the Middle East needs a new warlord” too seriously. Probably enabled this thing to run until it got out of hand.

      They were thinking they’d get a replacement for Saddam. Someone to keep the noise down. Instead a new monster rose up, as tends to happen when you’re in the habit of tossing out money and guns to criminals while disarming the good folks.

      • great hypothesis, except for the part where it is totally wrong. which is all of it.

        ISIS existed before the US invaded Iraq.

        ISIS first gained territory in Syria, not Iraq.

        ISIS got a foothold in Iraq AFTER we adandoned Iraq.

        Bush blundered by invading Iraq. Obama blundered by abandoning Iraq to become a haven for ISIS on the west side and a wholly owned subsidiary of Iran on the east side.

        • As I tell people when ISIS in Iraq subject comes up: This is what happens when Bush invaded Iraq with little planning, and when Obama abandoned Iraq with no planning.

          But Assad has much to blame as well, since he practically allowed the insurgency to build up a network of fighters and resources during the Iraq War to funnel into Iraq. He didn’t think they would become a threat to him, until he started butchering protestors and side lining the so called moderate opposition groups during the Arab Spring.

  4. Sounds like a description of the Japanese in WWII. Sounds like they need the same treatment, not pussy-footing around the issue.

    • The only thing these savages understand is brute, unadulterated, and unyielding force. That is what self-anointed “Progressives” either do not or are simply unable to bring themselves to understand for reasons of vanity.

      If there was ever a greater reason for an armed and competent citizenry in the 21st century than to defend against zealotry and hate like this, I have not yet seen it.

      My only hope is that there are still MEN in America, and more than a few WOMEN along side them, that haven’t be pussified enough to make them unable to respond with the aggression and tenacity necessary to deal with animals like them should they ever pop their ugly little heads up.

      • Yeah, because going over there, killing a bunch of people, losing a bunch of our own, and leaving a mess behind will surely fix everything! We’ve only tried it so many times already.

        Seriously though, we need to stop fvcking around in that hell hole.

        • Did I ever advocate for interfering in things that we have no business stick our nose in the first place?

          No. There’s absolutely no whatsoever for you to have said that. At all.

          It’s because of that that ISIS exists in the first place. All I was saying, and did say quite clearly mind you, is that as citizens we need to be able to respond to any threats to pop their little heads up heads up on our soil.

  5. Yeah it’s a different MO from the mentally unstable, disaffected, maladaptive, “I’m – gonna – get – even – with – world – and – make – them – pay” mall / school / theater shooter. Those losers never go down fighting or go out in a blaze of glory. They just disconnect their brains because their greatest fear is living another day or being in pain for even a moment.

  6. Why is Farnam “frightened”?

    Sure, ISIS is a serious potential threat to the US, but not in the numbers and not with the weapons in the article.

    Kinda hard to get PKMs, RPGs, and satchel charges in any large quantities in the US.

    The most serious threat is from car bombs (the old, commonsense name isn’t complicated enough for JIEDDO, so we gotta call ’em VBIEDs now). Farnam’s M-4 don’t help much against car bomb in a crowded area.

    • You really think it’s that hard? We have literally THOUSANDS OF MILES of unguarded border territory and MILLIONS of square miles of untouched wilderness. Not to mention thousands of shipping containers going into and out of our ports every day; we can’t check all of it all the time. Not to mention the millions of illegal aliens–oops, I mean “undocumented workers” living in the US right under everybody’s noses…
      If you think it’s too hard to smuggle weapons into the US, you’re living in a fantasy world.

      • This brings me back to another comment I read a while back.

        Take, for example, the 1.6 million pounds of marijuana the DEA seized in 2010. That’s million, with an “m”, by the way. That’s just a smaller percentage of what actually did eventually make it market. I don’t have an exact fix on the number of arms and accoutrements that could fit into the space occupied by that much grass, but I’m willing to wager that it’s enough to arm at least a significant part of our criminal element here.

        Hell, the Charlie Hebdo attackers had a f***ing RPG for crying out loud. Or so we’ve been told anyway.

        • Don’t forget that the 1.6 million pounds of weed was headed for a market that wanted to buy it, going across the borders of a nation whose president used to smoke it.

      • For over 20 years the US has been subsidizing the hiring of foreign nationals, mostly from this region of the world and almost all Muslim, by US trucking companies to fill a driver shortage. THEY are pulling those containers and billions of pounds of dangerous goods throughout North America!

      • so you tell me why I can’t find a PKM and RPG, ’cause I’ve been wanting some of them for the 4th of July!

        Meh. Even if you smuggled in PKMs and RPGs, as soon as you displayed them you would provoke an immediate response from the authorities.

        I stand by my statement that car bombs are more likely to be used by terrorists to cause a mass casualty attack in the US than PKMs and RPGs.

    • The big thing people are getting wrong here is that ISIS is NOT Al Qaeda. They are not part of them, they are not partnered with them. In fact, they hate each other. ISIS is a political group, AQ is a terrorist group. AQ doesn’t take and hold territory. ISIS’s goal is to conquer and control SWA and establish a new Islamic state. The current primary goal of AQ is removing western influence from SWA, and part of their strategy is to attack western nations with the goal of hurting our economy and our moral (hence “terrorism”). Both are competing to build a caliphate.

      If ISIS and AQ wanted to use PKMs, AKs, RPGs, etc against the US mainland, they would’ve by now. Except they haven’t. So far it’s either homemade bombs or hijacked aircraft.

      Mumbai-style shooting rampages haven’t shown up in the US, I would give credit to our deterrence factor of high self-defense gun ownership rates. There is no credible evidence that any such attacks are coming anytime soon.

      • I know all about the rift between ISIS and AQ, and the ISIS imperative to create a caliphate. that doesn’t necessarily mean they won’t decide to launch (or inspire) terror attacks in the US.

      • I disagree. They are two sides to the same coin. Yes Al Qaeda and ISIS had a falling out, but it wasn’t due to ideologically, it was due to tactics. ISIS wants to butcher everyone and anyone, including fellow non-committed Muslims, to reach their goal of a Caliphate. Al Qaeda did do that in the beginning but figured car bombing a market full of civilians just to kill one or two patrolling Coalition, or Host Nation security forces was becoming a serious PR killer. Al Qaeda believed if they can just take out the corrupt leaders in these Arabic countries, the masses will naturally follow them. Both are also two different groups that formed under two different opportunities and places. Al Qaeda is known to set up base in Afghanistan during the intermediate rise of the Taliban, but some forget that they were actually in Africa prior to that, and were constantly looking for a place to set up shop. ISIS largely picked up strength during the brutal reprisals of the Assad regime against civilians and poorly equipped rebel opposition groups. As a result, ISIS never had the problem of finding territory to conquer or had problems of acquiring a proper revenue stream, ie taxes and oil.

        As for the lack of attacks against the U.S. homeland, there are several reasons for that. Number one, it’s just easier for either groups to attack U.S. interests abroad. Even back in WWII at the height of Imperial Japan’s power, why didn’t they attack the U.S. mainland after Pearl Harbor and the Aleutian Island campaign? Because it was just easier taking over U.S. controlled Philippines, U.S. supported China and the other motley chain of islands we had in our possession. Number two, despite the fact we have essentially a wide open border, it still takes time, money and planning to attack the U.S. Homeland. Even the 9/11 attacks took years for Al Qaeda to plan properly, and Bin Laden was initially hesitant to approve it, thinking the plan was not going to work. VBIEDs still need an established safehouse, money, experience, expertise, and equipment (especially explosives) to get up and running, something the chaos of war will provide handsomely. That car bomb attempt in time square would have gone off correctly if it the bomber had enough experience wiring up the bomb, instead of fizzling out like it did. ISIS is probable concentrating all it’s efforts on securing it’s little caliphate in Syria and Iraq before worrying about attacking the U.S. homeland, in no small part to the opposition of the Kurdish fighters.

    • Getting those weapons into the country would be about as hard as getting the millions of pounds of pot, coke, herion, etc that cross the boarder every year. Guess what, those weapons most likely are already here. I’m surprised we haven’t seen them used already.

      • we haven’t seen them used much in the US because they aren’t isn’t as easy to get them as you suggest, and more importantly, it isn’t easy to get them into a position to attack without provoking a response by authorities. Everbody would immediately know something is not right if dudes were lugging PKMs and RPGs.

        this is why car bombs are so dangerous: cars are ubiquitous.

      • Get their weapons here? Let me clue you in. First they’ll have to convince us to move some of our weapons somewhere else. The country’s already full of them. Even Winchester and Ruger are going to have start buying back old guns in order to sell new ones.

        I find the terror fears beyond absurd. 320,000,000 Americans. In a good month ISIS couldn’t kill a few thousand. What have we become that we fear such rabble and such losses? I’m embarrassed for my nation. I can understand people becoming apprehensive about local crime or our overweaning government that locks up thousands of Americans every working day. Arab terrorists? What a joke. We’ve got a bigger threat of having our houses snatched in civil forfeiture by an administration that openly finds returning U.S. soldiers a bigger terror risk than ISIS.

        The problems in the middle-east are political. We didn’t fight a war in Iraq. A war would involve a few hydrogen bombs and go home. We fought a struggle to affect political outcomes and incidentally to rebuild a large cadre of highly trained US soldiers, the outcome of the conflicts be damned.

        I enjoyed some of Farnham’s bits ten and twenty years ago. The fear-mongering lately about terrorists just seems the sign of nervous old age. He doesn’t need ISIS to justify a M4 in the car and another by his bed. We produce our own home grown riots and flash mobs, home invaders and car-jackers.

  7. So. Keep shooting until the target changes shape or bursts into flames. And then shoot some more.

  8. Umm gee wiz, this guy is comparing trained, well-equipped troops hopped up on massive doses of methamphetamine fighting a conventional war to untrained, unsupported lone wolf terrorist operators. Uh, yeah. Or rather, make that no.

    A lone wolf terrorist will attack some sort of public venue, not an individual in his home or bed. And if this fool gets out of his car carrying an M4, I suspect he may have more (flying lead) to worry about than some lone terrorist in the mall.

    • John Farnam is no fool. You obviously don’t know him

      It is best to learn from him rather than ridicule him

      • True, I do not know him. but after reading his exclamatory screed, I conclude that he is a paranoid mall ninja wannabe operator that i would prefer to never meet. One simply cannot compare the apples of well-trained and equipped militant militias in a foreign country to the oranges of some wannabe misfit with no military training or background carrying out a lone wolf attack. A large, well-equipped terrorist mission here would be hard to organize, hard to arm, and hard to execute. That attack will not be supported by a vast ammunition supply, rpgs, tanks, mortars and Grads. It will not have hundreds of fighters. It would indeed be a suicide mission, probably by a small cell of three to five attackers with semi-automatic rifles and handguns, i.e., no better armed than the average street gang. Or if it is another 9/11 attack, it will not matter how well any of us are armed.
        No, we cannot prevent any and all attacks, any more than we could prevent Sandy Hook or Aurora, but that does not mean we all need to run out and buy body armor and fill the trunks of our cars with an armory.

        • You conclude wrong. Farnam developed many of the self defense tactics/concepts we now consider “standard.” He is a military veteran and a pioneer of self defense training. He was one of the first to offer training to private citizens, even predating Ayoob.

        • And that makes him an expert on international affairs and Islamic militant political movements.

      • Rabbi, I’ve long had great respect for Farnham, his method of teaching, his general list of precepts which he used to keep on his website, his backing of lights and pepper spray as possible methods of defusing confrontations short of lethality, and so forth. All first rate. He certainly had, in his life, more contact with two-way shooting ranges than, for example, Jeff Cooper. That alone gave him credibility with me long ago.

        What is unsettling is to see his shift (at least in writing and appearances) from the down-to-earth defensives instructor to a man focused on terror wars abroad. I also notice a return to the military focus of his youth, something he fairly shed as he built his first-rate pistol-training and self- and home-defense focus post-Vietnam. He and I are contemporaries. I also had combat experience and two-way range practice for many months and in the same areas, plus Laos.

        I feel free to mark these changes, not as ridicule, but openly to express my disappointment. I don’t like the fear mongering based on foreign news when he does it (much and recently) any more than when our politicians do it (much and recently).

        On the other hand, I’m rather glad to see his much increased acceptance of the M4/AR design for self- car- and home-defense over the last decade. Good. I wish him well, but also wish he’d drop the “oh my god, terrorists!” line. It isn’t foreign terrorists that should be motivating men and women to take his and Vicki’s courses. It is the growing crew of shiftless punks and over-wrought race-war mongers we’ve grown here at home.

        I miss the old John Farnham.

  9. The US has waaaay too many nukes. I suggest we unilaterally disarm a little bit by getting rid of some of our older stock.

    On ISIS. And anyone who supports them.

    • “Please explain, exactly, how ISIS is a direct threat to the US mainland?”

      ISIS has over 400 million in hard currency-gold from an Iraqi bank they looted.

      The Russians have vast quantities of some really nasty nuclear waste, a lot of it in underground tanks at abandoned nuclear facilities.

      ISIS loads it into an airliner with a lot of conventional explosives. File a flight plan to the US and detonate it over the large city of their choice.

      Low cost, very high payoff.

      Iran might give ISIS one of their crude nukes.

      Load that into an airliner-cargo carrier. Nuke New York, Boston, Philly, etc…

    • So what’s stopping them? Why haven’t any other terrorist groups done this? Do you have evidence to back up that ISIS intends to carry out this plan?

      • “Do you have evidence to back up that ISIS intends to carry out this plan?”

        The fundamentalist jihadi have sworn to strike the west.

        I’m inclined to take them at their word on that.

        All these slickly produced sharia law executions they’re putting out?

        Recruitment purposes. Imagine them filming one at a mall they attack. How will that play to their target audience?

    • first of all, it was obviously a joke. second, reading is a fundamental skill, blaine – no where did i write we should nuke people that have nothing to do with isis.

  10. ISIS and the anti gun crowd are using the same techniques!

    Found myself swapping the names as I read and the article works, both ways.

    Is this food for thought or what?

  11. Watch the Charlie Hebdo video. They are not Navy Seals or Army Rangers or even Marine fire teams, but they are not wimps either. When they saw the Paris police car coming they stepped out of their rented Citroen, squared to the target, and fired. When on of them lost a tennis shoe, (real warriors wear boots, I’m just saying) they calmly stopped, picked it up and threw it in the car. One of them was good at tactical reloads, one was not. We will need to close to engage. As Josey Wales said “Get ready little lady, hell is coming to breakfast”.

    • Never a good idea to underestimate your opponent. Err on the side of caution and work under the mindset that they are at least as skilled as you are.

      • Never overestimate your opponent, either.

        This is where we need to apply Sun Tzu’s Art of War principle, “If you know [your enemy] and know yourself, you will not be imperiled in a hundred battles …”

        The more we know about ISIS, the better.

    • the attack on Charile Hebdo was pulled off by guys claiming allegiance to AQ Yemen, and the Kosher market was pulled off by a guy claiming allegience to ISIS who was friends with the Charile Hebdo guys.

      So despite Blaine’s idiotic posts, ISIS clearly poses a terror threat to the West.

  12. Some may think history started Sept 10, 2001, but the U.S. Gov has been dropping bombs pretty consistently over there since the first Iraq war, and don’t forget the leader of most of the politicians in DC from both gutters, Benjamin Netanyahu. It’s not your blue jeans or your rock n roll music ISIS hates, it’s the bombing of the middle east and the blind behind kissing of Isreal’s rear.

    • Exactly! You know what guys, if only we weren’t so mean to ISIS, we could all just be friends. I’m thinking about starting a new non-profit organization called called Americans Against the Bullying of Our ISIS Friends, or AATBOOISISF for short. This new organization will work towards the critically important initiative of providing real and sustainable programs designed to mitigate bullying and meanness against ISIS freedom fighters. Please donate now!

    • What a load. Stalin, Mao, Hitler, and Pol Pot take exception to you dispertion on their murderous productivity.

    • you don’t know what you are talking about. read the Atlantic article about what ISIS wants.

      If it was as simple as you claim, then why is Hezbolla fighting ISIS?

      • Hezbola is Iran’s proxy in Lebanon, to fight Israel. Syria is nothing but an Iranian pawn at this point. The White House favors Iran and despises the political world of Saudi Arabia. It isn’t so complicated.

        “Yes” to DG’s advice that Americans read beyond the Koran into the early history and extended dogma of Islam.

        As for domestic weapons training: There isn’t going to be much banning of AR’s in most of the country as the politicians start to get the message and the fear. Sure, let SF and NYC become ‘not many guns’ zones. That’s their problem. Rich bankers have to hide out somewhere, afraid of the peasants, and having nightmares about recently discharged Spec 4’s. A tall NYC condo building seems about good from my point of view….. “Live in a Target? Be a Target.” But when they find themselves with unarmed masses and cops who can’t shoot straight, don’t come whining to PA and AZ and GA and WI for help, We’ll be busy with our own home turf, and so will most US soldiers.

        • Even an informed read of the quran is telling (understanding the chronology of the writings is vital to establishing current precedence).

        • I agree with your statements, but they are incomplete. Hezbollah had done more than just fight Israel as Iran’s proxy. They pulled off terror attacks in Buenos Aries and London, for example.

          They have probably been the most successful against ISIS in Syria. One of the dangers of ISIS is that since we aren’t crushing them, Iran is forced to do so, and is there by expanding both their power and territorial control and Hezbolla’s.

          OTOH, I do like watching the videos of Hezbollah literally annihilating ISIS fighters.

    • @ Omer: The West has been dropping bombs there since the 1920’s. Since Trenchard and Churchill decided to demonstrate, in British Mesopotamia (that’s IRAQ for the less historically inclined), that you could put down the colonial rabble by dropping explosives on their heads from planes,.

  13. One thing missing from the Isis description is that they are extremely well funded. They bring in millions every month through oil sales

    • I suspect they are also getting funding from a government somewhere. At least for their original seed money.

        • No, I’m sorry, your response is not in the form of a question, the correct answer would be “What is Saudi Arabia? Alex.”

        • “Saudi Arabia.”

          I doubt that.

          Iran and ISIS are buddies. Saudi Arabia hates Iran, and ISIS wants to seize Mecca and Medina.

          Saudi Arabia announced a few months back that they were the ones to bankroll A.Q. Kahn’s development of the Pakistan nuke.

          Even going as far as imply that Pakistan has a nuke that Saudi Arabia has already paid in full, waiting to be picked up.

          At roughly the same time the Saudis ‘leaked’ that they have granted Israel overfly rights with AWACS and tanker support if they were going to attack Iran’s nuke program.

          The enemy of my enemy makes for strange bedfellows.

          • Iran and ISIS are NOT buddies. Shia militias and the Iranian revolutionary guards are battling ISIS.

            ISIS views Shiites as apostates and executes them.

      • Hell they picked up something like 500+M$ worth of gold and such out of the Mosul banks. You can bet they are shopping around for a nuke.

        • Who? The Iraqi Sunni NCO’s and Officers that got pissed on by Jerry Bremer when we did Saddam. That’s the source of their few pilots, artillery experts, tank drivers, and so forth. This is old news. It just doesn’t get into the news much.

    • Bingo! I have been saying that for awhile. ISIS does not exist in a vacuum. They have to be able to unload their loot and they need supplies to continue the war effort. This is a front in the war.

  14. Thank God we’ve been working tirelessly for 20 years to destabilize and overthrow the secular regimes keeping a lid on this jihadi insanity!

    • Oh, please. Mubarak, Gadhafi, and Saddam would’ve probably all died of old age/syphilis by a few years from now anyway, kicking off this whole mess, regardless. Iran was the most stable power player, so they would’ve expanded their hand. The only ‘wildcard’ was the US finally committing after a decade of dicking around blowing up radar transmitters in the desert. I’m sure it was totally accidental, but we actually did kick off the inevitable Arab Spring, on our terms/time table, but we were so preoccupied with leaving the arena we couldn’t influence it. Had we supported dictators favorable to us (Libya & Egypt) things would have petered out into the same or better situation as before the revolts (as opposed to anarchy and fascism, respectively), and worked assertively to topple those unfavorable (Iran and then Syria), Iran would be greatly marginalized and isolated by now, and the US would have far more options (access, if not allies) to address future problems in the region.

      But no. We basically took every course of action imaginable to expand Iranian hegemony in the region while denying our access & influence. I assume because the White House thinks the Persians will be better stewards, or something (n-th time’s the charm, I’m sure). Why, it’s almost as if they already have a nuke and are blackmailing our spineless leaders with it.

  15. “The US government is still the champion mass murderer in the entire world, ISIS can only dream of reaching the top echelon of bloodletting.”

    Blain, the level of retarded in you is staggering. Truly epic.

    “Mass killings occurred under some Communist regimes during the twentieth century with an estimated death toll numbering between 85 and 100 million.”

    What’s the US number and cite your source.

  16. to grindstone: huh? I never called people opposing the M855 ban “America haters”. I opposed the ban!

  17. i dont really see the point in this article unless someone proposed that they would kill themselves rather than get caught. kinda shows me john doesn’t seem to know much about islam. suicide is the ultimate sin in islam.

  18. Take a look at one of Iran’s proxies, Hezbolla, ambushing 200 ISIS/al nusra fighters.

    There are a lot of dangerous groups in that corner of the world. And Hezbolla has carried out larger terror attacks abroad than ISIS has so far. Still, I’m glad to see SOMEONE whacking ISIS where it counts: on the ground.

  19. We created ISIS. We removed a good leader (Saddam) and are doing our darnedest to overthrow another good one (Assad) and presto! Power vacuum. Then you throw in the fact that the whole region, rightly or wrongly sees all Weaterners, led by the USA, as infidel invaders who have been calling the shots and exporting our culture to their land for about a century now, and you have a recipe for a lot of idealistic “disaffected youth.”

    Then you factor in what are euphemistically called “regional rivalries,” in that the Saudis, Qatar, UAE are all terrified of Iran, whom they regard as heretical dogs and which has always had an avowed goal of overthrowing their monarchies, and the picture becomes clearer. Saudi money + power vacuum + anti western sentiment = ISIS, a very convenient way for the radical Sunni states to wage a proxy war against Iran and Syria.

    • ISIS existed before we overthrew Saddam. We didn’t do a whole lot to overthrow Assad.

      Invading Iraq didn’t create the wahhabi desire for a caliphate. but we did create a power vacuum when we abandoned Iraq.

      It is now clear that the invasion of Iraq was a mistake, but so was abandoning it. But to say “we created ISIS” is utter sophomoric nonsense.

        • Well, I tend to agree. The Obama administration didn’t do much to get Maliki to be more inclusive, and the Obama administration abandoned Iraq under the pretext that we couldn’t come to a SOFA with Iraq. As if.

          And then ISIS filled the vacuum. And now the Iranians and their proxies are the only ones fighting ISIS on the ground.

  20. I personally don’t fear ISIS like Mr. Farnham but I do feel the sense of rage due to the anti-Christian atrocities. I’d love a pound of ISIS flesh but the US needs to adopt a walk softly and carry a big stick again. Its not our fight.

  21. And if you want some more insight, Graeme Wood has written probably one of the most comprehensive pieces on what drives ISIS – what it is they hope to acheive and how they believe it needs to unfold.

    A poigniant take-away is this:

    “The Islamic State, also known as the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS), follows a distinctive variety of Islam whose beliefs about the path to the Day of Judgment matter to its strategy, and can help the West know its enemy and predict its behavior. Its rise to power is less like the triumph of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt (a group whose leaders the Islamic State considers apostates) than like the realization of a dystopian alternate reality in which David Koresh or Jim Jones survived to wield absolute power over not just a few hundred people, but some 8 million.”

    Read the whole thing. Its long but worth it.

    • exactly right. What many people don’t know is that ISIS is very brutal to what they call apostates – e.g., muslims who theynfeel are not ideologically pure enough. this includes all Shia.

      this is part of the reason why Hezbolla and ISIS are fighting against each other (and Hezbolla are much better armed and more lethal)

      Anyone who says ISIS only exists because the US committed this or that “crime” doesn’t have a clue what they are talking about.

      • To be fair to ISIS, they can point to unequivocal textual basis in the Islamic texts (which is not just the Qur’an, BTW) for the basis of their agenda.

        Remember: In Islam, Muhammed is without sin, and you can do no wrong in emulating the Prophet’s life. When you read the Sira, you find out just how bloody the life of Muhammed was.

        • Yep. And until US politicians can wrap their brains around that and openly state it, no amount of firearms training is going to affect our preparedness. Preparation for war requires clear-headed knowledge of the enemy. Still, we’ve got sufficient other reasons to keep and bear arms…with skill.

  22. Close our borders and deport everyone who immigrated here in the last 75 years and their children and ISIS ceases to be a problem for the United States.

    • And deport them to Iraq. 25million Mexican/CentralAmerican Catholic groundkeepers/poolboys would do a lot for the place.

  23. Folks ought to read up on ISIS before they opine about. in addition to the excellent Atlantic article “what ISIS wants”, some other informative articles include:

    Some food for thought. “AQI” was somewhat under control until the US abandoned Iraq. After the US left, ISIS filled the powervacuum. Iran stepped in to help the Shias. We now have a metastisizing Shia-Sunni conflict spreading. The most likely outcome in Iraq is a Shia victory and the establishment of Shia terror groups just as brutal and impervious to reason as ISIS. The situation is complicated, and DOES pose serious threats to the US and the West, because both groups have committed terror attacks against the West before (Sunni more so than Shia). As more Sunni ISIS fighters return to their homes in Europe, and as the Shia militias become somewhat more radical and violent, terror against the West becomes more likely. Couple that with a Iranian nuclear program that has the potential to spark a nuclear arms race between the Shias and the Sunnis, and the situation becomes extremely dangerous for the world and a significant portion of the world’s oil supply.

    I’m not a zionist, my opinions are based on what I see as the US’s interests. The invasion of Iraq turned out to be a bad thing for the US, but abandonment of Iraq was even worse for the US.

  24. Sarcasm is pointless in this discussion folks.
    I agree with pretty much of Farnham as said.
    It is inevitable that ISIS will eventually strike on CONUS.
    The fear used to be that the violence was going to come from the
    “radical right-wingers”, of the “vast right-wing conspiracy”.

    It wasn’t long ago that the Fusion Centers were targeting Libertarian,
    Tea Party, Ron Paul supporters.

    Some of the American converts to ISIS and other radical Islam have been tracked and caught conspiring, but eventually they will start to get through.
    The Boston bombers identity was handed to the FBI on a plate, but they ignored it.

    Some people think the Boston bombing was the “Pearl Harbor”.
    I don’t think we have had our Pearl Harbor, yet.

    The media is pretty much asleep to this threat and will play down and deflect any attention to this threat because it does not fit the narrative of their agenda.

    These ISIS guys are not like the typical “active shooter” profile.
    They will go after soft targets.

    They will not be suicidal and try to “take a stand”.

    Whose to say they may not employee a hit and run scenario?
    If they do that it will be next to impossible to catch them.

    If they target an elementary school, who is to say they will not
    plan to run on to the next one?
    Or have co-ordinated attacks on multiple targets?

    This is the same situation that Israel had to deal with until the armed all teachers.
    Unfortunately, the public’s thinking tends to be reactionary and will always be in the game to playing catch-up until they become proactive.
    The best way to keep bloodshed to a minimum is to prepare.
    Do Risk Assessments and plan accordingly.
    Put your head in the sand and we will all suffer.
    We all can do something to prepare.

    Aside from all guns and ammo and combat training, are you prepared to render first-aid?
    How many of you carry first-aid kits?
    I don’t want to have to get in shooting situation.
    I am not a warrior.
    I am not a hero.
    But I know how to patch a wound.

    • Everyday carry of long guns would be advised if the threat is realistic. With a nation this size, I am more concerned about government terrorism on a day to day basis than I am threats from ISIS. Either way, I support those who choose to carry long guns whilst going about their business and recreation. It works against either threat.

  25. I suggest people start learning a lot more about Islam, because without doing so, you can’t and won’t understand groups like ISIS/ISIL/IS/etc vs. AQ, vs. Hezzboallah.

    For those who have done their homework on Islam, here’s a quick distinction: ISIS is worried about the “near enemy,” and AQ about the “far enemy.” They’re both interested in bringing about the end of days (as they see it), but they’re working for the same result from different angles.

    What sets ISIS apart from prior terrorist groups is that they’re seeking to form a nation-state in the middle east, a recreation of the caliphates of prior centuries, when Islam was ascendant and truly dominated a large land mass. They have the funding to accomplish many things, and the west is now currently led by complete incompetents (Europe) or people who are sympathetic to the Islamist cause (Obama).

    I would expect to see AQ franchisees pull a Mumbai-like op somewhere in the west soon enough, and their level of success will depend on the incompetence of the political and law enforcement leadership.

    ISIS would surprise me if they did, but I suspect that they would be far more competent in their execution if they did choose to do so.

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