Foreign Policy - ISIS

By: Ashley Burgess, Drew Smith, and Colin Echols

Who is ISIS?

ISIS is the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. They have seized land from northern Syria to central Iraq. The group was created in 2004 in Iraq as a Western militant group devoted to establishing an independent Islamic state. ISIS seized control of Raqqa, eastern Syria, which controls more than half of Syria’s oil assets. ISIS is demanding that Muslims across the world to swear allegiance to their leader, Ibrahim Awad Ibrahim al-Badri al-Samarrai, and move towards the territory thats under control. In 2004 the group was originally just the Islamic State in Iraq (ISI) but in April of 2013 the merged their force with Syria to make ISIS. There is somewhere between 20,000-32,000 fighters within ISIS but 70% of them joining out of fear. ISIS members have an extreme interpretation of the Sunni Islam and consider themselves the only true believers. They are against anyone who doesn’t meet the standards of “true” muslims.

Power Vacuum

  1. What is a power vacuum? A situation when a government has no identifiable central authority, or that someone has lost control of something and no one has replaced them.
  2. How was ISIS able to grow to the size and scope they are now? The ongoing civil war in Syria played a key role in ISIS’s revival. It allowed them t hold on to territory and to build up weaponry and money. With being in eastern Syria, ISIS has secures a huge cashflow from the oilfields. ISIS relies on taxes, selling electricity, and exporting oil to fund themselves. They are also very threatening and saying if muslims don’t join forces with them then they will be killed because they aren’t “true” muslims. Only 30% of their force actually are the forces behind all this while 70% joined out of fear.
  3. What are the factors that led to this formation? The factors are their religion. They believe that they are swearing to the allegiance of their leader and to move to a central location. They are also a group of muslims that have a an interpretation of the Koran, their sacred book, that tells them to kill anyone that threatens their religion.

Sources

Interviews:

Debbie Burgess:

"I find this situation heartbreaking and I know it is very complicated and there is no easy solution when dealing with terrorist. Whether international terrorism or local mentally disturbed individuals, it is almost impossible to eliminate these tragic massive killings when the killer has full intentions of sacrificing their own life.

As far as us in America. I do believe a percentage of the American population have grown up believing it is their right to be safe and that government is at fault if anything bad happens to us. This is unrealistic. We are blessed to live in such a country that has been so safe for years. I believe our government does everything possible to keep us safe, but there are no guarantees or ability to eliminate all threats.

I do feel that we should by sympathetic to refugees from these terrorist countries, but that doesn’t mean we need put everyone in our country in danger. We can financially help with refugees and possible offer an isolated and controlled environment to house these individuals. This should be a drastic improvement from their current situation. I do not feel we should allow massive amounts of refugees into our country to live intermingled with all other citizens since the ISIS movement has proved that many of these people appear to be refugees and have been training for years to attack others.

This is just a terrible situation and we must turn to God for guidance and peace and direction."


Shannan Smith:

Isis is a terrorist group that needs to be controlled, there where thinking is dangerous. I think that we should send troops in along with other countries to take out the groups. Bombing is not working

Own opinion

I think that the United States needs to close the border. I think we also need to up the security to make sure that we are protected. We need to make sure that anyone from ISIS can not get into the United States. I believe that we need to provide better background checks on people before allowing them into the country. No one should be denied coming to our country based on religion but a thorough background check needs to be done on everyone trying to come in. As for refugees, I don’t think citizens should be obligated to take them in. We should provide warehouses or any kind of shelter we can for them and help them financially while keeping an eye to make sure our country is safe. I believe we should send troops to the middle east but we need a strong plan before doing so. We need to talk with other countries and come up with a plan of action so we can go in and try to eliminate the group as fast as possible. We just got out of war in Iraq so we don’t want to go into another huge war and lose thousands of troops therefore we need to make sure before we go in, we know exactly what we’re doing.