The Pentagon has released a map which displays how much Iraqi territory is being taken back from ISIS. The gains being made are being done so by Iraqi security forces and the power of the coalition air forces. The U.S. department of Defense states that the conflict and territory will change hands due to “daily fluctuations in battle lines.”
Afzal Ashraf, a counterinsurgency specialist and a consultant at the Royal United Services Institutes is helping to decode what the data on the maps really means. He states that although ISIS has suffered many losses, the losses seem to be coming around the edge of the territory. He describes the efforts against ISIS as timid pushes against the front lines instead of attacks that aim to break them up by attacking them from the center. He explains that in order to make a significant impact against ISIS, a military philosophy needs to be applied that would use massive air strikes that would destroy main supply routes and disrupt their command and control so the so they can cause a more rapid collapse. Unfortunately, this kind of attack requires much more high tech capabilities than the Iraqis have.
ISIS is losing but it is at a slower pace than it could be. To distract from their losses, ISIs will make a push on Ramadi because they have a lot of support in that area. A success in this area will be huge for them because it will make it seem like they are still firmly in control and open the door to recruitment. ISIS is spreading terror through fear by the killing of refugees and destruction of ancient statues but, on the battlefield, they are losing the war.
With this data and analysis of the data, I believe that everyone knows what needs to be done to eradicate the terrorists group, one and for all. If the powers that be can work together and come up with an attack or strike with sufficient force, ISIS could be a thing of the past. If we know what they are doing and why they are doing it, there is no reason that we cannot stop them.