Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

6/27/2014 (8 months ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Islamic fighters may succeed well beyond our imaginings.

Thirty thousand men. Thirty thousand battle-tested, hardened combat veterans, religiously motivated, disciplined guerrilla fighters are not under the command of ISIS commanders in Syria and Iraq following an alliance between ISIS and the al-Nursa brigade. The situation has just escalated.

Leaders of the formerly rival factions seal their alliance with a handshake.

Leaders of the formerly rival factions seal their alliance with a handshake.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

6/27/2014 (8 months ago)

Published in Middle East

Keywords: ISIS, al Nursa, al Qaeda, Iraq, Assyria, Iran


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Several media sources are now affirming that the al-Qaeda backed al-Nursa brigade of 15,000 fighters has allied with the 15,000 ISIS fighters to aid in the formation of an Islamic caliphate in Syria and Iraq. 

Previously the two groups were reportedly at opposition as ISIS was disavowed by al-Qaeda for being too extreme. Now, the two groups have allied putting 30,000 battle-tested, fanatical guerrilla warriors in the terrorist camp under a unified command.

Let us pray for peace in this critical region.


Opposing them are possibly hundreds of thousands of poorly equipped, barely trained, Iraqi conscripts and volunteers. In Syria, a beleaguered and exhausted army holds its line against the terrorists. Pushed out of the conflict is the Free Syrian Army, an organization that simply wanted to free Syria from the oppressive rule of Bashir al Assad.

Now the people of the region are most likely to face life under a modern Islamic caliphate with ties to al-Qaeda and a special hatred of Israel and the United States.

Photographs of the leaders of both brigades have emerged, showing the men shaking hands and embracing.

This situation is eminently serious. Iraq no longer has the military capability to oppose a force of 30,000 insurgent fighters. These men are well-equipped, well-financed veterans of the brutal conflict in Syria. The Iraqi army has numbers, but that's about it. The absolute lack of training and equipment means those troops will be largely thrown away in any pitched battle.

Iraqi airpower will be a big help, but airstrikes have limited value against guerrilla fighters who can coalesce and disperse at the sound of approaching aircraft. If they can get their hands on credible surface-to-air equipment, then that calculus could also change for the worse.

The United States will need to have an interest in the region because the members of ISIS and al-Nursa have no interest in peaceful engagement with the rest of the world. These fighters believe in conversion by the sword, and are fighting to spread Islam around the globe. Although they are not invincible, their brutal tactics make up with fear what they lack in numbers. They are powerful out of proportion to their numbers.

It is likely the world will have to fight them man-to-man at some point if we are unwilling to tolerate the formation of a new Islamic state in the ancient lands of Nineveh.

Indeed, over 26 centuries ago the Assyrians formed an empire in that very region and dominated the known world with their military. Their chief weapon was fear. Anyone who opposed them would pay steeply as the Assyrians thought nothing of torturing and murdering opponents, including women and children. They made spectacles of such brutality and boasted about it in their writings and artwork.

It's difficult to avoid seeing the parallels. These terrorists are conquering lands and ruling them by fear, posting videos and pictures reveling in their brutality.

The ancient Assyrians were eventually conquered by a coalition of states, especially the Medes and Chaldean peoples, civilizations which occupied the present-day locations of Iraq and Iran.

Likewise, a similar coalition may be needed to oust these would-be neo-Assyrians from the same region. However, the effort will be both bloody and expensive. The other nations of the world may have to help. As ISIS and al-Nursa enjoy successes, their reputation and power will only grow. The world will have to prepare a way to deal with these people or choose to tolerate their presence and aggression for years to come.

We can rest certain they will not be still, nor will they abide the existence of those different from them, making it only a matter of time before they become a problem for everybody.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for March 2015
Universal:
Scientists: That those involved in scientific research may serve the well-being of the whole human person.
Evangelization: Contribution of women: That the unique contribution of women to the life of the Church may be recognized always.



Comments


More Middle East

A miracle in the modern age! Conjoined twins successfully separated in Saudi Arabia Watch

Image of After nine hours in surgery, two Yemeni boys, who were born as conjoined twins, will be able to live normal lives.

By Matt Waterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

After nine hours of surgery, two baby boys, born as conjoined twins, have a chance at living normal lives. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The two boys, from Yemen, were born connected at the torso, and shared both their large and small intestines, their genitals, ... continue reading


Young boy horrifically murdered on tape - surprisingly, NOT BY ISIS? (WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT) Watch

Image of

By Abigail James (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A newly horrifying video, showing a nine-year-old boy being murdered by militia, has been publicly released. However, this video does not show ISIS militants as the perpetrators. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - This graphic video, said to be filmed near Tikrit, ... continue reading


Was a girl really stoned to death for having a Facebook account? Watch

Image of Stones used in an execution are not to be too large or too small. They must be the right size to cause painful injury and eventually death, but not immediately. Suffering is part of the punishment and deterrent.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Two weeks ago, the Islamic State stoned to death a Syrian girl for adultery, despite the fact she never touched another person. Her actual crime? Opening a Facebook account. The report is controversial however because it has not been confirmed by outside sources and ... continue reading


ISIS RELEASES 19 kidnapped Assyrian Christians but what about the other 200? Watch

Image of

By Abigail James (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Nineteen of the more than 200 Assyrian Christians kidnapped by ISIS in north-eastern Syria have been set free. Taken from their homes in February, the fate and whereabouts of the remaining Assyrian Christians is still unknown. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Those ... continue reading


Emails from a MADMAN: 'Jihadi John's' horrific emails to reporter reveal his instability Watch

Image of Mohammed Emwazi as a young lad -- unaware of the chill he would bring the world in his later years.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

"Jihadi John," the Islamist State terrorist connected to at least six executions of Western journalists broadcast online is now identified as former London resident Mohammed Emwazi. People who knew the elusive murderer are now coming forward with insights on ... continue reading


(WARNING: Graphic Photos) ISIS throws another 'gay' man off rooftop to die Watch

Image of

By Abigail James (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

ISIS has, once again, resorted to throwing a man to his death off a high building. With a large crowd witnessing the procedures, the Islamic State carries out a guilty charge to a man accused of being a "child of lot." LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - According to ... continue reading


Destroying culture: New Islamic State video shows priceless statues beheaded Watch

Image of The five-minute video shows men going at statue after statue, knocking them to the ground and destroying them with sledgehammers and jackhammers.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

In another atrocity perpetrated against world history and culture, members of Islamic State are shown destroying priceless works of art in a museum in Mosul, Iraq. Some statues are beheaded in the manner of IS' squirming victims. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic ... continue reading


ISIS' leading man, the masked Jihadi John's true identity revealed Watch

Image of

By Abigail James (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The man behind the mask in brutal ISIS execution videos, known as Jihadi John, is assumed to be a British man named Mohammed Emwazi. Jihadi John appears in the beheading videos of American hostages, James Foley and Steven Sotloff and Britan hostages, Alan Henning and ... continue reading


Islamic State butchers 15 captured Christians, calls for Muslims to watch murder of 350 more Watch

Image of Islamic State fighters captured almost 400 Syrian Christians, and are reported to have executed 15.

By Matt Waterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

New reports from Syria reveal that the Islamic State may have murdered 15 of the more than 300 Christians it had captured earlier this week. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - A Catholic humanitarian group, Aid to the Church in Need, issued a report that the 15 of ... continue reading


Saudi Arabian man sentenced to death after rebelliously tearing up copy of Koran Watch

Image of Protesters simulate a flogging in front of the Saudi embassy in Washington DC in protest against the 10-year prison sentence given to a blogger.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Saudi Arabia has long been a friend to the United States and its allies, a very important hedge against militant Islamist groups and nations in the Middle East. This alignment does have limits - Western diplomats are expected to address the kingdom's many human ... continue reading


All Middle East News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Jeremiah 18:18-20
18 'Come on,' they said, 'let us concoct a plot ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 31:5-6, 14, 15-16
5 to your hands I commit my spirit, by you have I ... Read More

Gospel, Matthew 20:17-28
17 Jesus was going up to Jerusalem, and on the road ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for March 4th, 2015 Image

St. Casimir
March 4: Casimir grew up in a world where his life was not his own. As a ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter