Friday, June 03, 2016

The Rally Point is Shrinking

It seemed that ISIL was building up Libya as a bastion to retreat to in case Caliphate Prime in Iraq and Syria goes down. The jihadis may need another back-up plan soon.

Libyan forces seem to be compressing ISIL:

Meanwhile the campaign against ISIL in Sirte is showing progress with anti-ISIL forces moving closer to Sirte and surrounding the city to cut ISIL off from supplies and reinforcements. ...

ISIL casualties are unknown but refugees from Sirte indicate there are fewer ISIL men there and it is believed that ISIL strength in Libya has dropped by over a third so far this year. As they have done in Syria, Iraq Afghanistan and elsewhere harsh ISIL rule has enraged many of the locals. In Sirte ISIL punishes or executes people for minor infractions of what ISIL considers proper Islamic lifestyle. ISIL definitely believes that if you can’t be loved by your subjects than fear is an acceptable substitute.

This is good.

But really, there is no excuse for this being a really tough job. While it is tough to defeat jihadis when they fight as insurgents and terrorists, it should be a relatively simple thing to do to deprive them of control of the territory that they hold now in Syria, Iraq, and Libya.

A decent army will beat scream-and-leap tactics (that's a Kzin reference) every time. The main question is whether in defeating them in battle they are killed in large numbers to really cripple them or simply scattered so they can fight primarily as insurgents and terrorists.

Of course, finding a decent army to do the butt kicking is the problem. Assad hasn't found one in numbers sufficient to regain control of all of Syria from the many rebels who hold territory. So far Iraq has not, either. And Libya is still a territory in search of a government that can mobilize all the competing militias that resist ISIL into a force that can finally reclaim their territory.

And it would help if the Moslem world would finally reject the Islamist ideology that breeds jihadis.

It's a Long War.