Not Finished Yet: A Report on ISIS-Related Incidents

ISIS’ heyday may seem long gone. There are no sensational headlines nor prolific attacks and they continue to lose territory in Syria. As comforting as this thought is, it may be too soon to tell. While successful counter-insurgency operations hinder ISIS’ ability to organize, recent evidence suggests the group’s leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, is still alive and at large. A report titled “Terror Gone Viral: Overview of the 243 ISIS-Linked Incidents Targeting the West” issued by the U.S. House Committee on Homeland Security details the scope of ISIS’ activity by providing data on plots and attacks planned by the terrorist organization. The report also provides evidence as to al-Baghdadi’s continued activity.

This report makes a few key findings including:

  • “ISIS and its adherents have been linked to 142 incidents—arrests, plots and attacks —targeting Westerners or the West over the last two years”
  • “Cumulatively, over the 2014 to 2018 period covered by the Terror Gone Viral reports, ISIS has been linked to 243 incidences, averaging five terrorist incidents per month”
  • “Over the last two years, the number of ISIS-inspired attacks has gone-up to 63 percent”
  • “22 teenagers or younger who were linked to ISIS incidents”
  • “14 ISIS-connected plots and attacks reviewed by the Committee involving refugee and asylum seekers”

The report also notes that the United States has a longer fight ahead of it to truly defeat the threat of ISIS. Curtailing ISIS’ online presence and continuing pressure of their territorial holds is crucial to counter ISIS.

More information on terrorism can be found in the HSDL Featured Topic on Global Terrorism and Domestic Terrorism.

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