The Islamic State is a global terror organization that has claimed more than 1,000 lives worldwide and is the most lethal terrorist group on the planet.
But in some ways, the group has largely avoided the spotlight of international law and is largely hidden from the world’s media.
The group, which also calls itself the Islamic Emirate of Iraq and the Levant (Isil), has not only been able to launch attacks on the world, but to do so without the threat of being captured or killed.
Its ideology is rooted in Sunni Islam and has been adopted by al-Qaida and other terrorist groups worldwide.
The Islamic Emirates of Iraq, Syria, and Libya have also launched attacks on their own.
In a new article published in The Lad, Iain McBride, a researcher at the British Security Research Institute, explores the group’s network and its connections to other terrorist organizations.
McBride points to the group as a potential threat to Britain.
He also notes that the Islamic Emirates is not just a group of radical jihadists, but is also a major facilitator for many of the most dangerous Islamist groups around the world.
The first three months of 2017 saw a record number of foreign fighters leave to join Islamic State, according to the UK’s Home Office.
The number of British citizens who have travelled to Syria and Iraq to join the group jumped from 8,500 in June 2017 to 11,400 in December, the same month the group released a video that called for its followers to “go and fight for Allah and jihad.”
McBride describes this as a “new, worrying trend.”
In this article, McBride explains how the Islamic group’s leadership is not only hiding behind an elaborate network of local mosques and mosques in its territories, but also that its members are increasingly recruiting from the West.
The group’s leaders have not only hidden the organization’s links to al-Qaeda, but have also tried to avoid the spotlight.
McBride notes that IS has managed to use social media and video messaging apps to recruit foreign fighters in Britain.
The IS-inspired propaganda video was released in April, and McBride says the group “has been working for several years to build a social media presence in the UK, where they have made it clear that they are not going to hide the group behind mosques.”
According to McBride and other experts, the IS-led network of social media posts is a significant reason why IS has been able “to maintain its dominance in a highly centralized environment.”
This, McBrides argues, has meant that IS is able to recruit from a wide variety of backgrounds and communities, including young Britons who have never seen or heard of al-Qa’ida, European immigrants who have not experienced a major terrorist attack, and members of the British public who are not interested in the extremist ideology of the group.
But the IS network is also an extension of the global Islamist network.
McBride says that IS’s social media strategy is an extension, rather than a departure, of the network established by al Qaeda in the 1990s.
As the IS group became more effective, McBrien says, its leaders began to target British citizens, particularly Muslims from non-Muslim minority communities.
“It is a question of whether or not the Islamic emirate of the caliphate is the caliphate that it is today,” he writes.
IS has been building its influence in Britain and elsewhere, and now, according, is seeking to replicate its strategy by using social media to recruit new members, as well as recruit converts to its ideology.
In March, the London Bridge terror attack was carried out by an IS sympathizer, who had previously been recruited by the group to kill people in the U.K. The attack, in which a British national died and dozens more were wounded, was carried in an attack on a bus carrying British tourists in central London.
When it comes to the role of British Muslims, McBriansays the group may have adopted a more conservative approach in its strategy.
“It appears to be more a response to the increasing Islamization of the country and the perceived threat of a radicalization of British youth,” he said.
It is not clear, however, whether the Islamic groups tactics have been effective in controlling the young British people that have left for IS.
Isis is currently recruiting in Britain via Skype.
McBreeys article concludes that, “It is likely that this is the first time that the IS leadership has tried to recruit in this way.
If that is the case, it could have a significant effect on the trajectory of the IS caliphate and the spread of its ideology.”