Global iGuerilla Update

Islamic State Foreign Legion

Thursday, May 21, 2015

The Islamic State Foreign Legion

The Islamic State has devoted a great deal of time and energy attracting and fielding its ‘Foreign Legion’. The imported Foreign Fighters reinforce the IS claims of being THE leader of all the worlds Muslims wand that they rule the true Caliphate. The 15,000 to 17,000 foreigns strengthen IS legitimacy while generating a latent threat to their home countries.

On a practical level, the foreign fighters bring a plethora of new skill sets and expertise not resident in the region. They provide IS with a built in sleeper cell capability who can return home to serve as martyrs, recruiters, logistic supporters or operational facilitators.

The reports are clear that there is no set template for who joins. Some are lifelong Muslims and some are new converts; some are thrill seekers and some are professionals and the majority have prison records. In many regards, they are a lot like their French predecessors who were accused of being misfits, masochists and sadists.

In 1835 the French Foreign in Algeria was ambushed and routed at the Macta River by Abdul Qadir. Ten percent of their troops were killed and their commander was recalled to France. The Islamic State Foreign Legion needs to have their own Macta moment. Until then, the west needs to wither stop the bleeding or exploit the open door.

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–Peter J. Schifferle PhD, Lt Colonel.(ret) Professor, School of Advanced Military Studies U.S. Army.

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