A former Guantanamo detainee known as Jamal al Harith (formerly Ronald Fiddler) launched a suicide attack with a vehicle borne improvised explosive device (VBIED) south of Mosul earlier this week. He is at least the second former Guantanamo detainee to launch a suicide attack in or around Mosul on behalf of the Islamic State and its predecessor organization.
On Monday, the State Department listed Ali Da’amoush and Mustafa Mughniyeh, both part of Hezbollah’s senior leadership, as specially designated global terrorists.
Along with Iran, Hezbollah helped the PMF “with training and planning, and with weapons and equipment” to the Popular Mobilization Forces with the knowledge of Iraq’s prime minister, according to Abu Mahdi al Muhandis.
Photos have emerged of Qassem Soleimani, the commander of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Qods Force, in Aleppo, Syria. Forces allied with the Syrian government declared victory this past week.
The establishment of Iraq’s Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF) is an extension of Iran’s plan to export the revolution, which keeps war against Sunni extremists from reaching the country’s borders, a senior adviser to the commander of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Qods Force argues.
Aleppo is on the verge of falling to the pro-Assad coalition. A diverse range of Syrian and foreign militias, backed by Russian airpower, have contributed to this success.
According to CENTCOM, Islamic State fighters were using the Al Salem hospital complex as “a base of operations and command and control headquarters.”
During a congressional hearing earlier today, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper testified that “violent extremism” — that is, jihadism — demands more intelligence collection and analysis now “than at any other point in history.”