Chechen ISIS commander musters forces at Syrian base

Omar al Shishani, the Chechen commander who joined the Islamic State of Iraq and the Sham last year, was recently pictured while addressing a large contingent of ISIS fighters at a captured Syrian airbase. The photographs, below, were obtained by The Long War Journal.

While the exact location of the gathering was not disclosed, it is believed that al Shishani gathered the ISIS force at a captured Syrian military base in Al Bab or Manbji, towns north of Aleppo. The gathering took place in front of what appears to be an ammunition bunker or aircraft hanger. Al Shishani is believed to be basing his operations in Aleppo from the two towns.

The red-bearded al Shishani, pictured below, is standing beneath the black banner of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Sham.

Shishani meeting1.jpeg

Shishani meeting 3.jpeg

Shishani meeting 5.jpeg

Bill Roggio is a Senior Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and the Editor of FDD's Long War Journal.

Are you a dedicated reader of FDD's Long War Journal? Has our research benefitted you or your team over the years? Support our independent reporting and analysis today by considering a one-time or monthly donation. Thanks for reading! You can make a tax-deductible donation here.

Tags: ,


  • AliBubba says:

    Looks like a nice target to me

  • maverick404 says:

    How nice it would be to drop a couple of 2k bombs right in the middle of them all.

  • T2 says:

    Who are the guys in blue,
    3rd photo upper left side?

  • abuabdullah says:

    If only they could cease targeting fellow Mujahideen and channel all their effort annilating the Syiah.

  • Patrick M Connors says:

    What I find interesting, though it is difficult see completely, is how fully uniformed or “geared up” these fighters are. This isn’t some ragtag assembly and they are apparently well funded.

  • Dave says:

    A force of that size requires a lot of money and a long tail of support. We don’t get the meeting memos, don’t know where the money comes from, and can’t make the supply train a little more difficult?

  • donowen says:

    It is truly absurd to not have an active stealth drone program operating over this hell hole. We only need to get lucky several times and ISIS is so atrited as to be useless.

  • Jeff B says:

    Pictures were taken at the NE corner of the RASIN EL ABOUD Air Base out side of Shekh Ahmad, Syria


Islamic state



Al shabaab

Boko Haram