Caucasus Emirate in Syria displays US-made anti-tank missile


A jihadist poses in front of a US-made TOW anti-tank missile 

A fighter from the Caucaus Emirate in Syria, an al Qaeda-affiliated group, released a photo showing ownership of a US-made BGM-71 anti-tank missile. It is unclear when or where the photograph was taken, but it is likely recent and taken in northern Syria. A note card reading “Imarat Kavkaz” or “Caucasus Emirate” in Chechen can be seen in the foreground.

The Caucasus Emirate in Syria was formed when the former emir of Jaish al Muhajireen wal Ansar (Army of Emigrants and Helpers), Salahuddin Shishani, was removed from his post along with his deputy, Abdul Karim Krymsky, last month. Shishani announced his pledge to Muhammad Abu Usman, the new leader of the Caucasus Emirate, in a short video that was released by Akhbar Sham, a Russian-language website that previously promoted Jaish al Muhajireen wal Ansar’s activities and leaders in Syria. However, according to From Chechnya to Syria, a website that tracks Russian-speaking jihadists in Syria, it is not a new organization; rather, it is the same group in Syria that had sworn allegiance to the Caucasus Emirate, only now independent from Jaish al Muhajireen wal Ansar.

Caleb Weiss is an editor of FDD's Long War Journal and a senior analyst at the Bridgeway Foundation, where he focuses on the spread of the Islamic State in Central Africa.

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: ,


  • Fred says:

    Has anyone done an analysis on how many TOW missiles have ended up in the hands of al Qaeda? Was the end use monitoring overall a success or an overall failure?

  • Henry says:

    Another Hillary Obama missle for there jihadi friends

  • Guy says:

    While it’s a good lesson in unintended side effects, spillover like this is to be common when pumping weapons into a war zone. One TOW might make a small tactical difference but it’s nothing in the bigscheme of things, especially given the flood of guided AT like Kornets etc. I wonder how they expect to resupply the TOW once the ammunition is expended…

  • Guy says:

    * big scheme… typo D:

  • Guy says:

    Regardless, it’s always interesting to see where the hardware ends up and I appreciate the blog greatly!


Islamic state



Al shabaab

Boko Haram