We use cookies to provide some features and experiences in QOSHE

More information  .  Close
Aa Aa Aa
- A +

The day after al-Baghdadi's death

28 58 0

Speculation about the demise of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi has circulated since 2014, with both the US and Russia claiming at different times to have killed him. But US President Donald Trump's decison yesterday to publicly confirm a US military raid appears to signal with high certainty that this time the self-declared caliph of the Islamic State in Iraq and Levant (ISIL, also known as ISIS) has not been able to elude death.

While the media and various analysts have emphasised the importance of this development, al-Baghdadi's demise will not impact the ability of ISIL to operate as a decentralised terrorist group in the near term. The leaders of the previous incarnations of ISIL were killed in 2006 and 2010 in Iraq, and yet the group has repeatedly re-emerged.

The day after al-Baghdadi's death, ISIL appears to be slated for a comeback. While Trump is triumphantly celebrating a PR victory at a time when he is facing impeachment woes domestically, his foreign policy decisions in Syria are likely to facilitate ISIL's regrouping and re-emergance.

Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, whose given name was Ibrahim Awwad al-Badri al-Samarrai, was born in 1971 in the city of Samarra, 130km north of Baghdad. His father is said to have preached at a local mosque. During the years of Saddam Hussein's "faith campaign" after the 1991 Gulf War, a period during which the Iraqi state promoted a greater role for Islam in the public domain, al-Baghdadi enrolled in the Islamic University of Iraq in Baghdad.

During his studies, he was introduced to the writings of the........

© Al Jazeera