Former ISIS Leader’s Suicide

The close up of the former ISIS leaders face. This shows an angry man with black hair and a mustache and beard.

A photo supplied by the U.S. government showing Mr. al-Qurayshi, who was named the head of ISIS in 2019.

On Sunday, February 3rd, in Idlib, Syria, the U.S. Special Operations Forces (SOP) successfully found the ISIS chief, Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi al-Qurayshi. When Qurayshi was found, instead of being captured he detonated a suicide vest which killed him, his wife, and children. U.S. forces used a bullhorn to demand people inside the building to come out peacefully and when they didn’t, the SOP decided against an airstrike to attempt to protect innocent lives.

After the operation, U.S. President, Joe Biden, issued a statement saying that the mission in Syria was “a testament to America’s reach and capability to take out terrorist threats no matter where they try to hide anywhere in the world.” Biden also condoned the troops there saying, “Thanks to the bravery of our troops, this horrible terrorist leader is no more.” 

Quaryshi marks the third jihadi leader to die in this decade. The first of which was in 2011 when U.S Navy SEALs raided and killed al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden. Then in 2019, special forces found ISIS leader and founder, Abu Bakr, who, on finding, also blew himself up. 

After the death of Bakr, ISIS named Qurayshi as the new leader. Qurayshi who joined ISIS in the mid-2000s quickly rose up the ranks eventually landing a title as senior idealist and judge. Qurayshi gained this title with his passion for abducting and slaughtering mainly the Yazidi people, a religious minority in northwest Iraq. The Yazidi people were a targeted group for ISIS for many years, and Qurayshi only increased it. 

Unlike the other leaders, such as Osama bin Laden, Qurayshi kept his head low and stayed discreet. ISIS never let photos or information about him leak out and he also never sent audio messages to keep himself under the radar. 

At the time of the raid, local responders said no U.S casualties had been reported. However, after Qurayshi detonated the vest, casualties rose to thirteen people including children and other innocent lives. 

The deaths came mostly from the Qurayshi family however the pentagon later confirmed three civilian deaths. Quraishi’s body was found on the ground due to the blast of the explosion. The size of the bomb is claimed to have decimated the entire third floor of the building Quraishi was hiding in, as well as killing all on the floor.

The raid came a week after one of the biggest attacks in recent years. ISIS-led a prison break at a Syrian prison where many ISIS members were being held. The group of terrorists blew a hole in the wall. Following the event, there was a week-long standoff between security and the group in which the terrorists lost. Due to this loss, ISIS stayed quiet attempting to calm the waters after the unsuccessful raid. 

Despite the death of Qurayshi, ISIS is still a threat. It is believed that ISIS has already moved on with the loss of its leader, so it’s important not to think the threat of the group is gone. But as of right now, the U.S has successfully slowed down the pace of ISIS.