The U.S. troops, in collaboration with partner forces, conducted 38 missions against ISIS in Iraq and Syria during May, according to U.S. Central Command. The persistent military effort led to the capture of 31 suspected ISIS operatives and the killing of another eight. Amid the focus on Ukrainian offensive and aggression from China, this highlights the ongoing battle against ISIS, long after the fall of its caliphate.
- The U.S. troops and partner forces launched 21 missions in Iraq and 17 in Syria against ISIS in May, leading to the detention of 31 suspected ISIS operatives and the death of another eight.
- From January to April, ISIS attacks reduced by 68% in Iraq and 55% in Syria. ISIS has failed to organize anything more significant than opportunistic engagements involving one to a few individuals.
- The ISIS caliphate that once controlled a significant part of Iraq and Syria has been diminished with local forces’ help, led by the U.S. military coalition. However, parts of Iraq and Syria that once belonged to the ISIS caliphate remain unstable.
- ISIS is currently in a survival posture with a low operational pace in Syria and Iraq, with an estimated 5,000 to 7,000 members and supporters in both countries, down from 18,000 fighters in 2020 and 10,000 in 2022.
- Despite diminished numbers and loss of top leadership, ISIS remains a significant threat within the region, with its center of gravity in Iraq and Syria. The group’s branch in Afghanistan, ISIS-Khorasan, uses the country as a logistical and coordination hub but lacks the resources and manpower of its remnants in Syria and Iraq.