Hey, remember that ISIS group? The terrorist organization that burst on the scene in the Middle East so suddenly and so horrifically in 2014 that the mere mention of their name has become the stuff of nightmares?
The same group that, as their influence has spread westward by inspiring and even orchestrating ruthless terrorist attacks in Europe and the United States, has led observers to declare President Obama as a feckless leader when it comes to national security?
And the very same group that has led some paranoid people to believe that all Muslims are inherently bad?
Well, they may very well be on the verge of collapse.
This has been a story that has gone widely unnoticed, mainly because it’s happening 7,000 miles away and in the same week as the final debate in arguably the most contentious presidential election in the history of our country, but on Monday, a mix of American-backed Iraqi and Kurdish soldiers began an offensive in Mosul, in northern Iraq, to retake the city from ISIS.
Just a bit of rewind for a moment. When ISIS took the city of Mosul in 2014, it stunned everybody and quickly proved to the world that they are a legitimate terrorist threat to be reckoned with.
After that, they gained smaller cities throughout Iraq and Syria and even Libya.
ISIS stands for the Islamic State. The difference between them and Al-Qaeda is that they actually have territory — a state. That is their calling card.
The reason they are able to attract so many followers worldwide is because they are able to tell people that they have territory in which they can create the Islamic caliphate that is their ultimate goal. Within that territory will be the apocalyptic war that they have continually presaged.
Well, flash forward to present day. ISIS has since lost many of its territories, like Ramadi and Tikrit in Iraq, Dabiq in Syria (where that apocalyptic war was supposed to take place) and in Sirte in Libya.
Mosul is the largest they still hold. If they lose it — which they are expected to, since their forces are badly outnumbered in this current battle — the militants will have no choice but to flee to their de-facto capital of Raqqa, in Syria, their last remaining stronghold.
I’m not saying ISIS is dead. Even if they lose all of their territory, the poisonous ideologies they have spread are still out there. Plus they can still operate underground. And lord knows what may emerge as the next terrorist threat even if ISIS goes away.
But it just goes to show that the people who thought America was doing nothing to combat ISIS could not have been more wrong — and it was done without putting a single American soldier on the front lines.
This battle in Mosul may take weeks, or even months, to complete.
But if it goes the way it’s predicted, than President Obama will be entitled to one hell of a mic drop on Jan. 20 when he leaves the White House.
Nonetheless, it’s pretty sweet to imagine that we may very well see the downfall of Donald Trump and ISIS in the same calendar year.
After what has been a horrifying year for America, it may end on a pretty darn good note, after all.