US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) have reclaimed control of Raqqa, the self-declared capital of the Islamic State. This development is a major victory in the fight against ISIS and a strong indication of the terrorist group's decline.
What you should know
- The SDF, an American-backed militia group made up of Arab and Syrian Kurdish fighters, told CNN Tuesday, "Major military operations in Raqqa are finished but they are now clearing the city of sleeper cells -- if they exist -- and mines … The situation in Raqqa is under control and soon there will be an official statement declaring the liberation of the city."
- The northern Syrian city of Raqqa has been under ISIS control since 2014. Residents living under the terrorist’s rule have been publicly executed for offenses as minor as smoking.
- With the fall of Raqqa, the Islamic State has now lost two of its most important strongholds in the past three months. Control over the city of Mosul was reclaimed in July.
- The victory has come at a heavy cost: an estimated 3,829 airstrikes have leveled the city, killed more than 1,000 civilians, and displaced approximately 270,000 residents, according to this New York Times report.
What you may not want to know
Jason Buttrill, former intelligence analyst and Chief Researcher for The Glenn Beck Program, joined Dana Loesch on today’s “Dana” to share what he saw and what he learned during a recent visit to Iraq and in particular the city of Mosul.
“I was just there a few months ago,” said Jason. “This Shiite militia group that is trained by Iran, the PMU [Popular Mobilization Units,] they were already making fortifications and getting ready … the moment you get rid of ISIS and they are pushed out of Mosul and other areas, the next ISIS is the Shiite militia…. These guys are like ISIS. There is literally no difference.”
He added, “When I was over there, I was in a UN refugee camp and there was a little boy that his father basically dragged us into the tent and showed us his knee. The Shiite militias had drilled through his knee because this family was Sunni. They drilled through his knee and held him for ransom in front of the father … and these are the people who are just about to take over Iraq.”
To learn more, please watch the full video clip above.