After the 2003 US led invasion of Iraq, the terrorist Al-Qaeda began to collapse and vanish. Two years later, ISI (Islamic State in Iraq) was born out of Al-Qaeda's extremist ideology. Led by Abu Ayyub al Masri till 2006, the group became under the leadership of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi since then. It remained inactive till the time of the Arab Spring during which it seized the chance to invade Syria as well. From that time one, the terrorist group became known as ISIS. In 2013, ISIS announced the establishment of its so-called Caliphate, changing its name thereby to ISIL (Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant).
The terrorist group then started committing some of the most heinous atrocities against humanity ever, including killing, slaughtering, and burning people alive, etc., with the aim of delivering a message to the entire world that "ISIS is a group that has no mercy." The incident of the Jordanian pilot "Muath al-Kaseasbeh", who was burnt alive by this terrorist group in front of cameras, is a case in point.
Such terror provoked the entire world to take a joint move against that bloody, terrorist group. With the support of the USA, an international coalition was formed to fight against it. The various air strikes and attacks against ISIS and its fighters managed to weaken and undermine its military foundations, allowing the coalition forces thereby to regain control over those lands previously usurped by the terrorist group. By the end of 2018, the US President Donald Trump announced the “Defeat of ISIS”.
After celebrating the defeat of terrorist ISIS, many questioned the fate of the group’s leader “Al-Baghdadi”, who was apparently absent from the ongoing events. Al-Baghdadi made the most unwelcomed appearance after the “Sri Lanka terrorist attacks”. At that time, he wanted to tell the world that ISIS was still there working and recruiting new fighters, and to confirm that he was still alive and in charge despite the various claims on his death. This visual appearance also aimed at rallying and invoking his affiliates around the world to launch attacks and to continue the fight for their claimed “Dawla”.
Many experts wondered if the territorial defeat of ISIS meant that the group had ended forever, or would it just be a time of convalescence for the dispersed fighters to regroup, reorganize and regain their power. With all the ongoing questions on the future of ISIS fighters, their wives and children in mind, the US president Trump made a congratulatory speech telling the world that “Al-Baghdadi” has actually been killed, and finally the world has got rid of one of the bloodiest criminals ever. This is congratulatory news indeed; yet to what extent shall we be happy and relieved? Killing “Al-Baghdadi” does not mean at all that the extremist ideology of ISIS has come to end, nor does it mean that ISIS fighters, men and women, will abandon their extremist ideology or will not try to plan for launching new attacks.
On the contrary, Al-Baghdadi’s death might arouse the enthusiasm of ISIS fighters to launch more and more of their deadliest and bloodiest attacks, which is why the entire world should be all ready to face any of these expected attacks. Institutions concerned with countering extremist thoughts and ideologies should also devise plans to help those who will leave the terrorist group after the death of its leader, lest they would join or form other terrorist groups.