The media is finding it harder and harder to deny good things that President Donald Trump seems to be achieving. Trump just announced that “five of the most wanted leaders of ISIS just captured.”
This follows right after the release of three American hostages from North Korea and the remarkable pictures of their arrival at Andrews Air Force Base and their welcome home by Trump.
Even CNN’s Chris Cuomo was forced to admit that that was a highlight of his presidency so far which is quite an admission coming from CNN, a frequent critic of Trump.
Now comes the ISIS news that the top leaders were captured in an incredible cooperative effort on the part of the US., Iraq and Turkey.
From NY Times:
Five senior Islamic State officials have been captured, including a top aide to the group’s leader, in a complex cross-border sting carried out by Iraqi and American intelligence, two Iraqi officials said Wednesday.
The three-month operation, which tracked a group of senior Islamic State leaders who had been hiding in Syria and Turkey, represents a significant intelligence victory for the American-led coalition fighting the extremist group and underscores the strengthening relationship between Washington and Baghdad.
Two Iraqi intelligence officials said those captured included four Iraqis and one Syrian whose responsibilities included governing the Islamic State’s territory around Deir al-Zour, Syria, directing internal security and running the administrative body that oversees religious rulings.
Iraq’s Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi was praised in media for what for what the intelligence service called a “major victory.”
They had been tracking an aide to Abu Bakr al Baghdadi, the leader of ISIS.
Mr. Ithawi, described by the Iraqis as a top aide to the Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al- Baghdadi, had been in charge of fatwas, or religious rulings, in the Islamic State’s so-called caliphate. He was also in charge of the education curriculum, and was a member of the body that appointed security and administrative leaders for the Islamic State’s territory, which had included large parts of Iraq and Syria.
He had been living in Turkey with his Syrian wife under his brother’s identity, one of these officials said.
The Iraqis sent the Turks an intelligence file they had amassed on Mr. Ithawi, and the Turkish security forces arrested him on Feb. 15, and extradited him to Iraq, this official said.
They then used him to track and trap the others.
The American-led coalition used this information to launch an airstrike in mid-April that killed 39 suspected Islamic State members near Hajin, in the Deir al-Zour district of Syria, the second official said.
The joint Iraqi-American intelligence team then set a trap, according to these officials. They persuaded Mr. Ithawi to contact several of his Islamic State colleagues who had been hiding in Syria and lure them across the border, the officials said.
The Iraqi authorities were waiting, and arrested the group soon after they crossed the frontier, the officials said.
Those arrested included Saddam al-Jammel, a Syrian who had been the head of the Islamic State territory around Deir al-Zour, and Abu Abdel al-Haq, an Iraqi who had been the head of internal security for the group. Two other Iraqis were also arrested, the officials said.
It’s hard to argue with success.
And since Trump came in, ISIS has been beaten on the field in Iraq and has killed or captured many of its leaders.
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