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Money Matters: Sources of ISIS’ Funding and How to Disrupt Them
Many attribute the quick success of the Islamic State in Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) to its extensive financial resources, earning it the title of the richest terrorist organization in the world. While ISIS’ funding has fueled its hostile takeover and enabled it to assume a state-like role in its controlled territories, ISIS’ funding also may be its greatest weakness. If the U.S.-led anti-ISIS international coalition can successfully sever the terrorist from its many funding sources, its eventual defeat will become more likely. To successfully starve ISIS of its financial resources, the coalition will need to pressure Turkey and the Kurds to increase border security, form a uniform policy towards kidnapping for ransom, and target ISIS’ internal avenues of transport and sales.