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Excellent series on the Islamic State

I recommend the five part video series on the Islamic State over on VICE News. Very factual with a minimum of ‘interpretation’. VICE News is often a haven of fluorescent idiocy and tedious Guardian-speak, but in this case it has been a while since I have seen such good old fashioned journalism relating to the Middle East.

UPDATE: they have posted the series in one full length video, so I have adjusted the link accordingly. Highly recommended.

14 comments to Excellent series on the Islamic State

  • The Steel Ferret

    Boy, that’s creepy shit. We sure ain’t going to beat these guy by playing nice. This will be a war of extermination, because they’re pretty damn open about that being what they intend. But my guess is we’ll only get serious following the next 9/11.

  • Alsadius

    Vice is annoying at times, but for reporting on third-world shitholes, they’re pretty much the best around. Their North Korea series(including the followups on North Korean labour camps in Siberia) were the best NK reporting I’ve ever seen, and I’ve seen a lot of it.

  • Perry Metzger (New York, USA)

    Ignoring political considerations, libertarian or otherwise for a moment:

    I find it peculiar that, in spite of the fact that these folks clearly intend to wipe out all the regimes in the area, the local governments, who clearly have it in their interests not to be wiped out, are doing fairly little. I suspect this speaks to how corrupt and weak they are.

  • Julie near Chicago


    “…a haven of fluorescent idiocy and tedious Guardian-speak….”

    Wonderful wordcraft, inducing a response normally associated with the inspiration of laughing gas. Thanks!

  • […] Samizdata has suggested a visit to Vice News for their take on the Islamic State. […]

  • Linked here http://classicalvalues.com/2014/08/the-islamic-state/

    And I know how it works. As soon as I post the link a track back will show up.

  • Arclight

    but in this case it has been a while since I have seen such good old fashioned journalism relating to the Middle East.

    Yes, they mostly just let the subjects speak for themselves. Very good series, thanks for the pointer. I was against the war in Iraq but these people will have to be not just defeated but wiped out and the ground salted. They makes Saudi Arabia seem like Switzerland.

  • I find it peculiar that, in spite of the fact that these folks clearly intend to wipe out all the regimes in the area, the local governments, who clearly have it in their interests not to be wiped out, are doing fairly little.

    They’re probably taking the lead from the West. The Australians are all wringing their hands over the photo of an Australian jihadist’s 7 years old son holding up a severed head, saying it is racist and provocative. The photo I mean, not the kid holding the head.

    If the West is going to handwring over this sort of stuff, it deserves everything it gets.

  • Kim du Toit

    After watching that news report, all I could think about was “MOABs”, “daisycutters” and “nuclear cruise missiles”.

    I would also suggest that as a national policy, all those European/UK jihadists in IS should have their original citizenship stripped away, with no right of return. If they love the IS so much, let them stay there and kill each other.

    I also prefer the Kissinger approach to the Shi’ite/Sunni conflict: “It’s a pity one side has to lose.” (i.e. let them kill each other until nobody is left.)

    Yeah, it’s heartless. So are they.

  • That was pretty much my reaction Kim.

  • Maggie K.

    This is without a doubt the best documentary I’ve seen BY FAR about these people. It is not just the violence but the terrifying lack of women that I found so chilling. Where is the preposterously named feminist movement on this? They’re creating a generation of children we’re going to have to kill if we intend to stay alive as anything other than slaves to be raped and directed like cattle. Those are some words I never ever thought I’d ever write.

  • Yup, what Kim said. I can see mosques at prayer time becoming legitimate military targets before the decade is out. They want a war, at some point they’re going to get it.

  • Slartibartfarst

    Looks like straightforward no BS reporting from the Vice crew in the 40-minute full length video.
    I originally found it via Guido Fawkes here, where he says:

    WATCH: The Islamic State
    The best reporting of what has happened in Iraq and Syria over the last few months has not been in the papers or on television, but online. Vice are the only news organisation who have managed to embed a reporter with Islamic State (ISIS). Medyan Dairieh’s documentary from Raqqa is remarkable viewing and well worth a watch.

    At approx 40 minutes it is quite long, but it is worth a watch.
    Those IS (was ISIS) mujahedin seem to be very committed – I guess similar to the Al Queda and Taliban.
    You probably won’t be able to stop people who are that committed without killing them.
    It’s a powerful thing, Islam – “The Religion of Peace”™
    Presumably it would be peaceful if a global Caliphate were established – no?
    Some people (not me, you understand) might say that the jihadists would probably have gone away peacefully, if only they had been allowed to build the proposed triumphal Cordoba House at Ground Zero, but I couldn’t possibly comment.

    There is more on the video from the YouTuble link here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AUjHb4C7b94#t=1161%5D

    Vice crew: The Islamic State (Full Length)
    Published on 14 Aug 2014

    Subscribe to VICE News here: http://bit.ly/Subscribe-to-VICE-News

    The Islamic State, a hardline Sunni jihadist group that formerly had ties to al Qaeda, has conquered large swathes of Iraq and Syria. Previously known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), the group has announced its intention to reestablish the caliphate and has declared its leader, the shadowy Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, as the caliph.

    The lightning advances the Islamic State made across Syria and Iraq in June shocked the world. But it’s not just the group’s military victories that have garnered attention — it’s also the pace with which its members have begun to carve out a viable state.

    Flush with cash and US weapons seized during its advances in Iraq, the Islamic State’s expansion shows no sign of slowing down. In the first week of August alone, Islamic State fighters have taken over new areas in northern Iraq, encroaching on Kurdish territory and sending Christians and other minorities fleeing as reports of massacres emerged.

    VICE News reporter Medyan Dairieh spent three weeks embedded with the Islamic State, gaining unprecedented access to the group in Iraq and Syria as the first and only journalist to document its inner workings.

    Check out the VICE News beta for more: http://vicenews.com

    Follow VICE News here:
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  • They have also been doing some very good reporting from the Ukraine, and from all sorts of fringe militant groups in Europe.