A third, more terrible, incarnation of ISIS could yet appear

United States President Donald Trump awarded himself a long victory lap as he announced the success of last weekend's operation against ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, gloating over the supposed details of his demise.

It is a significant success for US special forces to have killed the leader of the most savagely ambitious jihadis of this century. This raid is probably more important than the killing in 2011, under former president Barack Obama, of Osama bin Laden, author of the 9/11 attacks on US soil a decade earlier, who had by then faded into an afterlife of myth as his Al-Qaeda movement of Islamist insurgents faltered.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 31, 2019, with the headline 'A third, more terrible, incarnation of ISIS could yet appear'. Print Edition | Subscribe