The Head Of The Snake
As war between the West and Islamic State escalates, little is known of IS leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi. Is destroying Al-Baghdadi the key to defeating terror? This report explores the ISIS reign of terror in Syria.
"Al-Baghdadi has only appeared in public once, and after that never again", describes Hani. Like so many Syrians, Hani fled from the brutality of the Islamic State after they captured his hometown of Raqqa. It is not only in Raqqa that the lives of citizens are in danger. While Sinjar is one of the first major cities that ISIS has had to give up, after their retreat the horrendous consequences of their reign of terror became clear. Mass open graves filled with bodies revealed the remains of anyone who did not share their beliefs. Captured by US forces in Iraq in 2004 and detained at Camp Bucca, Baghdadi has gone on to build a powerful and remorseless caliphate intent on world Jihad. "Al-Baghdadi wants to be portrayed as the religious leader of this new nation. But he wants to be invisible. This only increases his appeal", explains an expert. In response to their growing strength, Western powers have increased military retaliation in Syria, but this war cannot be fought with weapons alone; it is far more complex. As one expert describes, "you can't bomb an ideology...if you try to bomb an ideology you will only reinforce it".FULL SYNOPSIS