The Sydney Morning Herald quotes Rafik Hariri Center Nonresident Fellow Ramzy Mardini on ISIS’s expansion in areas with weak or non-existent state institutions and what that means for the fight against them:
It seems that containment will likely emerge as the default response, with ISIS having probably reached its territorial extremities. Ramzy Mardini, a fellow at the Atlantic Council’s Rafik Hariri Centre for the Middle East, says: “It’s no coincidence that the militants’ gains have been limited to areas populated by disenfranchised Sunnis eager for protection from Shiite forces.
“[ISIS] is thriving in the midst of sectarian cleavages, established insurgencies, and weak or non-existent state institutions. Hence, its support in Iraq and Syria is not the rule – it is the exception.”