While the caliphate they’ve constructed crumbles around them, the Islamic State continues a campaign of bloodshed that has reached close to 2,000 lives in the past six months.
According to Reuters, the Islamic State militant group has killed 1,878 civilians in the second half of 2014. A British-based monitoring group has verified the number of casualties. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights also claims the Islamic State has killed 120 of its own members, most of them fighters returning from overseas.
The military group took control of large parts of Iraq and Syria and installed a caliphate in June 2014. The Islamic State has fought the governments of Iraq and Syria since that time.
As reported by the Inquisitr, the caliphate has garnered criticism for barbaric acts such as public beheadings and stonings in the areas of Iraq and Syria controlled by the group. The group claims these executions were carried out for violations of Islamic law such as adultery, homosexuality, stealing and blasphemy.
The group also beheaded two United States journalists and three aid workers from the U.S. and Great Britain earlier this year. The acts were seen as attempts to pressure the U.S. led coalition into ceasing bombings of Islamic State fighters in Syria.
Amid the fighting, the Islamic State’s attempt at governing appears to be collapsing. While the group commits most of its time and resources to fighting, basic necessities and living conditions continue to fall by the wayside. According to Philly.com, medicine is scarce, prices are rising and many in the area feel the Islamic State’s attempt to govern teeters on the edge of collapse.
Despite propaganda videos depicting a functioning government, reports out of Mosul, Iraq state the water is undrinkable, hepatitis is spreading and flour is becoming scarce.
An anonymous U.S. official operating in Syria has reported that the infrastructure in Islamic State held territories has been propped up by the Syrian government.
“ISIS doesn’t know how to do this stuff. When stuff breaks down they get desperate. It doesn’t have a whole lot of engineers and staff to run the cities, so things are breaking down.”
However, as bad as things may be in Islamic State held areas, the barbaric practices of the group keep the likelihood of rebellion at remarkably low levels. Civilians are not likely to speak out or rise up with public beheading a distinct possibility.
And so, the fighting continues. The deaths continue to mount. And the civilians, caught in the crossfire, continue to suffer.