US Special Forces Raid Kills Senior ISIS Leader

 In Foreign, Military

A team of U.S. Special Forces (aka Delta Force) commandos took out ISIS leader Abu Sayyaf and captured his wife Umm Sayyaf in an overnight raid in Syria. They also rescued a Yazidi girl the couple was holding as a slave.


US Special Forces conducted a raid deep inside Syria overnight -Reuters photo

“Abu Sayyaf” is reportedly a senior leader who was responsible for overseeing the oil and gas operations of the Islamic State. He is said to have had an increasing role in military operations,  communications, and planning.

According to CNN, helicopters dropped SF personnel deep inside Syria, in Deir Ezzor, which is near the  al-Omar oil field. There was hand to hand combat and a firefight during the operation, but no US personnel were harmed.

Though the stated purpose of the mission was to capture Sayyaf, he engaged SF forces and was killed. About 12 ISIS fighters were killed in the operation, which reportedly was ordered by Ashton Carter and green lighted by Obama.

The wife, Umm Sayyaf, is suspected of being a member of ISIS and involved in terror activities. She was taken for “debriefing” after capture to a military facility in Iraq.

Who are they?

“Abu Sayyaf” is a pseudonym. It is also the name of a radical islamist group in the Philippines. The name actually means “bearer of the sword.” He is also known as  Abu Muhammad al Iraqi and Abd al Ghani. Both of those names are common as well, the first meaning that he is from “Iraq” and the other simply means “servant of the all sufficient.”

The United States could have ordered a drone strike, but instead committed Special Forces to a ground raid, which indicates he was such a high value target that snagging him was imperative. US Personnel seized computers, communication equipment, and and other materials that were with Sayyaf. they are also hoping that his wife will give up important information regarding ISIS operations, and the whereabouts of more Yazidi captives.

Whether rumors of ISIS leader al-Baghdadi’s severe wounding is correct or not, the US take down of the man in charge of ISIS’ money stream is a significant accomplishment. Iraqi leaders say they killed two other senior ISIS leaders recently as well.

One by one,  or two by two. they all need to be taken out.


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