The Islamic State (ISIS) and CBRN Weapons

THE OMINOUS MANIFESTOIn March 2014, the home of an high-ranking Islamic State cabinet member named Abu Kassem was raided by Iraqi Special Forces. A portion of a grandiose manifesto, the 100-Year Plan for the Islamic State Sunni States, was uncovered during the operation. In the Economic Assets of the Sunni Entity chapter, Kassem listed the "the big stockpile of uranium in the 'Akashat fields" as an important resource for the state building project. Saddam Hussein's regime mined uranium at Akashat, a small town near the Syrian border in Anbar, though years of economic sanctions and war halted meaningful production. The stunning and rapid expansion of the Islamic State network saw the capture of Anbar Province, and jihadists assumed control of facilities like Akashat across Iraq and Syria. Kassem's manifesto reveals that Islamic State leaders knew that potentially dangerous and unsecured CBRN materials could be acquired in Iraq and Syria, and that they had plans for them. For More…

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About the Contributor

Daniel Lebowitz

Mr. Lebowitz earned his M.A. in Nonproliferation and Terrorism Studies from the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey in 2015. As a student, Daniel excelled in researching lone...