Tag Archives: Joel Rayburn

Saddam’s Henchmen Were Fanatics Long Before They Joined The Islamic State

By Kyle Orton (@KyleWOrton) on July 20, 2015

Published at National Review

Samir Abd Muhammad al-Khlifawi (Haji Bakr), a former colonel in Saddam's intelligence , who became ISIS' director of strategic planning.

Samir Abd Muhammad al-Khlifawi (Haji Bakr), a former colonel in Saddam’s intelligence , who became ISIS’ director of strategic planning.

After long neglect, the media has finally recognized the role of the FREs—former (Saddam) regime elements—within the Islamic State (ISIS). But the pendulum has now swung too far: Some reports are now claiming that the FREs have transformed the leader of the terror army, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, into nothing more than a front man for the Baathists.

These suppositions are mistaken. Most FREs within ISIS have not been ideologically Baathists for a long time. Continue reading