tv The Isis Threat An AC360 Special Report CNN March 2, 2015 6:00pm-7:01pm PST
tonight a 360 special report, the isis threat. an hour-long report. they appear to be recruiting just about everywhere and uses modern technology to spread a murderous vision of the medieval world they seek to create. isis fighters have established bases in iraq, as well as syria. they've slaughtered thousands, taken hostages for ransom, or simply to kill. they've inspired foreigners to wage jihad both abroad and at home and drawn american forces back to iraq. jordan's king abdullah calls the fight against isis the third world war. you'll want to watch tonight as we explore the isis threat.
isis grew out of the u.s. invasion of iraq in 2003. its first leader, abu musab al zarqawi. sharing a similar ideology and hatred of the west. zarqawi was also targeting fellow muslims in iraq. the brutal tactics cause d them to p avoid the group. zarqawi was killed in 2006 and the group scattered. a few months later, they're rebranded as the islamic state in iraq. in 2011 the group names a secretive religious scholar as its leader. he claims to be a direct descendent of the prophet muhammad. his ambitions spread beyond iraq
into the chaos of syria. by 2013, al baghdadi changes the name again, this time calling the islamic state in iraq and syria, and soon take the first syrian city. the black flag hanging in the eastern city of raqqa. comes the strong hold for their growing movement. president obama is asked about the threat in the interview with the "new yorker" in january of 2014. compared isis to a junior varsity sports team, saying, quote, the analogy we use around here sometimes that i think is accurate is that the jv teams puts on laker uniforms, it doesn't make them kobe bryant. those remarks come back to haunt him as isis launches a massive offensive. including mosul, the second largest city in iraq, and tikrit, the hometown of saddam hussein. time after time iraqi troops
either are defeated or run away. the brutality of the group, many iraqi soldiers flee in terror as they see the fighters approach. in a rare public message al badadi proclaimed the territory under islamic law, a caliphate with himself as the head. isis is arguably the most prolific terror group in history in terms of recruitment with an estimated 20,000 foreign fighters traveling to syria and iraq to join their ranks. in august, president obama authorizes targeted air strikes against isis in iraq. later that month isis releases a video of the beheading of james foley, warning the u.s. against further air strikes. >> our objective is clear. we will degrade and ultimately destroy isil. through a comprehensive and sustained counterterrorism strategy. >> the u.s.-led air strikes in iraq and syria haven't stopped, and neither have the brutal killings of isis captives.
the belief in a final apocalyptic battle are fueling these fighters, who are now inspiring attacks in countries outside the battle zone. there's a lot to look at in the hour ahead, a lot to talk about. joining us is fareed sa cary on cnn. and contributing editor graham wood, a great cover story for the magazine, what isis really wants and how to stop it. and the author of what does not apply here, untold stories of fighting against muslim fundamentalism. graham, a lot of this started with the article that you wrote, which i thought was a fascinating piece. you say isis is, while many people call it unislamic, you say it is in a sense very islam. >> yes. in a very particular sense. they do look at texts that are
considered islamic texts, and they have one of many different types of literal interpretations of these texts. >> and focus on the violent parts. >> they're extremely selective. they do care about these texts, though, within the islamic state they have a collection of scholars, not widely known scholars, but people who look at the texts and try to come up with justifications for what the islamic state does based on those texts. >> a lot of the people who are joining are not islamic scholars. they're people who have been in street gangs. they don't really know much. >> in a way, graham's article is superb in telling us what the true believers believe. the real interesting question is, why is this catching on. ideology, radical islamism ideology has been around for 14 centuries. it seems there are two layers that operate. one is a lot of these people feel dispossessed, economically
dispossess dispossessed, very repressive regimes in the middle east. remember, the middle east still has 85% dictatorship. by far the highest percentage in the world. and you add to that something that the microstudies show, young men looking for adventure, looking for a cause larger than themselves, looking for adrenaline highs. you put that all together and it seems to me that is the recruiting tool. but the overlords, if you will, have this much more grand islamic vision. but the foot soldiers are coming in for a very different reason. >> look at the so-called jihadi john, that appears in the beheading videos, from a well-off family. you can't make the argument he's dispossessed. >> it's not about -- it's not about being poor. there are young people who often feel that they are in protest of the world. when i was growing up in india, there were a lot of marxist
radicals, violent militants in the middle east. some of them were rich, some were educated, but they believed the world order is something they wanted to oppose. >> this is just the latest -- >> this is the off-the-shelf ideology for muslims right now. >> do you believe that? >> i think there's a political element here, too. look at the history of the region in the last ten years. we went into iraq, we toppled saddam hussein. the upper echelons of isis are iraqi military, baath party members. >> not known for particularly -- >> in some cases went from a year before wearing military fatigues and drinking wine and smoking cigars, to the next year in the long black beards. look, the last four years, assad, when the syrian revolution took off, he had a specific propaganda goal. the goal was to create the
extremism in vir yeah. that's why if you look at the videos of the syrian muck ba rat, what they were doing, effacing them, making them saying there is no god but bashar. the goal was to create extremism within syria. >> because we should point out the original demonstrations in syria were not extremists, they were people protesting the murder of children. >> when we talk to some of the foreign fighters, they tell you we were drawn to the conflict because we hated to see our co-religionists treated in this way. >> what's ironic about that, these forces are at the forefront of brutality in the region. >> against their co-religions. a lot of people don't pay attention to the sunni/shia divide or really understand it. >> but that's really important. we have to remember, al qaeda began as a grand global jihadi organization, and then picked some specific goals. we're going to attack americans, maybe attack the saudi royal family. isis began with a very narrow
sectarian goal, which was to -- the cause in syria and iraq. in iraq they felt they were being ruled by a shiite dictatorship. so it began as this very local sectarian thing. then they established the caliphate. graham's article makes us realize that. then the goals become grander, and more -- now they're attracting people. at heart, there are sunni revolt against shia rule. >> it's so important. again, to your point, a lot of people in the west don't pay attention to the sunni/shia divide. but it is essential because isis does not view people from the, you know, that are not part of -- they don't view shias as -- >> they call them the rejectionists. the people that zarqawi, number
one were the shia. >> above christians, above everyone else. >> even above the americans. when the americans leave iraq, the majority of shia will be the enemy i face. what was the strategy. his strategy was, let's kill them. he hated them. in fact, when he first met osama bin laden, one of the things he did to alienate bin laden, was to go after the shia, murder them, dispossess them, blow up their holy shrines. their retaliation against the sunnis will drive the sunnis greater into our fold. that was the strategy. by the way, this is playing out even today. >> but here's why i think it's an important issue, which is all their globes are truly global or are their goals local. because in essence, at the core they seem to have these very local goals. but they've layered on these global ones. you know, and a lot of the foreign fighters come for those global goals. the foreign fighters don't come because they want to save syria.
they come because they think this is some grand global crusade. >> whether or not the goals are global, the impact is global. i've been hearing in kazakhstan, young people indoctrinated, pledging allegiance to isis, all across central asia. >> the caliphate, which is central to isis which was not central to osama bin laden, he didn't believe the conditions were right for a caliphate. isis, that's why they believe in holding the territory. while their goal is, maybe this layering of international goals, it's really in service ultimately of building this caliphate. >> that's a major distinction between these two groups. when al qaeda was operating, it was really on a cellular underground model. they were aiming at a far enemy. they were trying to fly planes into buildings in new york city, for example. whereas the caliphate are trying
to draw people in, so the caliphate can be strengthened to expand outward through the contiguous boundaries. >> but those who watch the videos, they attack shia muslims, there are 200 million shia muslims around the world, all who believe isis could be killed. >> they win because of the demographics. the in-gathering as graham pointed out is the key. how do you take iraq? the mujahadin will overwhelm the shia. when the americans leave, it will be even easier. there is this apocalyptic struggle. i think the political element cannot be stressed enough. it's reclaiming baghdad and damascus. >> what you wrote is it's really armageddon. the end result is the end times which they believe is near. >> yes. and they have this end game, which bin laden in a way had, too. apocalyptic belief is not an
uncommon thing in many religious. what is really distinctive about isis relative to bin laden's view, is that the apocalyptic end game is going to happen fairly soon. we're talking about in a matter of years. >> but they actually believe jesus plays a role in this. >> they do. they think there will be particular battles in particular places and ultimately come down to jerusalem, where jesus will return, and will save the remaining 5,000 fighters of the islamic state. >> jesus will save isis fighters? >> jesus will come back in an anti-messiah figure and be victorious at the helm. >> while that is the ideology and the other worldly end game, the temporal goals are important, too. what they're focusing on is the caliphate, and governance, and taking power, and how to exercise that power. >> it seems quite clear that those goals actually often trum 7 the so-called religious ones.
they go to the museum in iraq, they destroy a few of the statues to show how islamic they are. pure islam, you don't thaf any idol worship. but they're selling most of the others. they take hostages, but they want money for the hostages. >> there's a lot more we'll get to. we have to take a quick break. when we come back, the military demands with the major offensive just getting started today to take back the iraqi city of tikrit. what will it take to defeat isis. the question of whether the countries in the region are able or even willing to do it, and what role, if any, the united states should be playing. stay with us. i am totally blind. and sometimes i struggle to sleep at night, and stay awake during the day. this is called non-24. learn more by calling 844-824-2424.
or visit your24info.com. hey pal? you ready? can you pick me up at 6:30? ah... (boy) i'm here! i'm here! (cop) too late. i was gone for five minutes! ugh! move it. you're killing me. you know what, dad? i'm good. (dad) it may be quite a while before he's ready, but our subaru legacy will be waiting for him. (vo) the longest-lasting midsize sedan in its class. the twenty-fifteen subaru legacy. it's not just a sedan. it's a subaru.
with my andi can...m tracfone, order safety goggles. play music for seedlings. post science fair projects. schedule guinea pig feedings. video chemical reactions. take pics of mr. bones. time the next launch. calm down principal jones. i can do all that with my android from tracfone. 90-day plans start as low as $20. for a limited time get the samsung galaxy centura with the spongebob movie kid's watch and exclusive case cover. look for specially marked packages at walmart. tracfone. do everything for less. scourge of 20th century city life. raiser of blood pressure. disrupter of supply chains. stealer of bedtime stories. polluter. frustrater. time thief. [cars honking] and one day soon, we'll see the last one ever. cisco is building the internet of everything for connected cities today, that will confine the traffic jam to yesterday. cisco...
...tomorrow starts here. my lenses have a sunset mode. and an early morning mode. and a partly sunny mode. and an outside... to clear inside mode. transitions® signature™ adaptive lenses... are more responsive than ever. so why settle for a lens with just one mode? experience life well lit®. ...upgrade your lenses to transitions® signature™. visit your local visionworks today. to ask about transitions® signature™ lenses with chromea7™ technology. and start living a life well lit®. hey mom, you want to live by the lyeah.right? there's here. ♪ did you just share a listing with me? look at this one. it's got a great view of the lake. it's really nice mom. ♪ your dad would've loved this place. you're not just looking for a house. you're looking for a place for your life to happen.
zillow the results of the online twitter poll, should the united states lead the fight against isis. there were nine more coalition air strikes today against isis targets in iraq and syria. nearly 3,000 since the air campaign began. this map shows the areas where the greatest ones in ku banny, second in mosul, tikrit, which hasn't had many is where a battle is already starting to take place. on the ground, iraqi forces today launched a major offensive aimed at taking back the city of tikrit. the plan is to move against mosul sometime this spring.
whether on the ground in combat, or in the air. two individuals with deep experience in the region, retired lieutenant general mark hurtley and bob bair. in terms of the military situation, you don't think isis is as impressive as their early gains made a lot of people believe? >> i really don't. what stunned people and the reason obama had to almost apologize for his jv team comment is they took mosul. second largest city in iraq. but the gains in iraq were not so much because of isis' strength, it was because of the iraqi army's weakness. but weakness not technocratic, not a fighting force, but it was political. the sunnis who comprised the foot soldiers in iraq's army refused to fight. because they regarded certainly the government in baghdad, the iraqi government as essentially a shiite dictatorship. and between the two, they kind of preferred isis.
so they melted away because they didn't want to fight isis. so it was that political problem that gave isis this huge military victory. >> but general, you're obviously there and integrally involved with iraqi forces, since the u.s. pulled that out essentially, you had phantom battalions, phantom troops that existed on paper in the iraqi army, but the money that was supposedly paid to them went to the generals in the iraqi army. >> correct. i completely agree with fareed. this is an army that could fight. when we were there with them, they could fight. i fought with them. i conducted operations with them. but during that three-year period between the time u.s. forces left, mr. maliki took over, we saw some early indications of that even when i was there. when we conducted operations in mosul, mr. maliki was beginning to replace his generals. and we were seeing the kinds of people he was replacing -- >> cronies? >> cronies, no military experience, paying for positions. they just didn't know how to lead. the soldiers can feel that.
if you go into a situation where you're not paid, and people are threatening you, and you have no leadership, you're going to quit your job, too. especially if someone comes in and threatens to cut your head off. >> especially if your general has taken off and it's just low-level troops. >> correct. >> why should anyone believe that after training military for, i don't know, ten years, and then three years for them to fall apart, that six months later, with renewed american interest in retraining iraqi forces, why are they going to be able to take tikrit or mosul? >> there's more of a threat. i think they see an interm threat to their nationalism. and they are beginning to see that the government in baghdad is now very interested in them. we're seeing the defense prime minister visiting their soldiers, linking up with the tribal shaikhs and some kurdish areas, that never happened when i was there with mr. maliki. >> bob, we were talking about
the sunni/shia divide. that plays into this as well. you have these shia militias backed by iran, which have made many of the advances that have taken place over the last couple months. >> anderson, it's worse than that today. it's come out that the islamic equivalent guard of iran, and this is the same group that blew up the marines in '83. going back to old history. kidnapped one of my bosses in beirut. is really a bad guy. is in tikrit today, sort of managing this assault on the city. >> so what message toes that send to the sunnis? >> exactly. look, with this iran, essentially has its proxies on the ground and the sunnis will say we'll defend a lot of our province, which is all sunni, and this is the shia/sunni divide you've been talking about, which is worsening by the day. >> if you're a sunni sitting in tikrit, and you suddenly see
this iranian force, you see a shia militia/death squad coming in -- >> you are suspect. but i would contend that the sunni/shia divide is not what we're all making it. in the north, there have been kurds, sunnis, shia, turkman, syrians, living together under saddam hussein for a very long time. it is not that much of -- it would be the equivalent of saying your politics are different, your religion is different, but they now see a threat. and even though the iranians are now contributing to the fighting of isis, there might be some contention, the sunni tribal members might say, these are shia forces come in, sadrists, it is contributing to the good. >> i think let's see if this works out. you're right that that's the plan, and the iraqi government has made some good steps. they are going to try to retake mosul, as we understand it. there are about 2,000 isis fighters there.
the iraqi army is going to put something in the range of 20,000 troops up against them. kurdish peshmerga, iraqi troops, both sunni and shia, and a small number of american advisers. but they will have american drones, there will be american air support. and the idea here is to launch a genuinely iraqi response, not iranian, not -- if that works, nothing succeeds like success in military affairs. >> can we take a look attic rit. and tell us why you think it's so important. >> it goes to what fareed said. the criticality of taking land away from isis, because that's what they desire, that's part of the caliphate. taking back mosul. we've seen the buildup also in s samara. a critically important shia city with a lot of sunnis there. >> not too far from baghdad. >> about halfway distant between tikrit and baghdad.
after the iraqi forces take tikrit, the question is going to be, will they then take shircot, peel off and go toward kirkuk? or will they continue to open up the supply lines between baghdad and mosul. you can't go directly into mosul. there's got to be this campaign plain from baghdad to mosul with all the places in between. the critical piece will be when they turn toward kirkuk. right between kirkuk and the other dot in the middle is a small town that seems to be becoming the capital of isis. it was already a problematic area. it was a bad area when we were there. and what you'll see is continual action to drive isis out of territory. >> the retaking of the ground? >> the key will be, will the locals agree -- >> the tribal groups, the baathi
officers, they're watching. >> but they -- i mean, the u.s. toward the end was able to reverse a lot of gains that al qaeda had made was because of disenchantment by the tribal groups, and payments made to the tribal groups. the sunni awakening, the tribal awakening. are we seeing any evidence that there's this disenchantment? >> we are talking to the sunni tribal groups approved by baghdad. we're not talking to the al anbar tribes at all. because we have to pass through the so-called democratic process. which means the sunnis have to show abeyance to the shia government. and they're discredited. we do not know what they're going to do when the army moves in. if they move in with popular mobilization, the militias, so-called death cults, i think it's going to get worse. >> what we're looking at is a difficult but doable military
strategy. that's iraq. syria is much more complicated. because you've got literally hundreds of groups. and at the end of the day, you know, if you -- you are in effect strengthening the assad government. >> for a lot of these groups, target number one is bashar al assad. that's what they want to continue. >> syria's gone. it's not coming back together. that's my prediction. >> we have to take a break. up next, isis recruitment. you heard a lot about it. what is the appeal? can it be stopped? we'll talk to a parent working to stop her own son going over to fight for isis. [rob] so we've had a tempur-pedic for awhile, but now that we have the adjustable base, it's even better. [evie] i go up...heeeeyyy... [alex] when i put my feet up on this bed, my stress just goes away. [announcer] visit your local retailer
i am an electric crew foreman out of the cupertino service center. i was born and raised in the cupertino area. it's a fantastic area to work. the new technology that we are installing out in the field is important for the customers because system reliability i believe is number one. pg&e is always trying to plan for the future and we are always trying to build something stronger and bigger and more reliable. i love living here and i love the community i serve. nobody wants to be without power. i don't want my family to be without power. it's much more personal to me for that reason.
the battle for mind slar with sons and daughters at stake. in the last two years or so, drawn in part by propaganda videos, hundreds of young westerners have left their homes and gone to join isis. damian became radicalized in canada and fought and died in syria. his mom remembers the phone calls home. >> i would get so scared. because you tell me that you had to run because an airplane was coming in. it was flying low. when they flew low, they dropped bombs. i couldn't stop talking to you. i didn't want to let go. it ate me up inside. >> her son had initially told her that he had gone overseas to study arabic. he actually had gone to syria. that clip is from extreme dialogue. two anti-extremist organizations that she now works with.
thank you for being with us. so sorry for your loss. >> thank you. >> i think a lot of people hear about, you know, families where a child has gone off to fight and becomes radicalized, and think, how does that happen? how does a parent not know? can you talk just a little bit about what it was like for you? >> back then, i mean, when everything started happening, it was in 2011. in north america, we didn't really know there was an issue going on. now, you can see the signs. just by being aware, educating parents, the change in behavior, attitude, kind of that restlessness, that agitation, you can feel and see cutting off from friends, changing their behavior, more reserved, more private. >> your son converted to islam. at first you saw a positive change. >> exactly. he converted in 2008. it was fantastic. it was a positive change for him. so these changes didn't start happening until three years later. >> and was it somebody who
reached out to him? was it videos he was watching online, a combination? >> it's a combination for him. and the other thing he also had was a study group. so these other boys that were also radicalized that were looking on the internet had been introduced to it from somebody within the city. they were all gathering together to pray and strengthen that belief. >> what do you think for your son was the appeal of going to a place where -- i mean, syria, he clearly had seen the videos, clearly knew what was happening there? >> the big thing for him, when i finally got ahold of him -- >> because he told you he was going to egypt to study arabic. >> exactly. i believed when i was talking to him at first that that's where he was, until he went off the radar for a month. and our security intelligence showed up. at that time when he finally reached out to me a month later, that's when he indicated to me that he had gone over to help with women and children that were being tortured, raped,
murdered, and to fight against bashar al assad. if you look at the propaganda that's out there that we don't see on the media, it's really compelling. and there's strong messages that are grabbing these kids saying, you need to do something. you need to act now. and all these other stories in the media are making us look bad. >> graham, one of the things you read, i think it was you, that you wrote, was saying that the recruiters will say this is the most exciting movie that you can be a part of. >> yeah. they'll say that this is the biggest struggle that the world has ever seen. so if you're bored at home, if there's something that -- some kind of meaning that you're missing at home, then you can join up in a struggle of proportions that you couldn't even imagine before you were told about the details of this kind of fight. >> so how does anyone counter that? >> one of the critical things we need to do, and this goes back to what you said influenced your son, is to get out the stories of the muslim victims of terrorism, and of groups like isis. if you've been as i've been to
the cemetery where victims of the armed islamic group and seen elderly muslim women praying for their slain children, this sort of story that somehow you go off and join jihad, and you're going to be defending muslims is completely exposed. >> the reality is, you're killing muslims. >> yes. >> that's the number one target is muslims who they don't believe are muslim enough, not following the proper path. >> absolutely. the vast majority of the victims of jihadist groups and jihadist terrorism are people of muslim heritage. but we don't see their faces. we don't talk about those victims, or the heroic iraqi woman lawyer executed by isis in september because of her opposition to their barrity. we need to tell those stories, so that young muslims and people who think they're going to help by joining jihad will find other ways of doing that and know that is absolutely the wrong path. >> isis has its own etiology cal
machine, pointing out that these people are not muslims in their eyes. they would say, that the people fighting against isis are not muslims at all. >> do you have to defeat in the conflict in order to end the appeal for the recruiting? >> you have to end the conflict first. if you're a sunni muslim and you don't get into the nuances of the religion or history of the rest of it, you have to look at sunni islam as under threat. look at yemen. shia government's taken off. a shia government in baghdad. you have hezbollah, the effective government in lebanon. and once you identify with sunni islam, and the pure interpretation of the faith, you are under threat. and you are obligated to defend islam. this is the message. it's very simple, very hard to combat. and in fact, sunni islam has failed with these corrupt governments in saudi arabia, with the invasion of iraq in 2003. and this message is very
powerful. especially for kids in the west who can't identify with, you know, that the consumerism and the rest of it and don't have a future, and it's the only thing they can identify with. to stop that message is almost impossible. by the way, these communities, these jihadist communities, i spent a lot of time in israeli prisons sitting around with them. they're very pleasant people. they sound reasonable within their own logic. >> they can reasonably be talking about beheading somebody, they -- >> they turn the switch. to defend islam, we have to kill. we have to kill the, you know, the people like us. >> is there something about the simplicity of the message? i don't know if purity is the right word. the simplicity of the message that there's right and wrong, black and white, this person is not muslim. they say they're muslim but they're not muslim. >> and you're rewarded in the
hereafter. in eternity you're rewarded. if i'm going to offer you eternity and you really truly believe it -- >> do you feel like -- i think about parents whose children have joined a cult. i'm trying to imagine when you were talking to your child, and once you knew he was actually in syria, did you feel there was any kind of argument you could make that would reach him? >> i tried in the beginning. it was very difficult because he was already so far geographically from me. and that distance made it more difficult. but over a period of time i tried using verses in the koran, getting help from anybody, and he was so passionate and believed so much in what he was doing, that he was there. he had to help these people. it was a desperation. but it was really difficult to get to him. then over a period of time, he started to change. and withdraw even further. and you could see that he was getting colder, colder, and more distant. but he's surrounded with this type of environment, you're going to change. so it was very difficult. >> anderson, it's the violence,
the vacuum, the power vacuum and that awful violence in the middle east, that's so hard for us to understand. which just entrenches this attitude. as long as these conflicts continue on, we're going to have the phenomenon of the islamic state. it's going to be one form or another, it's going to appear here and there. >> the power of the extremist ideology. one of the key things is to defeat and discredit that ideology in every way possible. one of the things we need to do is support the family groups, like yours, where i think about the somali education center in minneapolis started by a man whose nephew, 17-year-old nephew was recruited by al shabaab, who didn't know anything about al shabab, was killed by them when he tried to come home. his uncle campaigns against recruitment with very few resources. we need to support people like them. >> the message to parents out there, you've got to talk to your kids, just like you talk to them about drugs. >> we do.
we've got the sex education, drug education in school, where is there such a big stigma and taboo. by keeping it in, and not sharing it, you're leaving it to anybody else to do it instead. >> your son died fighting in aleppo? >> he was just outside of ale o aleppo, which was an isis controlled town. >> i'm sorry for your loss. thank you for the work you're doing here. i appreciate it. we're going to continue our discussion when we come back. we'll take a short break. just ahead, digging deeper on the money angle. this is what isis wants, the world to see priceless artifacts smashed to bits. but isis is selling other antiquities, and oil and other sources of income. we'll follow the money when we come back. i have a wandering eye. i mean, come on. national gives me the control to choose any car in the aisle i want. i could choose you...
or i could choose her if i like her more. and i do. oh, the silent treatment. real mature. so you wanna get out of here? go national. go like a pro. "what is it that we can do that is impactful?" what the cloud enables is computing to empower cancer researchers. it used to take two weeks to sequence and analyze a genome; with the microsoft cloud we can analyze 100 per day. whatever i can do to help compute a cure for cancer, that's what i'd like to do. dovisit tripadvisor new york. with millions of reviews and the best hotel prices... book your next trip at tripadvisor.com today.
welcome back to the isis threat. one of the latest propaganda videos released by isis is showing militants destroying priceless artifacts in an iraqi museum. vital pieces of the historical record wiped out. isis wants to send a message with these images. at the same time they're smashing antiquities, they're also selling them on the black market for cash. here's what king abdullah told fare fare
fareed in an interview. >> more recently in iraq, they overran banks. and managed to capture a lot of money. and ran their own economic industry. so they were selling a lot of oil, producing a lot of billion dollars worth of revenue a year. that's been degraded significantly since because of coalition air strikes. but they had their own ability to run their own economy successfully. >> michael, talk a little bit about how else they fund themselves. >> as you mentioned, they sell the artifacts on the black market. they have an improvisation al system what should be smashed and what should be sold. if anything is worshipped, pre-islamic gods created as sculptured, they get powdered. >> they can justify all of this.
>> of course. again, messiahonic, if they have to. they sell oil to bashar al assad. he's been financing them for years. they sell oil to smugglers at the turkick border. >> so those under threat from him, he's not really fighting them, fighting other groups, aiding them at times. >> even the regime says, we don't make a priority on fighting isis. crucifying theories, controlling one-third of our country. >> this group who wants to overthrow bashar al assad, they're not above selling oil. >> it's been called a tactical alliance between the two. nor is the priority on taking the war to them. >> the extreme version of arab dictators have, frankly, have always done, is to say to the world and their population, it's me or the jihadists. if you look at what the egyptian general el sisi is doing, effectively he's saying, there is no opposition.
we're going to jail everybody, kill others. so that i'm the pillar of stability. if you want to bet on what's going to come afterwards, you can bet on it. >> isis you're saying actually helps bashar al assad, the existence of isis? >> it gives the population of syria a stark choice. to give the population of syria a stark choice between a good labor ral democratic opposition and as sad -- >> it also verifies the message as sad was giving from the beginning which is, these are terrorists opposing us. >> he says, look what you've got. his dad in 1982 said, look, these people are all crazy. knock it down. it's either me or the islamic chaos. >> it's important to point out, they also make money from european countries which are paying for kidnap victims. >> that's kind of gone under the radar. countries have paid in the hundreds of millions to get aid workers and journalists back from isis-held territories. we are negotiating with the
terrorists, maybe not the united states, but the french have specifically. >> we've heard from a lot of the families of the americans, because the americans held captives see their fellow captives being ransomed back to european countries. >> terrain is an integral component to the isis economy. the more they charge in taxation. if you're a farmer, and you have 100 head of sheep. isis can say, give me five, give me ten. they're charging taxes of the people they rule, thus generating -- >> it's legitimate under islam. it sort of works. >> if you're a nonmuslim, it's jaseera. >> to look at the solution end of this problem. when we were wondering about al qaeda, there was always this question of how do they get their money. it was the saudi networks, and money coming from the uae, and a lot of it was maybe from states. but mostly from individuals. and how do you stop it since it was all part of a great unknown.
terror law in that city. this was shot by a woman in lives in ra ka at great risk to her life. crucifixions are reported to be done on a regular basis. we're not using his actual name. he has to remain anonymous for his safety. thank you for speaking with us. can you describe what daily life is like under isis rule? >> thank you. yes, the life under the city of ra ka, it's very hard to live. especially for the civilians. not the isis fighters. it's the life of the people of the city. there are two different lives in the city. for the people there is very, very strong rules for the isis. all the women must put veil.
and if the woman don't put veil, she punished for that. there is taxes on the people. every market inside the city, even there is taxes on the electricity. there is a lot of executions. a lot of crucifixions. if you say anything against isis, you will be killed for that. it's very difficult to live in the city. -- without the knowledge of isis, they'll kill you for that. anyone speaking against them or taking videos of them for the city, they say perhaps you're a spy for the west. they will kill you for that. if you are making anything that isis don't want to do to show it to the world or not to want to do it, they will kill you for that. also, the people are really suffering because isis close all the organization that gives aid for the people. the hospital situation are really bad. i document more than 86 people
dying because there is no devices for washing. i document more than 278 cases for forcing girls to manage an isis fighters. most of them are under 18. there is a lot of executions. we document in the last 15 months more than 57 executions. you will be executed for anything. >> we have a number of guests that want to ask you questions. do you have something? >> i read your piece in "the guardian" a week ago. you said that the isis control over the city is still really solid, there's no sign that they're losing their grip. is that the still the case today or are they beginning to erode their control over the city? >> yes, the case is still like that. because, yes, i know that they're effective on isis, kill some of them. but, you know, because isis in the city, like a prison. they don't allow the women if
they are not over 45 years old to leave the city. most of the people are prisoners in the city. so they cannot destroy the headquarters inside the city because most of them are between the civilians and the neighborhoods for the civilians. it's very difficult to defeat them. if you want to defeat them you must send the troops on the ground. most of the west and the europe they adopt want to send troops on the ground because it will be a big problem, a lot of blood, there will be massacres. if there are air strikes inside the city. a lot of civilians will die in i want to get at least one more question. >> fareed zakaria. let me ask you, what are the isis guys like, the young men who are joining us? are they religious? are they young men who enjoy the power? how do you describe them in. >> i think most of the isis are laughing on them. when they're publishing their
propaganda video they think -- the city, it's like a par diez, the caliphate and stuff like that. but when they enter and they're shocked by the real, the real islamic state, the isis is terrorist group, killing civilians, chasing women and killing innocent people. they're shocked at the real life or what's going on in the city for real. but if they want to -- it's their problem because the isis will take tear passport and from the first day when they go into the city. so like i say before to the cnn, the problem is not how to get to the islamic state or to the city, the problem is how to get out if you want to. so most of these guys or these young guys, the isis is laughing at them. just they think the real caliphate. because they're seeing the womans and the rape, the young
guys and boys dying in syria. >> it's obviously a lot different than they see in the propaganda videos. we're out of time. we appreciate you talking to us. i want to thank all of our panelists tonight pop that dus it for this special edition of "360." cnn tonight starts now. you just saw 360 special report, the isis threat. but you may be surprised to see what has some people really outraged when it comes to isis. this is cnn tonight. i'm don lemon and we want to know what you think of this. >> looks like your ride is here. you be careful, okay? >> dad, it's just isis. >> efb is laughing about that sketch from saturday night live. it's more shocking to a lot of people than anything dakota johnson does in 50 shades of