The evolution of Islamic State's 'provinces'.
Islamic State (IS) has expanded its network abroad since the collapse of its geographical 'caliphate'. Its activities abroad seem to fall into two categories: small networks of ex-combatants and supporters capable of limited urban terrorist attacks, and more structured 'provinces' that claim a cohesive existence, although this is increasingly untrue.
- The more structured IS provinces become, the more they become vulnerable to military attack.
- Cutting off external cashflows would reduce the ability of functioning IS provincial structures to pay wages and buy arms.
- Western governments will focus on tracking individuals of interest, especially but not only those returning from the Middle East.