US-Led Coalition Now Says Less Than 1,000 ISIS Left in Iraq, Syria

Figure Down From 3,000 Estimated Just Three Weeks Ago

Early this month, the US-led coalition had estimated that 3,000 ISIS fighters were left in Iraq and Syria, the smallest number in years. On Wednesday, officials revised that estimate downward to less than 1,000.

The new statement credited the reduction to the “commitment” of the coalition in fighting ISIS, though there is no indication of any conflicts they’ve been in lately that would remove 2,000 ISIS from the battlefield.

This may reflect more ISIS fighters leaving the region with the loss of effectively all of their territory, heading to other areas of interest for the faction, or returning home to their countries of origin.

If it’s the later, that could be a serious concern, as ISIS recruited heavily from Western Europe and elsewhere around the world, which means their return will put a lot of people with contacts to international terror in places they traditionally have struggled to infiltrate.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.