The Dark Side of the Economy: A Comparative Analysis of the Islamic State's Revenue Streams

The Islamic State’s ambitious goals have led to the organization obtaining a large amount of costs. However, the Islamic State does not have adequate revenue streams to maintain these expenditures. This paper compares the Islamic State’s costs and revenue streams with two similar organizations, Hizballah and Al Qaeda. The comparison will explain that the Islamic State’s revenue streams are not as efficient and diversified as Hizballah and Al Qaeda’s revenue streams have historically been. As a result of inefficient and unvaried revenue streams, the Islamic State will be forced to structurally change.

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The Unanticipated Threat of ISIS: Rise, Growth, and Stability

The terrorist threat posed by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria/Sham (ISIS) was unanticipated by many. This paper argues that ISIS’ rise, growth and stability are largely a result of disenfranchisement in Iraq and Syria and financial stability. However, examination of the history and social conditions in Syria and Iraq demonstrate that the expansion of ISIS, or another organization similar to ISIS, was nearly inevitable. This paper provides an overview of ISIS’ rise by examining how the organization was able to initially gain support by capitalizing on disenfranchisement. This paper will also explain the growth and stability of ISIS by examining how the organization has been able to financially support itself.

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