Experts opine that the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) responded to its loss of control over major population centers in Iraq and Syria that constituted its self-described “caliphate” by internationalizing its patterns of terrorist violence, committing higher-profile attacks abroad, and exploiting sectarian conflicts in other countries. In this study, we test this conventional wisdom. We theorize that the loss of population centers prompted ISIS to conduct more attacks abroad, to shift its attack venues abroad, and to cause higher casualties abroad. Using original time series data on ISIS control over major cities, we find empirical support for our theoretical assumptions.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Sociology and Political Science
- Political Science and International Relations