ISIS Boasts About Killings, Braces for Collapse
Group vows to fight on even if every scrap of territory is lost
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 13, 2016 2:29 AM CDT
People gather in front of a burned mall covered with posters in memory of the victims of the Karada bombing in Iraq earlier this month. The attack killed 292 people.   (AP Photo/Hadi Mizban)
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(Newser) – ISIS, which measures success in the number of people its followers kill in bloody atrocities around the world, says it had a very successful Ramadan. In the latest issue of its al-Naba magazine, the group boasts that it killed or injured 5,200 people in 14 "military operations" during Ramadan, including the Orlando nightclub massacre, the murder of a police officer and his wife near Paris, and a particularly heinous bombing in Baghdad, reports Vocativ. The group also claims attacks in countries such as Afghanistan, Nigeria, Somalia, and Turkey, saying its victims included 285 non-Arab Christians and almost 2,000 Shiite Muslims.

But while ISIS brags about far-flung attacks, its "caliphate" in Iraq and Syria is steadily shrinking, and analysts say the group appears to be bracing for the possible loss of all its territory, the Washington Post reports. A recent al-Naba editorial insists the group would survive as an underground organization even if the physical caliphate collapsed, and an ISIS operative who spoke to the Post on the condition his location was not revealed says the transition has already begun. "We do have, every day, people reaching out and telling us they want to come to the caliphate," he says. "But we tell them to stay in their countries and rather wait to do something there." He adds: "There is a message to all members of the coalition against us: We will not forget, and we will come into your countries and hit you." (Highly organized "wolf pack" attacks are seen as ISIS' new signature.)