But you'd be wrong. The truth is that ISIS's momentum is stalled: in both Iraq and Syria, the group is being beaten back at key points. There are initial signs — uncertain, sketchy, but hopeful — that the group is hurting more than you may think, and has stalled out in the war it was for so long winning. ISIS isn't close to being destroyed. But they are reeling. […]
First, while American airstrikes are not going to defeat ISIS, they have seriously limited the group's ability to conduct offensive operations. "Airpower has made it difficult for ISIS to concentrate its forces in large numbers," Jason Lyall, a political scientist at Yale University and an expert on counterinsurgency, writes via email. "It has made it more dangerous to reposition its equipment and forces, slowing down its reaction times and complicating its command and control. As a result, ISIS is a far more dispersed force than it was in June."
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