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Helpful Links Provide Insight into ISIS and Happenings in the Middle East

EducationWorld has curated content from reporters about ISIS (the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria). Regularly checking the homepages of the top 50 newspapers in the country, visiting the BBC news online and viewing White House press releases can help busy teachers stay up to date on the changing news in the Middle East.

UPDATE: September 23 USA Today story: "U.S. and Arab allies launch airstrikes against ISIL in Syria." (This space may be updated with breaking news on an intermittent basis.) 

The New York Times recently published a guide to ISIS that may help social studies instructors break down this organization for their sixth through 12th graders. The explanatory page contains infographics, photos, maps and links to longer articles.

The Islamic State in Iraq and Syria has a detailed structure that encompasses many functions and jurisdictions, according to ISIS documents seized by Iraqi forces and seen by American officials and Hashim Alhashimi, an Iraqi researcher. Many of its leaders are former officers from Saddam Hussein’s long-disbanded army who augmented their military training with terrorist techniques during years of fighting American troops.

Read more in the New York Times

The Las Vegas Review-Journal also published need-to-know facts about ISIS, with much of the content coming from the Associated Press. The Review-Journal page also contains a wealth of hyperlinks for further context.

As of Monday [September 15], the United States’ actions against ISIS include only airstrikes in Iraq, not in Syria. The President plans to send more troops. Officials in the White House said at the time that it could take years to dismantle the Islamic State, with a possibility of extending the mission beyond Obama’s presidency.

Read more in the Review-Journal. has a primer on all of ISIS's names and highlights of what has gone on in Iraq and Syria.

The full Arabic name for the Islamic State in Iraq and al-Sham is al-Dawla al-Islamiya fi Iraq wa ash-Sham — which, using Arabic characters, produces the acronym DAIISH. This acronym is often spelled, in English characters, as Da'esh or Daesh.

Read more in Vox.

A Scholastic News piece from June provided an overview of events leading up to President Obama sending military advisors to Iraq this summer.

Some critics feel Obama isn’t doing enough. They believe he should be more forceful in fighting ISIS. But Obama says the key to avoiding civil war in Iraq is for al-Maliki and his government to be more inclusive of all sects in Iraq.

 An opinion piece about ISIS from a Singapore teenager on Youth Journalism International’s website may interest other teens.

Largely unregulated, the internet and several social media platforms are being exploited by terror groups such as ISIS to disseminate malicious messages and materials for radicalization, with pliable teenagers often being their intended audience.

While the Council on Foreign Relations is not a media source, its webpage aggregates some of the latest news on the conflict in the Middle East. Access to blog posts and videos are also provided on the site.

Feel free to share other good sites to check for up-to-date news about ISIS and U.S. actions in the Middle East.


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