The Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) has caused considerable loss of life, bodily injury, and destruction of property and infrastructure in Iraq and Syria since its emergence in 2013. Indeed, the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights and the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq estimates that between January and August 2014, 8,493 civilians were killed and more than 15,782 civilians were injured by ISIL and its associated groups. In recent months,
Use of Force, and International Humanitarian Law
The multi-faction insurgency that has been tearing Iraq apart ever since the fall of Saddam Hussein’s regime in 2003 has often involved the use of such crude and indiscriminate methods and means of warfare as the suicide bomb and the improvised explosive device. But in mid-2014 there were reports that some aspects of the armed conflict had risen to unexpected heights of contemporary sophistication, with the apparent use of cyberspace as a domain for hostilities.