You heard of ISIS before you heard of ISIS – they used to be called “resistance fighters,” or “anti-Assad forces,” – back when we were providing them with arms and aid. Patrick Cockburn covers the full story of the Islamic State’s sweep across the wreckage of Syria and Iraq in his book The Jihadis Return: ISIS and the New Sunni Uprising (excerpt at CounterPunch.)

Patrick calls into TiH! to set up a broad political context for the history and current state of the ISIS/ISIL, from the internal tensions stoked by Western policies that enabled the group to flourish in Syria and then Iraq, to the region’s religious, political and financial backers operating in the open, and finally the realization that nations can support and combat violent groups at the same time, in a cycle that costs lives but makes certain people lots and lots of money.

Listen to the full interview at This Is Hell!

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