Back in 2003, the US government made decisions that seemed to be the right call. However, without those decisions there would be no ISIS today. They created chaos and then walked away and abandoned it. From that chaos arose a militant terrorist group now known as ISIS.
It was early 2014 and they seemed to come out of nowhere. ISIS started seizing key territory in Iraq. They swept into western Iraq and just took over the assets and nobody was able to stop them. Washington was stunned when they realized that the second largest city in Iraq fell in a day. But these were not angry newcomers; these men had been at war ever since the US invasion to Iraq. They had been fighting violently for ten years.
The secret life of ISIS began in the CIA headquarters in the aftermath of September 11 when Abu Musab al-Zarqawi became a person of interest. This man, who later became the founder of ISIS, was a thug who was in prison. It was there that he became more immersed in his religion and became determined to wage holy war. There was a prime opportunity to take him out because he was a threat to US forces and the allies, but Washington decided it was not the right time.
The vice-president at the time decided it was a better decision to use al-Zarqawi to lead them to Saddam Hussein and Osama Bin Laden, but the CIA found no evidence that there was any connection between Al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein. Still, the White House insisted and transformed Zarqawi into an iconic figure.
After the occupation, the defeated military felt disrespected. Week after week they had massive demonstrations that just kept getting worse; there were even a few killings. These men were easy targets for Zarqawi to recruit because they feared becoming meaningless in their own country. A few weeks later the insurgency began.
Washington chose to deny what was happening. They even went so far as accusing journalists of sensationalism and trying hard to convince everybody that the Iraqis were embracing the occupation.
Because the United States was in denial that an uprising was brewing, this made Zarqawi free to raise the stakes. He kidnapped a Jewish-American humanitarian and filmed his beheading for the world to see that he was serious and violent.