ISIS Stunner: Terrorist Organization's Annual Reports Unveiled; Reveal Full "Investment Highlights"

Tyler Durden's picture

In a day and age in which corporations rule the world, the brutal Al-Qaeda spin off known as ISIS is learning from the best, and as part of its credentialising and image-building has done something only major corporations do at the end of every year: it has issued annual reports for the past 2 years (unaudited, unless Ernst & Young has quietly upgraded from "massaging" the books for Lehman's Repo 105 and, of course, the New York Fed, without our knowledge).

That's right: as the FT reported earlier, "Since 2012 the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, (known as Isis) has issued annual reports, outlining in numerical and geographical detail its operations – the number of bombings, assassinations, checkpoints, suicide missions, cities taken over and even “apostates” converted to the Isis cause."

But while publicly traded corporations focus more on revenues, margins, and profits, ISIS has other key considerations:

In 2013 alone, the group’s report claimed nearly 10,000 operations in Iraq: 1,000 assassinations, 4,000 improvised explosive devices planted and hundreds of radical prisoners freed. In the same year it claimed hundreds of “apostates” had been turned.

Wait... are you serious?

Why yes: below are the "investment highlights" pages from ISIS' 2012 and 2013 annual reports:

And to think how many more assassinations and bombings ISIS would have achieved if only it wasn't for the damn "polar vortex"...

But why is ISIS not only documenting its every single act, but boasting about all of its terrorist achievements? According to the FT the purpose of releasing 410 pages full to the brim with the terrorist group's exploits, is simple: "Isis’s aim appears to be to demonstrate its record to potential donors." Which means that the glossy excerpted pages shown above are indeed nothing more than investment highlights!

The reports paint a picture of an organisation that analysts say is not so much the ragtag terrorist band depicted by Iraqi officials but more of an organised military structure with a clear political strategy to set up a Sunni sectarian state – and one with several of the hallmarks of a corporate entity.


“The reports provide measures of performance in the way you roll out details for donors,” said Jessica Lewis, director of research at the Institute for the Study of War. “They affirm that the organisation operates like an army and that it has state-building ambitions.”

Virtually every aspect of a conventional annual review is included: Nigel Inkster, former assistant chief of UK intelligence service MI6, and now director of transnational threats at the International Institute for Strategic Studies, said: "They produce [them] almost like a company, with details of martyrdom operations and targets. You have a clear overlay of structure, planning and strategy to the organisation."

One wonders: how does one differentiate between suicide missions and successful assassiantion attempts on a GAAP vs non-GAAP basis? The answer is unclear, but what is clear is that the modus operandi of terrorist organizations has changed drastically from the days of Osama bin Laden living in caves in Afghanistan.

Isis is the successor to the group that was known as al-Qaeda in Iraq and was so brutal in its methods that it drove Sunni tribes, with help and financial incentives from the US military, to turn against it in 2006. Isis learnt a lesson. “Isis decided the solution was better military power and that it should be a harder version of al-Qaeda,” said Ms Lewis.


And yet the group has adapted to new modern methods of spreading its message. Deft use of social media has been at the forefront of its campaigning tactics in Syria and Iraq. When it comes to using platforms such as Twitter, Isis is “probably more sophisticated than most US companies,” says Aaron Zelin, an expert on jihadis and fellow at the Washington Institute.


Isis’s use of social media has been one of the main reasons why it has become the single most popular organisation for fighters from foreign countries – including an estimated 2,000 from Europe, according to estimates from western intelligence agencies.

So ISIS is great at creating real (and probably fake, purchased in Bangladesh) Twitter followers, but what really matters at the end of the day, just like with every self-respecting corporation, is whether ISIS has the funds and can generate the income the sustain its terrorist operation.

And it is here that ISIS truly excels. As we reported last week, ISIS is now the richest terror group ever after it looted over $400 million from the central bank of the Iraqi city of Mosul - the first town it overran with virtually no resistance as part of its Blitz offensive.

"In financial terms, 2014 has been dramatically successful for the group, after fighters looted hundreds of millions of dollars from Mosul banks. According to the Council on Foreign Relations, Isis was already extorting taxes from businesses in Mosul before its takeover, netting perhaps as much as $8m a month.

While these achievements will be revealed in the upcoming ISIS' 2014 anual report, we wonder: will they be classified as recurring, or as all those GM recalls and JPM lawsuits, be deemed "One-time", "non-recurring."

In conclusion: ISIS has the balance sheet, it also has the cash flow, it has the weapons inventory, the property, refinery plants and bomb equipment, and the terrorist churn. It also has a glossy 410 page annual report for the Terrorist Fiscal Year Ended 2013 (which at more than double the pages of the 2012 report means business has never been better).

All that is missing is an IPO and a Conviction Buy rating from Goldman Sachs.

The full 2013 report can be found below (pdf)

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gh0atrider's picture

Almost too convenient to believe?

max2205's picture

Bet they don't use mark to market either. ....

Raymond K Hessel's picture

So is Malory Archer the Chairman of ISIS, still?  I haven't read their annual yet.


Does it show if they made a profit on the sale of coke back to Colombian drug lords?


Mwah ha ha haha ahhah aha 

Publicus's picture

Already happened, only open to the Saudi's and their friends.

palmereldritch's picture

Same venture capital funding as Google

ParkAveFlasher's picture

Wake me when they are ISO-certified.  I need flowcharted workflow diagrams, real defined processes, definitions of methodology, etc.  Until then, they are just a bunch of grab-assers.   

SWRichmond's picture

I wonder how the boys over at Southern Poverty Law Center feel about this...

Disenchanted's picture

13th tribe shit-stirrers love stuff like this.

Vagabond's picture

So the soap opera has a big new character indroduced.  The back story is laid, now where is storyline headed?

post turtle saver's picture

... and have six sigma black belts on staff

thisisjustarandomusernameicreatedforzerohedge's picture

so if army generals go short ISIS before airstrikes is it insider trading?

darkhorse007's picture

No. You see... they are on the government payroll. Therefore, they are exempt from all insider trading. My question would be, are they required to pay taxes on the gains...

Theosebes Goodfellow's picture

Either you got lucky or you know your Islamic history, 4chan. Rather witty either way!


(Mohammad lived in a cave in his "formative" years.)

wee-weed up's picture



Amerikan CIA response to the report...

"Gee, thanks... we had no clue!"

"We and our FBI and DHS compadres have been too busy...

investigating conservative and patriot groups for the Obozo Admin to have this on our radar."

Bunga Bunga's picture

So Goldman missed the train this time?

Quentin Daniels's picture

No chance.  They'll have a tentacle or two in there.

Buck Johnson's picture

No kidding, and for them to put this out they have major support.

Dewey Cheatum Howe's picture

Yep thery were ALLOWED to march into Mosul by Obama's military with no resistance from the air and no forewarning to Maliki for the Iraqi's to try to stop it just like there won't be any costs for raiding said Central Bank by the financial community through freezing of accounts and other anti-terrorist money laundering measures. That should tell you who is backing them.

I'd love to see the their money movement logs in the SWIFT system. TPTB know and by doing nothing they are implicitly giving consent.

BobPaulson's picture

Better watch out for hostile takeover. Doesn't Zuckerburg still have a full warchest?

what's that smell's picture

you'd have to be the dumbest MF'r drooling and playing with you ca-ca in some dark corner of your mother's sub-basement to believe this silly propaganda.

here's my entry: "Bin Laden Resurrected from Cells harvested from ill-tempered seabass turds; news at 11"

kchrisc's picture

If we could only get them to use Corzine as their broker.

Bunga Bunga's picture

Or give them GM management. ISIS gone bankrupt in 3..2..1.

Rootin' for Putin's picture

ISIS recalls suicide vests due to faulty switch.....

The_Dude's picture

C'mon....these guys are nothing....think how awesome the US MIC infographic would be....i can see it now...

130 countries occupied with US bases

$ X trillion budget wasted propping up decaying empire

XXX million innocents killed since 1913

X wars started under false pretenses

Ad naseum....

Would be a thing of beauty, I tell ya...

KickIce's picture

Shame we don't have an organization in place that has the surveillance capability to sniff an organization like this out.

Nexus789's picture

They do optimise their bang for the buck

cossack55's picture

I beg to differ sir.   They believe in the "deep slash" method, as opposed to the "scrape and pray".

TrumpXVI's picture

Not a chance...they use Mark to Fantasy...just like all respectable western commercial concerns.

Da Yooper's picture

When is JPM & the Fed going to start shorting this bitch ?

venturen's picture

I think you meant reverse merger!

Ignatius's picture

"Almost too convenient to believe?"



Total Bullshit...

I Am Not a Copper Top's picture

Extreme Bullshit.  In all of this have not seen one mention of Israel.  They have no opinion on the matter?  Only they benefit from US playing both sides of this.

McMolotov's picture

You've gotta hand it to them. "ISIS" sounds intimidating, like a secretive organization of super-villains in a Bond movie. The branding is much better than most terror groups. What the fuck is an "al Qaeda" anyway?

ISIS™ — ask for it by name.

prains's picture

ISIS....sounds like a rash you get on your balls that never goes away, especially in the heat

Killer the Buzzard's picture

Roughly, "al Qaeda" is Arabic for "the base", as in a military installation.

Matt's picture

I thought it was "The (data) base" since it was a notebook with a list of contacts for the foreign fighters that fought the Soviets in Afghanistan.

TrumpXVI's picture

"Look for the ISIS label"!

Disenchanted's picture

Isis = Goddess of ancient Egypt


She was worshipped as the ideal mother and wife as well as the patroness of nature and magic. She was the friend of slaves,sinners, artisans and the downtrodden...


The ultimate fuck you symbol to the dark patriarchy that currently runs the world...too bad this current Isis doesn't represent any of that at all. This ISIS is probably very similar to the symbology of putting Andrew Jackson on the 20$ FRN.

Frankie Carbone's picture

If half of the propaganda, photos, and video are true, then one can conclude that this is one gaggle of serious vicious bastards. 

We should have left once Saddamn was hanged. Not our problem anymore. 

Mr. Pickles's picture


Never should have gotten involved in the first place. Saddam may have been a bastard, but he was a secular bastard, and kept these religious psychos in check.