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The Guardian: Doubt cast over seniority of Isis leader killed by US special forces in Syria raid

* Defense secretary hails death of Abu Sayyaf as ‘significant blow’
* Isis specialist says man killed was ‘very close’ to chief spokesman

US special forces entered Syria on Friday night and killed a mid-ranking leader of the Islamic State, in only the second raid of its kind since operations against the terror group began more than a year ago.

The Pentagon said the raid killed Abu Sayyaf, who it said was an instrumental figure in black market oil smuggling. Iraqi officials, meanwhile, said the man’s real name was Nabil Saddiq Abu Saleh al-Jabouri.

US troops also captured the man’s wife and flew her to a base in Iraq, the first time they have seized a prisoner since the start of the campaign.

WNU Editor: I have been following the rise of the Islamic State since the beginning ... and until today ... I have never heard of Abu Sayyaf. I have heard of the Philippine terror group Abu Sayyaf .... but not an Islamic commander by that name. I then scanned all the known top leaders of the Islamic State for Abu Sayyaf .... again .... nothing. The U.S. Defense Secretary is saying that this is a major blow against the Islamic State .... but it looks like he was only a mid-level commander ... if that. This story is not adding up .... and when I read embellished reports of the raid like this one .... Abu Sayyaf raid required U.S. troops to use ‘hand to hand’ combat (Daily Beast) .... I part of me begins to wonder if there is more spin to this story than fact.

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