Islamic State has seen a spike in activity around Israel over the past several weeks, with activity not only heating up on the Golan Heights border with Syria, but in Egypt and along Israel's border with the Sinai Peninsula as well.
Arutz Sheva spoke with Dr. Ephraim Herrera, counter-terrorism expert and author of "Jihad – Fundamentals and Fundamentalism," to gain perspective on the situation.
ISIS's main goal is to achieve worldwide domination through an Islamic holy war, he explained, and the prime enemy is not even the West or infidels (i.e. non-believers), but first those liberal Muslims opposed to complete acceptance of strict Sharia law.
This is why, he explained, the group first gained prominence in the largely secular Syria – and why Egypt is a prime battleground as well.
What makes it unique is not only the size of the Caliphate, but the fear and religious fervor it spreads, he added. The reason ISIS is obsessed with decapitation and other savagery is to follow a Quran directive to strike fear in the heart of the enemy.
In light of all this, Egypt's fight against ISIS now could be crucial.
"Up until now, there was no total defeat of Islamic State, anywhere," Herrera said. A defeat could set a precedent which would sow doubt in the heart of Islamists, particularly in that country.
"Egyptians want the Sharia, 80% of them," he said, adding that 70% of Egyptians had voted for the Muslim Brotherhood and for Salafist groups. Economic problems are also a factor.
Herrera noted that the time to stop ISIS is now, however – before it gets even bigger.