I am wondering why ISIS built and/or took control of certain highly visible infrastructure that the U.S. and allies are now bombing, e.g. "four checkpoints, two guard towers and a command post." Surely ISIS could have foreseen how easy it would be for this type of infrastructure to be targeted and destroyed?

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    What is non-bombable infrastructure then? Sep 26, 2014 at 21:48
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    @bytebuster - Schools, mosques, hospitals.
    – user4012
    Sep 26, 2014 at 22:11
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    @bytebuster - As well as middle of a forest or other insurgent-friendly territory
    – user4012
    Sep 26, 2014 at 22:17
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    because they want to be a state not terrorist organization anymore, one more thing, arab states are screwed up totally who ever helps to reach this stage is a traitor and uncivil regardless of his/er political tendency or religion.
    – Abr001am
    Oct 21, 2015 at 6:22
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    @user4012 The coalition has bombed many schools mosques and hospitals. Jun 26, 2017 at 23:53

2 Answers 2

  1. IS needs to control the ground. That requires controlling local strongholds, high points and other tactically important items. Checkpoints, guard towers and command points are that - and if THEY don't control them, their enemies will and use against them.

  2. IS doesn't loose too much from US bombing them. A couple of low-level grunts get killed, in exchange for visibility and recruitment and branding ("We are important and strong enough to tangle with America and the West and Crusaders and Zionists... wait no, Zionists are actually wily enough to stay the f^*k away from the area but we'll lump them in anyway 'cause that plays well with the locals")

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    I think the oil fields and refineries (a major source of their revenue) and other captured government infrastructure are worth mentioning.
    – Publius
    Sep 27, 2014 at 22:38
  • @Avi - I don't think Obama's dumb enough to bomb oil fields and refineries? And they are somewhat offtopic to the Q
    – user4012
    Sep 28, 2014 at 19:25
  • Attacks have targeted oil refineries: washingtonpost.com/world/…
    – Publius
    Sep 29, 2014 at 0:50

They still need somewhere to sleep; and somewhere to provide cover and provision for ground combat. Whether ISIS needs fixed infrastructure at this stage is unclear, but they are hardly going to say no to Iraqi and Syrian assets they overrun.

For all we know the coalition is also bombing vehicles and troops running around outdoors. But that makes for a less concise soundbite.

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