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ISIS already has a new leader in former Saddam Hussein officer

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NEW YORK POST:

ISIS already has a new leader — a feared former officer for Saddam Hussein known as “the Destroyer,” according to reports.

Abdullah Qardash was reportedly already running day-to-day operations and kill campaigns for the terror group and formally took over its leadership after Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi’s death on Saturday.

“Baghdadi was a figurehead. He was not involved in operations or day-to-day,” a regional intelligence official told Newsweek in confirming the successor. “All Baghdadi did was say yes or no — no planning.”

Qardash had been loyal to Baghdadi after they were held together at the Camp Bucca detention center in Basra after being jailed by US forces over their links to al Qaeda in 2003, The Times of London has said.

Even before his death, Baghdadi was handing more power to Qardash, known as a brutal policymaker whose name is sometimes spelled Kardesh, the Times said.

A former security analyst with the Iraqi government, Fadhel Abo Ragheef, told the paper in August that al-Baghdadi was understood to be “trying to prepare Qardash to lead ISIS in the future.”

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