File - Militant Islamist fighters in military vehicles parade along the streets of Syria's northern Raqqa province June 30, 2014. REUTERS/Stringer
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Jihadists who swept like an army across Iraq and Syria are expected to return to guerrilla warfare and melt into the population to avoid heavy losses from U.S.-led airstrikes, analysts say.The group is now expected to change its strategy as the United States leads a coalition of more than 50 nations – mainly Western powers or Middle Eastern allies – against it.French jets carried out their first airstrikes against ISIS militants in Iraq Friday, after U.S. warplanes bombed a jihadist training camp.By blending into the cities, ISIS also hopes to increase the odds of civilian casualties, to help its propaganda war, Barry believes.ISIS has already begun moving some fighters, particularly foreigners, from Iraq to Syria, according to Iraqi security analyst Ahmed al-Shreifi.The only way that U.S. aerial bombardment can make a significant difference now is on fronts where ISIS has concentrated its forces, such as in rebel-held Marea in the north of Aleppo, said Thomas Pierret, a Syria specialist at the University of Edinburgh.
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