The difference between ISIS and ISIL

CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) –  Alexander Ciccolo of Adams, has been arrested and is being accused of plotting to make an ISIL-inspired attack on a college cafeteria.

22News did some digging as to what the difference between ISIL and ISIS is and found it has a lot to do with geography.

AIC’s Prof. of International Business, Gary Lefort told 22News the terror group was originally referred to as I.S., which stood for Islamic State.

Later, the groups called themselves ISIS, which stands for Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, where most of their fighting was focused.

Lefort said that now you often hear the group referred to as ISIL, because of their intent to expand beyond Iraq and Syria into the larger “Levant” region, including Jordon, Lebanon, Israel, Turkey, and parts of Egypt.

He also told 22News that ISIS recruitment videos online are often intended to grab the attention of “young impressionable men and woman”. He said those men and women, “have basically been recruited to become kind of lone wolves here in the United States for the sole purpose of carrying out attacks here on a coast-to-coast basis.” He went on to say that much of the recruiting is done online and through major social media sites.

22News also found that ISIS has recruitment videos in 23 different languages.

Some experts on the issue told 22News that social media posts supporting ISIS raise a “red flag” to federal investigators.

Ciccolo was arrested on July 4th. The FBI says Ciccolo talked with a cooperating witness in recorded conversations about his plans. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Users who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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