ISIS oil money

Who are they selling their oil to? And what are they buying with the money, and from where?

Allegedly, they are selling the oil to black marketeers in Turkey. As to the latter question, I imagine they are buying food, water, medical supplies, clothing, and lots and lots of weapons.

I have wondered the same thing since it was first reported that ISIS gets the majority of its revenue from oil sales. But suppose that it’s “bought through Turkey from Syria, and it’s sold to black market traders who function throughout the Levant.” At some point, this oil has to be purchased by a refinery, owned an operated by some large corporation, right? Isn’t it possible to trace where this oil is being sent and refined? Somebody is doing business with the bad guys. Who is it? Shell? Exxon? Seems like thousands of barrels of oil can’t just move around and be purchased without some sort of oversight. Who’s at the bottom of this con?

This was discussed in an earlier thread. ISIS has access to very inefficient mobile refining technology. It actually is on a truck and trailer system that can be moved from well to well. It is very inefficient in its conversion of crude to gasoline, but when your feedstock is free, you don’t need it to be efficient. They then sell the gasoline to through the black market, primarily in Turkey.

ETA: Mobile oil refineries used by ISIS? Is this real life meets an RTS game? - Factual Questions - Straight Dope Message Board

Bear in mind that there was a well-established oil black market which grew up on illegal exports from Saddam’s Iraq, was sustained by handling dodgy off-the-books oil during the post-saddam era and most likely also sanctions-busting oil from Syria. Much of that will have segued over to handling ISIS petro-smuggling without missing a beat.

Once a criminal network has learned its business and beome properly embedded in daily life it’s hard to get rid of, even if it switches from ‘helping our friends in XYZ’ to ‘supporting our mortal enemies ABC’.