That Escalated Quickly: Today’s War on ISIS

by Brandon Musick

“My fellow Americans – tonight, I want to speak to you about what the United States will do with our friends and allies to degrade and ultimately destroy the terrorist group known as ISIL. ”

-President Barack Obama

Well it seems that Republicans and Democrats are working together on something again (finally). This is of great significance given the recent opposition to President Obama by the Republican Party. However, on the eve of the 13th anniversary of the greatest American tragedy of our age, all eyes and ears were turned toward the ever-elegant President as he delivered a strong, motivating speech about the newest terrorist threat to the United States and world at large, ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq and Syria). Known to the Obama administration as ISIL (Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant) due to the recognition of Syria as a sovereign state being revoked. The President proposed a bold approach to the fight against this group: train and arm foreign rebels to combat the terrorists.

“First, we will conduct a systematic campaign of airstrikes against these terrorists.”

“Second, we will increase our support to forces fighting these terrorists on the ground.”

“Third, we will continue to draw on our substantial counterterrorism capabilities to prevent ISIL attacks.”

“Fourth, we will continue providing humanitarian assistance to innocent civilians who have been displaced by this terrorist organization.”

Both Democrats and Republicans in Congress seem to agree with and support this idea, but are still trying to figure out how exactly it should be implemented. Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-OH) explains that Congress is “at the beginning stages of building the kind of support that is needed across the nation to carry out this plan.” The fact that Republicans and Democrats seem willing to work together seems to indicate a large step forward in the politics and government of the US. Boehner later added that “if our goal is to eliminate ISIL, there is a lot of doubt of whether the plan that was outlined last night will accomplish that.” He also indicated that “it’s important to give the president what he has asked for.”

However, a decision on what to do is unlikely to be put to vote anytime soon. Congressman, as they are famed nationwide for, already had a plan laid out that included very little work. But a schedule is a schedule, even in Congress, where nothing seems definite. The most anyone can figure, Congress will vote on the issue either late in September or even sometime into October.

While there are some concerns from Republican representatives, the Democrats remain hopeful that they can reach a compromise and act as quickly as possible, which is serving Congress is virtually unknown for.

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