Although a group closely monitoring the Syrian civil war claimed last Friday that moderate and Islamist Syrian rebels near Damascus agreed upon a ceasefire with Islamic State militants, a Syrian National Coalition official said Saturday that no such truce has been reached between ISIS, also known as ISIL, and U.S.-vetted rebel forces.
With the arming and training of moderate Syrian rebel forces paramount in President Barack Obama's outlined strategy to defeat ISIS, the British group called The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said that rebel forces have reached a non-aggression pact with ISIS forces in the ward of Hajar al-Aswad, just south of the nation's capital city of Damascus.
Per the agreement, which was first reported by Agence France Presse, "the two parties will respect a truce until a final solution is found and they promise not to attack each other because they consider the principal enemy to be the Nussayri regime." more >>
It's good to see President Obama move beyond the "we don't have a strategy yet" phase in the fight against the Islamic State.
On the plus side, he seems to have a good grasp of just how serious a threat the Islamic State poses to the United States and much of the free world. The fact that an attack on the U.S. homeland won't occur tomorrow is no excuse for inaction today.
Waiting until an attack is imminent is foolhardy in the extreme. That's especially true when you're dealing with a relentless foe that has demonstrated an alarming thirst for savagery and a penchant for theatrical murder. When butchers like that send a "message," you reply with an emphatically lethal message of your own. more >>
Twenty-six foreign ministers pledged that their countries will do everything necessary to stop terror group ISIS during a major summit in Paris on Monday. The meeting came as the U.S. launched its first airstrikes in Iraq since President Barack Obama's announcement last week the expansion of operations.
French President François Hollande said that there is "no time to lose" in the fight against the Islamic militants, who have captured several cities across Iraq and Syria, carrying out beheadings and mass persecution of religious minorities.
"The cost of inaction would be to say to these butchers 'go ahead, you have a free pass.' We won't accept that," added French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius. more >>
The strategists who base their political advice on public opinion polls have just had a surprise. A new poll reports that the American people are now more likely to trust Republicans to handle immigration and less likely to trust Democratic plans to offer illegals a path to citizenship (aka amnesty).
Many people have believed this for some time. But it is now confirmed in a poll taken by the pro-amnesty Wall Street Journal, so it must be so.
The new survey is decisive; 35 percent say the Republican Party would do a better job on immigration while only 27 percent say the Democrats would. That's a dramatic reversal from the previous year. more >>
We can't delegate our war fighting to jihadists.
The New York Times piece that Rich Lowry links to below makes for singularly depressing reading, and it illustrates that the Obama administration has learned nothing. We're barely removed from a Libyan conflict featuring American air strikes in support of a rag-tag jihadist army, and now Libya is a jihadist playground, where our former "allies" kill our own ambassador and gleeful terrorists YouTube themselves swimming in our diplomats' pool.
So, now, here we are again aiding rebel groups like the "Army of the Mujahideen" in a fight against other mujahideen while the Islamic State gathers its strength and mocks us with beheading after beheading. more >>
While diplomats from 26 countries pledged to unite to fight ISIS "by any means necessary" at a conference in Paris Monday, the pathway to defeating the militant Islamic terror group appeared far from certain as Syria and Iran, the two countries sharing most of Iraq's borders, showed no support for the global coalition led by the U.S.
"They committed to supporting the new Iraqi government in its fight ... by any means necessary, including appropriate military assistance, in line with the needs expressed by the Iraqi authorities, in accordance with international law and without jeopardizing civilian security," said a statement after the meeting Monday, according to Al Arabiya.
"They will ensure that the commitments made today are implemented and followed up on, notably in the framework of the United Nations," it continued. more >>