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Richardson: Obama right to wait on ISIS strategy

Source: The Hill

Former New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson (D) said on Sunday that President Obama is right to gather more intelligence and speak with allies in the Middle East in preparing a strateagy to fight the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS).

Richardson said on ABC's "This Week" that he agreed with Obama’s decision not to divulge a strategy on ISIS last week. The president said Thursday “we don't have a strategy yet” on ISIS.

“I think the president probably should have said ‘we’re developing a policy, a new policy,’ ” Richardson said. "I applaud him too … these are very serious foreign policy issues,” Richardson, who ran for president in 2008, continued.

. . .

“My point is, let’s do it right,” he said.

Read more: http://thehill.com/policy/defense/216327-richardson-obama-right-to-wait-on-isis-strategy

A President carefully considering the best response. Imagine that.

American Fighting for ISIS Is Killed in Syria

Source: NYT

WASHINGTON — Like many teenage boys who grew up in the Midwest in the 1990s, Douglas McAuthur McCain was a fan of Michael Jordan’s Chicago Bulls and loved to play basketball.

But as he grew older, he lost interest in basketball as he shuttled between two suburban Minneapolis high schools. He never graduated, and in his late teens, he began to have run-ins with the law. In the decade that followed, he was arrested or cited nine times on charges including theft, marijuana possession and driving without a license.

Mr. McCain moved back and forth from Minneapolis to San Diego and then abroad. Officials now know he ended up in Syria, where three days ago, Mr. McCain became the first American to die while fighting for the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. He was 33.

The rebels who killed him were fighting for the Free Syrian Army, a rival group backed by the United States, and they went on to behead six ISIS fighters — but not Mr. McCain — and then posted the photographs on Facebook.

Read more: http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/27/world/middleeast/american-fighting-for-isis-is-killed-in-syria.html

Could this be right? I thought "our guys" didn't do such grotesque things.

Ironic that this guy's name is McCain.

The 9 biggest myths about ISIS

The 9 biggest myths about ISIS
AUG 23 2014, 9:42P

Myth #1: ISIS is crazy and irrational

If you want to understand the Islamic State, better known as ISIS, the first thing you have to know about them is that they are not crazy. Murderous adherents to a violent medieval ideology, sure. But not insane.

Look at the history of ISIS's rise in Iraq and Syria. From the mid-2000s through today, ISIS and its predecessor group, al-Qaeda in Iraq, have had one clear goal: to establish a caliphate governed by an extremist interpretation of Islamic law. ISIS developed strategies for accomplishing that goal — for instance, exploiting popular discontent among non-extremist Sunni Iraqis with their Shia-dominated government. Its tactics have evolved over the course of time in response to military defeats (as in 2008 in Iraq) and new opportunities (the Syrian civil war). As Yale political scientist Stathis Kalyvas explains, in pure strategic terms, ISIS is acting similarly to revolutionary militant groups around the world — not in an especially crazy or uniquely "Islamist" way.


An interesting read
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