Terror Attacks May Force More Aggressive U.S. Stance

“When the Islamic State stormed onto the scene in Syria and Iraq, it seemed focused on seizing territory in its own neighborhood. But in the last two weeks, the so-called soldiers of the caliphate appear to have demonstrated a chilling reach, with terrorist attacks against Russia, in Lebanon and now in Europe,” the New York Times reports.

“For President Obama and American allies, the attacks are almost certain to force a reassessment of the threat and may require a more aggressive strategy against the Islamic State, known variously as ISIS, ISIL or Daesh.”

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  • tiredofit

    I am less afraid of a terror attach on US soil than I am of the United States’ reaction to another attack on US soil. Turning this country into a police state would be exactly what the terrorists want. It would make their day.

    I would rather risk getting hit by terrorists than live in a country where we are required to carry papers, have to open our homes and cars to authorities without a warrant, and report our travels to the federal government.

    • embo66

      It’s not just that. though. What I dread is a return to the same panicked overreaction that led to the Iraq War, etc.

      One can already tell by comments all over the Web that a lot of people think we should repeat exactly our fear-driven, idiotic reaction to 9-11, wherein all the warlike actions we took then merely led . . . to ISIS and this current moment.

      Ye gods, I’m really not sure I could live through that again . . .

      • fool me twice… a heh … won’t get fooled again

  • Trajan8

    Not only that, but the Republicans are considering temporarily changing the name freedom fries to French fries. The repercussions of yesterday’s attack are huge.

  • APV

    There is a rare opportunity to bring together the European powers, allies in the middle East (Turkey, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, and Egypt) and also Russia and Iran. The latter two support propping up Assad while fighting ISIS, while U.S., France and most others want Assad to go. If those very difficult differences can be bridged, then it could provide a path to getting rid of ISIS, while working on a better political arrangement for Syria and Iraq.

    • embo66

      I agree that as much of the entire world as possible ought to join forces and defeat these bastards once and for all. But I think — if at all possible — it should be led by Turkey, Saudi Arabia, etc. and NOT by the US.

      Because if we go in there just like we always do, contributing the most resources and trying to run the show, the effort won’t ultimately be any more successful than our other attempts. We need to recognize the our presence only creates fuel for the fire, not for the solution.

      • APV

        Agree, not US led. Iran won’t be a party to a war led by predominantly Sunni Turkey and Saudi Arabia. Joint NATO & Russian led effort heavily supported by Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and Iran could work.

    • Calbengoshi

      One of the biggest problems with the US position that “Assad must go” is that the US government never has explained, and in my view it is likely that it cannot explain, why it is in the best long-term interests of the US for Assad to be replaced.

      The “rare opportunity” of which you speak also provides our government with an opportunity to reconsider whether it truly is in our long-term interests for Assad to be replaced. That doesn’t necessarily mean that we should consider supporting Assad, because it may very well be the case that we cannot predict to any extent which — Assad staying in power or Assad being taken out of power — would be better for our long-term interests.

  • BoredMe

    I really, really, really hate to get politically analytical on this today, but here’s just fact: Obama needs to act hard and swift on this in support of our oldest ally, and turn it into a Democratic strength instead of a Republican strength.

    • MYMY

      Don’t you think the victory in SInjar just now, cutting the ISIS supply line in two, plus the killing of Jihadi John wasn’t something pretty fierce? And don’t you think that ISIS was trying to distract attention from a major loss on the ground with this spectacular attack?

      • i notice they got jihadi john to the bottom of page 1 of nytimes withthis attack. and that sweep the other day… all this timing seems related.

        • WADE_NYC

          I think that the level of sophistication of this attack – the timing, the coordination, the planning, all of it, is way too methodic to be connected to the killing of Jihadi John. That seems to be the a view held by our national security experts who have been following this story and the reporting that has been done thus far.

  • gnatswatting

    In some ways the ISIS attacks on soft targets (airliners in Sinai, civilians in Paris) are a reaction to them suffering losses on the battlefield.

    After looking almost invincible in 2014 ISIS has been suffering military setbacks over the past few months in their so called state and with their franchises outside of Mesopotamia. Just today their leader in Libya was taken out by a US F-15.

    They are feeling the pinch and things are only going to get worse for them. We should continue to put the squeeze on them in a rational way and not overreact by doing something which may turn out to be counterproductive.

  • Matt Drabek

    This is probably the wrong prescription. The news reports I’ve read recently have indicated that ISIS has lost several major battles in the last few weeks and are generally declining in the region. It wouldn’t be difficult to infer from this that the attacks in Beirut and Paris were actually an attempt to change the narrative and elicit an over-reaction on the part of the West – which would help them gain more recruits.

  • Calbengoshi

    While the terrorist attack in France may result in the US taking a more aggressive stance, and may even be enough to get the GOP-controlled Congress to pass a bill authorizing the President to do what he already has been doing without legal authority in terms of attacking ISIS/Daesh, it should not be said that the terrorist attack in any way “forces” the US to d be more aggressive in combating ISIS/Daesh.

    As in all matters involving foreign policy, our primary concern should be to figure out what is most likely to have the most beneficial impact on the long-term interests of the US. While destroying ISIS/Daesh certainly appears to be in our best interests, how and by whom it is done may have as much of an impact on our long-term interests as whether and when it is done.

  • ralph_wiggam

    How long before the GOP claim that if the French had the right to carry firearms, this wouldnt have happened.

    • Buford2k11

      Trump, within minutes of the attack…