ISIS insurgency draws hardline response

In recent months, a budding jihadist terrorist group has seized the attention of the world, even as they seize villages in their native Middle East. They have caused horror, disgust and panic as stories and, occasionally, videos of their gruesome executions of prisoners have spread to the world’s populous. This group, the Islamic State, also known as ISIS or ISIL, is the newest and perhaps greatest threat to American and international security, and there has been extensive debate over how to deal with the organization. Finally, the U.S. and its allies are beginning to fight back against these enemies of peace and order, and that is a good and necessary thing.

War is like surgery in that no one wants to have it done, but sometimes it has to be. Situations like these, situations where videos featuring the decapitation of innocent journalists are being used as propaganda by bloodthirsty jihadists, are situations that require that military force be used to stop these executions. The mass killings committed by ISIS are another thing that must be stopped, and they can and will only be stopped by use of force.

One troubling aspect of the recent rise to power of the Islamic State is that the U.S. is perhaps partially responsible. Over the past few years, America has been greatly reducing her military presence in the Middle East. While the homecoming of U.S. forces has been a celebratory event indeed, it left a power vacuum in the Middle East as the governments of nations formerly supported by America found themselves without the might of the U.S. military to fight off terrorists.

ISIS has taken advantage of this opening to the fullest. Seizing territory “controlled” by these weaker governments and proclaiming them under a caliphate, or state ruled by Islamic law, they built a very large foothold for themselves that may prove to be difficult to dislodge.

One scary thing about this latest terrorist group is they have an apparent knack for propaganda. From videos of decapitations and mass killings to social media involvement, this latest terrorist group knows how to get their message out in a very persuasive manner.

Another disconcerting fact about the situation is that ISIS appears to have some reach even outside of the Middle East. Recently, a plan formed by some ISIS operatives in Australia was foiled by Australian officials. While it is, of course, a great thing that such a nefarious plot was prevented, it is somewhat disturbing that there is significant ISIS power in Australia of all places. In addition, there are reports that citizens from places such as Australia, the U.S. and the United Kingdom are leaving their countries to join ISIS in fact, the executioner in the videos of the journalists’ executions is thought to be British.

The airstrikes used by the U.S. against ISIS are a large step forward in the right direction. Using their superior air power to rain destruction down upon the hostile forces of their enemies, the U.S. and its allies are fighting back against the Islamic State. Hopefully, the forces allied against ISIS will be able to put a halt to their atrocities before many more can take place.