The Islamic State, belittled by President Obama just two years ago as a "JV" terrorist group, will dominate the attention of newly elected President Hillary Clinton or President Donald Trump as they face the challenge of taking on the extremists abroad and while preventing another Orlando-style attack that could shake public confidence in the next administration just as it's leaving the starting gate.
Inheriting Chaos: ISIS and the next president
The war against the world’s most dangerous terrorist organization will go on long after President Obama leaves office. In a weeklong series of articles and interviews, Washington Times correspondents Guy Taylor, Carlos Muñoz and Rowan Scarborough report from the front lines of the military, counterterrorism and policy fights that will determine the fate of the struggle against the Islamic State.
By Guy Taylor - The Washington Times
It's considered the star performer of the ill-fated Arab Spring, the one country in the region where representative democracy has made major strides. But even here, the fight against radical Islamic violence requires an unceasing vigil. Published September 14, 2016
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From afar, it looks like any gathering of old friends engaged in a time-honored ritual, sipping coffee while the hours slip by in one of this North African city's many cafes. But something more serious is going on.
NEWSMAKER INTERVIEW: The Obama administration has dented the Islamic State's money-making operations with airstrikes against the terror group's oil-smuggling empire and blacklisting its known financial facilitators from the international banking system.
The monthly scorecards issued by U.S. Central Command's Air Force component illustrate how carefully — critics would say how inadequately -- the White House oversees the air war against the Islamic State.
The liberation of this fiercely contested city in central Iraq's volatile Anbar province should have been a high water mark in the campaign to break the Islamic State's hold on the country and reclaim swaths of territory swallowed up in its so-called "caliphate."
NEWSMAKER INTERVIEW: U.S. leaders must be prepared to fight extremism and radical jihad emanating from the Middle East for "decades," says a retired Marine Corps four-star general who has spent the past decade on the military and diplomatic battlefields of America's war on terrorism.
The Obama administration has launched the first cyberwar against the Islamic State, a war that, coupled with real, not virtual, fighting, is producing one of the most encouraging on-the-ground successes in the conflict -- sharply cutting into the number of foreign fighters sneaking into Syria to join the group's terrorist army and its so-called Islamic caliphate.
Political and law enforcement authorities across Europe are struggling to confront the depth of the terrorist group's recruiting hooks in disaffected Muslim enclaves.
The Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) has carved out a reputation as the premier tracker and exposer of jihadi social media regularly released by various Islamic State media companies. What MEMRI finds is a constant daily drumbeat of Islamic State propaganda.
NEWSMAKER INTERVIEW: The Obama administration oversaw the 2011 takedown of al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden but has since failed to confront honestly the more dangerous rise of the Islamic State, according to the Republican head of the House Committee on Homeland Security, who worries that the president's "tone-deaf" posture toward Islamist terrorism has damaged the intelligence community's own assessment of the new group.
The imminent Mosul campaign also looms as a key battle in a global war on terror that will almost certainly be left unfinished when President Obama leaves office in just over four months -- a security, intelligence, diplomatic and political challenge that will instantly dominate the agenda of whoever wins in November.
Special operations troops say they should be doing more in the war against the Islamic State group, complaining of strict rules of engagement and White House limits on troop numbers in Iraq and Syria.