Following the second recorded beheading of an American journalist, President Barack Obama vowed Wednesday the U.S. will bring the Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS) to justice according to a report by the Khaleej Times.
“We will not be intimidated” by the killing of journalist Steven Sotloff, Obama stated while speaking at the Nordea Concert Hall in Tallinn, Estonia. “Those who make the mistake of harming Americans will learn that we will not forget and that our reach is long and that justice will be served.”
The recent graphic depiction of Sotloff’s execution marks the second time that ISIS has made a pronounced broadcasted effort to intimidate their enemies; the first being of James Foley, an American freelancer who had been missing in Syria prior to his death.
Caitlin Hayden, spokeswoman for the National Security Council said in a statement Wednesday that the U.S. intelligence community had analyzed the footage of Sotloff and reached the judgment that it is authentic.”
However, Obama’s administration’s plan for the Middle East involves the containment of their efforts rather than a seek-and-destroy mission aimed to eliminate the group entirely. Wiping out the extremist group would be an unachievable goal
“Our objective is to make sure that [ISIS] is not an ongoing threat to the region,” Obama said according to NPR. “And we can accomplish that.”
“As we've seen with al Qaeda, there are always going to be remnants that can cause havoc.”
According to the president, the most we can hope for is to mitigate the threat that the militants present to the region and to the foreign workers who operate in that area. Obama cautioned, however, that the campaign will take time, and that we should not expect this operation to be a “one-week or a six-month proposition,” according to Time.
With a warning that “threats evolve” Obama has also emphasized the need for a regional and global effort to make a lasting impact on the extremist group in the Middle East. To that end, he has tasked key aides with building an international coalition to assist in these efforts. With international help, Obama said, it’s possible to shrink ISIS “to the point where it’s a manageable problem.”