The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Martin Dempsey, recently called ISIS, "an organization that has an apocalyptic end-of-days strategic vision." Earlier this summer, ISIS made territorial gains militarily in Iraq and Syria and announced the establishment of a caliphate in areas under its control. They have pursued, attacked, and killed members of Christian minority groups in northern Iraq and have attempted to invade Kurdish controlled regions in Iraq. And last but certainly not least, ISIS has beheaded two American journalists, and is said to be planning more beheadings.
In August, the United States military began bombing ISIS held sites to stem their advancements. Without these surgical strikes, I have no doubt that Iraqi minority groups, including Christians, would have been slaughtered on the Sinjar Mountains and in the surrounding territories. The U.S. bombing campaign has assisted Iraqi security forces and the Kurdish Peshmerga in retaking territory. Working with these groups on the ground has made the U.S. bombing campaign very effective, while also reduced the need for a large presence of U.S. combat troops on the ground.
The United States has an obligation to lead and respond whenever the innocent are being massacred. We must quickly formulate a plan to wipe this radical terror group off the face of the earth before they have the capabilities to hit us here at home. There must also be a coalition of the willing that includes Arab nations. The United States cannot and should not have to go it alone in this fight.
I know the American public is war weary after fighting in the Middle East for over a decade, but we must respond to injustice with military might. I look forward to continued debate on the U.S. response in the coming weeks and hope that we will soon see a comprehensive plan from the Commander-in-Chief that cuts ISIS to the core.
Member of Congress