I’d say there’s a better than fair chance.
For the time being, officials are being cautious about linking the attack in Manchester, England to the terrorist group, ISIS.
Even as a suspect has been named, and even though his name wasn’t Billy Jack Morris, a white, Free Will Baptist, from Fitzgerald, Georgia… they’re not willing to give credit to ISIS.
Said Dan Coats, director of national intelligence:
“They claim responsibility for virtually every attack,” Director Dan Coats told the Senate Armed Services Committee. “We have not verified yet the connection.”
Well, he’s not wrong.
ISIS operates on a strategy of fear. Their method requires frightening citizens into compliance, and the more threatened the populace feels, the more power ISIS claims.
Killing 22 innocent concert goers – some children under the age of 16 – creates just the kind of instability those wretches thrive on.
Coats on Tuesday said the attack is a reminder the threat of terrorism and ISIS is “not going away.” Despite losing much territory in Iraq and Syria, the group still has the ability to carry out attacks on the west, he said.
Asked whether retaking ISIS de facto capitol in Syria, Raqqa, is more imperative after the attack, Coats said “that won’t solve the problem” because of lone wolf attacks and the ISIS’ spread to other, ungoverned territory.
Indeed. This is a war against an ideology, not a region.
But, he added, “driving a stake through the heart” of ISIS will “significantly improve the situation.”
I’ve long maintained that shutting down their lines of communication and spreading their message would go a long way towards that end.
I have to agree with Senator John McCain, when he said the attack in Manchester was a reminder that “the world is on fire.”
“Everywhere we turn, we can see threats to the world’s rules based order that underpins global security and prosperity,” he continued.
“I have heard few compelling answers,” he said, “about how the United States intends to use its alliances, its trade, its diplomacy, its values, but most of all its military to protect and defend our national interests and the rules based order that supports them.”
That’s because there are no answers. At least, not easy ones.
Our government (and others) have been far more focused on locating ISIS strongholds and trying to blast them out of existence.
While satisfying, it’s not the ultimate answer.
After all, how do you frighten someone into compliance who thrives on inhuman violence and feels their greatest glory comes in death?