The US has expanded its air strikes against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS), adding another element to the deadly mix of conflicts that is inflicting a terrible toll across the region.
US officials announced that their warplanes and drones – in a joint operation with five authoritarian Arab regimes – struck targets in eastern and northern Syria. This expands the war on the Sunni fundamentalists of ISIS beyond Iraq, where the US has carried out nearly 200 attacks since launching air strikes six weeks ago.
Gen. Martin Dempsey, chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, claimed the US targeted ISIS “safe havens” in Syria. But the missiles were aimed at cities like Raqqa, with hundreds of thousands of inhabitants – where ISIS, like any insurgency, has established itself. Civilian casualties – including people who abhor ISIS and oppose its occupations of Syrian cities –…
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