Breaking down the latest ISIS message
November 14th, 2014
03:35 PM ET

Breaking down the latest ISIS message

CNN speaks with Fareed about a message on an ISIS social media account, which claims to be from the group’s leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, saying that the U.S.-led coalition is "terrified, weak and powerless." This is an edited version of the transcript.

What are your first impressions when you hear this message, supposedly from al-Baghdadi, using the words weak, powerless, failed and going as far as mentioning the additional 1,500 troops the president has announced?

This is an old tactic. Al Qaeda used to do it all the time. There’s always a lot of bluster and braggadocio. But I also think it's important to remember something I have often said. They are trying to set a bait – they want the United States more involved. It helps them recruit.

Remember, ISIS has gone from nothing to becoming the replacement for al Qaeda, the most well-known jihadi organization in the world. How? By taking on the 800-pound gorilla of the world, the United States of America.

How exactly then would that create recruitment for wannabe jihadis?

Because if you are one of the many jihadi organizations or one of the many radical Sunni organizations in Syria that is sort of struggling for market share and adherents, that's one thing. If you become the organization that battles the United States, the crusaders, the West – if you become the face of radical Islam that is up against this new crusade – now, all of a sudden, you are the place everyone wants to come to. You're the place everyone wants to send money to. There's a lot of this that has to do with fundraising.

We heard from a Republican senator earlier in the week, Rand Paul, warning over an illegal war. And then we heard from high-ranking Democrat essentially echoing the same thing on a panel. Now what? Because it seems like this issue is definitely unifying, but it's divisive as far as members of Congress go. So, where does this move?

It won't have any practical effect, because these kind of congressional complaints about the executive taking over the war-making function and foreign policy making function have existed for a long time. The executive always wins.

So, it's just complaints. That's all it is?

Look, the president gets to make foreign policy, which includes the waging of these limited interventions. We haven't declared war since Pearl Harbor. It's always been a kind of executive action that when the executive wants, he gets Congress to approve. But what you're pointing out I think, which is true, which is there are two very different political figures, and it shows you that the American public does not want a sustained, protracted, intense American military involvement in the Middle East. They view it as a hellhole. They want to be out of there. So, that's going to be the bigger problem.

What about Bashar al-Assad and his fate? Because the notion of President Obama and the United States wanting him out seems, that just seems a little farfetched.

I think I would put it this way. It's on the backburner now. The goal is to defeat and destroy ISIS. Destroying ISIS itself is a reach at this point. Degrading it might be the best we can do. But then to go on from that and also deal with al-Assad in Syria where we don't really have very strong ground forces, I would say it's on the backburner.

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Topics: Iraq • Syria

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soundoff (78 Responses)
  1. rupert

    STFU fake banasy. U are an a.s.s .HOLE

    November 15, 2014 at 7:32 am | Reply
    • rupert

      Sorry folks, I never posted that obscene comment above. I would thank this Tea Partying jerk to quit using my screen name and moreover stop posting that Tea Party profanity under it!

      November 15, 2014 at 12:34 pm | Reply
  2. rupert

    This is the real rupert. And that fat slob in the picture couldn't go past three rounds against any American.
    Except for that stu pid pepperbelly wet.
    Back amelio sanchez. Amelio can't fight. He is a c.u.n.t.

    November 15, 2014 at 7:36 am | Reply
  3. j. von hettlingen

    Fareed says: "We haven't declared war since Pearl Harbor."
    How about the "war on terror"? The Bush-administration declared the Al Qaeda war and went into Afghanistan in October 2001. This "war on terror" is being fought in Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia, now Iraq and Syria!

    November 15, 2014 at 7:51 am | Reply
    • rupert

      It's this "war on terror" that's bleeding this country white, j. von hettlingen. Unfortunately, it is also generating big bucks for the right-wing politicians in Washington and this is exactly why it continues!

      November 15, 2014 at 12:37 pm | Reply
  4. chri§§y

    So very very true @ rupert!

    November 15, 2014 at 9:43 pm | Reply
  5. Thomas

    The same thing happened in Cambodia , the Khmer rouge , we created them by destabilizing the region with our bombing.

    Now we need to contain ISIS, and put them on trial , they will meet a dark fate !

    Why dose America after fighting enemies , allow her enemies the right to have fire arms . Next time we invade a country , let it be known that anybody with a weapon will be terminated along with the whole family , or neighborhood by 12"00am the following day .

    And whoever supplies them the weapons should be put to death . Kill all weapons merchants , oh I forgot the USA is one of the largest providers for military hardware .

    November 17, 2014 at 12:34 am | Reply
  6. meronvil

    This' man is
    First name:Mr Meronvil
    Last name:Jocelyn

    he's on employee of Royal Caribbean he did on incident, in side the ship they send him to treatment in south Miami hospital for one year he is be come more bad he do surgery
    He's ankle he has problem in the nee in the back be because he's ankle stell swelling when he walk match for that he need a good lawyer to help him please,contacts in thi's
    call Haitien Haiti
    Band du nord For bourgeois

    September 10, 2016 at 9:55 am | Reply
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