President Barack Obama on Sunday vowed to “destroy” the ISIL group in a relentless, strong and smart campaign that is in tune with the nation’s values. His speech meant to reassure a large number of Americans who feel the president’s stance on terrorism is too weak, didn’t announce an overhaul of a terrorism fight policy that critics have branded insufficient to take on the evolving threat of terrorism globally.
Obama, said last week’s mass shooting in San Bernardino, California, was a terrorist attack by a couple who had gone down the “dark path of radicalization” and embraced a “perverted” form of Islam.
“This was an act of terrorism designed to kill innocent people,” Obama said. “Here’s what I want you to know. The threat from terrorism is real, but we will overcome it. We will destroy ISIL and any other organization that tries to harm us. Our success won’t depend on tough talk, or abandoning our values or giving into fear. That’s what groups like ISIL are hoping for. Instead, we will prevail by being strong and smart, resilient and relentless. And by drawing upon every aspect of American power. We should not be drawn once more into a long and costly ground war in Iraq or Syria. That’s what groups like ISIL want. They know they can’t defeat us on the battlefield. ISIL fighters were part of the insurgency that we faced in Iraq. But they also know that if we occupy foreign lands, they can maintain insurgencies for years, killing thousands of our troops and draining our resources, and using our presence to draw new recruits,” Obama said.