“They want to be more . . . better than al-Qaeda.”
A man named Ahmad Rashidi was interviewed on Meet the Press today and provided an alarming look into the goals of ISIS. He claims they want to be “better” than al-Qaeda and orchestrate an attack “more brutal” than the 9/11 attack on the World Trade Center.
Andrew Johnson of National Review has more:
Man Who Escaped ISIS: They Want to Plan an Attack ‘More Brutal’ than 9/11
The Islamic State is “happy” about the air strikes by the United States because it validates their efforts in emerging as a global threat, says a man who escaped after a month with the group.
Ahmad Rashidi was captured by the Islamic State when he went to Syria from London to retrieve the two daughters of a family friend; the teenage girls had fled England to marry Islamic State fighters. When Rashidi found one of the girls, her husband accused him of being a spy and he was taken prisoner and tortured. He later won the favor of his capturers by telling them he was a doctor; Rashidi is, in fact, a first-year medical student.
While embedded with the Islamic State for a month, Rashidi gained access to their computers and communications. He told NBC News’s Richard Engel that the group communicates with its contacts “every day” and is not worried about the West’s response to its attacks. In fact, the Islamic State was “happy” about the American military’s response of air strikes because it proved to the group’s leaders that they were considered as important a threat as al-Qaeda.
“They want to be more . . . better than al-Qaeda,” he told Engel. “This is why they need to do something more brutal than the World Trade Center.”
Here’s the video:
Speaking of Syria, there are new developments in American policy.
Simon Tisdall of the Guardian reports:
US changes its tune on Syrian regime change as Isis threat takes top priority
US backing for Syria peace talks hosted by the Russian government in Moscow this week is being seen as further evidence that the Obama administration has quietly dropped its longstanding demand that President Bashar al-Assad step down as part of any settlement.
Russia, supported by Iran, has consistently backed the Assad regime since the civil war began in 2011, even after the UN implicated the Syrian leader in war crimes. The US government and the exiled Syrian opposition, supported by Britain, the EU, Turkey and Saudi Arabia, have argued with equal vehemence that peace is inconceivable while Assad remains in power.
As recently as last October, John Kerry, the US secretary of state, said there would never be peace in Syria “while Assad remains the focus of power”. But now Kerry has changed his tune. At a meeting this month with Staffan de Mistura, the UN’s Syria envoy, Kerry omitted any reference to regime change in Damascus, voluntary or involuntary.
“It is time for President Assad, the Assad regime, to put their people first and to think about the consequences of their actions, which are attracting more and more terrorists to Syria, basically because of their efforts to remove Assad,” Kerry said.
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