The Obama administration said it would destroy Syria's air defenses if they fire on US planes attacking Islamic State militants inside Syria. The White House says it won't coordinate airstrikes with Damascus.
If US statements are taken at face value, Obama has set the country a mammoth task in the Middle East with a very low probability of success.
The US Secretary of State received promises of help in Obama's new war against the Islamic State group yesterday from 10 Arab states.
So far, it doesn't look like much. That explains why the US president was short on specifics when he vowed to take the fight to the jihadis.
President Obama said Wednesday that the US would take the fight to Syria as part of an international coalition to destroy the self-declared Islamic State. But he ruled out a combat role for US troops.
Pledges are rolling in for a NATO 'rapid reaction' force, a direct response to what members say is Russian aggression against non-NATO member Ukraine.
Videotaped atrocities in an attempt to spread fear are nothing new for IS. But it appears to be stepping up its propaganda as world powers start to engage in halting its spread.
As a parent who often spent nights hovering on the edge of sleep, my heart aches not only for Jim – murdered by Islamic State militants – and other captive journalists, but for their families.
Islamic State militants had demanded millions of dollars for James Foley's release. While the US government refuses to pay ransoms to kidnappers, some European governments have done so in the past, enriching Al Qaeda and its affiliates.
The PKK - a Kurdish separatist group based in Turkey that the US has placed on its 'terrorist list' – has been in the thick of the fight against the Islamic State in Iraqi Kurdistan.
That's a popular claim. But there's not much evidence to support it.
The US is developing a plan to rescue members of the Yazidi minority group amid increasing calls from the Kurdish government and Yazidi leaders for the US to respond more forcefully against Islamic State militants.