Dateline: the Aspen Security Forum 2014
General Martin Dempsey, chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff, talks about the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham noting that the ancient kingdom of al-Sham stretched from Lebanon to the current state of Israel to Syria to Jordan to Iraq and to Kuwait. General Dempsey says about ISIS, “They (ISIS) use brutality in a way that’s quite remarkable, even in the realm of terrorist organizations. And they get away with it because they’re succeeding. They have to be, at the very least, initially contained and then disrupted and then ultimately defeated. And what makes it very hard is that that ultimate defeat has to come from within the Sunni population.”
General Dempsey says the United States can enable and assist “but at the point when we will be able to consider them defeated, it will be because the moderate Sunnis of the world and the region reject them.”
General Dempsey notes, “We have to look to the Turks, look to the Kurds who can put pressure in different directions. This has to be regional.”
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