In January, President Barack Obama dismissed the terrorist group ISIS as a "JV Team" that didn't pose a real threat to America.
“The analogy we use around here sometimes, and I think is accurate, is if a jayvee team puts on Lakers uniforms that doesn’t make them Kobe Bryant. I think there is a distinction between the capacity and reach of a bin Laden and a network that is actively planning major terrorist plots against the homeland versus jihadists who are engaged in various local power struggles and disputes, often sectarian.”
The remarks made in an interview with New Yorker may very well come back to haunt Obama as the latest ISIS atrocities come to light.
Tuesday, a video apparently showing the barbaric beheading of American journalist James Foley at the hands of ISIS was posted to YouTube under the heading "A Message To America." The video also included the al Qaeda affiliated group making an audacious challenge to President Obama after showing Journalist Steven Joel Sotloff on camera:
"You're no longer fighting an insurgency, we are an Islamic army, and a state that has been accepted by large number of Muslims world wide, so effectively, any aggression towards the Islamic State, is aggression towards Muslims from all walks of life who has accepted the Islamic caliphate as their leadership, so any attempt by you Obama to deny the Muslims their rights of living in safety under the Islamic caliphate will result in the bloodshed of your people. The life of this American Citizen Obama, depends on your next decision."
The bottom line appears to be that President Obama and his advisers may not take ISIS as a serious threat, but that dismissive attitude has not dissuaded ISIS in any way. Further, they are directly challenging the American Commander-In-Chief to stand down or suffer more American deaths at their hands.
Meanwhile, Reuters reported Tuesday on more atrocities in Iraq at the hands of the "JV Team":
Ten days ago, Ali and his fellow villagers were suddenly surrounded by Islamic State militants with machine guns at night. They had long beards. Some had face masks and Arabic writing on the sides of their heads.
Absent from the scene were Kurdish peshmerga, or "those who confront death", fighters who had held parts of the north and were seen as the only force that could stand up to Islamic State after thousands of U.S.-trained Iraqi soldiers fled their advance, leaving them with heavy weapons including tanks
Suddenly the men began digging ditches - soon to become mass graves.
"We did not understand. Then they started to put people in those holes, those people were alive," said former grocery shop owner Ali, 46, pausing to weep.
"After a while we heard gunfire. I can't forget that scene. Women, children, crying for help. We had to run for our lives, there was nothing to be done for them."
Some Yazidis, like Hassan, 22, a student, shake their heads in disbelief when recalling how only foreign Kurdish fighters from Turkey or Syria extended a lifeline in the face of Islamic State.
"They tied the hands of one woman to the back of a car and her legs to another car and they split her into two," he said beside makeshift tents as women cried.
"Have you seen anything like this? This is all because she is not Muslim and did not want to be converted. We barely made it."