By Micah HalpernI've Been Thinking:
The US led coalition against ISIS requires constant activity and vigilance. Much effort will be required keeping the coalition together and keeping up the pressure on ISIS.
This is a military battle. It is also a battle of PR and social media. ISIS thus far has successfully frightened the masses. Almost everyone fears their brutality and their massacres. The question is when or whether ISIS will start to realize the power of the West and the coalition.
The first major airstrike was significant. It hit 50 targets with multiple ordinances from various launching positions.
But is seems that ISIS knew the US was coming. According to various on site reports, especially from the human rights organizations in Syria, 23 to 25 ISIS and al Nusra fighters were killed. It seems all those locations that we saw get blown up on tape were empty.
According to reports, those people who were killed were mostly manning the check posts that prevent people from travelling from one location to another without paying protection money aka a toll which they call Zakat, or charity for the poor - which in this case is for the greater good of ISIS.
Interestingly, after the strike, the Syrian government, which up until the strike warned the US saying that a coalition would been as an act of war, supported the coalition bombing of the terrorists. Now Syria stands with those who fight the terrorists.
As an important aside it seems that the United States sent messages, using the United Nations General Assembly in New York City as their conduit, to the Syrian ambassador that the airstrike was to take place. And it appears that the Iraqi ambassador served as the intermediary.
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