Allen West posted an article on his blog today explaining the difference between ISIS and ISIL. The Obama Administration and some news sources have begun to use the word ISIL instead of ISIS to describe the terrorists making their way across Iraq. I really wasn’t paying much attention to the change, but Colonel West explains the difference.
The article explains:
This week I listened to two Obama administration spokesmen, Josh “Not So” Earnest from the White House, and Rear Admiral Kirby from the Pentagon in relation to the Islamic terrorist army freely operating in Iraq and Syria. These two individuals and many other voices out of the Obama administration refer to them as ISIL (Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant). The group has professed the establishment of an Islamic caliphate and refers to itself as IS (Islamic State). The manner in which we should all be referring to this savage and barbaric group is ISIS (Islamic State in Iraq and Syria).
…First, if you choose to refer to this group as ISIL, you have basically rewritten the map of the Middle East and fallen into the trap of not recognizing the existence of Israel and also Lebanon. If you use ISIL you are then validating the Islamic totalitarian and jihadist claim that the modern day Jewish State of Israel is an occupation state and does not exist.
The Obama Administration has used some strange words in the past when referring to events in the Middle East. At a Ramadan dinner at the White House, Obama counter-terrorism advisor John Brennan referred to Jerusalem as Al Quds–a name that has a significant meaning to Muslim extremists. The name of the city is Jerusalem. It is the capital of Israel. The Arabs do not have the right to rename it. This is also the administration that referred to the shooting at Fort Hood as ‘workplace violence.’
The article reminds us:
Lastly, we need to address this group as ISIS because it is seeking to establish an Islamic state within the borders of two recognized nation-states; Iraq and Syria. ISIS can attempt to break down any borders and not recognize them, but we must. We cannot allow this group to reestablish some 7th century regional caliphate and therefore must fight to reestablish sovereignty.
Now, I would much rather use this crisis as a means to establish something long since needed — a separate country called Kurdistan — but my focus would be on destroying ISIS. There is an opportunity here to truly promote a country where there can be respect and coexistence of Muslims, Christians, and other religious minorities. A place that would thoroughly reject the idea of Islamic jihadism and would continue to be a reliable ally of the United States.
It is a shame that the Obama Administration does not include people with the understanding of the Middle East that Allen West represents. A more qualified group of presidential advisers might have avoided the disaster that President Obama’s foreign policy has become.