September 11th, 2014

Secy. John Kerry to CNN’s Elise Labott: U.S. not at war with ISIS

Interview Highlights
By Elise Labott, Laura Smith-Spark and Ray Sanchez, CNN
updated 4:55 PM EDT, Thu September 11, 2014

“What we are doing is engaging in a very significant counter-terrorism operation,” Kerry told CNN’s Elise Labott in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. “It’s going to go on for some period of time. If somebody wants to think about it as being a war with ISIL, they can do so, but the fact is it’s a major counter-terrorism operation that will have many different moving parts.”

Kicking off meetings with leaders from key Arab countries in Saudi Arabia to enlist regional support for a global coalition to defeat ISIS, Kerry defended the administration’s insistence that the 2001 authority to go after al Qaeda and its affiliates does apply to ISIS even though the two groups have publicly split from each other. He insisted that the group’s origination as an al Qaeda affiliate is enough to consider them connected.

Visit for the full story.