CNN quotes Rafik Hariri Center Resident Fellow Faysal Itani on President Obama’s efforts to form a regional coalition to combat the threat of the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham:

“There is likely to be a lot of difficulty getting a coalition beyond a limited approach, especially regarding U.S. efforts to attack ISIS in Syria,” said Faysal Itani, a fellow at the Atlantic Council’s Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East.

Different countries have different reasons to be wary of getting fully involved in the U.S.-led coalition. For example, Turkey has internal political considerations, as well as 49 Turkish diplomats taken hostage by ISIS, Itani noted.


While Iraq’s new government will fully join the U.S.-led strategy announced this week by Obama, major regional players including Turkey, Egypt and Saudi Arabia were unlikely to be as supportive, Itani said.

Even staunch U.S. ally Jordan, a certain backer, would likely choose what Itani called “quiet cooperation.”


Itani, however, called the ultimate objective unattainable and said that reality made regional nations cautious about joining the coalition effort.


“This whole thing has been covered by deep suspicions and doubts about whether the United States is truly committed to destroying this group,” Itani said.

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