Kerry says US has to be deeply engaged in Middle East due to ISIL

Kerry says US has to be deeply engaged in Middle East due to ISIL

Tue Nov 18, 2014 6:29AM GMT

US Secretary of State John Kerry says the United States should be deeply engaged in the Middle East because of the heinous crimes committed by the ISIL terrorist group.

“We have to be deeply engaged – deeply engaged – in this region, because it is directly in the interest of our national security and our economy, and it is also in keeping of who we are,” Kerry said at an annual policy forum in Washington, hosted by the publisher of Foreign Policy magazine.

“The United States does not go in search of enemies in the Middle East. There are times, however, and this is one, when enemies come in search of us,” he added on Monday.

The top US diplomat also warned that ISIL could grow as it has seized more land and resources than al-Qaeda ever had on its best day of its existence.

The remarks were made one day after American aid worker Peter (Abdul-Rahman) Kassig was beheaded by ISIL.

The latest ISIL video released Sunday showed a beheaded Kassig, who was kidnapped in October 2013 on his way to the eastern Syrian city of Deir Ezzor while working for his humanitarian organization.

Kerry said ISIL leaders assume that the world “will be too intimidated to oppose them.”

“But let us be clear: We are not intimidated … our friends and partners are not intimidated,” he said.

He said that the group had “become a threat to America’s core interests.”

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