The story behind Obama’s use of ISIL instead of ISIS

By Melissa Skinner

Before hurrying back to the golf course, President Obama has managed to address the country this week about the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) however, instead of referring to the terrorist organization as ISIS, he has referred to them as ISIL, which stands for the Islamic State of Iraq and Levant, numerous times during his speech on Thursday.

According to the Fiscal Times, both ISIS and ISIL describe the same murderous organization, but ISIL encompasses an area far greater than Iraq and Syria. In total, ISIL occupies the island of Cyprus, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, Palestine and a part of southern Turkey.

The question is then asked why would the President rather refer to the terrorist organization as ISIL instead of ISIS. According to the Fiscal Times, “An army of that territorial magnitude takes the focus off of the two countries (Iraq and Syria) that many believe define Obama’s continued failure in the Middle East.” In other words, he is trying to eliminate the connection between the chaos in Iraq with the U.S. inaction in Syria.

The beheading of American journalist James Foley is not the first time we have heard about ISIS. One month ago, it was released that they were committing a Christian Holocaust in Iraq slaughtering thousands and beheading children. When the story finally leaked nationally, Obama was quick to act initiating air strikes on the terrorist organization. Another question to be asked is why it took so long for the U.S. to respond to the needs of the believers in Iraq? When it is an American, people seem to care much more and that should not be the case. Every human life is important and nationality should not be a factor.

According to Fox News, “ Top U.S. military brass and former administration officials are publicly pressuring the White House to consider taking the fight against ISIS into Syria”, which again explains Obama’s consistent use of the term ISIL.

“ISIL is as sophisticated and well-funded as any group that we have seen. They are beyond just a terrorist group,” Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said on Thursday. He added at the end of his speech that the U.S. needs to “Get ready.”

The U.S should have been preparing for the threat of ISIS during the Syrian conflict. President Obama’s continuous inaction should not continue to go unnoticed. Our eyes have only witnessed the horrific execution of Foley. Although it is extremely riveting photograph, he is not the only person ISIS has murdered. Imagine seeing a photograph of every person they have slaughtered. The media would not have the time in a day to tell every story.

As a country, we have become relaxed and content to let the nonsense continue in our government. If our founding fathers were alive today, would they be playing golf or would they be taking serious action to make sure lives were spared? We all know the answer to that question but what are we going to do to change the corruption and make a difference?


Melissa is a recent graduate of Liberty University where she earned her Bachelor’s degree in journalism. When she was a student, she was actively involved with writing for the marketing department at Liberty, the student run newspaper the Liberty Champion as well as freelancing for Lynchburg Business. Melissa will be interning with the National Journalism Center in Washington, DC this fall, after interning with the Stacy on the Right Show Radio Program.

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  1. Avatar
    bill burt 24 August, 2014 at 02:40 Reply

    Why would anyone believe that the worst of the worst of these terrorists haven’t already breached our unsecured, open southern border? One thing this evil isn’t, is stupid.

  2. Avatar
    James Montgomery 24 August, 2014 at 06:30 Reply

    A good article. But one statement by Melissa stood out to me. EVERY LIFE IS IMPORTANT. It always bothers me when say, an airliner goes down with no survivers, the media will report the number of Americans on the plane with no mention on the other victims. I have not been a proud American because of the inaction of this President and the administration. This government is committing the crime of inactivity.

  3. Avatar
    Margaret 17 September, 2014 at 16:32 Reply

    The atrocities in Syria, Egypt, and Iraq are far worse than even this article describes.

    Maloula, Syria was a UN Heritage Site because the residents of this small town still spoke First-Century Aramaic. The people of the town lit a bonfire on top of the town’s highest point on September 12 every year since 325, because their ancestors had lit one of hundreds of signal fire from Jerusalem to Constantinople to proclaim when Constantine’s mother, Helen, found the Cross in Jerusalem.

    This year, Russian Islamists entered the town and laid siege. The local convent had an orphanage with nearly 100 children. They were taken. The three nuns were eventually released, but where are the children? Sold into slavery? Trafficked?

    Two teenage boys in Maloula were told to deny Christ and accept Islam. They were crucified in Maloula when they refused, along with an adult male.

    What has happened in Iraq is a genocide. How many of you know that last year seven were crucified from cranes on the lawn of the Presidential Palace in Cairo by the Black Muslim Brotherhood? One man was taken down and taken to a hospital in time to be saved. More than 500 young Coptic (Egyptian) Christian girls (8 to 18) have been kidnapped and sold as slaves or brides in the last few year — how would you raise a family in these conditions? The Christians of Egypt now must pay jizya, a tax, in order to practice their faith. The Copts of Egypt, as a people, are the oldest indigenous population in the country, an speak a close variant of ancient Egyptian. Their faith was founded by the Apostle Mark, who was sent by Peter from Rome shortly before his execution by Nero. Eighty-four Churches were burned in Egypt this spring, some dating to the late first century.

    Our State Department has known this. They have not made a diplomatic protest, they have not attempted to offer political asylum to this practicing Christians and their families. These people who own businesses, who would not allowed to take any money or possessions with them, or sell their property and take that money with them by Egyptian Law. Certainly, in a historic sense, these are exactly the conditions under which the United States has granted asylum in the past.

    The abandonment of diplomatic pressure in support of Christians in the Middle East by the United States for the last seven years has lead to the emboldenment of the Islamic State. If our President will not defend Christians in the Middle East, they know he has no will to contain Islamic terrorism.

  4. Avatar
    Austin Harris 18 September, 2014 at 03:33 Reply

    Just stumbled across this article (a good an insightful one I might add), and noticed that you are “A Champion for Christ”-Liberty Graduate. I also attend Liberty. I must say it’s #awesomesauce. Anyways, I loved your article, it answered my question very clearly (President Obamas usage of Isle vs. Isis), and I will be following you as my “Liberty Eyes” On World Politics…
    Keep up the good work,
    Austin Harris aka #loveworks

  5. Avatar
    Negro 15 March, 2015 at 17:00 Reply

    That seems why Obama chose ISIL instead the original ISIS. This is because there were some evidence against leadership of ISIS sheikh Abubakar Baghdadi, who was accused of being a Jew spy and fake Muslim. ISIS originally refers to as Israel Secret Intelligence Service. That is how Obama quickly chose ISIL to cover off.

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