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Remember when the reason for expanding this military campaign from Iraq into Syria was because ISIS was in both countries? It wasn’t so long ago. Well, now President Obama has announced that he also targeted a non-ISIS group in Syria. Mission creep in real time.

In a press statement given earlier this morning, President Obama admitted he targeted a second group besides ISIS in Syria. The second group known as the Khorasan Group is said to be affiliated with Al Qaeda which, in theory, would mean that Obama could rely once again on the 2001 Authorization of Military Force. Obama never mentioned the group in his address on ISIS to the nation.

Obama claimed the strikes against Khorasan were somehow defensive saying:

Last night we also took strikes to disrupt plotting against the United States and our allies by seasoned Al Qaeda operatives in Syria who are known as the Khorasan Group. And once again it must be clear to anyone who would plot against America and try to do Americans harm that we will not tolerate safe havens for terrorists that threaten our people.

So this is an interesting game. The Khorasan Group has members who were once affiliated with Al Qaeda therefore they can be killed under the 2001 AUMF? How far removed from Al Qaeda does someone have to be until the US government considers them not to qualify as Al Qaeda under the AUMF?

Also, in what sense is Syria a “safe haven” for the Khorasan Group? The Assad government is trying to kill Sunni militant groups daily. How did the US know Khorasan was plotting an attack? Is there any evidence to support any of these wild claims?

However unlikely the secretive Obama Administration is to answer these questions they should still be asked. Obama has opened another front in the perpetual War on Terror – a war that he claimed to be trying to end. Now we are back in Iraq, remain in Afghanistan, and diving headfirst into a complex conflict in Syria. And while there is little evidence American has any interests whatsoever at stake in these conflicts presently, there is historical evidence that there will be blowback from interfering, once again, in the internal politics of the region.

Dan Wright

Dan Wright

Daniel Wright is a longtime blogger and currently writes for Shadowproof. He lives in New Jersey, by choice.