Radical Islamic leaders have suggested that killing Americans and their allies, whether civilian or military, is an obligation of every Muslim. The Islamic State is driven by an ideology of hatred and destruction and its actions suggest that it wants a third world war between infidelity and Islam. To this end, it appears that ISIS is trying to lure the U.S. into deploying a large ground force in Syria and Iraq — so it can kill more Americans.
The United States cannot ignore the ISIS threat. Nor should it deploy a large ground force, and risk getting caught in quagmire. Washington needs a counter-terrorism strategy, which is based on a better understanding of the Islamic State's ideology, goals, and history.
ISIS is comprised of religious fanatics and zealots. They have a warped and wrong interpretation of the Quran, which they use to justify sensational violence. ISIS members are bound together by hatred of the West and the shared goal of martyrdom.