The Saudis see the Islamic State as a threat to their leadership in Saudi Arabia. For that reason, they are willing to provide a location where Syrian rebels who are not aligned with ISIS can be trained by U.S. advisors. That decision by the Saudis created a need for immediate action in Congress by the White House and Congressional leaders to respond by approving funding for the initiative. The conditions surrounding this circumstance caused Congressional leaders to pursue bipartisan action in support of the President’s decision. In a sense, the Saudi’s decision cascaded into motivating Washington to get its act together. Go figure.
One big question: From where is the Islamic State receiving its funding?
A Wall Street Journal report paints a picture, and provides some emphasis, however lacks quantitative metrics. See the picture illustration that depicts the possible situation.
“Islamic State sells oil and diesel fuel through a sophisticated smuggling and sales network to buyers that U.S. officials believe have included the Syrian government, local businessmen, and Turkish traders.”
“U.S., Allies Step Up Efforts to Choke Off Islamic State’s Funding
Campaign Aims to Block Oil Revenues, Deny Extremists’ Access to Global Financial System
By JAY SOLOMON
Updated Sept. 9, 2014 11:52 p.m. ET
WASHINGTON—The U.S. Treasury Department and Washington’s allies are ramping up efforts to hit Islamic State’s finances, particularly focusing on steps to choke off its oil sales, its donations from the Persian Gulf and its extortion rackets.
But current and former U.S. officials said the campaign presents a unique challenge to Washington’s counterterrorism agencies, as one of the first to target an organization that maintains a covert international support network while also functioning as a state through the control of large tracts of land.
The Obama administration, as a result, is tailoring a military, diplomatic and financial strategy to deny the Islamist extremist group access to the international financial system and to restrict its ability to export commodities and raise revenues through extortion and kidnapping.”
“The deal that upended Washington’s September
By MANU RAJU, JAKE SHERMAN and JOHN BRESNAHAN | 9/11/14 7:43 PM EDT Updated: 9/11/14 11:24 PM EDT
Last weekend, one of President Barack Obama’s top national security advisers scored a major coup during a visit to the Middle East: Saudi Arabia finally agreed to serve as a host country for training Syrian rebels in the fight against Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant militants.
So the adviser, Lisa Monaco, flew on the red eye back to Washington to deliver the news personally to Obama in the Oval Office on Tuesday morning, administration officials said.
The surprising news Monaco presented to the president would upend Washington’s plans for a smooth September. The successful accord with Saudi Arabia presented immediate problems back in Washington.
The White House would need a divided and reluctant Congress to provide new authority to the Pentagon to support the Syrian rebels. And Congress would need to provide that authority during a quick two-week session that leaders from both parties hoped would avoid big issues so lawmakers could return to the campaign trail unscathed.”
Read more: http://www.politico.com/story/2014/09/washington-dc-isil-iraq-syria-110876.html#ixzz3D71QrzX2