Maybe before they extend the airstrikes against the Islamic State too far, the White House might want to double check the geography.

Obama administration officials, briefing reporters before the president’s Wednesday night televised speech, made it clear that borders, especially the border between Syria and Iraq, will not be an impediment to U.S. airstrikes.

Speaking “on background,” one official said, “We are dealing with an organization that operates freely across the border, so we will not be restrained by that border in our determination to conduct airstrikes against ISIL (or IS or ISIS or the Islamic State).”

Then a second official reemphasized that a number of countries in the region were worried about the ISIS threat moving across borders. One of the briefers noted that the terrorist army “has been I think a galvanizing threat around the Sunni partners in the region. They view it as an existential threat to them. Saudi Arabia has an extensive border with Syria.” 

This was truly news. So we checked our own maps. No, Saudi Arabia doesn’t have an extensive border with Syria. Jordan has a rather large chunk of land between them.


Pretty sure this must have been just a slip from some exhausted folks, but doesn’t leave you with a warm and toasty feeling about where this is all going.