Philip Seib, uscpublicdiplomacy.org
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The IS leaders are not stupid. They will deploy their assets in ways that will limit the damage that can be done by conventional military operations. Defeating the Islamic State must occur on other battlegrounds, such as the realms of social media and public diplomacy. As of now, anti-IS countermeasures on this terrain have been puny compared to the masterful manipulation by IS proselytizers. To put this in terms U.S. officials might understand, we need a surge of media content, crafted by indigenous sources, that will be delivered at such a volume and with such forceful content that the lies of the Islamic State can be drowned out.
Contrary to the protestations of the U.S. counterterrorism establishment, the Islamic State has momentum and its menace is growing. This is a war that must be fought through ingenuity and persistence that we have not yet seen.