Cousin Says US Jihadi Killed in Syria 'Lost His Way'
U.S. officials say an American man recruited by the terror group the Islamic State (ISIS) has been killed in Syria.
Douglas McAuthur McCain is one of two Americans to reportedly die in Syria this week while fighting for the jihadist Army. Officials are still waiting to retrieve McCain's body and verify information about his death.
The 33-year-old grew up in Minnesota and went to college in San Diego. His cousin, Kenyata McCain, said he had lost his way.
"I felt like he may have lost his identity because all of this is not him," she said.
Officials believe that several jihadist groups in Syria, including ISIS, have recruited some 100 Americans to fight in their ranks.
In May, Mohammad Abu-Salha, another American fighting for a rival rebel group to ISIS, blew himself up in a suicide attack. He left behind the following threatening message:
"You think you are safe; you are not," he warned.
Critics say the president's actions and inactions created the perfect environment for ISIS to grow, allowing a vacuum in Iraq by pulling out all U.S. troops. Gayle Trotter, a writer, attorney and senior fellow at the Independent Women's Forum, addressed this issue on CBN News Today, Aug. 27.
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ISIS has dominated the headlines, especially after the group beheaded U.S. journalist James Foley and took another American hostage, a female humanitarian worker in Syria.
The White House is responding with renewed pressure, with President Barack Obama issuing a warning to jihadists.
"Our message to anyone who harms our people is simple: America does not forget. Our reach is long. We are patient. Justice will be done," he said.
The president has also authorized surveillance flights in Syria.
"This is a serious threat from a serious group of terrorists and we need to stay mindful of doing what we need to do to protect American citizens at home and abroad," Pentagon spokesman Rear Adm. John Kirby said.
Earlier this month, the United States began launching air strikes against ISIS in Iraq. Now the Pentagon is preparing for the possibility of airstrikes against ISIS in Syria.
The president has long resisted taking military action there, but with the growing ISIS threat it appears that new options are now on the table.