A week after the release of a clip with sported professionally produced, near Hollywood-level editing and effects, showing the brutal burning of a Jordanian pilot hostage, Jordan announced it has deployed "thousands" of ground troops to its border with Iraq as it ramps up a campaign against ISIS militants, two Jordanian government officials told NBC News on Tuesday.
As NBC reports, the troops were sent to prevent the infiltration of ISIS fighters into Jordan and as a show of force, according to the sources who spoke on condition of anonymity. In other words, what would formerly have been seen as an overt act of territorial incursion, or as it is also known, a sovereign invasion, is now interpreted as a defensive act, one seeking to "prevent" infiltration by the same ISIS, that only exists due to US intervention in Syria in 2013.
Jordan's King Abdullah last week threatened to make ISIS pay for the death of Muath al-Kasasbeh's after video of the military pilot's murder emerged. He vowed to wage a "harsh" war against ISIS "because this terrorist organization is not only fighting us, but also fighting Islam and its pure values."
Abdullah also pledged to hit ISIS militants "hard in the very center of their strongholds."
One wonders why the need for the land grab, pardon, defensive incursion, when as previously reported, Jordan has already unleashed up to 20 missions per day by Jordanian jets targeting the militant group's positions in Syria.
"We are determined to wipe them from the face of the Earth," Maj. Gen. Mansour al-Jobour told NBC News on Sunday, citing the need for "revenge" after al-Kasabeh's killing.
That much is clear. The question is what else is Jordan "determined" to do once it has military boots on the ground first in Iraq and soon, inevitably, in Syria which as a reminder, is what this is all about.