Both the House and Senate have voted to approve a measure to train and arm Syrian rebels. President Obama thanked lawmakers, saying the bipartisan support showed Americans were united in the fight against Islamic State militants. Democratic Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard from Hawaii is also an Iraq war vet and she voted against the measure. She told Anderson that her biggest problem is that "the mission is unclear."
There are serious questions about why the U.S. needs to lead the way in the battle against ISIS. Anderson talked it over with U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Samantha Power, who said regional powers need to put "skin in the game."
President Obama is preparing for a major speech laying out his plan for dealing with ISIS. A sports analogy he used to describe the terror group during an interview with the New Yorker's David Remnick back in January that is raising serious questions today.
"The analogy we use around here sometimes, and I think is accurate, is if a jayvee team puts on Lakers uniforms that doesn't make them Kobe Bryant…"
Anderson looked at the fallout from that comment and discussed it with David Remnick.
During a news conference today in Estonia, President Obama said his goal is to "degrade and destroy" ISIS. He then took a step back and said his goal is to ensure ISIS is "manageable." President Obama has already sent U.S. troops to Iraq to help protect U.S. personnel and embassies. Is the administration concerned that ISIS is plotting attack targeting Americans here at home? Anderson spoke with Deputy National Security Adviser Tony Blinken.
Tom Foreman looks at who is fighting for ISIS, along with the terror group's strengths and weaknesses.
The latest ISIS video, which claims to show the execution of American journalist Steven Sotloff, is raising questions about America's response to the terror group's advances. Senator John McCain spoke to Anderson and slammed President Obama for not having enough of a strategy to take on ISIS.
After days of waiting to see if President Obama would target ISIS with airstrikes inside Syria, he addressed reporters today saying:
'I have consulted with Congress throughout this process. I am confident that as Commander-in-Chief I have the authorities to engage in the acts that we are conducting currently. As our strategy develops, we we will continue to consult with Congress, and I do think it'll be important for Congress to weigh in, that our consultations with Congress continue to develop so that the American people are a part of the debate. But I don't want to put the cart before the horse. We don't have a strategy yet. '
Anderson spoke to Jim Acosta for the White House response to the President saying, 'We don't have a strategy yet.'
There are serious questions about whether ISIS can hold on to and govern areas it now controls. Anderson discussed it with the New York Times' Ben Hubbard.
President Obama has authorized airstrikes in Iraq targeting ISIS. The announcement comes after the U.S. launched an airdrop operation delivering humanitarian relief to thousands of members of a nearly extinct sect known as the Yazidis. ISIS forced them from their homes and into the surrounding mountains to die without food or water. It isn't just the Yazidis on the run from ISIS. Christians, Kurds and other minorities are fleeing ISIS fighters who are armed with weapons stolen from the Iraqi military. Ivan Watson reports from Irbil, Iraq on the latest on events that led up to President Obama's decision to authorize these airstrikes and airdrops.
The Pentagon's airdrop operation in Iraq is both delicate and risky. Anderson discussed the logistics of all this with Retired Air Force Lieutenant Colonel Rick Francona, New York Times reporter Stephen Farrell, and former White House Homeland Security Advisor Fran Townsend.
President Obama authorized targeted airstrikes and a humanitarian relief airdrop after ISIS' latest offensive in Iraq. Over the last few years, ISIS has grown to become one of the world's most brutal and dangerous Jihadist groups. Anderson Cooper looks at how they became so dangerous so fast.
Could ISIS retaliate against the U.S. with an attack on the American homeland? Anderson discussed this ISIS' capabilities with former CIA officer Bob Baer, National Security editor of The Guardian, Spencer Ackerman and Quartz managing editor Bobby Ghosh
U.S. combat operations in Afghanistan are set to end at the end of the year. Now, President Obama is laying out his plan to leave nearly 10,000 troops there through 2015. That is contingent on the new Afghan government signing off on a security agreement. Even if this plan does win approval, President Obama admits Afghanistan "will not be a perfect place." National security analyst Peter Bergen has the latest.
The AC360 Later panel digs into Fmr. Defense Secy. Robert Gates' new memoir, which heaps scathing criticism on the Obama administration. The Dish founder, Andrew Sullivan, says "it’s not what I would expect from Bob Gates. I would expect it from other people. But this man?...the fact that he was enraged the entire time, I find it hard to understand."
Former Defense Secretary Robert Gates blasts his former boss, President Obama, in a new tell-all book. He also takes aim at Joe Biden, Hillary Clinton, and even former General Petraeus in a memoir riddled with stories of suspicion and distrust. CNN’s Chief National Security Correspondent fills us in on the details.