Iraqis welcome U.S. plan for air strikes on Islamic State targets after months of turmoil, while a Syrian official warns Washington about interfering with Damascus. Deborah Gembara reports.
TV AND WEB RESTRICTIONS~** **~ SOUNDBITE: U.S. President Barack Obama saying: "We will degrade, and ultimately destroy, ISIL..." It was a pledge made on American television. SOUNDBITE: U.S. President Barack Obama saying: "We will conduct a systematic campaign of airstrikes against these terrorists." In Iraq and Syria, where the U.S. will carry out this mission, reactions are mixed. SOUNDBITE: Civil Rights Activist, Amer Shummari saying: "To be honest, we are very content with President Obama's statement. Iraqis have lost a lot of blood in this fight and we have made a lot of sacrifices, and it is only now that the Western world have begun to move." SOUNDBITE: Baghdad Resident, Raad Mohmed, Saying: "Baghdad is a mess now and we know that the U.S. president's statements concerning Iraq are not genuine. It is governed by U.S. interests and double standards." The sharpest divide on the U.S. plan came from officials. Syria's Minister of National Reconciliation Affars Ali Haidar says military action of this nature sets a dangerous precedent. SOUNDBITE: Syrian Minister Of National Reconciliation Affairs Ali Haidar saying (Arabic): "Islamic State may be in the future a pretext for the countries that want to intervene in Syria to be aggressive, even if there were not real intentions to fight terrorism." He also said any action taken in Syria must involve Damascus. In Baghdad, Deputy Prime Minister Hoshiyar Zebari says he's encouraged by the Obama plan. SOUNDBITE: Deputy Prime Minister, Hoshiyar Zebari saying: "It will help to push back, to defeat ISIS." The response from officials mirrors, to a great extent, how each country has handled the threat. Syria has urged the West to say out of its now four year war with insurgents, while Iraq's near collapse in the face of an Islamic State blitz this May triggered international concerns about a power vacuum.