Obama Criticized for Claim That ISIS Is 'Contained'

The GOP seizes on a claim made by President Obama that ISIS is 'contained.'

ByABC News
November 14, 2015, 9:48 AM

— -- Critics are lashing out at President Obama in the wake of the attacks in Paris on Friday for remarks he made to ABC's George Stephanopoulos a day earlier in which he said that ISIS was "contained."

“From the start, our goal has been first to contain, and we have contained them," Obama told ABC on Thursday. "They have not gained ground in Iraq. And in Syria it -- they'll come in, they'll leave. But you don't see this systematic march by ISIL across the terrain."

The comment came just hours before the announcement of a U.S. airstrike in Syria that had targeted 'Jihadi John.' But the mainly symbolic victory was cut short following the attacks in Paris on Friday in which at least 127 people were killed.

French President Francois Hollande blamed ISIS for the attacks on Saturday, calling it "an act of war."

Several Republicans, including candidates for the GOP presidential nomination, seized on Obama's comments as his latest mistake in underestimating the terror group.

“They are not a JV team. They are not contained. They are on the march," Republican presidential candidate Carly Fiorina said in an interview with conservative talk show host Hugh Hewitt. "Secondly, I think it reminds us that when the United States is not leading the world is a more dangerous and a more tragic place."

Donald Trump tweeted Friday evening, sending his condolences to the victims and hostages, however Saturday morning he took a much more critical tone.

GOP Presidential candidate Mike Huckabee also attacked Obama's "contained" comment, citing the downing of the Russian plane over Egypt and the Paris attack.

"We are clearly not dealing with leashed animals or with a JV team," Huckabee said. "During the debate last week, I stated that we should not admit those claiming to be Syrian refugees and was condemned by the left for that position. I was right and the events in Paris affirm that."

Obama is convening a meeting with his National Security Council this morning on the Paris attacks and the response from the U.S. They will meet before Obama leaves for Turkey this afternoon.