US Launches Six More Airstrikes Against ISIS

Barrage targeted the Mosul Dam; British intelligence looks to identify who killed James Foley.
3:59 | 08/21/14

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Transcript for US Launches Six More Airstrikes Against ISIS
The US launching -- six more airstrikes in Iraq today against the extremist group known as -- this. Despite threats that the jihadist might kill a second American journalist held hostage. Hello everyone I'm Mary Bruce in Washington the White House striking ice is today near the strategic Mosul dam. Trying to push -- -- back and British officials now trying to figure out the identity of James police killer. ABC's Karen Travers joins us now with the latest Karen. -- afternoon Mary were waiting to hear from the State Department any minute now and later this afternoon Defense Secretary -- -- will speak for the first time he's going to be the first on the record comments on camera that we've seen from the administration since that videotape came out earlier this week showing the killing and James Foley. And as you said British officials and US intelligence officials. Are looking through that videotape for any possible clue that could gives some indication to the identity of that executioner. A massive hunt is under way to track -- the man who killed American journalist James Foley. Authorities are using a database of known jihadist to search for a match with his eyes hands and most telling. His voice British officials say it's a distinctive -- -- accent. -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- Early this summer there was a secret rescue operation in Syria to save Foley and other Americans held by crisis. Senior administration officials say the mission by American special operations forces failed. Because the hostages weren't there in the video released by rice's -- these executioners specifically called out President Obama. Demanding an end to the US airstrikes in Iraq. There have already being close to 100 airstrikes there and yesterday no indication the president's backing down. We will be vigilant and we will be relentless. When people harm Americans anywhere. We do what's necessary to -- the justice is done. In fact options had been presented to union to intensify the air strikes. Other possibilities President Obama may be considering include. More weapons to Iraq teasing Kurds -- the front lines send more US special forces to advise the Iraqis. Or a bigger step take the fight to Syria another ice is stronghold. By launching airstrikes for the first time -- -- targets there. Another aspect is intelligence gathering moving drones and surveillance aircraft into the region in greater numbers because Mary as you know -- US does does not have the personnel on the grounds Mary. Now Karen -- -- this rescue mission it was extremely secretive even a fully family didn't know about it they said. Until after so why did the White House decide to go public with this mission. Mary the administration says they wanted to keep this a secret this was a highly dangerous highly critical mission that of course failed and they said that. They wanted to keep it secret as long as they could but yesterday it seemed clear that. News organizations were going to be reporting details on it -- they went to get ahead of that put out details on their own everybody had a briefing yesterday the information was embargoed until everybody could reported at the same time. And is unusual how forthcoming they -- on this but of course today you can imagine. Secretary Cagle is gonna get a lot of questions about more of those details this is a very big deal a US special forces operations Syria. That of course is something that depending on is gonna have to have a lot of answers for today Mary. ABC's Karen Travers in Washington thank you for that. And we will -- the State Department briefing live right here on When it happens. For now I'm Mary -- in Washington.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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