CNN anchor Jake Tapper took issue with President Obama's claim that the Islamic State had been "contained" on Sunday following a spree of major terrorist attacks in France and the Middle East.
"If this is what ISIS looks like contained, I shudder to think what ISIS looks like uncontained," Tapper said to State Department official Ben Rhodes.
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France suffered the deadliest attack on its soil since World War II on Friday, when at least eight terrorists with machine guns, hand grenades, and explosive vests killed 129 people and wounded over 350 at multiple locations around the city. The Islamic State has claimed responsibility for the attack.
If true, this would be the latest in a string of successful attacks and atrocities by the terrorist group in the last month. Islamic State has taken credit for the bombing of a Russian airliner over Egypt in late October, killing 224 people. An IS-linked suicide bombing in Beirut, Lebanon on Friday killed 43 and wounded 239. An IS propaganda video featured footage of its jihadists machine-gunning 200 Syrians.
Rhodes told Tapper that President Obama had been making "a very specific point" about losses in territory and leadership IS has suffered due to U.S. airstrikes and ground operations by coalition partners.
"What we've been able to do is stop that advance and reclaim territory, going on the offense with our partners on the ground," Rhodes said. "We have to be one step ahead of ISIL every time, if we can."
"One step ahead, we don't seem to be one step ahead of any terrorist group these days," Tapper said.
As the White House touts its success in containing terrorist groups like IS, its own data indicates that terrorism is on the rise. The number of deaths due to terrorism spiked by 81 percent between 2013 and 2014, according to a State Department report.