U.S. President Barack Obama says he will continue to build his coalition against Islamic State, as Jordan confirms its direct military involvement in overnight U.S.-led airstrikes inside Syria that killed at least 70 IS fighters. Mana Rabiee reports.
U.S.-led airstrikes on Syria captured on cellphones. Amateur video appears to show smoke rising over the town of al-Bukamal. It's a strategically located town that sits on the border with Iraq, as the U.S. and its Arab allies begin, for the first time, a campaign of airstrikes against militants inside Syria. At least 70 Islamic State fighters were reported killed, plus 50 other militants linked to al-Qaeda in separate strikes inside Syria, which the U.S. conducted alone. Just hours after the strikes began, U.S. President Barack Obama addressed the nation from the White House lawn. SOUNDBITE: U.S. PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA SAYING: "The strength of this coalition makes it clear to the world that this is not America's fight alone. Above all, the people and governments in the Middle East are rejecting ISIL and standing up for the peace and security that the people of the region and the world deserve." The action pitches Washington for the first time into Syria's three-year-long civil war. Obama heads to the United Nations General Assembly now to rally more support behind his drive to destroy Islamic State. The strikes overnight happened with the participation or support of several Arab allies including the Saudis and the UAE. It's not clear yet what exact role each Arab partner played, but Jordan has confirmed its military was directly involved. (SOUNDBITE) (English) MINISTER OF STATE FOR MEDIA AFFAIRS AND COMMUNICATIONS, MOHAMMAD MOMANI, SAYING: "Our airplanes and air force conducted specific attacks on the positions of this terrorist organization. This comes in light of our declared policy of fighting terrorism..." The attacks took place with no objection -- and even signs of tacit approval -- from Syrian President Bashar al Assad's government, which Washington says was notified in advance. It's a remarkable sign of shifting Middle East alliances…as the U.S. tries to destroy Islamic State on a new battleground in the heart of the Middle East.