“They are beyond just a terrorist group. They marry ideology, a sophistication of … military prowess. They are tremendously well-funded. This is beyond anything we’ve seen.” Full story here. This statement by U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel is a clear indictment of the fact that ISIS is a proxy-army for the Gulf monarchies of Saudi Arabia and Qatar. Indeed, a mainstream Arabic media monitoring website notes there is very little mention of ISIS in the Gulf; instead, terms like “Iraqi Sunni’s” are employed, and the groups actions are described in the language of resistance. The emergence of ISIS, as a proxy-army, likely presents the biggest challenge the U.S. has ever been forced to confront in the region because dismantling the organization is becoming increasingly tied to dismantling the post-WW1 compact which created Saudi Arabia.