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Anchored by Jake Tapper, The Lead airs at 4 p.m. ET on CNN.

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September 11th, 2014
04:23 PM ET

U.S. official: U.S. flying surveillance over Syria

(CNN) – The American military is already hitting ISIS targets in Iraq.

Now, U.S. surveillance aircraft are flying over Syria, gathering intelligence for impending air strikes on ISIS, a U.S. official tell CNN.

The President, who refers to these terrorists as "ISIL," said Wednesday that he wants to lead a coalition to take the fight to ISIS.

"I will not hesitate to take action against ISIL in Syria, as well as Iraq. This is a core principle of my presidency: if you threaten America, you will find no safe haven," Obama said.

But immediate military action is unlikely, defense officials tell CNN. The U.S. is still developing intelligence for targets, and identifying resources, including number of troops to train Syrian rebels.

Former U.S. military commanders – those who have led the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan – have sobering assessments of the difficultly of executing the President's plan.

CNN's Jim Sciutto reports.

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