Published On: Mon, Nov 10th, 2014

President Obama talks ‘new phase’ of fight against Islamic State, going on the offensive

President Barack Obama said sending more US troops to Iraq signals a new phase in the fight against the Islamic State and Levant (ISIL) group (more commonly called ISIS or just Islamic State.)

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After earlier unveiling plans to send up to 1,500 more American troops to Iraq to advise and train its forces, Obama told CBS “Face the Nation” on Sunday that the U.S.-led effort to defeat Islamic State is now moving to a new stage.

“Phase one was getting an Iraqi government that was inclusive and credible — and we now have done that,” Obama said. “Rather than just try to halt momentum, we’re now in a position to start going on some offence,” he added to CBS, calling for Iraqi ground troops to start pushing back the Sunni Muslim fighters.

“We will provide them close air support once they are prepared to start going on the offence against (ISIS),” Obama said. “But what we will not be doing is having our troops do the fighting.”

Instead, he explained, the new deployment of up to 1,500 soldiers will work at four training centers with members of the U.S.-led coalition to train Iraqi soldiers and assist them with the strategy and logistics to fight ISIS on the ground. When they begin to go on the offense against ISIS, the U.S. will provide close air support.

Going on the offensive will be a significant challenge for Iraq’s forces, which saw multiple divisions fall apart in the early days of the ISIS June offensive, leaving major units that need to be reconstituted.

Obama then shift gears to call for Syrian President Bashar Assad needs to step down from power.

“It is still our policy, and it’s an almost absolute certainty that he has lost legitimacy with such a large portion of the country by dropping barrel bombs and killing children and destroying villages that were defenseless, that he can’t regain the kind of legitimacy that would stitch that country back together again,” the president said during the interview.


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- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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