Obama to address U.S.

president Barack Obama is to address U.S. troops involved in his new strategy to 
“degrade and destroy” Islamic State (IS) militants in Iraq and Syria. He will also be briefed by commanders at the Florida headquarters of Centcom, the command covering the region, BBC News reports.
Obama to address U.S. troops on ‘strategy to destroy’ IS
President Barack Obama

The president has said U.S. troops will not have a combat mission in Iraq, under the strategy outlined last week.

But ground forces may be sent if a new international coalition fails to defeat IS, the top U.S. general said on Tuesday, Sept 16.
Gen Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told a Senate committee that an international effort against IS was currently the “appropriate way forward”.
However, he said “if that fails to be true, and there are threats to the United States, then I of course would go back to the president and make a recommendation that may include the use of U.S. military ground forces”.
Gen Dempsey confirmed that under the current plan, U.S. military advisers would help the Iraqi army to plan attacks against IS, also known as ISIL.
The jihadist group controls large areas of Syria and northern Iraq. It has between 20,000 and 31,000 fighters in Iraq and Syria, according to CIA estimates.
Obama arrived overnight in Tampa, Florida, where U.S. Central Command (Centcom) – responsible for the Middle East and Central Asia – is based.
“As we implement the president’s strategy to degrade and ultimately defeat ISIL, it’s the men and women of Centcom who will partner with others in the region to carry out our limited military mission in those countries,” White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said on Tuesday.
In recent weeks Iraqi and Kurdish peshmerga forces backed by U.S. jets and drones have been advancing against IS positions in northern Iraq.
In his speech last week, President Obama unveiled a four-point plan to defeat IS using further air strikes, support for Iraqi troops, anti-terrorism activities and humanitarian aid.
On Monday U.S. aircraft carried out the first strike under the new strategy, south-west of Baghdad. The U.S. administration has also been working on a broad coalition to fight the jihadist group.
At the weekend 30 countries took part in a summit in Paris, and pledged to help Iraq fight Islamic State (IS) militants “by all means necessary”.
Correspondents say the murders of two U.S. journalists and a British aid worker by IS militants – all shown in a videos released by IS – have added momentum to the plans.


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