Joint Chiefs won't rule out US troops riding along for ISIS battles | TheHill - Liar Liar!
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Joint Chiefs won't rule out US troops riding along for ISIS battles | TheHill

The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff on Tuesday wouldn’t rule out having American advisers accompany Iraqi troops into battle against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS).

President Obama has deployed 1,600 U.S. advisers to Iraq so far, but he has stressed that there are no “boots on the ground” in a combat role.
But Gen. Martin Dempsey said it’s possible he could, at some point, recommend to Obama that the American advisers begin riding along with Iraqi forces, as they take on ISIS, which would put them in harm's way.

"To be clear, if we reach the point where I believe our advisors should accompany Iraqi troops on attacks against specific ISIL targets, I will recommend that to the president," Dempsey said at a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing, using an alternate acronym for the group.

"At this juncture, our advisers are intended to help the Iraqis develop a mindset for the offensive and the actions to match it. Our military advisers will help the Iraqis conduct campaign planning, arrange for enabler and logistics support, and coordinate coalition contributions," he said.

The U.S. will also "pressure" ISIS in Syria as well through a plan to train and equip vetted moderate Syrian rebels, he said.

"We will work to ensure they have a Syrian chain of command and report to a moderate Syrian political authority. This force will work initially at the local and community level, and help pull together Syrians who have most felt the harsh hand of ISIL," he said.

Dempsey said the U.S. will "be prepared to strike ISIL targets in Syria that degrade ISIL's capabilities."

"This will not look like 'shock and awe' because that is not how ISIL is organized, but it will be persistent and sustainable," Dempsey said.

He said the president's plan to degrade and destroy ISIS was "appropriate" but cautioned it would require a "sustained effort over an extended period of time."

"It is a generational problem. And we should expect that our enemies will adapt their tactics as we adjust our approach," he said.

Dempsey emphasized that military actions would be "part of a whole of government effort that works to disrupt ISIL financing, interdict the movement of foreign fighters across borders, and undermine the ISIL message."

"Within a coalition of capable, willing regional and international partners, I believe we can destroy ISIL in Iraq, restore the Iraqi-Syrian border, and disrupt ISIL in Syria," he said. "ISIL will ultimately be defeated when their cloak of religious legitimacy is stripped away and the populations on which they have imposed themselves reject them.".... Read More

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