John McCain Publicly Calls Out Obama’s Decision To Send Only 200 Troops To Iraq As Weak
John McCain had strong words for Obama’s relative inaction when it comes to ISIS. And he’s right. McCain calls Obama’s small “incrementalism” as weak and an effort that really isn’t meant on winning a war, but rather being able to put out a press release and claim to be taking action.
Obama has vowed to send additional artillery systems, Apache helicopters and over 200 troops to Iraq to fight ISIS. The campaign will focus on supporting Iraqi forces as they attempt to recapture the city of Mosul.
Mosul is the second largest city in Iraq and is currently occupied by thousands of ISIS terrorists as well as approximately one million civilians. Regardless of the number of civilians occupying the city, a push to rid the area of all ISIS forces is only months away. The U.S. is hoping that the additional forces and weapons will accelerate that process.
Clearing the city is a top priority for Iraqi and U.S. forces in the area who are attempting to force ISIS out of Iraq. According to American officials we have reached a critical point in the battle against ISIS. ISIS is allegedly “on the run” after an airstrike campaign in Iraq and Syria killed three of ISIS’ top commanders and won back nearly 40% of the group’s territory in Iraq.
The Obama administration says the move will “accelerate the retaking of Mosul” by providing additional firepower and military strategy to the Iraqis. New measures have been implemented to support the additional troops. U.S. Military advisors will be able to get closer to the battlefield and provide better support. These officials were previously limited to remain at higher brigade or division headquarters far from the battlefield. American advisers will now be able to travel with the Iraqi units and provide more up-to-date feedback.
Despite their efforts, the Obama administration is being criticized by some high-ranking U.S. officials. Sen. John McCain calls the the increase too small to make an impact. The additional 217 troops being sent to the Middle East will only raise the authorized number of U.S. troops from 3,870 to 4,087. He warns that the insignificant increase will have little impact.
“This is yet another example of the kind of grudging incrementalism that rarely wins wars, but could certainly lose one,”
Obama claims that U.S. troops will not be engaging in combat and states that these troops will only play a support role to local Kurdish forces who have been extremely effective in the fight against ISIS. However, expanding the roles of troops currently stationed in Iraq and sending additional forces is hypocritical to this claim and has raised eyebrows among some analysts.
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