Kerry: Our Strategy Is To Give "Military Assistance" In Iraq, Syria


SECRETARY OF STATE JOHN KERRY: At its core, our strategy is centered on a global coalition that will collaborate closely across a number of specific areas, including direct and indirect military support. Military assistance can come in a range of forms -- from training and equipping, logistics to airlift, and countries from inside and outside of our region are already right now providing that support in these venues.

I also have no doubt whatsoever that we will have the capabilities and resources we need to succeed militarily. And President Obama made clear we'll be expanding the military campaign to take on ISIL in Iraq, in Syria, wherever it is found. But this is not the Gulf War in 1991. It is not the Iraq War in 2003, and that's true for a number of reasons. Number one, U.S. ground troops will not be sent into combat in this conflict. From the last decade, we know that a sustainable strategy is not U.S. ground forces, it is enabling the local forces to do what they have to do for themselves and for their country.

I want to be clear, the U.S. troops that have been deployed to Iraq do not and will not have a combat mission. Instead, they will support Iraq forces on the ground as they fight for their country against these terrorists. And in Syria, the on the ground combat will be done by the moderate opposition which serves as the current best counterweight in Syria to extremists like ISIL.

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