Newscast Media WASHINGTON—The President has announced some additional steps
that will be taken to include creating joint operation centers in Baghdad and northern
Iraq that can facilitate our coordination with Iraqi security forces. Also, a decision
has been made to send an additional number of American military advisors — up to
300, who can help provide an additional assessment of how to train, advise, and
support the Iraqi security forces.
Obama emphasized that while the fate of Iraq hangs in the balance, sending in US
combat troops is not an option.
“American combat troops are not going to be fighting in Iraq again. We do not have
the ability to simply solve this problem by sending in tens of thousands of troops and
committing the kinds of blood and treasure that has already been expended in Iraq,”
the president said.
He also stressed the need for an inclusive partnership among Sunnis, Shia and Kurds
to effectively stomp out terrorist threats and avoid a “whack-a-mole” situation.
When asked about Iran’s potential involvement he responded:
“Iran can play a constructive role if it is helping to send the same message to the
Iraqi government that we’re sending. That Iraq only holds together if it’s inclusive. If
Iran is coming in solely as an armed force on behalf of the Shia…then that probably
worsens the situation.”
The US will lead diplomatic efforts to support political stability involving all the
stakeholders in Iraq. Iraqi leaders have been urged to come together around a political
plan that gives everyone confidence in the political process rather than violence.