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Exclusive: ‘None Of This Happened’: White House, Pentagon Call Trump ISIS Story Into Question

The White House did not ask defense officials to help come up with ideas to brand the Trump administration’s anti-ISIS efforts differently from the Obama administration, Senior Pentagon and White House officials told The Daily Caller News Foundation.

“The White House has asked defense officials to come up with new ideas to help brand the Trump campaign as different from its predecessor,” The Daily Beast reported Wednesday, citing two defense officials and a senior administration official.

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“None of this happened,” a senior White House official told TheDCNF, vehemently denying the report.

“I’m not familiar with any such effort,” Pentagon Spokesman Navy Capt. Jeff Davis similarly told TheDCNF.  The senior White House official further corroborated Davis’ denial, referencing discussions with National Security Council officials.

Members of the press widely circulated The Daily Beast’s claim on social media as evidence the Trump administration cannot come up with a better strategy than former President Barack Obama’s to defeat the terrorist group.

The Trump administration has by and large made no major departure from the Obama administration in its strategy against ISIS. The U.S. continues to rely on the U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces to fight the terrorist group in Syria and sustains its partnership with the Iraqi Security Forces in operations in Mosul.

The Trump administration has, however, taken a more hands-off approach to the broader strategy. This method includes lifting troop level caps in the fight against ISIS and giving further deference to U.S. commanders on the ground.

Kimberly Dozier, Senior National Security Correspondent at The Daily Beast and a CNN Global Affairs analyst, did not respond to a request for comment by the time of publishing.

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