The Obama administration won’t rescue Iraq, the White House says.
On Thursday, White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest told Fox News that “the United States is not going to be responsible for securing the security situation inside of Iraq.”
The United States will continue to launch airstrikes, Earnest said, as well as train and equip Iraqi locals to defend themselves against the militant terrorist group “in their own country.”
Defense Secretary Ash Carter — after criticizing the Iraqi army for retreating from Ramadi because of their lack of “will to fight” — said Thursday that the United States military is focused on better preparing Iraqis to fight the Islamic State, through both training and equipment.
Earnest also emphasized “continuing to go after the flow of foreign fighters and ‘shut down the pipeline.'”
A recent UN report obtained by the Associated Press found a “70 percent increase in the flow of foreign fighters since 2014,” as well as 25,000 individual combatants “traveling to jihadi conflicts from more than 100 countries,” leading to massive gains for militant groups like ISIS and Al Qaeda.
The new White House strategy will require “sustained commitment,” Earnest said, but if “well executed, [will] enjoy some success.”