While President Obama and his staff have admittedly not figured out a plan for fighting ISIS, the military will send ‘up to’ 450 troops to Iraq to boost the training of local forces. The move comes after an overnight series of bombs on Baghdad by the Islamic State and the Iraqi government’s appeals for more help.
The troops will be used to open an additional training center, bringing the number from four to five, in theory enabling a larger number of Iraqis to join the fight against ISIS. Sunni tribal volunteers would be the target audience for the training.
President Barack Obama, according to White House spokespeople, made the decision at the request of Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi and based on advice from Pentagon defense planners.
While Obama continues to resist demands for combat troops or for more U.S. soldiers on the ground to call in air strikes, the will of Iraq’s army to fight remains in serious doubt.
Numerous reports have emerged of well equipped soldiers simply dropping their weapons and running when confronted by ISIS attacks. Iraq also does not have a standing army of any sort and instead a mishmash of tribal militias. This means poor coordination and communication between the groups, while ISIS is a battle hardened, tightly organized group that is using innovative tactics to overtake and demoralize its enemies.