US President Barack Obama has virtually declared war on The Islamic State and has sought Congressional approval to launch military strikes against the barbaric militant group which has unleashed mayhem in Syria and Iraq.
Flanked by Vice President Joe Biden, Secretary of State John Kerry and outgoing Defensc Secretary Chuck Hagel, Mr Obama underlined that the ISIS will lose.
“Make no mistake, this is a difficult mission and it will remain difficult for some time but our coalition is on the offensive. [ISIS] is on the defensive and [ISIS] is going to lose,” Obama said from the White House’s Roosevelt Room on February 11.
He stressed that the authorization sent to Congress does not appeal for the deployment of ground combat forces.
“I’m convinced that the United States should not get dragged back into another prolonged ground war,” he added.
The deadline for the resolution is kept no longer than three years, so that the next president and Congress would enjoy freedom to plan their own strategy.
“As Commander in Chief, I will only send our troops into harm’s way when it’s absolutely necessary for our national security,” Obama said to request Congress for its first war-powers vote in 13 years.
Mr Obama stressed that the draft war powers request would “strike the necessary balance” and give him “flexibility” to defeat the militants.
However, Republicans expressed discomfort that he had chosen to exclude any long-term commitment of ground forces, while some Democrats voiced dismay that he had opened the door to deployment at all.
As per proposal, the 2002 congressional authorization that preceded the American-led invasion of Iraq would be repealed under the White House proposal. But a separate authorization that was approved by Congress after the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks would remain in force.
The reaction in Congress can be seen as full of scepticism on Obama’s attempt to find a political middle ground with respect to ground forces.
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