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In Iraq, closing the gap between Obama's goal and means

September 22, 2014
Doyle McManus | Los Angeles Times
Discordant notes from the Obama administration last week were widely interpreted as a collision between a war-weary president and a gung-ho military. And it was easy to see why.
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U.S. Faces Tough Struggle on Ground to Oust ISIS

September 19, 2014
Helene Cooper, Michael R. Gordon, Eric Schmitt | The New York Times
The American air campaign to thwart the advance of fighters from the Islamic State has been the easy part of President Obama’s strategy in Iraq and Syria. Soon begins the next and much harder phase: rolling back their gains in Mosul, Falluja and other populated areas, which will require American advisers to train and coordinate airstrikes with Iraqi forces.
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War on Islamic State will be long and difficult, top defense officials tell Senate

September 17, 2014
Nancy Youssef | McClatchy Newspapers
In their first public briefing since President Barack Obama laid out his new strategy for defeating the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, the nation’s two top defense officials on Tuesday provided few details of their plans and no guarantees of success.
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New Military Campaign Extends a Legacy of War

September 11, 2014
Peter Baker | The New York Times
In ordering a sustained military campaign against Islamic extremists in Syria and Iraq, President Obama on Wednesday night effectively set a new course for the remainder of his presidency and may have ensured that he would pass his successor a volatile and incomplete war, much as his predecessor left one for him.
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Obama Approves ISIS Surveillance Flights Over Syria

August 27, 2014
Mary Bruce, Chris Good | ABC News
President Obama has approved U.S military surveillance flights over Syria to track the Islamic militant group ISIS, a group that American warplanes have been attacking in neighboring Iraq, ABC News has confirmed.
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Obama says U.S. will be 'relentless' in pursuing Islamic State

August 21, 2014
Christi Parsons, Kathleen Hennessey, W.J. Hennigan | Tribune Newspapers
A clearly furious President Obama condemned the Islamic militants who claimed responsibility for beheading an American journalist, vowing Wednesday to beat back “this cancer” and showing no sign of constraining the U.S. military intervention in Iraq.
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U.S. troops entered Syria in failed attempt to free Foley, others

August 21, 2014
Nancy Youssef, Jonathan S. Landay | McClatchy Newspapers
Several dozen U.S. special forces troops flew into Syria last month in a bid to rescue several Americans held by the Islamic State, including journalist James Foley, but they pulled out after discovering that the captives had been moved, senior U.S. officials said Wednesday.
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Why Washington Should Declare War on ISIS

August 21, 2014
James Kitfield | National Journal
When a centrist Democrat, a Republican hawk, a libertarian, and a tea partier all find common ground on Capitol Hill, it's worth noting this rare outbreak of bipartisan consensus. Sens. Tim Kaine, James Inhofe, Rand Paul, and Ted Cruz all believe the White House should seek new approval from Congress for U.S. military operations in Iraq. President Obama should give the senators exactly what they are requesting.
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Obama’s Mission Creep in Iraq

August 19, 2014
Michael Crowley | CNN
In 2003, George W. Bush was too quick to declare that “major combat operations in Iraq have ended.” In 2014, Barack Obama may be too slow to admit that they are just beginning.
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