It is error alone which needs the support of government. Truth can stand by itself. -- Thomas Jefferson

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Iraqi Kurds Call for Foreign Ground Troops in Anti-Islamic State Fight

The following excerpts are from

(AP) -- A senior Iraqi Kurdish official on Wednesday called for greater support in the battle against the Islamic State group, including with foreign troops, saying the Kurds are "alone" in the fight.

Fouad Hussein, chief of staff to Kurdish President Massoud Barzani, said the U.S.-led coalition airstrikes are helpful but "to finish ISIS... you need to finish it on the ground. And on the ground, we are most of the time alone. So we need partners."

"It means advisers, it means special forces, it means a collective fight against ISIS, it means equipment, it means munitions," Hussein said.

Though IS fighters have been forced to retreat from Kobani, the strategic town on Syria's border with Turkey, the battlefield picture suggests they are far from beaten in northern Iraq, where harsh winter weather and thick mud underfoot hampers military moves.

The Kurdish peshmerga fighters have struggled for months to inch ahead, backed by U.S.-led coalition airstrikes, which began in northern Iraq.

Several coalition countries have provided arms to the Kurdish forces but many of those weapons have not yet been delivered to soldiers because most require additional training.

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Iraqi Kurds Call for Foreign Ground Troops in Anti-Islamic State Fight

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