Kerry: Expect 'Timely Decisions' by Obama on Iraq

Image: Kerry: Expect 'Timely Decisions' by Obama on Iraq

Friday, 13 Jun 2014 09:35 AM

 

  Comment  |
   Contact  |
  Print   |
    A   A  
  Copy Shortlink
Years of investing in Iraq with time, money and lives of American soldiers are the reasons the U.S. is considering new military action to quell a fast-moving insurgency that has taken key areas of northern Iraq and vows to march on Baghdad while still resisting direct involvement in neighboring Syria's civil war, Secretary of State John Kerry said Friday.

He said the Sunni insurgency, which has swept to control of several cities in Iraq's west and north, is also plotting against American and Western interests.

Known as the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, the brutal insurgency has brought Iraq back to the forefront of U.S. foreign policy as the Obama administration debates how deeply to intervene halfway around the world. President Barack Obama has touted his decision to end the war in 2011 as one of his administration's key successes.

Kerry said no decision had been made as of Friday as to whether the U.S. military would help Iraq beat back the insurgency. The Iraqi government has asked for U.S. airstrikes to target terrorists, and the Obama administration is weighing whether to do so.

Kerry said a decision would be made soon.

"Iraq is a country we've had a very direct relationship with, very direct investment and engagement with, not to mention the lives of our soldiers who were lost there, providing this opportunity to them," Kerry told reporters at the end of a conference in London on combating sexual violence in conflict zones. "And I don't think anybody in the region, or in this administration, believes it is in the interest of the United States to turn our backs on that."

He said the U.S. is "laser focused" on helping Iraq.

Nearly 4,500 U.S. troops were killed in the war that began with a 2003 invasion led by the U.S., and the conflict cost American taxpayers hundreds of billions of dollars.

There were signs that pulling together another international coalition — which Obama said in his recent West Point foreign policy speech was his preferred method of military intervention — on Iraq would be difficult.

British Foreign Secretary William Hague said the U.K. is not prepared to offer military intervention in Iraq. London's reluctance to provide military action in Syria last year was a driving factor in the White House refusal to launch air strikes there. The German foreign minister, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, said Friday that the Sunni-led insurgency was a powerful force that could make preventing a partitioned Iraq very difficult.

Kerry also briefly cited evidence of plots that the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant has built against the United States and the West, but he did not provide any details. Kerry described ISIL as a "terrorist enemy" that has threatened the U.S. and West. He said the insurgent network, which is inspired by if not directly linked to al-Qaida, "has been plotting and looking for opportunities to take on the West."

Obama made clear in the speech at the U.S. Military Academy on May 27 that he believes unilateral American military action should be reserved for instances in which core national interests are challenged or the public's safety is in jeopardy.

© Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

  Comment  |
   Contact  |
  Print   |
  Copy Shortlink
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
Email:
Country
Zip Code:
Privacy: We never share your email.
 
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
Top Stories
You May Also Like

Obama Executive Order Gives Pay Raise to Federal Workers

Friday, 19 Dec 2014 22:36 PM

Federal workers and uniformed military service members are getting a 1 percent pay boost. . . .

Mental Illness History Ruled on Appeal to Not Bar Gun Ownership

Friday, 19 Dec 2014 22:14 PM

A federal appeals court concluded that a history of mental illness shouldn't bar citizens from owning a weapon in a firs . . .

China Arrests US Aid Worker on North Korean Border

Friday, 19 Dec 2014 21:56 PM

China has arrested an American Christian aid worker based near its border with North Korea, his lawyer said Saturday, as . . .

Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

 
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved