12/03/2021 05:46:16 pm

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Obama Asks Congress To Authorize Three-Year Fight Vs. ISIS

US President Barack Obama had asked Congress to authorize the use of military force against the Islamic state, saying the measure will ensure the group's defeat.

"Now, make no mistake, this is a difficult mission and it will remain difficult for some time," Obama said during a press conference. "Our coalition is on the offensive, ISIL is on the defensive and ISIL is going to lose." He added.

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Obama, accompanied by Vice President Joe Biden, Secretary of State John Kerry and Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, detailed the resolution he sent to Congress Wednesday.

The proposed resolution calls for operations against the ISIS for a maximum of three years.  However, it provides no geographic limits on the battlefield. 

The authorization will automatically expire in three-years, to give way for Congress to re-evaluate the issue, when the next president's term begins.

Obama stressed, the Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF) won't be anything like the large-scale ground combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.

"I am convinced that the U.S. should not get back into another ground war in the Middle East -- it's not in our national security interest and not necessary for us to defeat ISIL," he said.

Obama said operations will come under limited circumstances, such as rescue missions, intelligence collection and use of special forces.

The resolution drafted by the White House does not revoke the 2001 AUMF that gave the President the authority to use all necessary force to combat global terrorism.

The document also highlighted Obama's warning, that if the ISIS is not destroyed, it will pose threat beyond the Middle East including the U.S.

"The so-called Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) poses a threat to the people and stability of Iraq, Syria, and the broader Middle East, and to U.S. national security," Obama wrote.

The president went on naming Americans who were killed while in ISIS captivity, including journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff, and aid workers Abdul-Rahman Peter Kassig, and Kayla Mueller."

Congress had generally supported the AUMF, though some lawmakers disagree on the limited scope of the military powers given to the president.

House Speaker John Boehner expressed concerns the operations aimed at defeating the terrorists may not be successful.

"If we are going to defeat this enemy, we need a comprehensive military strategy and a robust authorization, not one that limits our options," Boehner said. "I have concerns that the president's request does not meet this standard." He added.

But House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi took the opposite stand.

"We hope to have bipartisan support for something that would limit the power of the President, but nonetheless protect the American people in a very strong way," Pelosi said.

During Obama's State of the Union Address, he urged Congress to swiftly pass the authorization for a military campaign - a move, he says, will show the world how united America is, in its mission to destroy the ISIS.

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