"The resolution we've submitted today does not call for the deployment of US ground combat forces to Iraq or Syria," Obama said on Wednesday. "It is not the authorization of another ground war like Afghanistan or Iraq."
Obama said that the troops in Iraq now would not serve in any combat missions and that he was "convinced that the United States should not get dragged back into another prolonged ground war in the Middle East," because it would not be in the best interests in the US national security or attempts to defeat the Islamic State terrorist group.
US Prepared to Send Special Forces Against ISIL Leadership
The United States is prepared to send Special Forces to take out Islamic State leadership if there is actionable intelligence, US President Barack Obama said.
“If we have actionable intelligence about a gathering of ISIL [Islamic State] leaders and our partners didn’t have the capacity to get them, I would be prepared to order our special forces to take action,” Obama said on Wednesday.
The president unveiled a draft authorization for use of military force (AUMF) to give a legal underpinning to anti-Islamic State military operations in Iraq and Syria. Under the AUMF US ground combat forces would not be involved in another war in the Middle East, Obama said. Instead, the authorization puts local ground forces in Iraq and Syria at the forefront of fighting against the Islamic State.
Obama is seeking war powers from Congress for anti-Islamic State military operations that began last summer in Iraq and Syria with airstrikes after the terrorist group moved from Syria and seized large swaths of territory in Iraq.
The United States is spearheading a nearly 60 nation anti-Islamic State coalition targeting Islamic State military positions, command and control centers, infrastructure and financial sources, according to the Pentagon. As part of the effort to «degrade and defeat» the Islamic State the US and coalition partners are supporting and training Kurdish and Iraqi security forces, as well as planning to train moderate Syrian rebels over the next year to take the ground fight to the Islamic State in Syria.