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Ex-Pentagon Official: Sending More US Troops to Iraq ‘Pointless’

© AFP 2021 / AHMAD AL-RUBAYEUS soldiers give guidance as they train Iraq's 72nd Brigade in a live-fire exercise in Basmaya base, southeast of the Iraqi capital, Baghdad, on January 27, 2016
US soldiers give guidance as they train Iraq's 72nd Brigade in a live-fire exercise in Basmaya base, southeast of the Iraqi capital, Baghdad, on January 27, 2016 - Sputnik International
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Dan Goure, former director in the US Secretary of Defense’s Office of Strategic Competitiveness says that deployment of additional contingent of US soldiers to support the Iraqi offensive against Daesh stronghold of Mosul will have little to no effect.

WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The deployment of the announced additional contingent of US soldiers to support the Iraqi offensive against the Daesh stronghold of Mosul will have little to no effect, former director in the US Secretary of Defense’s Office of Strategic Competitiveness Dan Goure told Sputnik on Tuesday.

"The US is playing nickel poker in Iraq," Goure said on Tuesday. "There is no end game, they [US leaders] are praying on their knees to God that nothing goes wrong and that everything returns to the way it was in Iraq in 2011."

Goure was responding to US Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter’s announcement on Monday that he would send 560 additional US troops to Iraq, to back an Iraqi offensive to retake the city of Mosul from the Islamic State terror group.

US soldiers prepare to participate in a training mission with Iraqi Army soldier, right, outside Baghdad, Iraq. (File) - Sputnik International
Iraq Cringes Over Extra US Troop Deployments Ahead of Battle for Mosul

Goure noted that the 560 troop figure has no relation to strategy other than one that is "pointless."

He noted that that the latest increase of US troops in Iraq is simply a tactical move to show that something is being done there.

Carter’s contingent includes a layer of soldiers to provide force protection for personnel stationed on the airfield, known by the US Military as Q-West.

Goure pointed out that the Defense Department has acknowledged that there are more than 4,000 US soldiers in Iraq, but argued the figure means the number of soldiers is likely two to three times the stated number, on top of which there are contractors who also operate in Iraq.

Dan Goure serves as vice president of the Lexington Institute, a think-tank in Arlington, Virginia.

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