President Barack Obama has stated that the United States and its allies have made progress in the military campaign against Islamic State, but warned that the militant group still can direct and inspire attacks. So even though battles have been won the war is still on.
The US is leading a military of a group of countries that have joined together for one common purpose, the destruction of ISIS. conducting air strikes against Islamic State the group seized broad lands of territory in 2014.
Even though it has succeeded in breaking Islamic State’s grip on some towns, although it still controls its two de facto capitals, Mosul in Iraq and Raqqa in Syria.
Mr Obama, who had criticised for suggesting Islamic State was made up of amateurs, presented a more measured assessment on Thursday.
He said the last two years, US-led air and ground campaigns have proved that the extremist group can be beaten in the most common military fights but that it has shown the ability to carry out damaging, small-scale attacks.
“I am pleased with the progress that we’ve made on the ground in Iraq and Syria,” Mr Obama told a news conference at the Pentagon after meeting with officials directing the campaign
However he added, “We’re far from freeing Mosul and Raqqa.”
While the campaign against Islamic State in Iraq, Syria and now Libya is making significant gains, the group is adapting, reverting to high-profile attacks and using the internet to recruit and train, and to encourage “lone wolf” attacks.
“They’ve seen the degree of attention they can get with smaller-scale attacks using small arms or assault rifles,” Mr Obama said.
“The possibility of either a lone actor or a small cell carrying out an attack that kills people is real,The US must do a better job of disrupting Islamic State networks that can carry out attacks far from the group’s bases in the Middle East, ”Mr Obama said.