Nearly a third of territory reclaimed from the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria since 2014 has been won in the past six months, due to new policies adopted by the Trump administration, a senior State Department official said Friday.It's almost like Obama didn't want to win, or something.
Brett McGurk, the State Department’s senior envoy to the anti-Islamic State coalition, said that steps President Trump has taken, including delegating decision-making authority down from the White House to commanders in the field, have “dramatically accelerated” gains against the militants.
Combined Islamic State losses in both countries since the group’s peak control in early 2015 total about 27,000 square miles of territory — 78 percent of militant holdings in Iraq and 58 percent in Syria. About 8,000 square miles have been reclaimed under Trump, McGurk said in a briefing for reporters.
[The State Department’s map of ISIS areas of influence in Syria and Iraq]
He said the Islamic State has been driven out of 45 percent of Raqqa, the group’s de facto Syrian capital since the launch of an offensive by U.S.-backed local forces two months ago. U.S. and coalition airstrikes have been instrumental in the ground successes of the Syrian Democratic Forces, composed of Kurdish and Arab fighters.
Tuesday, August 8, 2017
Reason #5635 That Trump Was Elected
Washington Post? Under Trump, gains against ISIS have ‘dramatically accelerated’