Gen. Dempsey: Send ‘Advisers’ to Front Lines in Anbar Province

Pushes Iraqi Govt to Start Arming Sunni Tribes

Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman General Martin Dempsey is urging the Obama Administration to agree to send the “military advisers” on the ground in Iraq to the front line in the Anbar Province, where they’d almost certainly end up in direct combat with ISIS.

Gen. Dempsey urged the US to make the deployment into “advise and assist missions” into Anbar Province, where ISIS controls the vast majority of territory, conditional on the Iraqi government arming Sunni tribes.

Dempsey claimed the US has been given indications by the Iraqi government that they’re willing to arm Sunni tribes, but that they have not begun to do so yet. One of the few Sunni tribes openly allied with the Iraqi government was routed in Hit earlier this week.

Dempsey declined to say whether the tribal fighters that were captured and killed in Hit sought US airstrikes on their behalf. It seems Dempsey is keen to get such tribal factions involved in the war, though with Shi’ite militias cracking down heavily on Sunnis whenever they retake territory for the Iraqi government, it’s unclear how many will be willing join them.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.