British defense officials are confirming that there is ongoing consideration of a plan to send “hundreds more” troops to Iraq, with the troops to be listed as “trainers.” This would be a substantial addition to the existing 300 troops in Iraq.
Unlike the US, which has been putting its ground troops increasingly on the front lines, the British troops in the nation so far are far away from any combat sites. In addition to training, Britain has warplanes conducting airstrikes and is providing growing amounts of ammunition to the Kurdish Peshmerga.
With the US getting increasingly aggressive with its deployments, it seems likely that they will pressure other nations’ trainers to be more proactive in putting their own troops in combat. This is especially true of nations like Britain, with significant presences in the nation.
For the time being, however, British officials insist that no decision has been made on any new deployments, and that any troops who would be sent to Iraq would strictly be “behind the wire,” far from any combat.