Obama: ISIS Has Lost 40 Percent of Iraq Territory

- President Obama Monday met with the National Security Council at the Pentagon on the topic of the strategy to confront ISIS, and delivered a televised address afterwords in which he stated that the U.S.-led coalition is making territorial progress in both Iraq and Syria. 

"Our strategy is moving forward with a great sense of urgency on four fronts," the president said. The strategy has four prongs: Military action against the terror group, training forces on the ground, stopping ISIS recruiting, fighting and propaganda and diplomacy to end the war in Syria. 

The president added that he had taken steps to step up the fight against ISIS even before the attacks in Paris and San Bernardino, calling ISIS "thugs" and "thieves." 

"We're taking out ISIS leaders and commanders," the president said. "ISIL leaders cannot hide, and our message to them is, you are next." 

The president added that the coalition has captured a great deal of territory in both Iraq and Syria that was formerly held by ISIS- including 40 percent of what it once held in Iraq- and that ISIS has not had any offensive victories in recent memory. 

Defense Secretary Ash Carter, the president said, will soon visit the Middle East, with Secretary of State continuing the diplomatic process in Russia. 

 

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