Obama Limits Use Of Ground Troops in Proposed ISIL Fight Authorization

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The following is a Letter from the President to the U.S. Congress regarding authorization for the use of United States Armed Forces in connection with the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, courtesy of the White House press secretary.

“Attached and signed today is a message to the Congress with respect to draft legislation on the Authorization for the Use of United States Armed Forces in connection with the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.”


The so-called Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) poses a threat to the people and stability of Iraq, Syria, and the broader Middle East, and to U.S. national security. It threatens American personnel and facilities located in the region and is responsible for the deaths of U.S. citizens James Foley, Steven Sotloff, Abdul-Rahman Peter Kassig, and Kayla Mueller. If left unchecked, ISIL will pose a threat beyond the Middle East, including to the United States homeland.

I have directed a comprehensive and sustained strategy to degrade and defeat ISIL. As part of this strategy, U.S. military forces are conducting a systematic campaign of airstrikes against ISIL in Iraq and Syria. Although existing statutes provide me with the authority I need to take these actions, I have repeatedly expressed my commitment to working with the Congress to pass a bipartisan authorization for the use of military force (AUMF) against ISIL. Consistent with this commitment, I am submitting a draft AUMF that would authorize the continued use of military force to degrade and defeat ISIL.

My Administration’s draft AUMF would not authorize long-term, large-scale ground combat operations like those our Nation conducted in Iraq and Afghanistan. Local forces, rather than U.S. military forces, should be deployed to conduct such operations. The authorization I propose would provide the flexibility to conduct ground combat operations in other, more limited circumstances, such as rescue operations involving U.S. or coalition personnel or the use of special operations forces to take military action against ISIL leadership. It would also authorize the use of U.S. forces in situations where ground combat operations are not expected or intended, such as intelligence collection and sharing, missions to enable kinetic strikes, or the provision of operational planning and other forms of advice and assistance to partner forces.

Although my proposed AUMF does not address the 2001 AUMF, I remain committed to working with the Congress and the American people to refine, and ultimately repeal, the 2001 AUMF. Enacting an AUMF that is specific to the threat posed by ISIL could serve as a model for how we can work together to tailor the authorities granted by the 2001 AUMF.

I can think of no better way for the Congress to join me in supporting our Nation’s security than by enacting this legislation, which would show the world we are united in our resolve to counter the threat posed by ISIL.


February 11, 2015.

Click here to read the draft legislation.

10 Replies to “Obama Limits Use Of Ground Troops in Proposed ISIL Fight Authorization”

  1. No more religious war. come home.rebuild Detroit and let the Abrahamic religions fight it out without us.

  2. Dear Republicans,

    Any chance you can address this request by our COMMANDER IN CHIEF just once without turning it into partisan fiasco?

  3. More than 20,000 volunteers from around the world, including some Americans, have traveled to Syria to join the ISIL militant group and other extremist groups, US intelligence officials say.

    Foreign militants from over 90 countries, including at least 3,400 people from Western states and more than 150 Americans, have travelled to Syria to join terrorist groups there, the National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC) said in its latest estimate on Tuesday.

    “The rate of foreign fighter travel to Syria is unprecedented. It exceeds the rate of travelers who went to Afghanistan and Pakistan, Iraq, Yemen, or Somalia at any point in the last 20 years,” said NCTC director Nicholas Rasmussen.

    A majority of the militants have joined the ISIL terrorist group in Syria and Iraq, the NCTC added.

  4. Agreeing or disagreeing with this depends on how accurate the information that we are getting from sources is.

  5. And here Obama’s “no boots on the ground” policy is about to go down the drain. If Obama fails to bring peace in the world, the world fails. The Europeans have already failed. Obama has had no help from them in his task. Refugees are drowning by the hundreds in the Mediterranean. What good may come from finance rigor and a deficit max 3% of GDP? Who is going to help such a policy? Greece is on the verge of a collapsing economy and on the brink of pulling out of UE. Obama has tried to keep government for the people a priority. And to keep the promise a peaceful world is a prerequisite.

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