In the wake of President Obama’s statement that the U.S. has ‘no strategy’ for Syria, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry called for a global coalition to fight quickly growing IS threats throughout the region, according to the AFP.
Appearing in his op-ed in the New York Times, Kerry’s comments came in the week leading up to a NATO summit in Wales, where along with Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel he plans to meet with European leaders to enlist their support for the “broadest possible coalition of nations,” to combat IS.
While the U.S. continues to carry out limited airstrikes on IS targets in northern Iraq, President Obama has been upfront about the fact that there is currently no strategy in place to combat the group on a regional level. Last week, the president authorized the flight of observational spy planes in Syria to monitor the situation on the ground, but has yet to begin any airstrikes on the targets inside the country.
While Syrian President Bashar al-Assad said his government would welcome assistance in fighting the extremist group, he’s also warned any military action on Syrian soil will be met with counter-aggression if not first coordinated with government forces. The U.S. has since ruled out any such cooperation with the Assad regime, whose military actions against civilians during the country’s more than three-year civil war have been repeatedly denounced by the White House.
However, the assertion means any U.S. military strategy inside Syria must aim either to sidestep Assad forces completely or coordiate with a third-party negotiator.
With the U.S. in the rotating presidential seat during next month’s meeting round, Kerry says he aims to introduce the action plan at the UN Security Council summit meeting in September, asking for international political, humanitarian, intelligence and military support to combat the IS’s “nihilistic vision and genocidal agenda.”