After meeting with Pentagon officials Monday, President Obama seemed confident in his administration’s strategy to defeat ISIS. The commander-in-chief offered Americans an update on our progress during a press conference that followed their discussions.
“As we squeeze its heart, we’ll make it harder for it to pump its terror throughout the world,” Obama declared.
“We are hitting ISIL harder than ever,” he continued.
Our increased airstrikes, about 9,000 as of today, as well as a record amount of bombs, have been effective in halting the terrorists’ march, he said.
The president also reminded Americans that, since this spring, we’ve hunted and killed several ISIL leaders.
“ISIL leaders cannot hide,” he said. “You are next.”
Additionally, we are “continuing to hammer” and destroy ISIL’s infrastructure. Hundreds of oil tankers and refineries have been targeted and the terrorists have lost about 40 percent of the territory it once controlled in Iraq, as well as thousands of square miles in Syria. Forces are also working to cut off ISIL’s supply routes in Mosul.
“It will lose more,” Obama promised.
Our partners on the ground are also doing their part to root ISIL out – “block by block.”
The president then suggested that emotions play an important fight in the fight against terror as well, as more and more people are seeing ISIL for the “thugs” they are.
Immediately following the press conference, Defense Secretary Ashton Carter is going to the Middle East to work with coalition partners on securing more support for this fight.
The president also addressed the terror threat here at home, reminding Americans that Homeland Security is modifying the terror alert system to help individuals remain vigilant, especially as they prepare to travel this holiday season.
Finally, Obama recognized our men and women in uniform, many of whom will be thousands of miles away from their loved ones this Christmas.
He did not take any questions.
The Republican National Committee was not impressed with the president’s presser, insisting it was nothing more than a “photo-op:”
“This politically motivated photo-op won’t do a thing to protect the American people from another attack, said RNC spokesman Michael Short. “We need a new strategy to defeat ISIS and keep America safe from radical Islamic terrorists, not a new public relations campaign to protect President Obama and Hillary Clinton’s poll numbers.”