Mark Collins – Decades-Long War vs ISIS?

One is sure the POTUS did not want to hear this from the US Army’s Chief of Staff–and for how long is our government willing to project a Canadian military commitment, especially given the pressures facing the Canadian Forces?

Odierno: ISIS Fight Will Last ’10 To 20 Years’

The Army’s top officer believes the fight against the Islamic State, commonly known as ISIS or ISIL, will last “10 to 20 years,” an expansion of the timelines generally offered by the Obama administration.

Gen. Ray Odierno, the Army chief of staff, added that the solution to the militant group cannot come entirely by military means.

“In my mind, ISIS is a ten to twenty year problem, it’s not a two years problem,” he told reporters Friday. “Now, I don’t know what level it will be a problem, but it’s a long term problem.”

White House officials have been warning since strikes began against the militant group that the fight could be years long, but Odierno’s assessment is by far the longest timetable laid out by a Pentagon official.

“The administration has said ‘three to five’ years. I think in order to defeat ISIL, it’s going to take longer than that,” Odierno said. “This movement is growing right now, and so I think it’s going to take us a bit longer than we originally thought.”..

The general, who is retiring in August, made his comments in response to a question about budget cuts and the impact that they are having on Army capability. His answer came while noting that the Army is “not going to be able to do everything we’re being asked to do” under the expected budget environment [see “The Incredible Shrinking US Army“].

While acknowledging the challenges in the fight, Odierno did keep in line with the Obama administration’s goal of having the fight against ISIL be handled primarily by local forces on the ground.

POTUS will appreciate that at least.  Earlier:

WEIRD Omabadreaming About Defeating the Caliphate

As for Canada:

“Glavin: In Canada, an embarrassing foreign policy debate”

More here on pressures facing the CF.

Mark Collins, a prolific Ottawa blogger, is a Fellow at the Canadian Global Affairs Institute; he tweets @Mark3Ds


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