U.S. President Barack Obama leaves the Oval office of the White House during his departure to Raleigh, North Carolina, in Washington, U.S., November 2, 2016. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
Your feedback is important to us!
We invite all our readers to share with us their views and comments about this article.
Disclaimer: Comments submitted by third parties on this site are the sole responsibility of the individual(s) whose content is submitted. The Daily Star accepts no responsibility for the content of comment(s), including, without limitation, any error, omission or inaccuracy therein. Please note that your email address will NOT appear on the site.
Alert: If you are facing problems with posting comments, please note that you must verify your email with Disqus prior to posting a comment. follow this link to make sure your account meets the requirements. (http://bit.ly/vDisqus)
Although a U.S.-backed alliance of Syrian armed groups announced the kickoff of the offensive Sunday, U.S. officials caution the fighters will first try to seal off and isolate the Daesh stronghold, a process that could take two months or longer.U.S. Marine Gen. Joseph Dunford, the top U.S. military officer, played down the idea that seizing Raqqa would be quick or easy, saying the first job was sealing off the city.The U.S. plan for Raqqa calls for an assault force of thousands of fighters from the Kurdish Peoples Defense Units, known as the YPG, and Arabs whose job it would be to take and hold the city itself, U.S. officials said.However, U.S. Special Operations Forces in northern Syria have yet to recruit enough Arabs to take and hold the Arab-dominated city, they said. Some U.S. officials and experts doubt that the United States will be able to soon field an Arab force large and strong to defeat thousands of Daesh militants who have had months to prepare a final stand.For now, the Turkey-backed force has stopped short of Al-Bab, which is about 30 kilometers from the Turkish border, U.S. officials said.
FOLLOW THIS ARTICLE