White House admits that it’s counter terrorism operation in January killed Weinstein and Porto who were being held hostage by al-Qaeda.
President Obama takes full responsibility for these operations…We would be conducting a thorough independent review to understand fully what happened and how we can prevent this type of tragic incident in the future.
U.S. officials say the ISIS offensive on Kobani is concentrating the group’s manpower in a small area and presenting a target for air strikes. U.S. CentCom chief Army Gen. Lloyd Austin:
The enemy has made a decision to make Kobani his main effort…Now, my goal is to defeat and ultimately destroy ISIL. And if [the enemy] continues to present us with major targets … then clearly, we’ll service those targets, and we’ve done so very, very effectively here of late
White House Press secretary Josh Earnest says the administration sees the assault as an opportunity:
That has created a rather target-rich environment around Kobani for American and coalition air strikes that when they see clusters of fighters or they see depots of material or supplies that are critical to the success of those fighters, it’s easier to take them out.
The White House denies that the expansion of airstrikes in Iraq means it is engaging in ‘mission creep,’ saying that the mission parameters remain to provide humanitarian aid and protect U.S. personnel and facilities. Press Secretary Josh Earnest responds to questions about weekend strikes around the Haditha dam to support anti-ISIS fighters:
The way that it’s been described to me is that there is a threat that if ISIL decided to destroy the Haditha Dam that it could threaten or would threaten the airport downstream from the dam.