President Obama tonight will announce a U.S.-led coalition against the Islamic State that will expand American airstrikes against the terrorist group into Syria.
"With a new Iraqi government in place and following consultations with allies abroad and Congress at home, I can announce that America will lead a broad coalition to roll back this terrorist threat," Obama will say, according to excerpts of the speech. "Our objective is clear: we will degrade, and ultimately destroy, ISIL through a comprehensive and sustained counter-terrorism strategy."
The excerpts did not reference Syria, but The Guardian newspaper reported that ISIL positions in Syria would be targeted.
Obama will also assure the U.S. public that the effort will not include American troops on the ground.
"This effort will be different from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan," he said. "It will not involve American combat troops fighting on foreign soil."
Instead, what he describes as a counter-terrorism campaign will be conducted through a "steady, relentless effort to take out ISIL wherever they exist using our air power and our support for partner forces on the ground."
Obama will liken the operation to those that the U.S. has employed for years to degrade and destroy al Qaida and affiliated groups in the Middle East and North Africa.
-- Bryant Jordan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org