Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union,” in commenting on the city of Ramadi falling to ISIS last week, Defense Secretary Ash Carter suggested he had a lack of confidence in the Iraqi army’s ability to take on ISIS.
Carter said, “What apparently happened was that the Iraqi forces just showed no will to fight. They were not outnumbered. In fact, they vastly outnumbered the opposing force, and yet they failed to fight, they withdrew from the site, and that says to me, and I think to most of us, that we have an issue with the will of the Iraqis to fight ISIS and defend themselves.”
“We can give them training, we can give them equipment — we obviously can’t give them the will to fight. But if we give them training, we give them equipment, and give them support, and give them some time, I hope they will develop the will to fight, because only if they fight can ISIS remain defeated.”
Carter added, “If there comes a time when we need to change the kinds of support we’re giving to the Iraqi forces, we’ll make that recommendation. But what happened in Ramadi was a failure of the Iraqi forces to fight.”
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