Obama Says There’s "No Timeline" For Iraq Operation

President Obama promises a limited, effective fight against the Islamic State in Iraq in comments Saturday morning. U.S. military jets launched several airstrikes Friday on isolated targets.

President Barack Obama speaks on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, on Aug. 9. AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais

President Barack Obama Saturday morning said he wouldn’t “get into a particular timetable” for the aerial American assault on Islamic State militants in Northern Iraq — but he also promised that the conflict would not bring American ground troops back to the country.

“We will not have U.S. combat troops in Iraq,” Obama said before departing for vacation on Martha’s Vineyard. ‘We learned a lesson from our long and costly incursion.”

Obama said air strikes that began Friday had destroyed crucial Islamic State weapons and positions, but that the crucial factor will not be American military engagement but Iraqi political will.

“The nature of this problem is not one that the U.S. military can solve,” he said.

Obama also said he’d spoken to, and won the backing of, French and British leaders.

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Lisa Tozzi is the news director for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.
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