- The Washington Times - Thursday, January 15, 2015

Iraqi officials are voicing displeasure with the efforts of the Obama administration and its coalition allies to help stem the tide of the Islamic State group.

U.S. Marine Gen. John Allen was told in a closed-door meeting with Parliament Speaker Selim al-Jabouri that the level of support Iraqi security forces are receiving is insufficient to the task at hand. Gen. Allen was in Baghdad to meet with numerous officials from Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi’s government.

“Until now our feeling is that the international support is not convincing,” Mr. Jabouri told Reuters on Wednesday. “We might see participation here or there, but it is not enough for the tough situation we are passing through.”

Mr. Abadi’s office offered tempered criticism after a meeting with the general, saying in a statement that the U.S. coalition should “increase the tempo of the effective airstrikes on Islamic State positions,” Reuters reported.

The U.S. currently has over 2,000 military personnel in Iraq training security forces for confrontation with the Islamic State group. That number is expected to grow to 3,000 based on orders announced Nov. 7 by President Obama.

U.S. airstrikes in Iraq against the Sunni radical terrorist organization have been ongoing since early August. Defense News reported on Jan. 6 that those strikes have cost $1.2 billion.

Gen. Allen chose not to respond to the Iraqi complaints regarding U.S. support.

“Our global coalition to counter (Islamic State) grows stronger as does our collective commitment to the people of Iraq and the country of Iraq,” the general told reporters in Baghdad, Reuters reported.

Iraq is expected to receive 10,000 M16 rifles and 12,000 sets of body armor, Kevlar helmets, medical kits, and counter-IED equipment to Iraq in the coming weeks. During the year, the U.S. also plans on sending the nation roughly 250 Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) at no cost to the Iraqi government.

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