- The Washington Times - Saturday, January 28, 2017

President Trump signed executive action Saturday ordering the Joint Chiefs of Staff to immediately develop a plan to defeat the Islamic State, sending a message to the world that obliterating the terrorist army is a top priority for the U.S.

“This is the plan to defeat the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, in other words ISIS,” he said as he singed the document in the Oval Office. “I think it’s going to be very successful. That’s big stuff.”

The president issued the order in the form of executive action to send a message, said a senior administration official.

“Obviously that executive order will represent a profound statement on the part of the United States that we are committed to ending this atrocity,” said the official.

The Joint Chief will have to present options for the destruction of ISIS to Mr. Trump within 30 days. Anticipating the order, military leaders reportedly have already begun to devise new strategies.

Mr. Trump signed two other executive actions.

He signed an order to reorganize the National Security Council. Mr. Trump said it would make the council more efficient and enhance the security of the U.S.

“People have been talking about this for a long time, like many years,” said Mr. Trump.

The other action created new ethics standards by imposing on administration officials a five-year lobbying ban and a lifetime ban on lobbying for foreign countries.

The call for a new strategy against ISIS follows an executive order signed Friday to beef up the U.S. military with more aircraft, ships and war-fighting tools, a buildup that is likely to contribute to the new war plan.

Mr. Trump vowed to defeat ISIS during the campaign. He routinely criticized the Obama administration’s tactics against the terror group.

The official stressed that wiping out ISIS was necessary from a national security standpoint and from a global humanitarian standpoint.

“If you think about the root causes of the humanitarian crisis in the middle East today, obviously ISIS was a major if not predominate factor in a lot of that,” said the official. “You see the genocide of Yazidis and Christians and Kurds and many other groups.”

• S.A. Miller can be reached at smiller@washingtontimes.com.

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