Bill Clinton backs Barack Obama's anti-Islamic State plan, but calls it 'away game'

Like majority of Americans, former US President Bill Clinton said he ''strongly'' supported Barack Obama's strategy against the Islamic State, that the President outlined last week.

By Supriya Jha | Last Updated: Sep 17, 2014, 00:08 AM IST
Bill Clinton backs Barack Obama's anti-Islamic State plan, but calls it 'away game'

Washington: Like majority of Americans, former US President Bill Clinton said he ''strongly'' supported Barack Obama's strategy against the Islamic State, that President Barack Obama outlined last week.

Speaking to Judy Woodruff of PBS Newshour, the former president voiced his faith in Obama's game plan against the ISIS, but not without dropping a hint of caution.

Repeating Obama's words, Clinton agreed that the Islamic State can be “degraded and eventually” destroyed only and only if the people they are abusing are willing to fight”. Clinton was referring to the Sunni tribal chiefs, who have been given role in the new Iraqi government.

 

However despite endorsing Obama's plan of training and equipping the Iraqi soldiers, Clinton did drop a dash of caution, saying, “[E]ver since Vietnam, we have learned that if the United States goes anywhere in the world to fight – I hate sports analogies, but essentially it’s an away game, and we need to be backing a home team.” 

Clinton also hailed the newly formed Iraqi government, and the willingness of Sunni tribal chiefs to fight the Sunni extremists of the ISIS, stressing the importance of US training and equipments to support them.

Obama announced his game plan against the ISIS last Wednesday in a late evening televised national address, declaring to extend strikes on ISIS in Syria. Obama has however, stuck to his policy of no combat US troops on ground, and believing more in using air strikes and Training the troops in Iraq and Syria to fight the extremists.

The US has also managed to shore up international support against the Islamic State as more than two dozen nations have signed up to an anti-IS coalition, foreign ministers of which met at Paris yesterday and vowed to go after the IS extremists.