WASHINGTON (KRON) — U.S. President Barack Obama said Thursday he’d authorized targeted airstrikes in Iraq to protect American personnel.
“When we have the unique capabilities to help avert a massacre, then I believe the United States of America cannot turn a blind eye,” Obama said Thursday about Iraq.
The announcements marked the deepest American engagement in Iraq since U.S. troops withdrew in late 2011 after nearly a decade of war.
“Today America is coming to help,” he said in a late night statement from the White House.
The United States has airdropped meals and water in Iraq, sending aid to minority groups trapped as brutal Islamist fighters advance.
“The mission was conducted by a number of U.S. military aircraft under the direction of U.S. Central Command,” a senior U.S. defense official said. “The aircraft that dropped the humanitarian supplies have now safely exited the immediate airspace over the drop area.”
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