PARIS – The US-led coalition against the Islamic State is doubling down on its strategy to fight the extremists, insisting on staying the course it set last year despite the radical group’s recent conquests on both sides of the border between Iraq and Syria.
Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi pressed his case Tuesday for more support from the 25 countries in the coalition at a one-day Paris
conference on fighting the militant group, organized within weeks of the fall of the Iraqi city of Ramadi and the Syrian city of Palmyra. The coalition has mustered a mix of airstrikes, intelligence sharing and assistance for Iraqi ground operations against the extremists. Al-Abadi said more was needed – his country reeling after troops pulled out of Ramadi without a fight and abandoned US-supplied tanks and weapons. “We will redouble our efforts,” said Deputy Secretary of State Tony Blinken. ISIS, Blinken said, “stands for nothing and depends on people who will fall for anything.”