Defense

Senators to press McMaster on ISIS plan in closed meeting

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The Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Thursday will meet with President Trump’s national security adviser to discuss the administration’s yet-unseen strategy for combatting ISIS.

Committee Chairman Bob Corker (R- Tenn.) told journalists Wednesday that H.R. McMaster will meet with the committee in an off-the-record discussion, during which he intends to press the general on his overall anti-ISIS strategy and other topics.

“I’d just like to see it. I know there was a 30-day review, but we’ve seen no evidence of any documents that have been produced,” Corker said.

{mosads}“We know they’ve been focused on Iraq and Syria, and we have a really good sense of all of that. What we haven’t seen is the overall ISIS strategy. And it’s time that we see that.”

Trump signed an executive action in January asking the Pentagon to deliver a new counter-ISIS strategy in 30 days.

The Pentagon provided the White House its initial review within that time frame, but the strategy has yet to be finalized. Defense Secretary James Mattis said last month that the strategy “has been put in skeleton form” and that “it’s being fleshed out now.”

Senate lawmakers are also likely to ask McMaster for details on the administration’s new military strategy in Afghanistan, which would deploy additional U.S. troops to fight against the Taliban.

Officials are considering a plan — first reported by The Washington Post — that would provide the Pentagon with broader authority over how many troops to deploy. A Tuesday report from NBC News said the administration is considering the deployment of an additional 5,000 troops.

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