by Daniel J. Graeber
Washington (UPI) Oct 17, 2014
Striking fixed Islamic State targets in Syria, including oil facilities, is part of the strategic effort to cripple the group, a Pentagon official said.
The group calling itself the Islamic State is said to be financing itself in part through a regional black market for crude oil. Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said U.S. military effort to defeat the group is about hitting where they operate.
"There's been a lot of strikes in [the strategic border town of] Kobani, dynamic tactical strikes," he told reporters during a Thursday press briefing. "But there's also been almost an equal number of total strikes against fixed facilities, command and control, finance centers, oil refineries [and] fixed sites."
The spokesman countered that the U.S. effort was in support of national ground forces and not so much "about going after sniper positions."
Iraqi Oil Minister Adel Abd al-Mahdi met earlier this week with Tony Blinken, the U.S. national security adviser, and other top officials to discuss the threat from the Islamic State.
The minister said there was "full coordination" on both sides on the field to fight and defeat the Sunni-led terrorist group.
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