Big ISIL Meeting

By Tony Bertuca / October 10, 2014 at 7:36 PM

The Pentagon today confirmed that Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey will meet in Washington on Oct. 14 with 20 foreign chiefs of defense to discuss ongoing operations in Iraq and Syria.

"The group will meet Oct. 14 at Joint Base Andrews and will include Gen. Lloyd Austin, commander U.S. Central Command," according to a background statement to the press from a military official.

The meeting, which was first reported by Foreign Policy on Oct. 8, would be the first gathering of coalition leaders whose nations are assisting the United States in its expanded campaign against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.

The gathering comes as the Pentagon has urged for "strategic patience" as ISIL forces bear down upon the city of Kobane in Northern Syria.

"You've got to take the long view here," Rear Adm. John Kirby, the Pentagon's chief spokesman, told reporters Oct. 8. "Everybody's focused on this town in Kobane, and I get that, but there is still a lot of fighting going on inside Iraq. . . . They aren't like any other terrorist group that we've dealt with. . . . I mean, unlike some terrorist groups, they actually do want to hold ground and infrastructure."