NEW YORK (CNN) – U.S. officials tell CNN there are longstanding and ongoing talks inside the military about increasing airstrikes in Iraq and even the possibility of tailored airstrikes inside Syria against specific ISIS targets, But officials stress No decisions have been made by the white house.
We’re actively considering what’s going to be necessary to deal with that threat. And we’re not going to be restricted by borders and the pentagon is divulging nothing
“We don’t telegraph our punches. Rest assured the leadership in the pentagon understands the threat posed by this group,” said Rear Admiral John Kirby.
Talk of military options stirred up by this comment by defense secretary haggle about the threat of ISIS and its ranks of 10,000 fighters.
“Oh, this is beyond anything that we’ve seen. So we must prepare for everything. And the only way you do that is that you take a cold, steely, hard look at it and get ready,” said Secretary Hagel.
Officials are taking pains to emphasize that any military action would only be part of any long-term strategy against ISIS, involving diplomacy and action from other countries in the region.
The pentagon continues to make the case that airstrikes alone will not defeat ISIS but it’s also not ruling them out.