The Department of Defense informed Americans today that one our own was shot and killed by ISIS in a firefight in northern Iraq today. This means he was a casualty of direct small arms fire by ISIS. This is the third American casualty at the hands of ISIS, the first by direct fire from ISIS fighters. Last month, the terrorists killed a United States Marine.
This is a combat death. The notion that we are not in combat with ISIS, that we do not have forces under fire in Iraq, is false. We do.
“It is a combat death, of course, and a very sad loss. I don’t know all the circumstances of it,” said Secretary of Defense Ash Carter to reporters on Tuesday. “Our thoughts and prayers are with that service member’s family.”
The AP reports the American was on a train-and-assist mission, advising Kurdish Peshmerga troops, and that they were under a large-scale attack by ISIS.
There are over 5,000 American troops in Iraq and the fight with ISIS is very real. Remember that when you hear politicians discussing our strategy and whether or not there are “boots” on the ground. There are casualties on the ground. Say a prayer for one lost today.