The Pentagon is drawing up proposals to offer to Donald Trump if his incoming administration decides to intensify the military campaign against the Daesh (ISIL) terrorist group, according to a report.
Trump has publicly called for a tougher military action against the terrorist organization wreaking havoc in Iraq and Syria.
Military officials said the options under consideration include reducing White House oversight of decisions before an operation is conducted and giving more tactical authority to the Pentagon, The Wall Street Journalreported.
The recommendations might also include easing restrictions on the number of US troops needed to carry out a mission.
Though the proposals are not likely to dramatically change the overall US strategy, they will open windows for the Trump administration to move more battlefield decision-making back to the military, officials said.
“Once the new administration is in place, we will offer recommendations going forward, should the new administration wish to amend those assumptions or the current approach,” a military official told The Journal.
Trump’s pick for national security adviser, retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, said the new administration will fully assess the military’s authorities to execute the fight against Daesh.
Military officials acknowledged that giving more latitude to the Pentagon will result in deployment of more US forces.
Congressional Republicans and some military officials have criticized the White House in the past for being overly cautious when considering requests to conduct military operations and send troops to combat.
“Part of the problem is, is that inside of the military right now…their hands are tied,” Gen. Flynn said in a recent interview with Fox News.
Gen. Michael Flynn arrives at the Trump Tower for meetings with Trump, in New YorkNovember 17, 2016. (Photo by AFP)
White House officials said they approve all requests for military operations and authorities they receive.
There are about 5,000 American troops in Iraq and up to 300 special operations forces in Syria. Those numbers are governed by so-called business rules.
The White House has strict oversight over the force level used in various military missions. Officials say some requests for more troops have required weeks or even months to win approval.
During his campaign, Trump often blamed President Barack Obama and former secretary of state Hillary Clinton for the creation of Daesh and instability in the Middle East.
“The Obama-Clinton foreign policy unleashed ISIS (Daesh) (and) destabilized the Middle East,” Trump said in a foreign policy speech in August.