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President Obama announced a counterterrorism strategy against the Islamic State that will include airstrikes in Syria as well as Iraq and will see 475 additional US troops dispatched to Iraq; the US will lead a "broad coalition" against the IS, and the strategy will center around US air power supporting "partner forces on the ground." He also urged Congress to approve $500 million to train and equip "moderate" Syrian rebels, and vowed that the US "will not get dragged into another ground war in Iraq." Secretary of State Kerry said US ground troops would be deployed in Iraq only if "very dramatic" changes called for it. A senior official said the US is very concerned that instability in Libya is conducive to its use by terrorists sending weapons and fighters to Iraq and Syria; he also said some militias there have expressed interest in IS.
President Obama told senior lawmakers he has the authority to carry out the plans for action against the Islamic State that he will announce tomorrow. The family of slain American journalist Stephen Sotloff claimed that his whereabouts in Syria was sold to the ISIS by a so-called moderate Syrian rebel group; the White House denied the report. The US is seeking to bolster intelligence cooperation with Jordan in the fight against the Islamic State. The US is ending its contracts with a security clearance contractor after it experienced a cyberattack in August that compromised the personal files of up to 25,000 Homeland Security employees.
Defense Secretary Hagel, meeting with the Erdogan government in Turkey to discuss strategy against the Islamic State, said the Obama administration will need to consider the ending as well as the beginning of any broader military action against the Islamic State; President Obama has said he will address the topic on Sept. 10. US intelligence officials are monitoring the possibility that commercial jets said to be missing from Tripoli Airport in Libya might be used for terrorist attacks.