Within a couple hours of President Obama’s telling reporters that “we don’t have a strategy yet” for taking on the Islamic State, White House press secretary Josh Earnest clarified that President Obama does have a strategy, or at least part of one.
He told CNN that the White House has outlined an approach for addressing the Islamic State’s efforts in Iraq, but is still awaiting to hear back from the Pentagon on military options in Syria, which is what the president was referring to. In part, Earnest explained, the Pentagon is exploring a broader strategy beyond just American military involvement.
“Those options are still being developed by the Pentagon,” he said. “They obviously have spent a lot of time working on this, and they’re still working through it.”
Even though the president doesn’t yet have a plan for Syria, Earnest repeatedly referred to the president’s strategy as ”comprehensive.”
After the commercial, State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki reiterated Earnest’s comments, saying that the administration has a larger strategy but no plan for Syria yet.