Just before President Obama and his family jetted off for a round of golf at Martha's Vineyard on August 9, he told the assembled reporters at a hastily prepared press conference that he would not commit to a timetable for resolving the ongoing conflict in Iraq. He admitted that this could “take some time”, even after Navy carrier-based jets made four more devastating air strikes on the Sunni Muslim militants in the Sinjar region of Iraq.
This was the third round of strikes by American forces on the forces of the Islamic State. U.S. Central Command reported that the strikes had destroyed IS artillery, and armored vehicle and a truck that had been used to fire on civilians. The US has also dropped aid in the form of food and water to Yazidi refugees who had taken to the mountains in fear for their lives. Pursued by the Islamist persecutors, the Yazidis who had fled from their homes were slowly dying of thirst. IS has threatened to kill all 300 Yazidi families that are currently surrounded, even while besieging the 50,000 members of the Yazidi religious minority at the mountain at Sinjar.
Obama said, “I’m not going to give a particular timetable, because as I’ve said from the start, wherever and whenever U.S. personnel and facilities are threatened, it’s my obligation, my responsibility as Commander-in-Chief, to make sure that they are protected.” Among his “immediate concerns,” said the chief executive, Obama said he wants to make “'sure ISIL is not engaging in the actions that could cripple a country permanently.” Moreover, he said, “I don't think we are going to solve this problem in weeks,” and admitted that a rebuild for Iraq “is going to be a long-term project.”