“Israel First”, the new doctrine of US Armed Forces

Centcom Chief: Iran Is Top US Priority

Links pullout from Iraq to ‘threat’ from Iran

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Speaking at the US Institute for Peace, Centcom chief Gen. Kenneth McKenzie declared Iran to be the top priority for US military forces across the Middle East, claiming they are hampering the war on ISIS, despite ISIS barely existing at this point.

McKenzie’s narrative struggled on consistency, arguing that there was great progress being made against ISIS, but also arguing that planned troop cuts in Iraq are now linked to the “threat” posed by Iran. This is in spite of ISIS no longer being a real issue.

This could be a problem for the US, as Iraq has already made clear they won’t be hosting US troops just to confront Iran, something they’d recently emphasized when Trump said he wanted to stay to “watch” Iran.

ISIS is the only real excuse for staying in the Middle East, and the group’s defeat is making this tougher and tougher to make everything about ISIS. Absent other ideas, however, it’s clear they’ll keep trying.