General says Islamic State a ‘serious generational problem’
WASHINGTON (AP) — The top U.S. commander for the Mideast says that although Islamic State militants are losing the last of their territory in Syria, the militants who remain are unbroken and radicalized, and represent a “serious generational problem.”
Gen. Joseph Votel (voh-TEL’) tells a House committee that unless IS and its ideology are handled properly, IS will sow the seeds of future violent extremism.
Votel’s assessment provides a reality check to President Donald Trump’s repeated assertion in recent weeks that IS has been defeated and lost 100 percent of its “caliphate,” which once covered a vast territory straddling Syria and Iraq.
Votel says IS now holds less than a single square mile, but has kept that that sliver of land for weeks, and many militants have escaped and are in hiding.