No US troops in Syria, Iraq, Clinton vows

  • 01/12/2015
Hillary Clinton (Reuters)
Hillary Clinton (Reuters)

US Democratic presidential frontrunner Hillary Clinton says that putting American combat troops on the ground in Syria or Iraq to fight the Islamic State group is a "non-starter".

"Well, at this point I cannot conceive of any circumstances where I would agree to do that because I think the best way to defeat ISIS is, as I've said, from the air which we lead, on the ground, which we enable, empower, train, equip and in cyberspace where, don't forget, they are a formidable adversary online," Clinton said.

She was speaking to CBS This Morning in excerpts released in advance of the full interview airing early on Tuesday (local time).

President Barack Obama last month authorised no more than 50 special operations forces to deploy to northern Syria in a non-combatant, advisory role to help co-ordinate local ground troops and anti-IS coalition efforts.

It is unclear whether the forces have already arrived in Syria.

"We don't know yet how many Special Forces might be needed, how many trainers and surveillance and enablers might be needed, but in terms of thousands of combat troops like some on the Republican side are recommending, I think that should be a non-starter," Clinton said.

"I agree with the president's point that we're not putting American combat troops back into Syria or Iraq. We are not going to do that."