Operation Inherent Resolve (OIR) is an ongoing US military operation in Iraq and Syria that began in 2014 and involves U.S. special forces and a coalition of regional partners. The objective of OIR is to “advise, assist, and enable local partner forces until they can independently defeat ISIS in designated areas of Iraq and Syria, thereby setting conditions for the implementation of long-term security cooperation frameworks." The US primarily works to empower the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) and the Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) to deter ISIS influence among regions of Iraq and Syria. Given the current low intensity conflict, the U.S. must consider the best type of investment in OIR. The U.S. should continue minimal engagement by utilizing the Syrian Democratic Forces to maintain influence within the population to impede radicalized ideology from spreading. The Coalition should additionally work with development professionals to begin the process of returning IDPs back to their communities to reduce the efficacy of IDP camps in supporting ISIS’ mission.
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