Bush calls for US ground forces to fight Islamic State

Posted at 1:02 PM, Nov 18, 2015
and last updated 2015-11-18 13:02:00-05

CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) - Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush says the United States must commit U.S. ground forces to the Middle East to fight the Islamic State.


In a speech in South Carolina, Bush says "air power is essential" but cannot by itself rid Syria and Iraq of the extremist Islamic group.


He says: "The United States - in conjunction with our NATO allies and more Arab partners - will need to increase our presence on the ground."


Bush did not offer detailed specifics in his prepared remarks. He had said in a speech in August U.S. forces ought to be used to help identify bombing targets, and held out the possibility for ground forces.


His comments come in the aftermath of the deadly Paris attacks that killed 129 people, and as Bush struggles to break into the lead of the unsettled GOP nomination fight.