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The first of 300 special troops deployed by President Obama have arrived in Baghdad, Iraq, Al Jazeera reports. Obama sent the troops to aid the Iraqi army against the Sunni militant forces that are making their way through the country.
The U.S. military advisers will establish a base in the city to evaluate the current crisis in northern Iraq. Roughly 90 troops have landed in Iraq and will be followed by an additional 50.
The troops are in Iraq to consult, not to engage in combat, but Time reports that Washington "has not ruled out air strikes." A New York Times poll from earlier this week shows that Americans are divided on whether air strikes in Iraq are a good idea.
"American forces will not be returning to combat in Iraq, but we will help Iraqis as they take the fight to terrorists who threaten the Iraqi people, the region and American interests as well," Obama said at a press conference. "Going forward, we will be prepared to take targeted and precise military action if and when we determine the situation on the ground requires it."