US is leaning on European and Arab allies to provide more troops and support for the war against the Islamic State group, hoping that the horror of the Paris attacks will compel them to get more deeply involved.
The administration sees as the beginnings of battlefield momentum in Iraq and Syria. It may also reflect a sense in the Pentagon that the campaign against the Islamic State group has advanced too slowly and requires more urgent and decisive military moves.
Pentagon topers detect more European interest in contributing to the military campaign in Syria, where many governments have stayed largely on the sidelines. But the officials acknowledge that it will be difficult to get more from budget-strapped countries already involved elsewhere in the world. Chances of drawing significant additional help from Arab nations seem even slimmer.
Defense Secretary Ash Carter has made clear the basic U.S. strategy is not changing. But during an hourlong meeting with top advisers and commanders earlier this week, Carter said now is the time to reach out to European allies for support in the fight against the Islamic State group, according to a senior defense official. The official spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss internal Pentagon deliberations.