NBC’s Richard Engel is embedded with Kurdish fighters on the ground in the Iraq-Syria-Turkey border region. He reports that the Kurds are becoming frustrated with the lack of power that the US is showing in the fight against ISIS.
Engel appeared with Andrea Mitchell on MSNBC today. He said that Kurds in Syria are “very eager” to get into the fight. He also described what he is seeing.
“Right now i’m on a hill overlooking an ongoing battle between ISIS fighters and Syrian Kurds,” Engel said. “The ISIS fighters are operating in the open. They have an open field and they are dressed in black and have been exchanging gunfire and we are watching the battle unfold and we have been talking to other Kurds who have been watching the same thing and they are very frustrated because they say if the US wants to carry out air strikes and wants to attack ISIS, there they are. They are operating not in a hidden way. They are easy to find. Obviously the US is carrying out air strikes, just not on a scale that the Kurdish fighters would like to see.”
Engel said that many of the Kurdish fighters decided that they couldn’t wait for US airstrikes any longer, so they charged the ISIS fighters despite the fact that the Kurds didn’t have any weapons to fight with.
Update: CNN interviewed an ISIS fighter who agrees — the US-led airstrikes are not hitting the group very hard. They were prepared for the strikes, and hid themselves and their equipment ahead of time.