President Obama informed Congress Monday of plans to send 275 U.S. military personnel to Iraq to protect America's embassy in Baghdad. (Via The White House)
As you might have heard, Iraq has become an even more dangerous place in the last few weeks.
JOE SCARBOROUGH: "It's one disaster after another in Iraq." (Via MSNBC)
SHEPARD SMITH: "A disaster that could have serious ripple effects in the Middle East and around the world." (Via Fox News)
That's due to an extremist militia of Sunni Muslims called ISIS, or the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, which has already taken several major Iraqi cities and now marches toward Baghdad. (Via YouTube / Nasrum min Allah)
ISIS is a particularly brutal offshoot of Al Qaeda — brutal enough that Al Qaeda has disavowed them. They've posted photos and videos of mass executions online. (Via YouTube / Tahrir Souri)
Sunday brought news that many Americans would be evacuated from the Baghdad embassy but most would stay. (Via The New York Times)
Those remaining will now have some added security. About 160 troops are already in Iraq, including 50 marines. The White House is adding 275 to that number, and the report sent to Congress notes that 100 more soldiers will be placed in a neighboring country in case they're needed. (Via CNN)
2012's Benghazi embassy attack is still a major flash point in Washington. It left four Americans dead, including Ambassador Chris Stevens, and raised a lot of questions about just how safe U.S. embassies are. (Via Al Jazeera)
Although the president has ruled out a more comprehensive combat effort to help Iraqi defenses ...
OBAMA: "We can't do it for them." (Via C-SPAN)
... the U.S. is considering cooperating with Iran in some way to help stop the advance of ISIS militants. Despite their rough history, neither government wants to see extremists in control of Iraq. (Via The Guardian)
The White House says the 275 U.S. troops will be entering Baghdad with the approval of the Iraqi government.