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First of US military advisers now in Iraq
It's been another bad day for the US-supported government in Iraq as it fights against an enemy invasion.
Iraq's military has been badly outfought, and President Obama must decide whether to support them with US air strikes.
Though the President has vowed not to send US troops into combat, he has committed to a small military presence.
The first of as many as three hundred US military advisers are now on the ground in Baghdad.
They have stepped into a dire situation.
The Sunni militant army that has invaded Iraq from Syria has captured another town in western Iraq.
It is the fourth town to fall in two days, and an entire Iraqi brigade was wiped out in the process.
The militant Islamist force, called "ISIS", can now move weapons freely from Syria into Iraq.
General James Cartwright says, "if they can hold these positions and lock them down, it is unlikely Iraq as we envisioned it will ever return".
The militant force now have their eyes on the capital.
"What we ought to look for next is the potential encirclement of Baghdad by ISIS to choke off the city and bring down the Maliki regime", says retired USMC Col. Steve Ganyard
In Egypt, Secretary of State John Kerry said Iraqi factions must unite so the US can help them fight the invaders.
In Baghdad, Iraq's Foreign Minister says that the US has a duty to stand by his country.
Hoshyer Zabari says, "... we had an agreement that I signed. It's called "The Strategic Framework Agreement". It says that whenever your Iraqi democratic government is threatened, America is ready to help".
President Obama, who has ruled out using US ground troops, must now decide whether to order air strikes.
Meanwhile, Iraqi forces are struggling against the Jihadist columns.
They are locked in a fierce battle for control of the country's biggest oil refinery, part of which is on fire.
In a jittery Baghdad, thousands of Shia muslims rallied to volunteer centers for training to fight the Sunni militants, but Iraq's security forces are mostly over matched.
They have little offensive capability, and their air power is severely diminished.
Meaning there is little they can do except wait for their enemies' next move.