President Donald Trump on Friday will visit the Pentagon for the first time to call on his newly appointed defense secretary to take a more aggressive approach to attacking ISIS fighters in Syria.
The New York Times on Thursday reported that Trump will call on Secretary James Mattis to present new options within 30 days.
The options may include expanding the use of Special Forces. Trump told ABC's David Muir on Wednesday that he would "absolutely do safe zones in Syria."
Big day planned on NATIONAL SECURITY tomorrow. Among many other things, we will build the wall!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 25, 2017
Also among the possible options are sending in more Apache helicopters and giving the U.S. military broader authority to make routine combat decisions, according to current and former U.S. officials familiar with the ongoing discussions the Associated Press reports.
There are about 5,160 U.S. troops in Iraq now, about 100 fewer than the maximum cap.
There are no more than 503 in Syria. Trump throughout his campaign made it very clear his goal to eradicate radical Islamic terrorism "completely from the face of the Earth."
Pentagon says the US air strikes on the ISIS camps in Libya were carried out by US B-2 bombers as extension of Operation Odyssey Lightning.— Mark Knoller (@markknoller) January 19, 2017
American bombers fired 31 strikes against ISIS 24 hours before Mattis was sworn in.
Trump has a busy weekend ahead
On Friday he's set to meet with British Prime Minister Theresa May.
On Saturday, he'll speak with Russian President Vladimir Putin for the first time since taking office. He's also expected to sign an executive order on voter fraud in the coming days.
--The Associated Press contributed to the report.