The Pentagon is laying the groundwork for a greater presence in Iraq, a Pentagon spokesman confirmed, one day after announcing an increase in personnel in the al-Anbar province.

The expansion could feature “several” locations throughout Iraq, including more inside al-Anbar, said Col. Steven Warren, Pentagon spokesman. Asked if the Pentagon was “actively” making plans for new bases within Iraq, Warren concurred.

Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told the New York Timeson June 11 that the Pentagon was looking at an expansion, referring to the basing structure as “lily pads” from which personnel could work with local fighters to combat the Islamic State, often referred to as ISIS. […]