President Obama said Monday that U.S. Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter would travel to the Middle East today to ask for more support from allied countries in the effort to fight the so-called Islamic State.

“Just as the United States is doing more in this fight, just as our allies France, Germany and the United Kingdom, Australia, Italy are doing more, so must others,” Obama said. “That’s why I’ve asked Secretary Carter to go to the Middle East to work with our coalition partners on securing more military contributions to this fight.”

Obama spoke after a National Security Council meeting at the Pentagon attended by top administration officials, including Vice President Joe Biden. He said the U.S. military is hitting the ISIL “harder than ever” before.

“This fall, even before the revolting attacks in Paris and San Bernardino, I ordered new tactics to intensify our war against ISIL. These actions, including more fire power and special operations forces, are well underway.” 

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