Anchored by Jake Tapper, The Lead airs at 4 p.m. ET on CNN.
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(CNN) – There is continued debate about the Obama administrations that there will be no boots on the ground in the fight against ISIS, no combat troops.
But there are already Americans wearing boots on the ground in Iraq and they will be involved in combat one way or another.
"Without question we will see our young men and women engaged in combat. I don't think they'll be given a primary, direct, combat assignment initially, but I think it's entirely possible that as events change and morph, the situation may ultimately require that," said former NATO Supreme Allied Commander Adm. James Stavridis. He is now the dean of the The Fletcher School at Tufts University.
"If we're going to be honest, we ought to start by saying we'll send in troops and they're going to advise, train, ,mentor, and they'll stiffen the Iraqi security forces and they'll stiffen the Peshmerga in the north, and we'll do the bombing in the west and initially no combat mission," he said.
For more of our interview with former NATO Supreme Allied Commander Adm. James Stavridis, check out the video above.