Third Party & Independents Archives

Boots for Ebola; No Boots for ISIS

As much as the President or democrats or others don’t want to believe it, Obama IS a war president. The “Bush’s fault” argument doesn’t hold much value anymore because, yes, Obama did bring troops home from Iraq, but he sent thousands more over to Afghanistan, and he’s been at war his entire presidency. He’s just not a strong war president.

The Ebola outbreak has prompted a need for boots in Africa to contain the virus (agreed), and Obama is "all in." With just 3 confirmed cases of Ebola in the US, the virus has been played a non-threat to the people here. ISIL or ISIS is a direct and urgent threat to us, yet Obama refuses to send boots Iraq and Syria.

Amidst this great boot debate for our President, Taliban suicide bombers are killing troops in Afghanistan and an Afghan soldier in training turned his gun on us. As soon as ISIS became a threat, we've forgotten Afghanistan and it's a dangerous scenario. The Middle East is a real life battleground in a game of "whack- a-mole," and our President just doesn't have it under control. During the 2008 debates, I remember thinking, "How can this guy [Obama] say he's going to bring troops home when he doesn't have any idea or real intel on the situation." Six years later, he has proven that thought to be true, and his lack of management of the war is horrifying.

Boots for Ebola, but no boots for ISIS? Come on, now Mr. President. That just doesn't make any sense.

Posted by MichaelMears at October 15, 2014 7:54 PM
Comment #384311

We would not simply be fighting IS but the entire Iraqi and Syrian Sunni population. They are in rebellion against the Shia dominated Iraqi government and the Shia Assad government in Syria. IS is but the extremist tip of their spear.

In the occupation, we had a very difficult time with the insurgency in the Sunni Triangle. That “triangle” has now been extended to Syria. Just prior to the peace agreement with the Sunni Tribes (Awakening), a Marine Corp general declared the area lost. The Maliki government squandered the “Awakening” and the surge. The Sunnis don’t trust the Iraqi government. We are now back to 2005, only worse. This is a huge civil war.

We need to proceed carefully. We need to feel out our friends in this conflict. Thus far, the Kurds appear to deserve support. As for the moderates, who are they?

Posted by: Rich at October 15, 2014 8:41 PM
Comment #384344

The Sunni generals and tribal leaders betrayed the US and the (Shia) Iraqi government, and turned over their arsenal of American weapons to IS. The Sunnis made their choice. They preferred 7th century fundamentalists to other alternatives. They have made their bed. Let them sleep in it.

The idea of sending American troops into that civil war is ludicrous. Suppose, just for a moment, that the US did occupy Iraq AND Syria.

Then what?

Think it through. How much of a threat do the fundamentalists actually pose in the first place? How many lives and how much fortune is it worth to address that threat? Does it make sense?

Listen to Obama. “Don’t do stupid stuff.”

The Kurds are not so pure. The Turks are bombing the Kurds in southern Turkey in what has been a decades long civil war. Tens of thousands have already died. The Turks would rather let IS slaughter the Kurds in that Syrian border town than lift a finger to help them.

Posted by: phx8 at October 15, 2014 10:48 PM
Comment #384345


The kurds appear to be the only group in that area that share our western values and don’t have elements of Islamic fundamentalism.

Their “impurity” is a result of a desire for self determination and for a country of their own.

It’s about time that we supported some true friends in that region. Its about time that we supported those that might actually establish a governing and social structure compatible with our concepts. Its about time that we supported those that will actually fight Islamic fundamentalists.

Turkey has stood by while the Kurds in Kobane have been attacked by IS. OK, they have chosen their priorities. Now, we must chose our priorities.

Posted by: Rich at October 16, 2014 9:06 AM
Comment #384346

The Kurds are not the only group in that area that share our western values. The Turks do, too. They are a stable secular democracy with a powerful military and a history of respecting the borders in a region practically defines instability.

That being said, the Kurds have been good allies and they seemed to be willing to embrace democracy. The trick will be getting the Kurds to respect borders, regardless of Kurdish ethnic groups in bordering countries.

I’m fine supporting these people. I just don’t see the point of intervening in the Sunni civil war. There are no good guys… Just try to prevent slaughters and genocides, and otherwise, keep out of it.

Posted by: phx8 at October 16, 2014 9:20 AM
Comment #384349

MichaelMears, it will be “Bush’s fault” for a very long time after President Obama is gone in regards to any problems for or with Iraq and Afghanistan. You may have forgotten this but it was the Bush Administration that went in and “screwed the pooch” when it comes to those two countries. President Bush will have to stand by this mistake as President Obama will have to stand by the mistakes his administration have made or may make. Stop with the excuses please.

Posted by: Speak4all at October 16, 2014 12:26 PM
Comment #384350

For anyone who feels my reference to “screwed the pooch” is some connotation of sex with dogs, let me explain. I can remember this expression going back to the mid 1960s. It stems I believe from a sports analogy. A “pooch” or a “pooch shot” is in reference to something in sports that should be able to be done relatively easily (golf, basketball, tennis, etc.). To have screwed the pooch means to intone that something that could have been done was messed up severely and had a bad outcome.

Posted by: Speak4all at October 16, 2014 2:13 PM
Comment #384434

The Iraqi parliament recently elected Hadi Al-amiri to a key interior security post. This fellow is affiliated with the Iranian gov’t and may have been involved in sectarian death squads. Doesn’t bode well for Sunni-Shite relations.

Nor for Iraq/US relations. So many differing factions fighting in Africa and the ME, the Kurds want a piece of turkey for their own state and so on - - -

It seems a certainty that no matter what the current admin does there is going to be opposition.

Perhaps by chasing most ISIL from the battlefield we can win some support and trust from a number of the more sane factions.

We can only continue to lend support to non-partisan gov’t leaders where they can be found. If a way can be found to give them a pig in every poke and some individual freedom maybe things will change for the better.

The Saudi’s could do a lot but I don’t expect anything from that gov’t other than self preservation.

Posted by: roy ellis at October 19, 2014 8:17 PM
Comment #384444

On a more positive note, US and coalition air support appears to have turned the tide at Kobane. The Kurds have reported very effective bombing at close quarters in the city with huge ISIL losses. Kurds are now mopping up remaining ISIL units in the city and nearby villages. Not over yet though.

Interestingly, Syrian FSA units joined Kurds in defense of Kobame. Possible beginning of a partnership that could turn out to be a real building block for a true moderate force in Syria.

Iraq is basically an Iraqi Sunni vs. Shia fight. As far as I can see, nothing much can be done to bring moderate Iraqi Sunnis back into the government. The Kurds, though, are an exception. We should do what we can to support them not only militarily but politically with the goal of getting them an autonomous state.

Posted by: Rich at October 19, 2014 10:17 PM
Comment #384446

US airdrop of arms and supplies to Kurds defending Kobane this evening. Huge slap in face to Turkey which opposed such re-supply. Technically the arms were not from the US but from Iraqi Kurds. However, delivered by US in multiple C-130 drops. Wow! We have to worry about offending Turkey when assisting a group actually resisting ISIL.

Posted by: Rich at October 19, 2014 11:02 PM
Comment #385342
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