Conference on ISIS Excludes Syria, Iran; Iran, U.S. Reject Idea of Cooperating Militarily


Map of ISIS
BBC via Wikipedia

Thirty countries met in Paris yesterday at the invitation of the French president, Francois Hollande, to talk about the threat posed by the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) Among them were the U.S., Russia, China, and the U.K. and several Arab countries but not Syria, one of the countries in which ISIS is operating, nor Iran, which borders Iraq and, as every country in the region, considers ISIS a national security threat.

Instead, the American and Iranian governments used the opportunity to exchange barbs. Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, claimed his government refused a "private request" from the U.S. to cooperate on ISIS. Iran already assists Iraq militarily, as does the U.S., and also assists the Syrian government in its ongoing civil war with ISIS and various other rebel groups.

The Syrian government, meanwhile, has insisted airstrikes in Syria without its permission would be a "big mistake," blaming the U.S. and its allies on helping to create ISIS. "Those who would like to fight terrorism cannot fight terrorism in Syria or in Iraq without coordinated actions with both governments and without a broader international coalition," Syria's deputy foreign minister said, according to the Tehran Times. "That should also take on board Russia, China, the Islamic Republic of Iran, and all other countries. You cannot fight terrorism when you collaborate with those who created these terrorist groups, including Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Turkey, and others." 

ISIS declared itself a caliphate in July, its dominion over all Muslims and territory reaching from Turkey to Saudi Arabia, the site of Islam's holiest city. While some American politicians warn that ISIS (like the big bads that came before it) could send agents across the porous U.S.-Mexico border, ISIS has far closer borders to penetrate in Saudia Arabia to the south and Turkey to the north.

In the meantime, only the United States has conducted air strikes in Iraq so far, and it is looking for other countries to commit combat troops. France, which called for the present ISIS conference a month ago, only began surveillance flights over Iraq after receiving permission from the Iraqi government at the conference.  Gen. Martin Dempsey, the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, said ground troops in Iraq would be possible if airstrikes "fail." As the U.S. prepares to escalate its military campaign against ISIS, it only provides regional powers more threatened by ISIS' operations less incentive to act on their own.

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  1. So, ISIS’ local enemies were excluded while their local allies were included?

    I am starting to think that Obama would fuck up getting laid in a Tijuana whorehouse despite having $600 in his pocket when he walked in.

    1. It’s almost like there are no good guys here and we should stay the fuck out of it.

      1. We tend to see conflicts as between the good guys and the bad guys, when they are often between the bad guys and the even worse guys.

    2. It is because these people don’t live in reality. They really don’t.

    3. Yea, we don’t really need to cooperate militarily with the same Iranians that were killing US soldiers in Iraq, and we don’t need to cooperate militarily with a Syrian military that’s been thoroughly infiltrated by sympathetic radical islamists. Green on Blue is a terrible combination of colors.

      1. But the U.S *does* cooperate with the same Sunnis that were kidnapping and killing American soldiers in Iraq.

        1. The 12-13 Sunnis involved in that incident belonged to a terrorist group. Not all Sunnis were members of that terrorist group. The actual kidnappers/murderers were hunted down and either killed or imprisoned. Those people are no longer a threat

          The Iranians were members of the military of the Nation/State of Iran. They did what they did with the full backing of the Iranian government, which still exists.

          I know the difference is subtle, but there’s still a difference.

          1. The Sunni uprising against Americans in Iraq consisted of 12-13 people?

            And they all were hunted down?

            Man, we should incorporate them into the U.S. army like the Brits do the Ghurkas and disband the entire Special Forces command, if 12 guys can create such death and chaos without air support, imagine what they could do *with* air support.

            1. You specifically referred to “Sunnis that were kidnapping and killing American soldiers in Iraq.”

              There was only one instance where US soldiers were kidnapped and killed by Sunnis. There were 12-13 Sunnis directly involved in that incident.

              Reading comprehension is your friend.

              1. Your comment is ridiculous. Kidnap or not, fundamentalist Sunnis have been at war with the United States for years and are responsible for many U.S. deaths.

                1. Which comment was “ridiculous”, specifically? Was it the one where I pointed out that we shouldn’t cooperate with people who are not on our side? Maybe it was the one where I pointed out that there was only ONE instance where US Soldiers were kidnapped AND killed by Sunni terrorists in Iraq?.

                  Having been deployed with the US Army to Iraq on three separate occasions, I’m well fucking aware that Sunnis “are responsible for many U.S. deaths”, but words have meaning, and when someone claims that we’re “cooperating” with “the same Sunnis that were kidnapping and killing American soldiers in Iraq”, it simply isn’t a true statement. Any Sunni that was involved with kidnapping AND killing US Soldiers is dead or in prison, along with about 300 of their closest friends and relatives.

      2. Green on Blue works great on those Seahawk uni’s!

  2. It looks like we have a perfect map of what to annihilate…am I missing something, or should we just blow up the red part?

    1. Humanity is the problem, we’ll just go on creating these movements unless we’re stopped.

      1. Damn right! Just look at the DMZ!!!

      2. Uhhh…are you saying that humanity is the problem, and the only way we can stop these “movements” is to stop humanity?

        Radical Islam is the problem. “Humanity” is why. We have a sense of it; they don’t.

        1. Nope. If we kill all the humans, there can be no war. The Left is doing the same thing with sex selective abortions to end the Republican war on women…DUH!!!!

        2. Sarcasm not detected.

  3. ‘Oh mighty Isis, Isis, Isis.’ Joanna Cameron really wasn’t that hot.

  4. In other news, it looks like the Huckmeister is back baby.

    If you hate evangelicals, this is actually good news. All him running will do is marginalize evangelicals. He won’t win but it will lock up the evangelical vote eliminating the need for any other candidate to court them.

    1. Stupid Flanders.

      1. He is nothing if not entertaining.

    2. …but it will lock up the evangelical vote eliminating the need for any other candidate to court them.

      It’s the Republican Party we’re talking about here, John. They won’t have a need, but sheer, unadulterated dumbassery doesn’t mean they won’t court them.

      1. That is just contrary to reality. Every single Republican nominee in my life time has told the evangelicals to go fuck themselves. Every one of them going back to Reagan. That the evangelicals run the Republican Party is one of the great lies the media tells. They get nothing and like it. Think about the last two nominees; John McCain and a fucking Mormon.

        I know most people on here think the evangelicals should be rounded up and sent to camps or at least have the common decency not to vote. But, the Republican establishment really does do its bit to ensure they understand that both parties and all right thinking people in America hate them.

        1. It’s basically different flavors of progressives running both parties.

        2. I agree with John, but somebody always quotes a Republican uttering the word “God” in a non-ironic manner, proving to their entire satisfaction that the party is owned and operated by a cabal of Dollar Store Savonarolas.

        3. All you’re saying is that they’re smart enough to not attract attention and are content to be the power behind the throne as kingmaker.

          1. So they play “king maker” and make people who hate them like McCain and Dole and Bush I, nominees? What is that some form of religious penance or something?

            1. I feel it’s a stretch to claim McCain and company “hate” them. Nevertheless, are you claiming the evangelicals who make up their lobbying machine are somehow less venal than any of the other sea creatures that inhabit the fetid swamp of DC?

              1. No. I am saying they have less power than the rest of them. We now have government sanctioned ass sex, they are going to put transvestites in the military, abortions happen by the millions, the whole country is awash in porn and gambling, just exactly what shred of influence do the evangelicals assert on anything?

                They are the least powerful most universally hated and ignored minority in the country. Yet, they are constantly held up as this bogey man who secretly runs the country.

                The lunacy has gotten so great that it is approaching old time Protocols of the Elder Zion European antisemitism territory. It really does.

        4. The term evangelical is just about as meaningless as the term tea partier.

        5. Every single Republican nominee in my life time has told the evangelicals to go fuck themselves.

          Um, George W. Bush?

          1. Him too. What did he give them? Ted Kennedy running federal education? Justice Penaltax?

            Evangelicals are nothing but the modern American half wit’s Goldstein

            1. Was he not for a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage? I don’t buy the argument that just because they didn’t get everything they wanted, that means they didn’t have any undue influence on the president. It would be like claiming Obama isn’t a liberal because we don’t have single payer healthcare

        6. The key word in your discussion is nominee. John, I’m pretty sure you’re smart enough to know, once they get the nomination, they tell everybody in the base to go fuck themselves. Well, except for libertarians. They get told to go fuck themselves much earlier in the process. But, how many Republican candidates hold off on the Value Voters Summit? How many refrain from the Christian College circuit?

  5. Gentlemen, you can’t fight in here!

  6. The Middle-Eastern dog seems not to want being wagged anymore.

  7. my roomate’s aunt makes $61 /hour on the internet . She has been without work for ten months but last month her income was $20549 just working on the internet for a few hours. official website….


    1. katie chalkley nob? The fuck?

    2. The few hours would be 336.9 at that rate.

  8. I’m still at a loss as to why ISIS presents much of a security threat to the United States, and if Iran, Syria and company are already fighting them, then why are we getting in the way?

    I guess they don’t want to invite Iran into Iraqi territory, but how much longer are we going to be able to keep up appearances on that anyway? We handed the region over to Iran’s influence when we toppled Saddam Hussein. The damage is mostly already done.

    Wanting to avoid that mistake was an excellent reason to oppose the Iraq War. Wanting to avoid that mistake was one of the main reasons why Bush, Sr. didn’t topple Saddam in 1991. Now that the mistake is made, I don’t see why we have to keep pretending…

    If Iran wants to send ground troops into Iraq to fight ISIS, why should we oppose them? Isn’t it just a pride thing? Want to reestablish respect for American interests again? I say we start by living in the real world instead of assuming Bush Jr’s and Obama’s pipedream is real.

    1. I noticed that the boundaries of their Caliphate did not include any US States or Territories, or border on any US States or territories.

      WTF are we doing again?

      1. I remember when letting Iran bog itself down in Iraq was a legitmate strategy–like watching the Soviets bog themselves down in Afghanistan.

        I hope we’re not so dumb that we’re going to throw ourselves into our own trap–again!

    2. “I’m still at a loss as to why ISIS presents much of a security threat to the United States…”

      Because they are not soldiers as people imagine soldiers to be. They are terrorists fighting an asymmetrical war with terrorism as their primary strategy. As terrorists fighting an asymmetrical war, they are looking for “soft” targets that will be disproportionally affected by terrorist acts. A car bomb going off in Baghdad isn’t news. A car bomb going off at the Mall of the Americas is. It’s easy, it’s cheap, and it’s WAY more effective than fighting the militaries of Syria, Iran, or the US head-on. They know that, and we know that, and simply put, it’s the next logical step for them.

      1. I don’t believe that defeating ISIS in Iraq lessens the desire or ability of any terrorist to set off a bomb in America.

        In fact, I’m pretty sure that Al Qaeda has been trying to hit American targets with terrorism ever since 9/11.

        …and that this would still be the same regardless of whether we had ever invaded Iraq–much less whether we try to squash ISIS now.

        I think this is a lot like the Iraq War, where we spent some $1.5 trillion of taxpayer money, lost 4,500 American lives, and suffered some 32,000 American casualties–with no measurable benefit to our efforts to counter terrorist attacks in the United States.

        If Iran is willing to fight our battles for us, why shouldn’t we let them?

        1. “If Iran is willing to fight our battles for us, why shouldn’t we let them?”

          Because they’re not fighting “our battles”, and if it would take the pressure off them, they’d put ISIS on a plane to the US themselves.

          The desire for terrorists to be terrorists is always there. It makes it a little more difficult when every time you have a planning session, everybody present gets turned into bone chips.

          1. You do realize Iran (Shia) and ISIS (Sunni) are mortal enemies? Their hatred of eachother runs deep.

            1. Yep, and I also realize that Shia Iranian drug cartels, with the tacit approval of the Iranian Government process and distribute 98% of the opium supplied by the Sunni Taliban, and supplies them with weapons.

              The Pakistanis are Sunni, and the Iranians are Shia, but they both have the same goals of keeping Afghanistan unstable. It’s a sacrificial boundary between Shia islam and Sunni islam.

              The Syrians are majority Sunni, Iraq is roughly 50-50, and Iran wants to keep Iraq unstable as a sacrificial boundary also.

              The point is that no matter what, the only goal the Iranians have is to either take over Iraq, or destabilize it. They can’t take it over as easily as they can destabilize it.

              1. We’ll just ignore that the Iranians were backing the Northern Alliance against the the Pakistani and Saudi backed Taliban when the Taliban were allied with Al Queda in the days leading up to 9/11.

                Better we focus on corrupt officials engaging in drug smuggling, because that’s so much more meaningful!

                1. Thanks for making my point. Massoud and Dostum, the two main leaders of the Alliance were both Sunni.

                  Nobody’s ignoring anything. The fact remains that Iran has an interest in the destabilization of Iraq and Afghanistan, and they’ll support any side or all sides, if it furthers their goal.

              2. “The point is that no matter what, the only goal the Iranians have is to either take over Iraq, or destabilize it. They can’t take it over as easily as they can destabilize it.”

                Isn’t that just a question of time at this point?

                See my other comments.

                1. Imagine a civil war, only with RPGs, belt-fed machine guns, and 1000lb car bombs. I would venture a guess and say that there’s not going to be any clear winner, Shia or Sunni, at any time in the near future.

          2. Yeah, Iran has Hezbollah. They don’t want ISIS for anything but fertilizer.

            Iran is already fighting ISIS in Syria either through a proxy (like Hezbollah) or directly.

    3. ‘ISIS’ as an organization/entity doesn’t threaten the US. The Europeans/Americans who are jihadis with ISIS are absolutely a security threat to the US. They already have passports. They ARE going to be returning ‘home’. And they ARE going to try to kill as many people as they can when (not if) they do return ‘home’. ISIS is NOT a local Middle East phenomenon. It is merely where the current generation of crazed jihadis is traveling to.

      Burying our heads in the sand about those people will not stop them from killing people when they return. I don’t know how to deal with this problem but it is NOT one where ‘let’s ignore it’ will work AT ALL.

      1. “The Europeans/Americans who are jihadis with ISIS are absolutely a security threat to the US. They already have passports. They ARE going to be returning ‘home’. And they ARE going to try to kill as many people as they can when (not if) they do return ‘home’.”

        1. I don’t know why the rest of my comment didn’t post. Either it’s the server squirrels, or the NSA too it!

          Anyway, what I said was, basically, this:

          1) I’m skeptical that putting boots on the ground this time will be any more effective against ISIS than putting boots on the ground last time was at putting down the insurgency.

          Why will fighting ISIS on the ground alleviate the problem of Americans coming home to commit terrorism?

          2) Whatever it is you’re planning to do about Americans returning home to commit terrorist acts, aren’t you going to do it anyway–regardless of whether we put boots on the ground to fight ISIS?

          1. I don’t know how to deal with the problem – but it is a real serious problem.

            We can’t ‘target’ kill those Americans in ISIS.

            We can’t just ignore it and outsource the fighting to Iran/etc (because they will assuredly end up doing the same thing that outsourcing stuff at Tora Bora did)

            Most of ISIS is foreign jihadis – not local jihadis. So they can melt away and disappear (ie return ‘home’) whenever they want. Further, this also means we are ‘responsible’ for creating the problem in the first place – and NOT in the easy ‘blame American foreign policy and blowback’ way that skeptics want to assume as the conclusion here.

            If we simply ignore the whole thing because that’s the easy-lifting no-thinking way out, then we are going to wake up one day very soon and find out that we have to deal with the problem here in the US.

            This is not an easy problem to deal with. But deal with it we must – sooner or later, there or here. Life’s a bitch.

            1. 1) Doing costly and inconsequential things is not the only alternative to “just doing nothing”.

              2) Letting Iran go after ISIS in Iraq is not “doing nothing”.

              3) There is no reason to think Iran isn’t just as committed to destroying ISIS as we are.

              1. Iran wants to get rid of ISIS (the organization that has planted itself there and declared a caliphate).

                They don’t give a rip about (and could probably see a benefit to) letting experienced foreign jihadis leave the region and return home to create problems for us here.

                So no, they don’t have the same agenda we do. They will fight ISIS for their agenda – not for ours.

                1. re ‘American boots on the ground’. I’m as much of a skeptic as you about whether that will work or even what the mission would be.

                  In theory, I can see where boots on the ground does make it much easier to distinguish between ‘ISIS fighters’ (most of whom are foreign) and ‘local civilians’. Dropping bombs from afar is definitely not the way to do that.

                  And certainly killing those ISIS fighters does eliminate any threat of their future return home.

                2. You’re talking about an enormous commitment of money and troops to accomplish something that you yourself admit may be inconsequential in stopping terrorist threats to the United States.

                  Again, doing nothing is better than doing something costly and inconsequential.

                  And, you know, the threat of Americans coming home and perpetrating terrorist attacks–to whatever extent that threat exists–wouldn’t disappear even if we could destroy ISIS.

                  That threat is always going to be out there anyway–and always was out there. And you should be aware that fighting another insurgency has the potential to inspire even more resentment, more hostility, and more terrorism against the United States.

                  What assurances can you give me about another occupation destroying more terrorist threats to America than it creates?

                  1. And you are creating strawmen instead of actually trying to even understand the problem.

                    So our alternatives are ‘something costly and inconsequential’ versus ‘doing nothing’? Is this seriously how you think the problem should be framed in order to figure out some solution to it?

                    Sometimes it really pisses me off that libertarians/non-interventionists are so ignored in our foreign policy. And then, without fail, reality pops up and I realize, aha no wonder they are ignored. Because in every specific situation they have nothing more to offer than a barking dog – no actual knowledge, no actual ideas, nothing but the same-old-same-old cant.

                    And no – ISIS is not an insurgency. Yeesh.

                    1. “So our alternatives are ‘something costly and inconsequential’ versus ‘doing nothing’? Is this seriously how you think the problem should be framed in order to figure out some solution to it?”

                      This is what you wrote:

                      “I don’t know how to deal with this problem but it is NOT one where ‘let’s ignore it’ will work AT ALL.”

                      That’s the way you framed it. This is the way I framed it:

                      “Doing costly and inconsequential things is not the only alternative to “just doing nothing”.

                      I’m the one pointing out the false dichotomy.

    4. I’m still at a loss as to why ISIS presents much of a security threat to the United States, and if Iran, Syria and company are already fighting them, then why are we getting in the way?

      Basically, ISIS is a fucking PR nightmare. It’s yet another variant of the Arab Spring phenomenon.

      At the risk of over-simplifying, the U.S. is allied with the Gulf Arab monarchies and has been for about 30 years (give or take). It’s a holdover of the cold war policy of allying with anyone who was strategically important as a way of keeping them from allying with the USSR.

      Back when Iran was ruled by a monarch, the U.S. had the same relationship with the monarch.

      The template for these relationships is that in exchange for basing and overflight rights, the U.S. provides guarantees of military assistance in case of being attacked and economic and military aid.

      Now invariably the local king/dictator/strongman would face local opposition, because they are all fucking kleptocrats that are squeezing everyone outside their clan/ethnic group to provide the ruling classes with wealth. They dealt with this problem using repression. Sometimes as in Egypt and Iran, the local rulers got significant U.S. assistance in material and men to facilitate the oppression, sometimes as in the case of the Saudi monarchy, it’s entirely internally run and supported affair.(cont)

      1. Regardless of the setup, the locals who aren’t in charge generally hate America, because accurately or inaccurately they are blamed for much of the local regime’s oppression. It hasn’t helped that since about 1991, much of Arab media has been able to stand upon piles of bloody corpses and say Americans did this.

        The system really started to break down before the cold war ended. First there was the popular revolt that kicked out the Shah, that ended with the Shiite fundamentalists turning on the other revolutionaries and sending them to the gallows. The U.S. and new strongmen in Iran have been at war of one sort or another since.

        The next blow to the system was the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait. Iraq had been a real coup, a soviet ally which had switched sides. Unfortunately, Saddam Hussein saw himself as Opec’s enforcer, and his invasion of Kuwait to punish them for overproducing put him in a collision course with the gulf arab monarchies.(cont)

        1. The U.S. led interventions against Iraq have never been about oil. It has always been intended to fulfil the terms of its alliance with Saudi Arabia, to protect their territorial integrity. But it was widely perceived by Sunnis as an attack on them. This was encouraged by the Saudi royal family, who encouraged the disaffected youth of their country tofight the infidel up north (thus neatly converting a saudi internal security matter into an American problem, one which Americans cleaned up handily with helicopter-mounted machine guns).

          The Al Queda war on the U.S. is not a clash of civilizations so much as an attempt to break the logistical support so that Al Queda can overthrow the gulf arab rulers and to take back the holy land from the infidels

          The U.S. government is riding a tiger; the gulf arabs are ruled by rulers whose religion and national mythology put them at odds with the west. And the people they rule over buy into the mythology, meaning that they hate both the rulers *and* the west.

          Every attempt by the U.S. to shore up these local rulers makes the locals hate the U.S. even more.(cont)

          1. Now fast forward to the current era. The Arab Spring toppled a whole bunch of stongment, and the U.S. has been unable to cope with it. In the case of Egypt it supported and then deposed and then supported the strongment. In the case of Libya, it assisted the rebels. In the case of Yemen, it’s bombing on behalf of the government. In the case of Syria, it saw a chance to get rid of an enemy of Israel (and an ally of the Shiite fundamentalists ruling Iran) by supporting the rebels. And had it been able to move as it wanted to, the attack would have strengthened the alliance with the rulers of the gulf arab states.

            But, the American people were also feeling shabbily used. The attack on Libya coupled with the dislike of the outcome of the Iraqi and Afghani adventures led the a failure of popular support for support for militarily intervening in Syria. Additionally, the Russians got involved, and they were easily able to maneuver the Obama administration into a painted corner.

            The gulf arabs stung by the U.S. failure to support their aims, then began pouring money and logistical assistance to ISIS getting them to turncoat on Al Queda.(cont)

            1. This would have worked, except that ISIS is led by people who have grown up their entire lives seeing arabs massacred by Americans on their TV’s, who insisted on counting coup on the U.S. as a way of proving their strength. The gulf arabs don’t care; they see what U.S. support was worth in Libya and Egypt and aren’t really scared of losing it.

              When the Arab Spring started, the Obama admin had to make some hard choices. Being craven idiots, they chose a stupid ‘strategy’ of waffling and doing what seemed most popular or expeditious at any given moment. They tried to portray themselves as the smartest guys in the room when in fact everyone could see they had no fucking clue.

              The basic choice was whether to support the rulers who had allied themselves more or less with the U.S. or not. Like germany in Wold War I facing the choice of whether to conduct unrestricted submarine warfare or not, had they picked a strategy and stuck with it, they would have been better off. Instead they waffled and incurred *everyone’s* enmity.

              At this point there are no good options for the U.S. They have so many enemies that any action they take will strengthen an enemy’s hand. The moderate syrian rebels are a fiction. There are radical Sunni islamists, the gulf arabs that support/fear them, shiites that everyone else hates, despised minorities like the Kurds, and the Turks that oppress them, and the Russian allied Allawites.

              1. I’m due for a meeting, but, just real quick, there were a lot of things we did during the Cold War–that helped us win–that don’t make a lot of sense now that the Cold War is over.

                We supported all kinds of rotten dictators in various ways, all over the world, during the Cold War, and once that was over, it’s hard to just abandon your erstwhile allies.

                …but that process had to start somewhere, and when the Arab Spring made it clear that huge swaths of the Arab street just weren’t going to take it anymore, we didn’t have much of a (reasonable) choice. There was never a better opporuntiy to start rearranging our relationships over there.

                It’s still hard to just walk away from your clients. And our long term security interests are still about Iran. Even if our domestic oil production grew to the point that the price of oil wasn’t as dependent on what OPEC and the Saudis did, we’d still need allied to in the region to help us with Iran.

  9. So, the enemy of my enemy…is still my enemy….if it’s Iran.
    Or something.

    I think.

    What the fuck are we is the US government doing in the middle east? is there any plan or strategy whatsoever?


    1. It’s sort of like how Obama didn’t want to sell the last of the government’s GM stock. On any bad investment, you lose your money on the way in–not on the way out! …but voters don’t think in those terms.

      If you sell GM’s stock for less than you invested, people think you lost all that money the day you sold. But you didn’t. You lost that money the day you invested it. It’s just that people think it’s only a “paper loss” until you actually sell. There’s no such thing as a paper loss. If your broker ever hits you with a margin call, tell him you don’t have to meet it becasue it’s only a paper loss and see what happens…

      We’re seeing the same thing in Iraq. If they let the Iranians go into Iraq to fight ISIS, it would make American voters think that Iran has all the influence in the region. Well guess what? Iran DOES have all the influence in the region! It’s been that way since we toppled Saddam and the Iraqi people voted a political party into power that was created within and financed by Iran!

      If we didn’t want Iran to have Iraq in its sphere of influence, we shouldn’t have toppled Hussein. But the milk is spilt now. How many more quagmires will we have to suffer in Iraq before our leadership is finally willing to face the facts. They don’t want to let Iran into Iraq to fight ISIS beause it would be a blow to American prestige?!

      How much prestige are we going to gain by getting bogged down in another quagmire of our own making?

      1. “How much prestige are we going to gain by getting bogged down in another quagmire of our own making?”

        None, but there’s no reason this has to be a “quagmire” either. The problem is that the CinC thinks he’s the smartest man in the room. If he would shut the fuck up, set a clear objective, and turn the military loose to do what it was intended to do, this shit would be over in a matter of 180 days or so. Desert Storm was a perfect example of what happens when you leave military missions to the military, and diplomatic bullshit to politicians.

        1. I think our military is like a rookie quarterback. Of course they want to play! They don’t want to sit on the sidelines. And when they’re in, they want to throw the ball. They’re quarterbacks, and that’s what quarterbacks do.

          Stupid is as stupid does, and if Obama can win this game by pounding the rock and telling the QB to shut up, then he’s not being stupid–not this time.

          It’s also important to remember that there wasn’t an insurgency before we invaded last time–and that the insurgency didn’t grow until after Saddam Hussein was toppled and the occupation began. In other words, occupation seems to breed support for the insurgents.

          There is no reason to think that ISIS won’t enjoy more support if we reoccupy just like the insurgency gained support among Sunnis during the occupation last time. And if that’s the case, what sort of clear objective can Obama possibly give the military?

          Occupy Iraq until the Sunnis fall in love with America? Occupy Iraq until the insurgency our presence invigorates no longer has popular support among Sunnis? Why not announce to the Iraqis that the beatings will continue until morale improves?

          1. Who said anything about occupying Iraq? We bomb the fuck out of IS whenever they mass, set up two or three remote bases, and let the guys who ride the skids of Little Birds go out every night and “action targets”. Small footprint, very effective. It takes awhile for the snake to regrow its head.

            I would venture a guess and say that there are few people in the military that are itching for more war. Given an objective of “cause IS to become combat-ineffective” would result in minimal ground troops, while an objective of “I don’t know what our strategy is but we’ve got to do something” will result in another cluster-fuck. Give the military clear objectives and then leave them the fuck alone until they accomplish those objectives, and they’re really, really good at what they do. You cannot then say “now that you’ve finished killing all these people, we need you to clean up the mess”. That’s a job for the Peace Corps, not the military.

  10. Were the Russians represented?

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