Category Archives: Iraq

Strategies, Obama Style

President Obama has been discussing the need for strategies in the Middle East. He is now proposing some strategies. I listened carefully to his talk and learned the President seeks to organize a coalition of Arab states who would gather together and destroy ISIS. This strategy entails more troops to aid the Iraq government, more bombing attacks, and more military equipment for those fighting against evil ISIS. I was struck with what was not part of this strategy. There is not a single word about Economic Development. There is not single effort to develop Middle Eastern economies so that hundreds of thousands of young men had jobs instead of sitting around cafes arguing and talking about jihad.

So, what MUST be done in the Middle East?

1. A Marshall Plan that requires Middle Eastern nations to develop modern economies.

2. The money would be dependent upon Middle Eastern nations working together.

3. The emphasis would be upon job creation.

4. Israel would be encouraged to hire bright young Egyptians, Jordanians, and Palestinians. These young people could return to their nations and initiate the creation of technology companies.

Give people jobs NOT GUNS!

John McCain Is Always Right!

Senator John McCain is ready to fight someone at the drop of the hat. He is ready to portray Barack Obama as the cause of any and all problems in the world. The Senator has now charged Obama policies for the current rise of ISIS. He charges that leaving Iraq was a mistake. “And the fact that they didn’t have a residual force in Iraq overriding his military advisers is the reason why we’re facing ISIS today.” Let’s look at the record:

1. President George Bush negotiated with the Iraq government to have American forces out of the country by 2011.

2. President Obama AGREED to leave a residual force of about 5,000 American troops PROVIDED that US forces were not subject to trial in an Iraq court of law.

3. The Iraq government refused to this request. I wonder what Senator McCain would have said if an American soldier was tried for a crime in a Muslim sharia law court!!

ISIS is the result of the George Bush invasion of Iraq that was supported by Senator John McCain!

Oh, the Wall Street Journal has concluded that Dick Cheney was correct all the time.

Republicans On Iraq Air Strikes

This intrepid reporter decided to seek reaction from leading Republicans about President Obama’s decision to send humanitarian aid plus air strikes in order to assist stranded Christians and other minorities in Iraq who are faced with death from ISIL.

Senator John McCain: “For months I have been telling the wimp President to show some balls and blast away in Iraq. How about sending in Special Forces to end this fiasco?”

Senator Rand Paul: “I am completely in favor of aiding Christians, and also any Jews. But, how much will this cost?”

John Boehner: “If this stuff has anything to do with ObamaCare, I am against it.”

Senator Ted Cruz: “First, protect our border against the hordes descending upon it. THAT is our priority!”

Senator Lindsay Graham: “Whatever John McCain goes double for me.”

Mitt Romney: “I told you, elect Obama and terrorism would increase.”

Sarah Palin: “Could you please point out on the map this Iraq?”

NRA: “Just another example as to what happens when people don’t carry around guns.”

Marco Rubio: “Does this have anything to do with illegal immigrants?”

George Bush: “Sorry, I don’t have time to comment, got some wood to chop”

Open Arms Of Christ To Afflicted??

Members of the Tea Party are completely opposed to allowing immigrant children to enter the hallowed grounds of the United States of America. As I recall, the Tea Party stands for Christianity and Jesus and a whole lot of very religious sounding people and groups. Recent events connected with the breakdown of Iraq’s incompetent government have resulted in the Islamic State fanatics gaining control of large areas in northern Iraq. After entering the city of Mosul, which contains Christians who date back to the original days of Jesus, the Islamic government warned Christians to leave the city. Their churches were destroyed, and any remaining has to pay a tax for being a Christian. The French government is shocked by this mistreatment of Christians and has offered a helping hand.

Interior Minister Laurent Fabius, made clear, “we are ready, if they so desire to help facilitate asylum on our territory” for any Iraq Christian so desiring. My question to the Tea Party–and the Republican Party is: Should the United States of America open its borders and offer asylum to CHRISTIANS who are being persecuted by Islamic Muslims? If the answer is, “Yes,” then it stands to reason these same compassionate people are ready to offer asylum to Christian children from Central America. If not, why not??

ISIL Keeps Moving South

The past few months have witnessed conclusion of a process that began years ago– the slow disintegration of what we term to be the nation of-Iraq. Ah, recall the pride of George Bush and Barack Obama as American forces withdrew from Iraq and left a nation with a “democratically elected” government, at least that was the boast of George Bush. Yes, we had defeated evil Saddam Hussein, of course, he used to be our ally during the 1980s when he fought against evil Iran, but times change and who we term to be an “evil doer” also changes. So, America left Iraq which contained an army of over 150,000 men armed with American weapons of war. Of course, since Shiite leader Nouri al-Maliki was now in charge, the first order of day, once the Americans were gone, was to rid the Army of Sunni soldiers and officers. It was time for -REVENGE- against the evil followers of the evil Saddam Hussein. Together with ridding the armed forces of Sunnis, Nouri also wanted to make certain that HIS BOYS were in charge. After all, if MY BOYs are in charge, we control money, we control jobs, and we control corruption.

A few months ago, Islamist soldiers numbering under 15,000 stormed into Iraq, confronted the 150,000 man army and sent them fleeing south toward Baghdad. A new Islamic state was proclaimed and any Iraq soldiers were no where to be seen in northern regions. Kurdish soldiers appeared in several cities. The past weekend, ISIL attacked the Kurdish held Zumar and Sinjar allowing them to hoist the Black Flag of triumph. Perhaps, someone will inform me why an Army of 150,000 armed with modern weapons cannot defeat militants who are fewer than twenty thousand in number?

How about sending in the Sunni Awakening Councils?

Torture, Torture, Everywhere In America

As a child growing up in the United States of America during World War II, movies constantly depicted the horrible Germans and Japanese as brutal foes. They tortured people, they gassed to death innocent people, heck, they even chopped off the heads of American prisoners. Thus, I was taught to believe that in my wonderful America, we were NOT like these evil people. We treated prisoners with dignity because the war was being fought in order to prove to the world that decency and respect for human life was central to the meaning of a democratic society. Of course, that was before the advent to power of Dick Cheney, Don Rumsfeld and George Bush, three men who decided that was central to the meaning of our Constitution, had no place in THEIR WORLD. These men decided to adopt tactics of the German Gestapo and the Japanese army in order to “Save America.”

Senator Dianne Feinstein who heads the Senate Intelligence Committee, will be issuing a 6,300 page document which describes in detail exactly how torture became the norm under President Bush’s fight to save AMERICAN DEMOCRACY. Former CIA directors are being given a chance to examine the document which provides evidence of torture during interrogations, rendition and detention. Oh, the report also provides a CIA defense of their behavior. I assume they argue, anything is OK to prevent Los Angeles from being destroyed by a hidden atomic bomb!

When a society becomes all they hate, it opens questions as to what originally did this society believe? I was raised to believe that Americans adhered to the US Constitution. When I entered the Army, I took the oath to defend this document. I thought President Bush took the same oath.

Question: What do we do to those who disregard their oath?

Explaining Iraq, Not Shouting Political Nonsense

The current Republican mantra is that President Barack Obama is responsible for the rise to power of Muslim extremists in Iraq. Republicans argue that,despite some original mistakes, President George Bush was able to recover, ended violence in Iraq, and turned over to Obama a nation prepared to become independent and prosperous. According to the Republican version, all Obama had to do was retain a small force of American soldiers and Iraq would have become a safe and prosperous nation. Senator John McCain continues to blast Obama for leaving Iraq too quickly.

Following is what actually happened in Iraq.

1. The famous “Surge” led by General David Petraeus was actually greatly aided by formation of “Awakening Council” Sunni militia. These Sunni led militia turned against Sunni extremists such as al-Qaida, and led the fight to defeat Osama bin Laden in Iraq.

2. Newly elected President Barack Obama AGREED TO MAINTAIN a small American military presence in Iraq. However, he insisted that US forces operate under the American Code of Military Justice, and not be subjected to trial in an Iraq court. Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki refused. THIS was the reason no US troops remained in Iraq. John McCain would have gone ballistic if an American President allowed American troops to be tried in Muslim courts!

3. The Obama administration obtained promises from Prime Minister Maliki, a Shiite, that the Sahwa Sunni militia which had fought against al-Qaida would become part of the Iraq armed forces, and Sunnis who fought along with Americans against Osama bin Laden would be paid.

4. Maliki turned against the Sahwa Sunnis, he persecuted Sunnis, and basically disbanded their militia. This led many Sunni militia to become so disgusted they joined groups like the Islamic State. The entire problem currently facing Iraq was caused by the inept, corrupt, lying government of Nouri al-Maliki!

The current situation was NOT caused by American decisions. It was the result of incompetent IRAQ decisions. I challenge any Republican to deny what has just been written!!

Cut The Girls For God

The other day, having nothing better to do I pondered why the practice of mutilating young girls had emerged in several parts of the world. Obviously, most places in the world do not practice a process of mutilating females in order to make them less likely to engage in wanton sexuality with men. Female Genital Mutilation is practiced by in Muslim and Christian areas of Africa and the Middle East or in parts of Pakistan. Of course, it is not done to all girls. Since the Islamic State of Syria and Iraq seized control of northern Iraq, this issue has emerged as a possible threat to young Muslim females. There are reports that ISIS has issued a fatwa which will require all Muslim girls to undergo Female Genital Mutilation in order to “print immoral behavior.”

If cutting sexual organs prevents immoral sexual behavior then how come we don’t mutilate the penis? Oops, I forgot that we Jews, and many Muslims, do slice off a part of the penis. Me included! Funny, it never made me avoid sexual behavior. Heck, if there is an attractive female who wants to make out with this 83 year old Jewish old man, please see me– immediately!

However, there is no joke about subjecting young girls to such brutal behavior.

Say, Whatever Happened To Iraq??

During the past two weeks the world has been focused upon events in Ukraine and in Gaza. World leaders are issuing statements, making claims, offering advice and threatening action if the other side does or does not do something. As our gaze shifts to the Ukraine or to Gaza, our gaze does not shift to Iraq. Hey, remember, there is a war still going on in Iraq. We complain about leaders of Hamas, but what about leaders of the Iraq government? Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki continues to refuse any compromise with Sunni leaders, and has lost confidence of Kurd leaders in Iraq, and ISIS continues to hold large areas of northern Iraq. It amazes me how short is our attention span on any issue in the Middle East. From day one when President George Bush refused UN requests for more time to check out the presence of alleged Weapons of Mass Destruction, the American response to anything connected with Iraq is to blunder along without any logical policy.

Iraq is a greater mess than the situation in Gaza. It is a nation tottering on the brink of collapse. Is ISIS gains control of Iraq this means it possesses the money and power to engage in biological warfare as well as pursue a nuclear component. Is it possible for our State Department to focus on two issues -simultaneously??

How Not To Fight Terrorists

Every so often, in a moment of frustration, my mind lingers in memories of Saddam Hussein. He was a brutal, sadistic murderer who lacked any sense of morality. He was a hedonist whose concept of joy was witnessing the brutal murder of some innocent man or observing fear and horror on the face of a young woman being raped by his savage son. The invasion of Iraq DID end his reign of terror. Unfortunately, it introduced another reign of terror. The American government had five years in which to assist those seeking creation of a modern peaceful Iraq in which all, regardless of religious or non-religious belief could live in harmony and peace. There is no doubt Americans failed to meet any standard of success. We allowed a thug religious fanatic, Nouri al-Maliki to gain power. He inherited an Iraq in which his religious enemies-the Sunnis were cooperating with the US military in crushing al-Qaeda. So, what did Maliki do? Once in power, he proceeded to persecute, jail, and drive from any positions of power Sunnis who had worked to destroy al-Qaeda! Republicans want to blame President Obama for this fiasco. The madness began when President Bush was in power. Obama inherited still one more of the Bush mistakes.

Could Obama had done anything to prevent the tragedy that was to occur? No one knows the answer to that question. Perhaps, there was a moment in 2009 when he could have clamped down on Maliki. He never made any such attempt, most probably fearing it would result in armed response from Shiite groups. So, Maliki persecuted the Sunnis, he drove them into the arms of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria(ISIS). Naturally, Prime Minister Maliki would never accept responsibility for his blunders. So, now what is he doing? Maliki now charges the Kurds with cooperating with ISIS! The Kurdish army is protecting Shiites fleeing from ISIS. They are behaving as an ALLY of Maliki, but he is bent on making them an enemy!

Oh, fifty bodies found in a village south of Baghdad. No doubt the bodies are those of Sunnis. Shot in the head and left to die. The end result is more recruits for ISIS. Retain this man in power and soon all Iraqis will be recalling Saddam Hussein with fond memories of peace.