Middle East Aflame
A New Red Line In Syria
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  • rheddles

    isn’t this is a curious thing to say?

    Not when it’s part of a religious creed.

    • gabrielsyme

      Yep, not when you’re more interested in securing your political base (when you can’t even run for re-election!) than actually acheiving victory.

      See also: Afghanistan, Iraq withdrawals.

  • Nevis07

    “Given that some U.S. troops are already on the ground, isn’t this is a curious thing to say? And even if this sort of thing was tacitly agreed to by all the parties,
    is there any need to telegraph this kind of information to the enemy?”

    I had the same thought when read the quote, but Obama and his administration have always put their domestic polling above national and defense priorities.

    • S.C. Schwarz

      Exactly. With Obama and his crew everything, repeat everything, is politics. Seeing American citizens repeatedly beheaded on TV is disturbing the electorate, so we see a few pinprick airstrikes, some bellicose rhetoric (‘gates of hell”), and some Hellfire missiles. But the progressive base is functionally pacifist so nothing serious will be done.

  • gabrielsyme

    It also seems at last to be open to arming the Free Syrian Army.

    Firstly, the US and other Western nations have already trained and armed various FSA factions, only to see many of those arms and trained soldiers end up within ISIS.

    I am, once again, flummoxed by TAI’s continuing support for arming the FSA. There seems to be a view that the FSA is some sort of fairy army from fairy-land that will defeat ISIS, defeat the Syrian Army without committing any sort of war crimes, and then, rather than engage in any punitive punishment of the Alawite community, establish a lovely pro-Western liberal democracy in Syria. This is the very definition of magical thinking.

    As, has been amply shown, the FSA is a somewhat artificial group of shifting factions, many of have been quite happy to collaborate and even join the al-Nusra Front and ISIS. Apart from this, the main enemy of the various FSA factions is the Syrian Army. The Syrian Army is the main opposition to ISIS in Syria. Supporting the FSA will inevitably result in depleting the capacity of the Syrian Army to fight ISIS. It is hard to see how arming the FSA will, on the whole, hurt ISIS.

    Even if, by some tactical miracle, various insurgents and jihadist factions under the banner of the FSA were to defeat both the Syrian Army and ISIS, we would still have a Libya-like situation of powerful armed factions attempting to govern a geographically, ideologically, ethnically and religiously-divided country. Given the extreme hatred of the Alawites and other religious/ethnic groups within the various FSA factions, such a victory could very well usher in pogroms, ethnic cleansing and even genocide. This is a very real risk, and one that we should not increase.

  • Jacksonian_Libertarian

    This is the weakest President in American History, and America will eventually have to pay for that weakness with the blood of American troops. Obama’s weakness is encouraging strategic overreach in every Authoritarian nation on Earth, and it is going to take American treasure and blood to put the filth back in its cage.

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