Please keep flattering me with comparisons to Deane.
And that red line Barry drew? It gets paler by the day. Even the Huffington Post understands that:
'...the Obama administration likely facilitated the rise of ISIS by withdrawing American forces from Iraq prematurely before adequately consolidating the substantial gains of President Bush's 2007 surge. In 2011, the president declared the Iraq War at an end, boasting of leaving behind a stable and self-reliant Iraq. As Dexter Filkins reports in the New Yorker, the Obama administration barely attempted to exert its considerable leverage to achieve a status of forces agreement that would have prolonged a reduced American military presence.
The unconditional withdrawal of American forces created a power vacuum in Iraq which Iran and other radicals filled. It unleashed Iraqi Prime Maliki's worst sectarian instincts, making him more dependent on Iran. It facilitated Iran using Iraq as a conduit to support surrogates in the Syrian Civil War which has blown back to imperil the coherence of the Iraqi state.
...history brims with examples demonstrating how the irresolute use of force risks the worst possible outcomes. Kennedy's Bay of Pigs Fiasco in 1961 tempted Soviet Premier Khrushchev to provoke the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962. Lyndon Johnson's strategy of graduated escalation convinced an implacable North Vietnam the United States lack the will to win. The debacle of Carter's failed rescue mission of the American hostages in Iran plummeted American prestige its Cold War Low. Clinton's precipitous withdrawal from Somalia in 1993 fed the delusion of Osama Bin Laden that the United States was the great but decadent Satan too irresolute the fight.
The United States would save much blood, toil, tears, and sweat defeating ISIS decisively now rather than later. Yet Obama's pinprick response devoid of strategic rationale will invite the maximum contempt for American resolve. The president will compound the risk of miscalculation if he continues to speak loudly while carrying a small stick.
Posted on August 20, 2014 - 03:47 PM