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They say that the beginning of wisdom lies in recognizing the facts.

Let me start by saying that the title of this piece does not reflect my personal opinion. I believe no matter what you call them, ISIS, ISIL, or the Islamic State, that these barbaric maniacs are everyone’s problem.

It is easy to write and express one’s opinion but it is a totally different kettle of fish if you were the person that had to send young men and woman into war.

Most wars are started by nations look to their own self-interest in the final analysis. Greed – the desire for more power and more territory.

* Religious idealism * Corrupt governments * Discontent and poverty * starts wars.

This war has all the ingredients combined into one.

If you don’t believe me watch one of the beheadings they perform on video for the entertainment of the masses.  If you don’t think ISIS is our enemy TODAY, you are seriously misguided and potentially delusional.

The question is how do we stop them from driving around flying black flags and saying, ‘Hey, come blow us up’…

Is it too late, and will more violence only embed the current positions? ( Leaving a cesspool of frustrated terrorist armed to the teeth to fight it out between themselves.)

Should we say we’ve done enough damage and all that can be done now is bomb them.

Is it naive, the obtuse or the dishonest to believe (or profess to believe) that trying harder will have the slightest chance of producing a different and more favorable outcome?

Twenty-three years after Operation Desert Storm laid the basis for George H.W. Bush’s ‘new world order’ and 11 years after George W. Bush went his father one better by capturing Baghdad itself — ‘Mission Accomplished’ —

The Iraq war has resumed in the form of a small-scale but apparently open-ended air campaign.

As the United States and its Coalition partners moves into the eighth week of its bombing campaign against the Islamic State, we still have little info about the scope, duration and cost both in human terms and financial, or what will be in place when ISIS is destroyed?

Is there or should there be any strategic objective? Other than U.S. weapons being used on both sides.

Libya is an example of the disasters that U.S. wars leave behind them — a war, by the way, with U.S. weapons used on both sides, and a war launched on the pretext of a claim well documented to have been false that Gaddafi was threatening to massacre civilians.

The answer is that there is no long-term strategy. 

The present military of bombing is just a substitute for strategy, indeed, for acknowledging the fact that nearly a quarter-century of military involvement in Iraq and in the Middle East more generally has produced next to nothing of value.

Regardless of how well we do the job it is quite obvious that the Iraqi government isn’t going to be able to hold up. With another x amount of years of war and it is certain that any little hope of forging any durable political order will be destroyed.

Together with its neighbor Syria ( supported by Moscow who suspects Washington’s ulterior motive is removal of its ally, Syria’s President Bashar Al Assad) like Syria it will end up as waste land of religious fractions fighting it out over what ever oil is left.

So where are we to-day. 

Today, ISIS and al-Qaeda compete for influence over Islamist extremist groups around the world. Some experts believe ISIS may overtake al-Qaeda as the most influential group in this area globally.

Isis now controls territory the size of the UK, it is making £600,000 a day from oil and has a fighting force of 10,000 militants, according to a leading expert.

Isis offers fighters more money than any group in the region – $400 (£243) a month – and offers more military equipment, to boot. Isis is trading of antiquities, some up to 8,000 years old, from which they are thought to have made around $36 million (£21.8 million) from just one region of Syria. ISIS is selling oil by the barrel on the black market for between $25 and $65 (£15 and £40), the terror group is thought to be raking in around $2 million (£1.2 million) a day.

From Syria they could be making double or even triple that.

There is no doubt the ‘Islamic State’ poses a danger of sorts to USA and Europe but the danger is negligible.

The United States plans to train and arm an initial 5,000 Syrian rebels, but this would not be a sufficient number to retake territory seized by the Islamic State.

The longer we wait to annihilate these barbaric monsters, the heavier the cost will be.

To have any chance the U.S. would need to train between 12,000 and 15,000, the costs would likely run between $200 and $320 million per month, This adds up to $2.4 to $3.8 billion per year. The deployment of 25,000 U.S. troops on the ground, as some have recommended, costs would likely reach $1.1 to $1.8 billion per month, and $13 to $22 billion annually.

All wonderful for the arms industry.

Even if this was to happen and ISIS were wiped off the face of the earth there will be a need to leave troops and supporting structure in place for decades to avoid repeating the mistakes of unleashes responses beyond the control of the actors as now is all too evident.

This is exactly how ISIS came into existence in the first place.

The U.S. and its junior partners destroyed Iraq, left a sectarian division, poverty, desperation, and an illegitimate government in Baghdad that did not represent Sunnis or other groups.

While the Syrian government declared war on its own people.  Almost 200,000 people had already died in this conflict, and 3 million made homeless it is no wonder that we have given birth to a monster called ISIS.

President Obama, recently said, “We don’t have a strategy yet for fighting ISIS.” He acknowledged that a group like ISIS “is beyond the pale; that they have no vision or ideology beyond violence and chaos and the slaughter of innocent people. And as a consequence, we got to all join together – even if we have differences on a range of political issues – to make sure that they’re rooted out.

I would respectively point out that ISIS is in possession of U.S. weaponry provided directly to it in Syria and seized from the Iraqi government.

The U.S. armed and  trained ISIS and allied groups in Syria, while continuing to prop up the Baghdad government, providing Hellfire missiles with which to attack Iraqis in Fallujah and elsewhere.

At last count by the U.S. government, 79% of weapons transferred to Middle Eastern governments come from the United States, not counting transfers to groups like ISIS, and not counting weapons in the possession of the United States.

You don’t have to be a General or Military expert to see that unless the world mounts a massive ground offensive ISIS will not be defeated. They will melt into what is left of the civilian population and the vast territorial lands they now hold.

The sooner they feel the full force of the world led by American (who has the largest obligation to retake the arms they brought or gave to the region) the sooner we can move to a peaceful solution and an eventual victory over radical Islamic terror that wants to control the world.

It entails destroying the Syria’s Assad regime, and shoring up the Afghanistan’s new President Ashraf Ghani who recently took office in the country’s first democratic transfer of power, making a pledge to stamp out corruption and calling for peace with the Taliban insurgents who marked the day with a fresh attack in Kabul.

After all blood and treasure spent in Afghanistan US delegation to Ghani inauguration will not include any cabinet members.”

My suggestion is grow-up and face the reality.

Washington refuses to consider working with Russia as long as Moscow insists that U.S. strikes need Syrian and U.N. approval.

Our, and the USA  only choice is to kill them before they kill us. If not the United States would be better served simply to butt out and leave it to the Regional powers such as Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Iran who are more directly threatened and in a far better positioned to deal with it. What a blood bath that would be.

The Big question as always is what will we leave in place if and when ISIS is destroyed. What are the desired end state in both Iraq and Syria, not to mention Afghanistan?

Bombing nations into ruins, and shipping more arms that will eventual turn up on our door steps is no solution.

Removing Inequality/poverty, with education, healthy and fair trade, is the long-term resolution to the worlds sorry state.

As I said at the start of this post God forbid any of us had to order young lives into a war. I like all of us can only hope and offer our sincere sympathy with those that have already losses their liver and love ones.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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