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Thread: DoD Official: Obama's strategy "foolish"; won't work

  1. #1

    DoD Official: Obama's strategy "foolish"; won't work

    Joseph Miller is the pen name for a ranking Department of Defense official with a background in U.S. special operations and combat experience in Iraq and Afghanistan. He has worked in strategic planning.


    After weeks of back and forth, on Wednesday night President Barack Obama outlined his strategy for “degrading” and “destroying” the Islamic State, and on the 13th anniversary of 9/11, Americans were able to finally wake up in a country that had a strategy for the most recent Islamist threat.

    The problem is that the strategy — to provide logistical support for Iraqi forces, limited air strikes, and a strong Free Syrian Army — is a foolish strategy that is unlikely to succeed.

    The president’s strategy calls for U.S. air strikes against Islamic State targets in Iraq and Syria in support of Iraqi army forces and the Free Syrian Army rebels who are fighting the Islamic State on the ground. Obama made it clear that the U.S. military commitment will be limited to air strikes, as he will not order U.S. ground forces into either Iraq or Syria.

    Instead of ground forces, however, the president said that the United States will increase training and logistical support for those armies on the ground, but herein lies a critical flaw: The Iraqis have not proven to be a reliable partner in the war on terrorism. And this, despite ten years of U.S. military training and equipment provided by the United States.

    In Iraq, the Islamic State has swept Iraqi forces in a number of recent engagements, with many Iraqi units simply abandoning their posts and refusing to fight. This problem is not one that can be solved through additional training. Even with the added power and confidence-boost of air strikes, a root issue is sectarianism. On a number of occasions, the Iraqi army failed to fight the Islamic State not simply because of bad officers and cowardice: Sunni units simply did not want to fight fellow Sunnis, even if they were extremists.

    In Syria, our other alleged ally, the Free Syrian Army, is fighting not only the Islamic State, but the Syrian army. And here’s a problem with arming them: It is strictly against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s interest to allow the Free Syrian Army to become strong enough even to challenge the Islamic State, because that would also increase the risk to his regime.

    Given the ruthlessness of his previous moves, it is likely that Assad will continue to order military attacks against the Free Syrian Army rebels at the same time that the United States is trying to build up the capacity of the Free Syrian Army to serve as the ground force component of the Syrian campaign of Obama’s new strategy. And under those conditions, it will be very difficult for the Free Syrian Army to succeed. This obstacle could require the United States to further expand its mission to include attacking the Syrian army in order to allow the Free Syrian Army to combat the Islamic State.

    The president’s end state in Syria remains contingent upon a political solution to the Syrian civil war. This is not likely to happen, and is probably the most serious flaw in the strategy. If there is a political solution, and Assad steps aside, then the theory is that the Syrian army would no longer fight the Free Syrian Army, leaving both armies free to engage the Islamic State.

    But Assad has no reason to step down at the moment. He has used chemical weapons against his own people and ordered military operations in civilian areas that have caused over 160,000 civilian deaths. If he were to step down, he would face charges in the international criminal court for these crimes. He has demonstrated a vicious commitment to remain in power, and will surely fight to the end, with the Free Syrian Army in his scopes the entire time.

    In both Iraq and Syria, the United States lacks a reliable, legitimate ground force that it can support with air strikes in order to defeat the Islamic State. Building the capacity of the ground forces through an advise, assist, and training mission will take a significant amount of time. During this period, the Islamic State will continue to plot and train for terrorist attacks, and Syria will continue down the path of becoming a failed state where Islamic terrorists rule.

    Just like Afghanistan, Sept. 10, 2001.



    Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2014/09/11/penta ... z3D7dADx3t

  2. #2

    Re: DoD Official: Obama's strategy "foolish"; won't work

    Quote Originally Posted by The Tradition
    Joseph Miller is the pen name for a ranking Department of Defense official with a background in U.S. special operations and combat experience in Iraq and Afghanistan. He has worked in strategic planning.


    After weeks of back and forth, on Wednesday night President Barack Obama outlined his strategy for “degrading” and “destroying” the Islamic State, and on the 13th anniversary of 9/11, Americans were able to finally wake up in a country that had a strategy for the most recent Islamist threat.

    The problem is that the strategy — to provide logistical support for Iraqi forces, limited air strikes, and a strong Free Syrian Army — is a foolish strategy that is unlikely to succeed.

    The president’s strategy calls for U.S. air strikes against Islamic State targets in Iraq and Syria in support of Iraqi army forces and the Free Syrian Army rebels who are fighting the Islamic State on the ground. Obama made it clear that the U.S. military commitment will be limited to air strikes, as he will not order U.S. ground forces into either Iraq or Syria.

    Instead of ground forces, however, the president said that the United States will increase training and logistical support for those armies on the ground, but herein lies a critical flaw: The Iraqis have not proven to be a reliable partner in the war on terrorism. And this, despite ten years of U.S. military training and equipment provided by the United States.

    In Iraq, the Islamic State has swept Iraqi forces in a number of recent engagements, with many Iraqi units simply abandoning their posts and refusing to fight. This problem is not one that can be solved through additional training. Even with the added power and confidence-boost of air strikes, a root issue is sectarianism. On a number of occasions, the Iraqi army failed to fight the Islamic State not simply because of bad officers and cowardice: Sunni units simply did not want to fight fellow Sunnis, even if they were extremists.

    In Syria, our other alleged ally, the Free Syrian Army, is fighting not only the Islamic State, but the Syrian army. And here’s a problem with arming them: It is strictly against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s interest to allow the Free Syrian Army to become strong enough even to challenge the Islamic State, because that would also increase the risk to his regime.

    Given the ruthlessness of his previous moves, it is likely that Assad will continue to order military attacks against the Free Syrian Army rebels at the same time that the United States is trying to build up the capacity of the Free Syrian Army to serve as the ground force component of the Syrian campaign of Obama’s new strategy. And under those conditions, it will be very difficult for the Free Syrian Army to succeed. This obstacle could require the United States to further expand its mission to include attacking the Syrian army in order to allow the Free Syrian Army to combat the Islamic State.

    The president’s end state in Syria remains contingent upon a political solution to the Syrian civil war. This is not likely to happen, and is probably the most serious flaw in the strategy. If there is a political solution, and Assad steps aside, then the theory is that the Syrian army would no longer fight the Free Syrian Army, leaving both armies free to engage the Islamic State.

    But Assad has no reason to step down at the moment. He has used chemical weapons against his own people and ordered military operations in civilian areas that have caused over 160,000 civilian deaths. If he were to step down, he would face charges in the international criminal court for these crimes. He has demonstrated a vicious commitment to remain in power, and will surely fight to the end, with the Free Syrian Army in his scopes the entire time.

    In both Iraq and Syria, the United States lacks a reliable, legitimate ground force that it can support with air strikes in order to defeat the Islamic State. Building the capacity of the ground forces through an advise, assist, and training mission will take a significant amount of time. During this period, the Islamic State will continue to plot and train for terrorist attacks, and Syria will continue down the path of becoming a failed state where Islamic terrorists rule.

    Just like Afghanistan, Sept. 10, 2001.



    Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2014/09/11/penta ... z3D7dADx3t
    And so .....?

    Please be specific.

  3. #3

    Re: DoD Official: Obama's strategy "foolish"; won't work

    He clearly wants ground troops but not sure how many Americans he thinks it would take. If this is the direction Congress thinks we should go, they should pass a resolution in support of it.

  4. #4

    Re: DoD Official: Obama's strategy "foolish"; won't work

    Quote Originally Posted by michael222
    He clearly wants ground troops but not sure how many Americans he thinks it would take. If this is the direction Congress thinks we should go, they should pass a resolution in support of it.
    So, just like Iraq, 2003. Glad he has fresh ideas.

  5. #5

    Re: DoD Official: Obama's strategy "foolish"; won't work

    Who had "1 Day" on the amount of time it took Republicans to start complaining about Obama agreeing to do what they wanted in Iraq?
    King Jackass

  6. #6

    Re: DoD Official: Obama's strategy "foolish"; won't work

    Of course it won't work. This region is beyond our control. All we're going to do is cost more American lives, blow through hundreds of billions, and be entrenched back in Iraq indefinitely. And even if we do take out ISIS, once we pull out some other extremist group will form to fill the void.

  7. #7

    Re: DoD Official: Obama's strategy "foolish"; won't work

    Quote Originally Posted by Belem
    Who had "1 Day" on the amount of time it took Republicans to start complaining about Obama agreeing to do what they wanted in Iraq?

    It took me about two seconds after Obama said the U.S. military ground response would consist of a grand total of 475 "advisers".

  8. #8

    Re: DoD Official: Obama's strategy "foolish"; won't work

    Quote Originally Posted by The Tradition
    Quote Originally Posted by Belem
    Who had "1 Day" on the amount of time it took Republicans to start complaining about Obama agreeing to do what they wanted in Iraq?

    It took me about two seconds after Obama said the U.S. military ground response would consist of a grand total of 475 "advisers".
    Besides for being a bad idea, how many Republicans have the balls to call for US troops - 3? You're the guy taking glee in the unpopularity of Obama's foreign policy.

  9. #9

    Re: DoD Official: Obama's strategy "foolish"; won't work



    NEW US airstrikes on Syria will restore peace in the region with no further complications, rubble or death.

    Precision bombing of ISIS targets is expected to bring democracy, rights for women and a thriving free-market economy to the region by the end of the month.

    President Obama has requested non-terrorists in the region to remove themselves to a place of safety for the next fortnight.

    He continued: “There’s only one tried-and-tested way to get rid of radicals, and that’s bombing them from 30,000ft in the air.

    “We’ve got plenty of experience in this area, trust us. You don’t go to war in Vietnam, Afghanistan, Iraq, Iraq, or Iraq without learning a few things.

    “Best of all, our work comes with the USA’s famous five-year guarantee.

    “In the unlikely event that your region descends almost immediately into a hellhole of recrimination and infighting, we’ll get back to you with some more bombs as soon as we can.”

  10. #10

    Re: DoD Official: Obama's strategy "foolish"; won't work

    The Brits and Germans won't fly over Syria. Apparently they respect sovereignty more than we do. Apparently several countries have refused to join the coalition.

  11. #11

    Re: DoD Official: Obama's strategy "foolish"; won't work

    Quote Originally Posted by Huey Grey
    ....even if we do take out ISIS, once we pull out some other extremist group will form to fill the void.
    We could always install a strongman. 8-)

    You know, someone who could tamp down on all the nastiness, and not have to be concerned with western values and rules of war getting in the way.


    Seriously I don't know what the answer is. Iraq needs some kind of stable unity govt, according to 'our' rules. But they hated each other too much to form one; maybe now if their backs are against the walls they would take that seriously. It's funny how so much of what WE try to get people over there to do our way doesn't work. They had an army under Saddam what actually fought like hell when matched against an equivalent force from Iran. But then we disband that army, and try to train one of our own. It's much better equipped, but yet it drops its weapons and cuts and runs when facing a much inferior force from ISIS.......WTH?

  12. #12

    Re: DoD Official: Obama's strategy "foolish"; won't work

    Quote Originally Posted by Huey Grey
    Of course it won't work. This region is beyond our control. All we're going to do is cost more American lives, blow through hundreds of billions, and be entrenched back in Iraq indefinitely. And even if we do take out ISIS, once we pull out some other extremist group will form to fill the void.
    This

    We need to get the hell out of the middle east. Let them solve their own problems. We have only made matters worse with each successive intervention.

  13. #13

    Re: DoD Official: Obama's strategy "foolish"; won't work

    Quote Originally Posted by Spearchucker87
    Quote Originally Posted by Huey Grey
    ....even if we do take out ISIS, once we pull out some other extremist group will form to fill the void.
    We could always install a strongman. 8-)

    You know, someone who could tamp down on all the nastiness, and not have to be concerned with western values and rules of war getting in the way.


    Seriously I don't know what the answer is. Iraq needs some kind of stable unity govt, according to 'our' rules. But they hated each other too much to form one; maybe now if their backs are against the walls they would take that seriously. It's funny how so much of what WE try to get people over there to do our way doesn't work. They had an army under Saddam what actually fought like hell when matched against an equivalent force from Iran. But then we disband that army, and try to train one of our own. It's much better equipped, but yet it drops its weapons and cuts and runs when facing a much inferior force from ISIS.......WTH?
    The answer to this is pretty straight forward. The only people who were allowed to serve in the Army are the Shiites. They don't really want to serve in northern Iraq as it is mostly Sunni. So, when ISIS began their assault, the troops were basically like, "Screw this, I'm not defending them from themselves."

    One idea that I really like coming out is an Iraqi Sunni "National Guard" so troops of the appropriate sect are assigned to like-minded areas.

  14. #14

    Re: DoD Official: Obama's strategy "foolish"; won't work

    Interesting, I didn't know it was only Shiites allowed in the army. I did know that when ISIS swept through some of these Suni areas, the populace felt so oppressed by the majority shia govt that they were more than willing to get in league with ISIS. So I guess in some cases it was not just "why defend them from themselves", it was more like "Woah......the people I was sent here to 'protect' are joining in the fight against me"

  15. #15

    Re: DoD Official: Obama's strategy "foolish"; won't work

    Quote Originally Posted by Huey Grey
    Of course it won't work. This region is beyond our control. All we're going to do is cost more American lives, blow through hundreds of billions, and be entrenched back in Iraq indefinitely. And even if we do take out ISIS, once we pull out some other extremist group will form to fill the void.
    I hate to admit it, but I agree.

  16. #16

    Re: DoD Official: Obama's strategy "foolish"; won't work

    Quote Originally Posted by Spearchucker87
    Quote Originally Posted by Huey Grey
    ....even if we do take out ISIS, once we pull out some other extremist group will form to fill the void.
    We could always install a strongman. 8-)

    You know, someone who could tamp down on all the nastiness, and not have to be concerned with western values and rules of war getting in the way.


    Seriously I don't know what the answer is. Iraq needs some kind of stable unity govt, according to 'our' rules. But they hated each other too much to form one; maybe now if their backs are against the walls they would take that seriously. It's funny how so much of what WE try to get people over there to do our way doesn't work. They had an army under Saddam what actually fought like hell when matched against an equivalent force from Iran. But then we disband that army, and try to train one of our own. It's much better equipped, but yet it drops its weapons and cuts and runs when facing a much inferior force from ISIS.......WTH?
    As much as we hated Saddam he did relieve us of many of these problems. He kept all these extremist at bay and served as no real threat to the U.S. and we didn't have to pay him a single nickel for these services. That's not excusing the massive prick that he was but as far as our interests went, Saddam did serve as a guard dog in that region.

  17. #17

    Re: DoD Official: Obama's strategy "foolish"; won't work

    Not confirmed... it's something I heard during a round table discussion on NPR.

    You will note that ISIS slaughtered any Army troops they could catch.

  18. #18

    Re: DoD Official: Obama's strategy "foolish"; won't work

    And when I say that Saddam served no real threat I mean in terms of him being able to attack us. He was a definite political and potential oil threat. But he simply did not have the capabilities to attack us.

  19. #19

    Re: DoD Official: Obama's strategy "foolish"; won't work

    [quote=The Tradition]
    Quote Originally Posted by Spearchucker87
    Quote Originally Posted by "Huey Grey":18nkep94
    ....even if we do take out ISIS, once we pull out some other extremist group will form to fill the void.
    We could always install a strongman. 8-)

    You know, someone who could tamp down on all the nastiness, and not have to be concerned with western values and rules of war getting in the way.


    Seriously I don't know what the answer is. Iraq needs some kind of stable unity govt, according to 'our' rules. But they hated each other too much to form one; maybe now if their backs are against the walls they would take that seriously. It's funny how so much of what WE try to get people over there to do our way doesn't work. They had an army under Saddam what actually fought like hell when matched against an equivalent force from Iran. But then we disband that army, and try to train one of our own. It's much better equipped, but yet it drops its weapons and cuts and runs when facing a much inferior force from ISIS.......WTH?
    The answer to this is pretty straight forward. The only people who were allowed to serve in the Army are the Shiites. They don't really want to serve in northern Iraq as it is mostly Sunni. So, when ISIS began their assault, the troops were basically like, "Screw this, I'm not defending them from themselves."

    One idea that I really like coming out is an Iraqi Sunni "National Guard" so troops of the appropriate sect are assigned to like-minded areas.[/quote:18nkep94]

    I am going to tear down your safe space
    Brick by brick I shall smash it with glee
    You cannot stop me from getting inside
    I am cold and I am hard and my name is 'Reality'

  20. #20

    Re: DoD Official: Obama's strategy "foolish"; won't work

    Quote Originally Posted by Huey Grey
    As much as we hated Saddam he did relieve us of many of these problems. He kept all these extremist at bay and served as no real threat to the U.S. and we didn't have to pay him a single nickel for these services. That's not excusing the massive prick that he was but as far as our interests went, Saddam did serve as a guard dog in that region.

    And you probably wouldn't desert from the army under Saddam, even if you were a shia being asked to fight for Suni areas. I imagine he cut that practice out just about alltogether.....probably amounted to a death sentence.

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