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Total number of comments: 532 (since 2013-11-28 15:36:09)


Showing comments 300 - 201

  • Top Five Washington Assumptions on Mideast that Are not True
    • Yes, on Oct. 3, Bacevich wrote an oped in the Washington Post critical of Obama's bombing campaign against ISIS in Syria. He made a lot of sense because Syria is a nightmare with no easy solutions. However, Obama sending 3,000 military advisors to aid the Iraqis regaining control of their country isn't exactly "Iraq War 3.0." It's risky but so is withdrawing. Both moves have downsides.

      I'm not the same Jack as the initial poster.

  • Top 5 Ways Obama Punked the GOP on Immigration; and the 2016 Campaign
    • It's difficult for me to have much sympathy for the 70% of the American public who supported the war in Iraq. I think they just wanted payback against Muslims for 9/11.Ditto for the public trying to wash their hands of the whole mess by blaming George Bush. The question wasn't about WMDs, but did Saddam Hussein have the delivery systems to attack a country on the other side of planet Earth? That was simply impossible.

      Hillary Clinton supported the war in Iraq.
      John Kerry supported the war in Iraq.
      Joe Biden supported the war in Iraq.

      George didn't fool them.

      Wars have unintended consequences. More wars being one of them. The American taxpayer will have to pay for those.

    • Politically speaking, Obama made the right move. Without a strong Latino vote in 2016 the Dems might be in trouble, Hillary or no Hillary. This gives the Republicans no choice but to come out swinging and after their TOTAL victory in November, the pubs are good with that.

      This hurts Jeb and helps Christie.

      Christie vs. Hillary 2016....WWIII...Who gets hit first-- Iran or Russia?

  • The Historical Drivers of Modern Day Developments in Iraq (Cole Interview)
    • Does ISISILIQ/Daesh/ whatever constitute one of the "great macro social movements of the area?"

      Nope, the U.S. will bomb their 'lil podunk organization with mucho Obombs over the next two years. The UN reports said ISIS has enough "light weapons" and ammunition to last 6 months to 2 years, but it also said some of the US weapons were too complex for them to operate.


      American politicians want a real war.

      Just in time for the next presidential election. If Sheldon Adelson's $100 mil. gets a Republican elected, we will go to war with a real country--Iran.

      If Hillary gets elected, it'll might not be nucular combat but it will be "toe-to-toe with the Rooskies."

  • American Public's Rewards for voting GOP control of Congress (Political Cartoon)
    • "YES War"

      70% of the American public supported the war in Iraq. They like what the Republicans have to offer. "Shock and Awe" had a German name in WWII----BLITZKRIEG!!!

      The Republican comeback from disaster has happened before. Ronald Reagan was elected just six years after Nixon resigned.

  • Top 5 Ways Daesh/ ISIL is Losing, as it lashes out like a Cornered Rat
    • "the populations are dead against more wars"

      It's never difficult for Republican politicians to convince their followers of the need to fight at least one more war. Most of them still think invading Iraq was the right thing to do and George was a misunderstood war president.John McCain and many Republicans believe we had the war in Iraq won until Obama withdrew all of the troops.

      They're easy.

    • Daesh recklessly overextended themselves and is paying the price for such foolishness. Perhaps, American air power and Iraqi forces will be able to keep pushing hard and collapse ISIS lines before they can be stabilized.

      What's bad for ISIS is also bad for the Republican hopes of starting a bigger conflict in Iraq and eventually with Iran. The Republican "ISIS now, Iran later" war plan just hit a big bump in the road.

      Plan B time for the Republicans.

  • Daesh (ISIL) Loses Refinery City in Iraq to Iraqi Army, Shiite Militias
    • These extremely high estimates of Daesh fighters are just propaganda aimed at keeping the public scared about terrorism. The Vietnam scenario is far fetched because sending tens of thousands of U.S. troops back to Iran would mean a war against the Shittes, not ISIS.

      Muqtada al-Sadr would cut loose with the Mahdi army one more time. American troops would be sitting ducks for IEDs and other surprise attacks. Did you see the parade of Mahdi army fighters? They looked like the Ferguson Police Dept. Weapons out the kazoo and they LOVE to fight Americans.

    • p.s. Gen. Shinseki said "several hundred thousand troops" would be needed for long term occupation--300.000-400,000 or so. Rummy and Wolfowitz thought 150,000 would be enough. A lot of military people had no doubt Rummy's "unknown, unknown" lowball estimate would turn into a disaster. They were right.

      "Our iddy-biddy imperial army" was the name a military friend used to describe Rummy's invasion-lite force.

      Same country, but a much different situation with Daesh.

    • I don't think the U.S. is on the losing end at all. Daesh looks weaker and weaker even in Anbar province. Why did they murder all those young Sunni men in broad daylight and leave their bodies in the middle of the street? If they had real control of Anbar, ISIS would not need to take such extreme and RISKY measures against SUNNIS. They don't have control because ISIS is overextended and losing on several fronts.

      Locals know the culture and the language, so I'll be surprised if Obama sends any combat troops. They won't be needed to route these ragmuffin buncha "midgets." By the end of next summer ISIS will be history in Iraq and Baghdadi will be dead.

      And no big war for those evil, war luvin' Republicans. Man, they are such a nasty tribe.

    • This isn't Vietnam. ISIS can't hide in the jungle. They just had a real bad week. Not only did ISIS lose this refinery town, but several ISIS commanders were also killed by a U.S. bombing attack.From the article..."It is perhaps the most significant military loss since Daesh took 40% of Iraq in early June, 2014."Not being able to defend this town means ISIS is weaker than I thought.

      Domestic politics are a huge concern. If Obama backs away from ISIS in Iraq the Republicans would have a field day claiming he was weak on national security. They would not only blame Obama but the whole democratic party the same way it happened in 1980 with The Raygun and Jimmy Carter.There is nothing worse for a president or a party than being labeled weak on national security---NOTHING. ISIS just beheaded another American. If Obama backs off, the Republicans will CRUCIFY him and claim he's being just as weak with Iran on nuclear negotiations. The Lobby will jump in and attack Obama like a buncha sharks.

      He'll take a beating like Jimmy Carter did. The dems better be very careful.

    • In Baghdad, Gen. Dempsey speaks the truth. He called ISIS "midgets" and said they were on their "back foot" meaning momentum was already turning against them. It's only a matter of time before U.S. air power along with the Iraqi army and Shiite militias slowly strangled ISIS.By the end of next summer, there won't be much of ISIS left in Iraq and the Republicans won't have a reason to call for combat troops and start a much bigger war.

      Iran will be their next target.

    • Barzani's Chief of Staff said ISIS was able to mobilize "hundreds of thousands" of young Arab fighters and he said that right after Gen. Dempsey made the comment about sending US combat troops to Iraq. Wonder if Barzani will stop the Kurds from breaking away if he can talk Dempsey into sending troops and heavy weapons to Kurdistan?

      If ISIS has so many men, why aren't they making big gains or any gains at all? How does ISIS plan to pay all these troops?

      Why is Gen. Dempsey talking about sending troops when bombing oil facilities would be the easiest way to cut their revenue and limit ISIS expansion?

    • It almost sounds like Gen. Dempsey might be setting the stage for a BIG BATTLE of Mosul like the BIG BATTLE of Kandahar Gen. McChrystal tried to pull of in Obama's "war of necessity."

    • Daesh is losing ground on different fronts so Gen. Dempsey's comment about the U.S. considering sending ground troops to Iraq doesn't quite add up. Perhaps, the general will let the public know more when he gets back from Baghdad. Will he recommend Obama IMMEDIATELY send 10,000-20,000 combat troops to keep Baghdad from being overrun?

  • Top 5 Disasters If GOP Senate derails Iran talks
    • You can imagine what would happen if Obama had not have taken forceful action in Iraq.The Republicans would "slam dunk" Obama over ISIS which make it easier for them to block nuclear talks with Iran.

      Obama would get the Jimmy Carter treatment.

  • Why it Isn't that Important Whether ISIL Leader was Killed
    • Ok, thanks for the response. This might blow up in Obama's face and I could be wrong, but the war party is a scary bunch. I was wrong about Assad in Syria. Like Dr. Cole says---"too many moving parts."

      If Obama backed away, he'd get blasted like Jimmy Carter. It would be 1980 all over again except today those Republicans are itching for a big war.

      OUR barbarians just broke the gate down.

    • If this doesn't work, don't you fear the Republicans winning the White House in 2016 and sending tens of thousands of U.S. troops back to Iraq? To me, that is the biggest danger.

      I must be missing something. BIG.

      I don't trust Obama, but I fear the Republican war mongers and the neocons.

    • p.s. I also wonder if John McCain will be singing a certain Beach Boy song about bombing ISIS the same he did about Iran? If Baghdadi is dead, the next time McCain is on the tube some reporter ought to ask him to celebrate the occasion by singing a few bars.

      Show a cli[p of the original first.

    • U.S. Central Command summed up why these attacks are important..."This strike demonstrates the pressure we continue to place on the IS terrorist network and the group's increasingly limited freedom to manoeuvre, communicate and command."

      Continuous pressure from the air and on land will cause ISIS in Iraq to collapse. Don't let up or give them a break.

      I wonder what John McCain thinks now? It was a bleak day for Baghdadi and a bad one for all the Republican war mongers.

  • When will US admit Boots on Ground in Iraq (3000 Troops)?
    • We do have an interest in a stable Middle East. ISIS is setting off chaos is Syria, Iraq, Turkey and Lebanon. Obama is doing the right thing. If he backs off and ISIS expands, the Republicans will blame him and start down the road to war.

      We can arm and train the Iraqis OR if the Republicans win in 2016 they will send tens of thousands of American combat troops back to Iraq---REAL BOOTS ON THE GROUND AND A REAL WAR.

      Take your pick.....A or B?

    • The public was up to their eyeballs with Obama using weasel words and Orwellian diction. That's what he does. Last Tuesday was their payback. Claiming ISIL is a dire threat to national security is ridiculous in the extreme. However, ISIL is destabilizing a large part of the Middle East in Syria and Iraq as well as southeastern Turkey with the Kurds and now Lebanon by promoting conflict between Sunnis and Shia in the north. People who have doubts about ISIL should watch that 20 minute video about Hezbollah and ISIL. They are very good at starting civil conflicts.

      Sending 1500 more troops to rebuild Maliki's "corrupt and incompetent ghost army" is much better than the Republicans sending American troops by the tens of thousands to actually fight ISIL in Iraq and Syria. If that happens, they won't be coming back.

  • Can Hizbullah save Lebanon from ISIL?
  • Why McCain & GOP are Slamming Obama for Writing Iran re: ISIL
    • Obama just sent 1,500 more military advisors to Iraq because they were needed to train the Iraqi army for their spring offensive against ISIS.

      Last week, Grand Ayatollah Sistani came out in favor of arming the moderate Sunnis.

      Yesterday came word of Obama's secret letter to the Supreme Leader of Iran.

      All of this points to a military solution to the ISIS gangsters.

      McCain and Jennifer Rubin have already blasted Obama for corresponding with Iran. They tie in ISIS in Syria with ISIS in Iraq for one reason: Syria means Assad and that leads to IRAN. Listen to what McCain says about Obama not arming the moderate Syria fighters. Bibi Netanyahu doesn't give a rat's a.. about ISIS. Those gangsters don't mean squat to him.

      IRAN IS THE REAL TARGET and that's why this letter started them HOWLING.

      Sending thousands of troops to Iraq is perfect for the neos. Iran is next door. The neocons aren't in to little wars.

    • Besides a nuclear deal, Obama might be trying to get Iran to join the fight against ISIS in Iraq. I would think that would offer some protection against all the warriors in the Republican party.

      OTOH, if Iran chooses to accelerate their nuclear programs, the Republicans and Israel will make them pay dearly. There is absolutely no way they can win the war that will be sure to come. Jennifer Rubin, the neocon at the Washington Post, wrote a whole column blasting Obama for contacting the Supreme Leader. McCain and Rubin going off on Obama for sending a secret letter means he hit a very sensitive spot.

      Ditto for Obama sending 1,500 military advisors to Iraq. The Republicans do not want Obama to launch an offensive, especially one with Iran, that will cause ISIS to crack and drive them out of Mosul and Iraq. That's why McCain went on and on trying to link ISIS in Syria with Iraq.

      If Obama crushes ISIS in the next two years and Iran plays a part that would ruin all the war mongers plans.

    • A secret letter linking a nuclear deal to Iran's help in defeating ISIS in Iraq puts the Republicans in a very awkward position. That's the reason McCain spoke mostly about Syria, not Iraq. This does give the Republican led Congress an excuse to reject Obama's authorization of the war against ISIS, but if Iranian aid helps defeat the ISIS gangsters, it will show that McCain and the Republicans were just playing politics.

      Who is really playing footsie?

  • Top 5 Reasons Obama is Seeking Congressional Approval for War on ISIL
    • Door #2. It's like Joni Ernst and poor hogs. It castrates the Republican war mongers for the next two years. No matter what the Republicans do they won't be able to talk up escalating the war against ISIS until after the 2016 election. By then, over the next two years, Iraqi forces, Shia, Kurds and Sunnis, backed by American air power should be able to maul ISIS. They don't have the military capability to withstand a sustained offensive by well trained and armed Iraqi forces, especially with no air power.

      A 'lil bit of door # 4 is good. Throwing a pigeon among the cats ain't a bad strategy. The antiwar Republicans won't have to go into battle on an empty stomach or declawed.

  • The Pressure to Escalate: How Washington governs by Whipping up Paranoia
    • "Everyone seems to agree that any prerequisite for any struggle to defeat the Islamic State is a "unity" government that could begin to woo back the alienated, oppressed Sunni population of northern Iraq. That, however is simply not in the cards."

      Grand Ayatollah Sistani would not agree with that statement.

      "In response to this fact on the ground, Washington has only one conceivable option: further escalation." How does Englehardt know this fact?

      Sistani called for arming the Sunnis because a sustain coordinated offensive with Kurds, Shia , Sunnis and American airpower is needed to degrade ISIS BEFORE the war party in control of Congress DEMANDS Obama send in American troops. THAT'S A FACT.

      Englehardt saying "simply not in the cards" is a perfect excuse for the Republicans to send in the troops.

  • How a Republican Congress could Entangle the US further in the Middle East
    • Scott Ritter said Bill Clinton knew Saddam Hussein had already destroyed his WMD before he attacked Iraq in 1998. Hillary had to know Saddam's WMD were gone when she voted for the neoconservative war in Iraq five years later.

      Ritter was proven correct about Saddam's lack of WMDs.

      Barack Obama tried to bamboozle the American public into believing his bs about the"war of necessity" in Afghanistan. He's too intelligent to have been convinced of the necessity himself. The David's COIN strategy was really aimed at turning Afghanistan into an American colony.

  • Ebola's not the First Racial Germ Panic: The Long History of Xenophobia and Scapegoating
    • Scott Brown said Ebola, illegal immigration and Muslim terrorism was "all connected."

      If the pubbies win big tomorrow, they'll claim ISIS suicide bombers with Ebola are planning to jump out of planes.

  • US Dilemma in Syria: Moderate Stronghold Falls to al-Qaeda, Fighters desert to Extremists
    • The ISIS leader who had to leave Mosul and return to Syria is missing out on the good times. Lining people up and executing them as well as a female sex slave market. If they still have their teeth, green and blue eyed young females sell for the highest price. They are for real BARBARIANS.

      It's much tougher in Syria.

      Supporting the moderate rebel forces in Syria as well as arming the Sunnis in Iraq is still the best option. If that doesn't happen, ISIS and the Succor Front will continue to roll.

  • Iraq: US dismayed Shiite Gov't hasn't Armed Sunni Tribes fighting ISIL
    • Unfortunately, The David's surge in Iraq worked well enough to convince Obama that Afghanistan really was a "war of necessity." He didn't listen to all the informed people who knew lots more about Afghanistan than Petraeus. The terrain and the different ethnic makeup made The David's COIN strategy a longshot at best. That's the reason Petraeus bailed out of the military so quickly. He didn't want a failure on his record because The David planned a smooth transition into national politics. In baseball, he would have been a smooth switch hitter.

      The New York Times is reporting a coordinated spring offensive is being planned by Iraq and the U.S. It's designed to cut ISIS supply lines and isolate them in Mosul.

  • Iraq: Grand Ayatollah Sistani joins Hagel in calling for Arming Sunni Tribes of al-Anbar
    • Sistani has warned against Shia fighters committing violence against innocent Sunnis. At he same time, he realizes ISIS doesn't negotiate and there can be no diplomatic solution. Western Iraq is similar to Kobani. If ISIS wins they slaughter the losers and move on to the next target. ISIS is using mass murder to intimidate other Sunni tribes in Anbar province.

      The biggest problem is really one of coordination between Shia, Sunnis and Americans. ISIS could be attacked on several different fronts until they are weakened substantially and can't expand. ISIS needs a constant supply of troops, weapons and money. A coordinated effort like the allies used against the Nazis in WWII or U.S.Grant used to defeat the Confederacy would probably be the best out of a list of bad options. If that doesn't happen, Iraq will be facing the same kind of nightmare as Syria with different factions fighting each other for years to come.

    • Grand Ayatollah Sistani is the most powerful man in Iraq, no question. In January, 2004, Sistani forced the Bush administration to allow one man, one vote by putting on two demonstrations. The first one, 30,000 marching in Basra. The very next day, 100,000 marched in Baghdad. The message was clear, if Sistani wanted half a million men marching on the streets, they would be lined up at the crack of dawn. The Bush gang had no choice but to roll over for Sistani.

      That was the real story of the purple thumb election.

      The Grand Ayatollah Ali Sistani..."You MUST protect the lives of innocent Iraqi citizens and safeguard their souls and their property, whatever their religious affiliation. They have been given to you for safekeeping, so make them feel secure. BEWARE, BEWARE lest any hand be raised against them, or their property, or lest anyone among them comes to harm; THAT IS A MORTAL SIN."

      In other words, any Shia who doesn't heed the warning of the Grand Ayatollah Ali Sistani WILL BURN IN HELL.

      Those ISIS gangsters should be VERY worried.

  • Turkey allows Kurdish Peshmerga to Cross to Kobane
    • Patrick Cockburn skirts around the question because he doesn't know what will happen to ISIS if they are forced to retreat from Kobani? He changes the subject and starts talking about the Civil War in Iraq.

      Just a few weeks ago, everybody was talking about the imminent fall of Kobani. Erdogan was comparing the Kurds in Kobani to the terrorists in ISIS while he was busy letting them flow across the border into Syria.

      Things have changed dramatically since then. ISIS may be back on their heels in Kobani and Iraq. Why else would they have a public execution of young Sunni men in broad daylight? Why would ISIS risk a backlash among other Sunni tribes in Anbar province?

      They don't have any friends.

  • Iraq: Is the Sunni-Shiite Slaughter at Jurf al-Sakhr really a US Victory?
    • If he was drafted, Charles McMahon (May 10, 1953-April 29, 1975) was the unluckiest American soldier. One of the last to get killed in Vietnam AND sent there after getting drafted by the war criminal Nixon in the last draft of 18 year olds. Those born in the 1st half of 1953. That's when I was born but I was lucky--300+ drafted number.

      I'm not a "cheerleader for Trooping."

      You'll think "hump a pack" if the Republicans win control of the Senate and McCain and Graham start going on the send troops now warpath.

    • ISIS is just a buncha gangsters who like to murder people. Yesterday, they murdered 46 SUNNIS in Heet, Iraq. It was a public execution. The victims, were barefoot with their hands tied behind their backs. Killed in broad daylight to send a message to other Sunnis tribes in Anbar.

      If American bombs don't degrade ISIS, American politicians will send in the troops. That's where this is going.

    • On Frontline last night, it was clear that the rise of ISIS can be blamed on Maliki and the hands off policies of Obama. But as Dexter Filkens explained, ISIS members are the hardest of the hard core and get off on killing people more than building a caliphate or anything else.If an ISIS killer can shoot someone in the back of the head from point blank range they like that the best, especially if the victims hands are tied behind them.

      They are BRUTAL!

      The last one to die in Kobani will be some poor Muslim from the U.K. ISIS is using as cannon fodder waiting for a U.S. bomb with his name on it.

    • The Obama administration should not back off. If they didn't bomb in Kobane, ISIS would overrun the city and celebrate a great victory. ISIS would escape paying the price for their huge military blunder. Kobane really would end up like the Alamo.

      In Iraq, if Obama doesn't bomb ISIS in Anbar province, they will expand their control, dig in and be much more difficult to roll back and defeat. The U.S. should push it right now and do all the damage they can do. It'll shorten the conflict and keep our most gung ho war luvin' politicians from starting a much bigger war.

      There won't be a 30 year war against ISIS. They'll become minor players, small fish in a big pond.

  • Iraq: Are Senior ISIL Commanders already Defecting in Mosul & Tikrit?
    • JTMcPhee, anytime U.S. politicians start talking up war a very healthy dose of skepticism is warranted. Lets hope the ISIS gangster horde has blundered into a catastrophe in Kobani. If that is the case, U.S. war mongering politicians won't be able to start a MUCH bigger war and send the army back to the Middle East.

    • You're welcome Ted. The ISIS Stalingrad was how someone else put it. Like the Nazis, ISIS over extended themselves and now they're trapped.

      ISIS has made a terrible, perhaps even a fatal blunder.

      Earlier today, I was reading a Guardian article about six young Muslims from Portsmouth, England that had gone to Syria to fight with ISIS. There was even a picture of them in the airport waiting to leave. They nicknamed themselves the "Portsmouth Lads." Of the six, four of them are now dead, two died in Kobani. One returned and is in jail. The last one is still alive in Syria. All of them were under 25 and got radicalized by watching ISIS videos in England.

      Crazy stuff like that will stop after Kobani is over.

    • I'm not an Obama supporter. I've been 100% against all of these STUPID wars on terror we have fought since 9/11 including the war in Iraq, Obama's "war of necessity in Afghanistan" and in Libya. I think Obama, his administration and almost all of the Republicans ARE FULL OF SHIT. I think Bradley Manning, Edward Snowden, Glenn Greenwald should share the Noble Peace Prize and have airports named after them. I also believe regime changing a Sunni ruler in Iraq set off a chain in events leading to Sunni extremists groups like ISIS.

      I hope I'm being clear.

      Having said that, I also believe it's wise military policy to degrade ISIS now and break up their momentum. That will make it much easier to roll them back in Iraq and Syria. Their slick online use of social media radicalizing young males in Europe and England will end. Spending millions and millions now will keep our war mongering politicians from wasting billions and billions later.

      The American public has already been INVOLUNTARILY COMMITTED. It's not "should be," future tense " It's "has been" past tense.

    • An article in today's Guardian says ISIS leaders are threatening to kill about 30 British jihadists who want to return to the UK. They're tired of playing jihad. That's a bad sign for ISIS.

      ISIS may have made a HUGE blunder in Kobani. Committing too many assets in Kobani may have left ISIS in a vulnerable situation and given us a chance to really damage them. Momentum is CRUCIAL to recruitment, strategy and long term success. Losing in Kobani could have a much bigger effect than just losing one battle. They depend on the BIG MO.

      This isn't chest thumping. If we get a chance to roll 'em, the military would be foolish not to press it. A big blow now will be well worth it in the long run.


      Does "" have any T-shits featuring Slim Pickens riding the bomb down on them Rooskies?

    • American bombs convinced 'em to defect ASAP. ISIS is destabilizing large parts of the Middle East and become too big of a problem. We'll keep bombing ISIS until they no longer have so much muscle or revenue.

  • The end of National Sovereignty in the Middle East? Iraqi Kurdistan sends troops into Syria
    • JTMcPhee, your post detailing Serena Shim's reports of ISIS fighters using WTO trucks from Turkey as well as her subsequent fatal car accident were key factors.

      Shim worked for Iran's Press TV.

      Today, there are reports of ISIS using chemical weapons in Kobani. The Guardian posted some pics of the victims. Politicos and the media might have a field day with this.


    • I'll give it a shot...

      Last weekend, Press TV's Serena Shim reported ISIS fighters were using World Trade Organization trucks to travel from Turkey into Syria. Press TV is Iran's English news broadcaster. Later on Sunday, Shim was killed in a traffic accident under murky circumstances. Some time later, Erdogan said Turkey would allow Kurdish Peshmerga fighters to cross from Turkey into Kabane so they could fight ISIS.

      Iran suspects Turkey's odd moves are really aimed at taking down Assad, not defeating ISIS. So, Iran countered Turkey's moves by proposing an alliance with Lebanon and SYRIA to fight ISIS. That way, Iran protects Assad while claiming to fight ISIS.

      The Persians did invent chess. Iran ALWAYS has one more move.

  • Iran Proposes Axis against ISIL to Iraqi PM Abadi as alternative to US Coalition
    • On October 10th, Iran warned Turkey not to intervene in Syria. Over the weekend, Erdogan flip-flopped and joined Obama's coalition against ISIS but taking down Assad's regime is still their main goal.Today, Iran's proposed an axis against ISIS that also includes Syria.

      Tomorrow, Rouhani and Ergodan will get together and sing "WE ARE FAMILY" in Farsi and Arabic.


  • Defying Turkey, US airdrops arms to Kobane Kurds
    • Several hundred million at least. I'll go with "stupidly and incompetently." Because of all those heavy weapons and their different sources of revenue, ISIS has become a much bigger problem in Syria, Iraq and now in northern Lebanon.

      No one really knows what will happen, but it looks like the U.S. will keep bombing the shiite out of ISIS for the next year or so. But if we continue to lose several hundred millions worth of weapons, our bombing campaign might be known as "Operation Revolving Door."

      We can just keep bombing those BAD GUYS from now on.

    • "Not exactly the same game, but the same result"--exactly. Silkwood was brave almost beyond belief. Serena Shim had only been in Turkey for ten days and other reporters declined to make the same accusations about ISIS fighters in Turkey using WTO trucks. It had to be well known.I think Shim should have been much more cautious.

    • Familiar with Karen Silkwood? She played the same kind of VERY dangerous game Serena Shim was playing in Turkey. Meryl Streep played Silkwood in the movie. When Roger Ebert asked Streep if she had reached any conclusions about Silkwood's fatal car accident, Streep said...

      "I SURE HAVE."

    • Do you think the United States deliberately lost millions of dollars worth of U.S. weapons in northern Iraq to ISIS?

    • One month ago, ISIS released forty two Turkish diplomats and their families held in Mosul since June. Turkey said it wasn't a military operation, no ransom was paid and there were no concessions, but up until yesterday Erdogan refuse to aid Kobane or allow any Kurds in to help the city. However, after talking with Obama on Sunday, Erdogan did his version of the John Kerry "flip-flop" right after the call.

  • Why is this Man Smiling? Iranian Officials say Confidant of US Deal on Nuclear
    • If a nuclear deal does happen, it will be interesting to see if Assad's regime comes into play. A couple of weeks ago, Peter Lee (China Hand) predicted an Iranian nuke deal would be reached only if Iran also gave up their support of Assad. If that were the case, Saudi Arabia might be part of a much larger peace plan. After all, the U.S. doesn't need Iran to defeat ISIS, but they do need Iran to stop aiding Assad. The Saudis also want that to happen.

  • Ebola & Immigrants and Muslims, Oh My! Operating the Fear Machine
    • Some Republicans are already claiming ISIS is coming across our southern border. Throw in Ebola and it's the prefect storm---ISIS, Ebola, illegal immigration leading to the APOCALYPSE will be the Republican mantra in 2016.

  • Turkey bargaining with base for US, wants no-fly zone in Syria
    • Google this "ISIS uses mafia tactics in Mosul." After ISIS took over in Mosul, there were lots of articles comparing their tactics to similar ones used by the mafia to get money. Without a steady revenue stream ISIS goes out of business.

    • ISIS is incredibly well organized. They have different revenue sources and use good military strategy. The Kurdish town of Kobani isn't connected to the Kurdish part of Syria. It's isolated. Only the Kurds in Turkey live that far to the west. ISIS realized they could lay siege to the town and attack it from three sides.

      In Kobani and western Iraq, ONLY military men with strategic training could design such a campaign. Sunnis from Saddam Hussein's old army must be running part of ISIS. How else could Mosul have been overrun so quickly?

      And Saddam Hussein had the same type of gangster regime. ISIS is like Al Capone in Chicago.

  • Is Baghdad next? ISIL takes Hit Base in Iraq, loots it for Weapons
    • I listened to a Joshua Landis 30 minute video describing his "Great Sorting Out" which is what he calls ethnic cleansing in Syria. That's what Landis thinks will happen and it will be very, very bloody. Basically a four way civil war---Alawite Shiites vs. Free Syrian Army vs. ISIS vs. Kurds until all the different regions have been ethnically cleansed of the other groups. Very brutal and nasty. ISIS is about to take the first step in Kobani.

      Check out the video. Landis gives examples of previous sorting outs in the Middle East. Israel and Palestine are one of his examples. He's Dr. DOOM.

      Toppling Assad after rolling back ISIS may not produce stability in the Middle East, but it's probably better than perpetual war and ethnic cleansing.

      JTMcPhee, doesn't it concern you that ISIS is just rolling along gathering momentum, arms and recruits in Anbar? What do you think will stop them?

      Sunni Saudi Arabia and Turkey are like the Romans compared to the Carthaginian like Shia, especially Assad. They won't give up until Assad is out of power--NO WAY.

      Comparing Assad to Carthage is VERY clever play on words.

    • ISIS suicide car bombers were used to blast the outer walls at this military base and overrun it. ISIS is trying to clear routes in Anbar province so they will be able to advance troops and supplies without meeting resistance. Then, they can set up for the next target.

      It's good strategy.

    • How would you like to be a Kurd trapped in Kobani with ISIS threatening to overrun the town and slaughter everyone including women and children?

      Just don't kid yourself, that's what they do.


      Complaining about Iraq and/or Obama ain't gonna save the people in Kobani from getting their heads cut off when the town falls. ISIS is throwing in more resources trying to overrun the town. Yesterday, military reports claimed increased bombing attacks killed several hundred ISIS attackers. Without increased American bombing ISIS would have taken the town and SLAUGHTERED EVERYONE IN IT!!!


    • Landis might be right, but he only sees a long term "grinding" civil war in Syria's future without a solution. Landis thinks Syria will break apart.

    • Just rolling back ISIS without ending the civil war in Syria would be going back to the status quo so that another ISIS like group could gain a foothold.

    • Ok, destroying the credibility was not a good choice of words and you're probably right about what gave rise to ISIS. The neocon plan to regime change Saddam Hussein was not only stupid, but risk starting a much larger conflict as we now see happening. ISIS is obviously using extreme violence to expand and escalate the conflict. Like John Kerry said, Obama's dilemma is inescapable. If/when ISIS continues on this course of action they will have to be confronted, stopped and their military capability degraded.

      There won't be a choice.

      Twelve teams of U.S. military advisors are already in Baghdad.

      Then, the Civil War in Syria must be ended and Assad can not stay in power. ASSAD IS A MASS MURDERER WHO DROPS BARREL BOMBS ON CIVILIANS. The key is not defeating ISIS. It's ending the civil war in Syria. Larger state actors, the U.S.. Iran, Saudi Arabia, Turkey and even Russia, must come to a political agreement on the best way to end the war in Syria and make Assad depart. . But in order for that to happen, containing and degrading ISIS MUST be the first step.

    • "With the extremists on the march, Obama faces a fundamental question of how to carry out his pledge to "degrade and ultimately destroy" ISIS. It's a terrible dilemma for the president but an INESCAPABLE one." John Kerry

      From the video..."There are now twelve teams of U.S. military advisors on the ground with Iraqi defense forces of Baghdad."

      Obama drew a red line in Syria and backed away from it. But Obama didn't claim the United States would go to war against Assad when he drew it. That isn't the case with ISIS. The President of the United States made a pledge to "degrade and ultimately destroy" ISIS. Obama can't back away from his pledge without destroying the credibility of his office and the country.

  • Listening to Nobelist Malala Yousafzai instead of just Honoring Her
    • Snowden isn't seen in the same light as Malala. He's not a feel good or a safe choice. Neither is Glenn Greenwald who has continued to tell the truth about Obama's wars. His piece about the evildoing "Khorasan Group" is one of his best. The Obama ad. cooked up these BAD GUYS and the media sold it to the public so they could start bombing Syria ASAP.

      Obama listened and then just blew off Malala's criticism of his drone wars. She'll get to visit Hillary if/when she gets elected. Hillary, Malala and Bill in the Oval Office is perfect.


  • The Last Days of Kobani Loom as ISIL Closes in on Syrian Kurds with Murder on its Mind
    • Greenwald has also written about the "KHORASAN GROUP" and how the administration cooked up a fake terror plot to justify bombing Syria.

      Why did they do this?

      Why did the media make the Khorasan Group such a big story instead of questioning a terror threat from a group no one had heard about?

    • I'm just trying to read the tea leaves. I think the end game is regime changing Assad, not defeating ISIS. To me, Obama NEVER would have started the air war against ISIS in Syria without also having a plan to end their civil war. That means Assad has to go which probably means American troops in Syria. All the Republicans are in favor.

      Have you read Glenn Greenwald's latest article?

      "Key Democrats, Led By Hillary Clinton, Leave NO DOUBT that Endless War is Official U.S. Doctrine."

      "The last thing the Washington political class and the economic elites who control it want is for this war to end." Glenn Greenwald

      G.G. is pretty good at reading the tea leaves.

      p.s. Don't miss Greenwald's WAR STOCKS updates. Like Greenwald says, all the fat cats in D.C. plan on making lots of money.

    • A frog and scorpion scenario might be worth it to Turkey if they get a no-fly zone in northern Syria. That would allow increased military action against ISIS but also limit Assad. Kobani falling is also a defeat to the PKK. Turkey could be looking at ISIS and Kobani as part of the long game.

      What happens if there is another Kobani and Obama is pressured into sending the marines to save the day? American troops in Syria is VERY bad news for Assad.

      Turkey stands much more to gain than lose when Kobani falls to ISIS.

  • The Alamo of the Kurds: Kobane Near Falling to ISIL
    • "For us, ISIL and the (Kurdish) PKK are the same." Erdogan on Sunday.

      I wonder if ISIS's release of the Turkish hostages has anything to do with their army just watching events unfold?

      Why does Turkey have few options? If they wanted to save Kobane from falling, all they have to do is roll across the border.

  • $22 Billion to Fight ISIL in same Year Congress cut $8.7 bn in Food Stamps
    • p.s. The vote in the Turkish parliament today makes me think crippling ISIS is just the first part of the overall strategy in Syria. How else is it possible for Obama's coalition to come together so quickly?

    • The civil war in Syria is at a stalemate. It won't work itself out. I suspect that's the reason Obama went from not having a strategy to against ISIL to fighting an all out air war against them so quickly. The administration has given hints of an ISIL first, then a regime change Assad strategy. I wouldn't be surprised if Saudi Arabia and Turkey are already on board with that.

      Why else would Obama makes comments about fighting for years?

    • What to do about ISIL is not an easy question to answer. In Iraq, the Peshmerga and other ground forces contain and might even roll back ISIL but in Syria, their HQ, no ground forces makes an air campaign much more difficult.

      The Civil War in Syria is stalemated with 300,000 deaths in just three years. Comparing it to our Civil War, the overall population was 30 million with 620,000 deaths in four years. The population in Syria was about 17 million in 2011. Our Civil War ended, but in Syria no end is in sight. It's a VERY nasty conflict and ending it is the real problem. Clearly, this stalemated conflict will cause much bigger problems if it continues. That's already happening in Iraq, Turkey, Jordan and Lebanon. It won't get better by itself.

      What should the United States, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Iran even Israel and Russia do to solve the ever growing CATASTROPHE in Syria?

  • Why Obama underestimated ISIL in Syria and Iraq
    • p.s. I failed to mention the biggest problem of all in the Middle East--Israel and the Palestinians , especially with Bibi Netanyahu running the show.

    • The Middle East has no chance of becoming stable until the Civil War in Syria ends. That won't happen until Assad is no longer in power.With ISIS controlling such a large area in Syria and Iraq and Assad in power, Middle East instability will continue to grow. ISIS must be defeated first.

      What happens if Lebanon and Jordan blow up? Where does it end? At some point, larger states (United States, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Turkey) have to take steps that promote stability.


    • Glenn Greenwald's article on the Khorasan fake terror plot is quite a read. Greenwald explains in detail how and why this terrorist group became the media's newest star BAD GUY group and why they disappeared just as quickly.

      Like Greenwald says in the article, "THE KHORASAN GROUP" even sounds like a SCARY name.

    • Obama believes ISIL is a political problem but one with a military solution, U.S. bombs and the buildup of moderate Syrian forces. Obama's national security advisor, Tony Blinken was on Fox News this weekend claiming that moderate rebel forces would be used against ISIS first AND then used to "transition" Assad out of power.

      In other words, regime changing Assad is next on the agenda.

      ISIL will be relentlessly bomb until they are either destroyed or more likely, no longer have the military power to be a real player in Syria or Iraq.

  • US strikes ISIL oil fields in Quest to Defund it: But will it Replace oil with Fracking?
    • Peter Lee (China Hand) has an interesting theory: Saudi Arabia's plan A was using jihadists to overthrow Assad. That didn't work, so now they moving to plan B. Peaceful coexistence with Iran if they dump Assad and allow the Sunnis to take control in Syria. In addition, the good 'ol USA backs the Saudi plan AND throws in a nuke deal with Iran if they let Assad get regime changed. If China Hand is right about Saudi Arabia's plan B, Iran would have to think long and hard about turning it down.

      Lots of countries are piling on the war against ISIS as fast as they can. Today, Britain, Belgium and Denmark joined up. Why have so many countries jumped on the anti-ISIS bandwagon?

      Something BIG must be happening behind the scenes.

  • Syrian Media Hail America as Damascus Ally, Support UN Ban on Foreign Fighters
    • "Obviously there are forces in Damascus who feel that the American intervention is a positive for Assad."

      When Damascus plays up Obama as an ally in the war against terrorists, Assad kills two birds with one stone--ISIS and Netanyahu.

      And Iran gets happy.

  • Shiite Militias of Iraq Reject US Return, Threaten to Attack US Forces
    • Today, on the Senate floor, Rand Paul came out against arming the Syrian rebels. He's already getting ready for 2016 and Hillary the Hawk is the anticipated target not to mention all the GOP presidential candidates who are also hawks.


  • Should US policy toward ISIL be Containment?
    • Another interesting Peter Lee comment: "The caliphate is a big deal, in my opinion, a big bad transnational deal with significant consequences throughout Asia, and something should be done."

  • Top 5 Contradictions in Obama's Emerging ISIL Strategy
    • Interesting article. "China Matters" calls Obama's Syria policy "Let 'er drift" and blames his administration for allowing Saudi Arabia and Turkey to support an IS jihad to solve Obama's dump-Assad problem.

      Now, they have a Frankenstein problem on their hands.

  • Middle East "Allies" decline to Commit Forces, Resources against ISIL
    • Because Bibi Netanyahu wants the "Shia Crescent" broken up. In May 2013,on the outskirts of Damascus, Israel heavily bombed weapons and munitions being transferred to Hezbollah in Lebanon.A YOUTUBE video showed Syrian rebels praising Allah when they saw what was happening.

      The better question would be why would Netanyahu be against ISIS? As far as I know, Netanyahu hasn't made any negative comments about ISIS.

  • Russia denounces Obama Plan for Syria Air Strikes as Violation of Int'l Law
    • I don't know how effective Hezbollah anti-aircraft attacks were since Israel bombed Lebanon at will. The reason Israel hasn't invaded Lebanon again is because Hezbollah's ground defenses, especially their anti-tank weapons, stopped Israel COLD.

      Bombing cities like Damascus would be difficult to stop. Plus, Netanyahu is BAT SHIT CRAZY.

    • Not only did Putin save face, he cleverly trumped the neocon moves in Ukraine. Of course, taking Crimea and invading eastern Ukraine was illegal, but Putin will not let NATO just move in and cut Russia off from having a port on the Black Sea. Putin knows if he didn't have a force in eastern Ukraine, then Crimea would be the next target.

      Putin is a thug, but so are the neocons. They both use force to get what they want. International law is just for the 'lil countries and other weak sisters.

    • Assad didn't fire on Israeli planes when they dropped bombs on the outskirts of Damascus just a few months ago. Assad isn't foolish enough to give Bibi a reason to cut loose on Syria the way Israel did on southern Lebanon in 2006.

      The leaders in every Muslim country know Bibi wouldn't hesitate to give them the Gaza treatment if he thought Israel was threatened.

  • 3 Years War? Obama to Bomb Syria in fight against ISIL
    • Perhaps, videos of ISIS beheading two Americans were made to lure the U.S. into bombing Syria with the hope that residential buildings full of Sunni Arab families will get hit. That would also make a very bad image in the Sunni world.

      OTOH, using an ISIS member with a British accent may have been a warning about what could easily happen in Britain. After all, the London bombings were carried out by four young adults without a terrorist organization backing them.

      Obama is in a awkward position, to say the least. If he does nothing and ISIS attacks, the hawks will pounce. But escalating a war against ISIS could also result in BLOWBACK.

  • Do Latinos in US have to Change their Names to Get a Job?
    • A coworker from Jordan did a subtle name change when he was doing political surveys in Los Angeles. He added an "o" to the end of his name and went from "Anwar" to "Anwaro." One vowel changed him from an Arab into a Latino.

      Anwar needed another "r."

  • 5 Things to Know Today about the Fight Against ISIL
    • I see Darth Cheney just added his $0.02 talking to all those war-luvin' House Republicans. After the pep talk, John Boehner declined to comment about the possibility of sending ground troops back to Iraq.

      This could work out so perfect for Cheney, the Republicans, the defense industry AND everything else military. Troops are sent back to Iraq and in order to Degrade, Decimate and Destroy ISIS, we also invade Syria Then, after ISIS is no more, we don't leave so we can keep a close watch on Hezbollah, Iran and Assad---the Shia BAD GUYS.

      The defense budget goes up to a trillion dollars and stays there.

      It's the Cheney ISIS now--Iran later plan.

    • Will the Kurds, Iraqi Shiites and the U.S. be able to defeat ISIS in northern and western Iraq without help from Sunni tribes? Why would those Sunnis ally themselves with the Shiite dominated Iraq government and fight against fellow Sunnis? Without their help, ISIS can not be defeated.

      In Syria, the Obama administration will not work with Assad, but everything they do to defeat ISIS makes him stronger, not to mention helping Hezbollah as well as Iran. U.S. bombs alone won't defeat ISIS in Syria.

      Obama is about to enter a very tricky situation. Not only will we be at war in northern Iraq, but Syria too with only a vague endgame years in the future.


  • Obama & Cameron find little Enthusiasm at NATO for new Iraq War
    • "Ladies and Gentlemen, WE GOT HIM!" Paul Bremer.

      The 21st century Archduke Ferdinand moment happened the day we invaded Iraq. ISIS and Ukraine are the aftermath of the neocon strategy.

      WWI blew up five weeks after Ferdinand was assassinated. Today's conflicts are unfolding much more slowly because different countries and peoples are gradually being drawn into them. Plus, fourth generation warfare doesn't produce a clear cut winner. Putin is fighting a sophisticated version of 4th generation warfare. Taking Kiev in two weeks would surely be a losing move because that would bring in the west.

      Isn't Joe Biden's son still in Kiev helping the Ukrainian fracking business get off the ground? I saw a pic of him wearing a hardhat in Kiev not too long ago. But that might have been somewhere in Colorado.

      Putin is a big fish in a small pond.

    • "white English speaking nations"...LOL, we need those guys/girls in England and Australia. Danes, Swedes and Icelanders are white folks but they don't speak our lingo.

      Even though they have supported all of our wars, white people in Poland aren't as important as Aussies because of that language restriction.

      Still, remember what George Bush once said..."DON'T FORGET POLAND."

  • Can Iraqi forces take back Saddam's Birthplace from ISIL?
    • The London bombers where homegrown and unknown to the authorities. ISIS returnees could pose a much bigger problem and Cameron knows it. The UK govt. has to be sitting on pins and needles. ISIS is crazy but they are far from stupid. Like you say, it's a "serious security issue."

      Here in the U.S., we don't have the same problem.

    • David Cameron thinks the UK government should have the authority to confiscate the passports of British citizens who might travel to the Middle East and fight with ISIS. Should the UK government's authority trump the civil rights of British citizens?

  • Obama's budding Cambodia Policy in Syria
  • Failed US War on Terror resulted from bizarre search for Moderate Jihadis
    • Patrick Cockburn was just on The Scoot Horton Show talking about ISIS, Iraq and especially Syria. He doesn't think the moderates in Syria were never strong enough to support. Cockburn thinks we should have supported Assad, but the U.S. govt. will never admit it.

      ISIS is like Frankenstein. The Saudis and others helped create it, but ISIS is all grown up and no one can control it.

      Meanwhile, the Russians are moving into eastern Ukraine. I don't think that's a coincidence.


  • ISIS to US: We'll drown you in Blood; beheads US Journalist, Holds Tikrit
    • ISIS isn't just about Iraq or Syria. Now they are fighting in northern Lebanon as well. Robert Fisk wrote about ISIS in Lebanon a couple of weeks ago.

      ISIS reminds me of a giant blob in a 1950s horror flick. When they are stopped going one direction, the blob changes course and attacks along other fronts. From Syria to Mosul south towards Samarra and Baghdad. Then, they go east to Irbil with attacks in northern Lebanon.

      U.S. politicians will try and control the blob's damage until they find a way to defeat it.

    • It might be a psycho-ops, but ISIS is well financed, well organized and well armed. They have taken control of large parts of both Syria and Iraq. They've gone toe-to-toe with Maliki's army and the pesh merga. They did murder James Foley and made a five minute tape of the slaughter. More Americans might be killed in the same barbaric manner.

      When ISIS makes a video of them cutting the head off an American, they are sending a message. Having an ISIS member with an British accent in the video is also significant because at least 200 hundred Brits are fighting with ISIS in the Middle East.

      They could also return to England with little problem.

      ISIS uses well thought out sophisticated techniques.

      But the richest, best armed and best organized prize goes to the United States. What other country could fight multiple wars for over TEN YEARS and have a lot more left in the tank?

      Escalation seems to be the next step for both sides.

    • Making a video of James Foley's murder with a British citizen was meant to send a message to the west. Hundreds of British citizens are fighting with ISIS. They can come and go as they please.

  • The New Jim Crow: Has the Right finally Repealed the Civil Rights Act?
    • The white right Republicans will be overwhelmed by the brown Latino vote. The Republicans have already lost Colorado, New Mexico and Nevada, 20 electoral votes greater than Ohio (18). They can't make that up.

      The Republicans will lose Florida for good in the next couple of elections.


  • 6 Things To Know If Police Stop You In The US
    • "No, you aren't. Just sit down and answer my questions."

      Your move, what are you going to do?

      If you choose to escalate the confrontation, you will NOT win.

      Make it easy on yourself. Don't challenge him. Do exactly what the police officer says and you won't get hurt.

    • An article on the front page of today's Washington Post written by a cop is perfectly clear....

      "I'm a Cop. Don't want to get hurt? Don't challenge me."

      "Here is the bottom line: if you don't want to get shot, tased, pepper-sprayed, struck with a baton or thrown to the ground just do what I tell you. Don't argue with me."

      "Do what the officer tells you and it will end SAFELY for Both of you."


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