Tag Archives: Islamic State

Democrats to blame for Turkish slaughter of Kurds?

U.S. Rep. Liz Cheney said the following, in part, during an interview with Fox News: “It was not an accident that the Turks chose this moment to roll across the border,” she claimed. “And I think the Democrats have got to pay very careful attention to the damage that they’re doing with the impeachment proceedings.”

OK, do you follow that? The Wyoming Republican — who happens to be former VP Dick Cheney’s daughter — believes the threat of impeachment has prompted the Turks to launch their invasion of northern Syria. Impeachment has prompted Turkey to slaughter Kurdish allies who have fought and died in the battle against the Islamic State.

My head is spinning. My jaw has dropped. I cannot grasp what Liz Cheney has posited to her pals at Fox News.

Here’s my take. The Turks launched their attack because Donald Trump talked to Turkish President Recep Erdogan and then decided to pull all U.S. troops off the battlefield; the Turks now have attacked Kurdish positions in Syria, killing Kurds on sight. We have abandoned a valuable ally in the ISIS fight and the Turks are taking full advantage. Trump acted without any input from his national security team; the Pentagon and the Joint Chiefs of Staff were blindsided.

That, I believe, is the sole reason for the Turkish incursion. The threat of impeachment has not a damn thing to do with this foreign policy disaster in the making.

Oh, why is the reference to VP Cheney worth mentioning? I guess it’s because Daddy Dick Cheney was known as a partisan creature, too, meaning that the fruit didn’t fall far from the Cheney tree.

‘You are leaving us to be slaughtered’

I am baffled, confused and at some level heartbroken over what Donald Trump has done to one of this nation’s more faithful military allies.

We are pulling our forces out of northern Syria, leaving the Kurds — many of whom have died fighting the Islamic State terrorists in the region — at the mercy of Turkey, which has launched sustained air and artillery bombardments against Kurdish positions.

The Turks hate the Kurds. The Kurds have told U.S. military officials that they have left the Kurds “to be slaughtered” by the Turks.

Indeed, I’ve seen some video of Turkish soldiers executing Kurds captured in the field.

What in the world is going on here?

Trump made the decision to pull out after talking by phone with Turkish President Recep Erdogan. He apparently got no assurance from Erdogan that the Kurds would be protected. He also surprised his national security team with the decision he made with reportedly no consultation with the experts who know what’s happening on the field of battle.

I am so very torn by this development. I endorse Trump’s view that we shouldn’t be involved in “endless wars.” However, the manner in which this decision has come about and the seeming resurgence of ISIS fighters in the region means that all of our sacrifice and effort in ridding the area of the terrorist monsters has gone for naught.

And it is likely to cost the Kurds thousands more lives as they are left to fight a superior military force invading their territory from Turkey.

What in the world have we done to our allies? And can we be trusted in the short or medium term to stand by other allies’ sides as they fight the terrorists networks intent on doing us harm?

‘They didn’t help us’ during World War II

Are you fu**ing kidding me, Mr. President?

You justify abandoning our allies in the fight against the Islamic State because they didn’t “help us” during World War II.” You said, “They didn’t help us in the Second World War; they didn’t help us with Normandy. With all of that being said, we like the Kurds.”

Oh, brother. The stupidity of your comments simply defies understanding.

Kurdistan is a region that sprawls across several countries: Iraq, Iran, Turkey, Armenia and Syria. The Kurds comprise about 30 million people. They do not function under a formal government. Kurdistan also is a long way from Normandy, France.

However, Mr. President, they are a proud and sophisticated people. They have been devoted allies of ours in the fight to eliminate the Islamic State. Thousands of them have died fighting ISIS alongside our military personnel.

But you have left them to fight not only ISIS, but apparently the Turks, who have launched attacks in northern Syria. The Turks hate the Kurds. How this tragic circumstance plays out is anyone’s guess.

You have incurred the wrath of politicians in both parties here, Mr. President.

And now you add to it all by speaking stupidly about Kurds’ absence from the beaches at Normandy.

That is idiotic, Mr. President. Oh, wait! I shouldn’t be surprised.

Here is how dangerous POTUS can be

So, just how much danger can the president of the United States put this country?

Consider how he concluded that it is time for the country to pull out of Syria and effectively abandon the Kurds, with whom our troops have been battling the Islamic State.

Donald Trump says otherwise, but he announced his decision to leave Syria without consulting the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the Pentagon, the CIA, the director of national intelligence. He acted on a phone call with Turkish strongman/tyrant President Recep Erdogan (pictured), who hates the Kurds and who well might move to obliterate our allies in the region.

Trump’s impulse was to pull out. It was to abandon our allies. He says he is keeping a “campaign promise” he made during the 2016 campaign. That is pure crap! He is not more interested in keeping that promise than he is in forcing Mexico to build The Wall, or to cutting the budget deficit.

At one level, I don’t necessarily oppose the decision to pull our troops out of harm’s way. Except that our nation already has committed to assisting the Kurds, who have done the bulk of the fighting — and suffered the bulk of the deaths — against ISIS.

How does the president plan to execute this strategy? Will he change his mind once again?

Our foreign policy lacks coherence. It is fueled by chaos and confusion, all of which comes from the Twitter account run by the president of the United States.

Do you feel safer now? Neither do I.

POTUS extols his ‘unmatched wisdom’ Wow!

Check out this Twitter message. It comes from the “stable genius,” the “serial liar/philanderer” and the guy who went to the “best schools” and possesses the “best words.”

Yes, Donald Trump has announced — without warning — a pullout of U.S. armed forces from parts of Syria where our Kurdish allies are fighting Islamic State monsters.

He refers to his “unmatched wisdom” in making the decision.

Oh, my goodness.

POTUS’s “unmatched wisdom” reveals a delusional trait that appears to be boundless. Without limit. There’s no end to it. No top end or bottom end of his self-aggrandizement.

I believe he also said ISIS has been “defeated.”

Nope. It hasn’t. Not by a long shot.

Central Command not consulted? Well, what’s new?

I guess none of us should be surprised to hear this bit of news from near the very top of the U.S. military chain of command.

Army Gen. Joseph Votel, commanding officer of the nation’s Central Command — which has authority over deployment of personnel in the Middle East — told Congress that Donald Trump didn’t consult with him before announcing his decision to withdraw our forces from Syria.

The president, though, did declare the Islamic State to be “defeated badly,” which was his seat-of-the-pants justification for leaving Syria and turning the fight over to . . . Syrian resistance forces.

The non-surprise comes in the form of those idiotic 2016 presidential campaign boasts that Trump made. He told us he was the smartest man in human history, that he knew the “best words,” had the “best mind,” would surround himself with the “best people” and, here’s my favorite, how he knows “more about ISIS than the generals do, believe me.”

Trump knows all

The tragedy of it is that the Republican presidential candidate persuaded just enough voters living in just the right states to score an Electoral College victory to be elected the 45th president of the United States.

So he now gets to govern without consulting the “best people” who ought to include Gen. Votel, a combat Army veteran with vast knowledge of the Islamic State and the threat it still poses in the region and around the world.

According to Time.com: When Trump announced his decision to pullout on Dec. 19, it sent shock waves through Washington and the rest of the world. “Our boys, our young women, our men, they’re all coming back and they’re coming back now. We won.” 

But did we? ISIS has claimed responsibility for terror attacks after the announcement, suggesting to many of us that the Sunni Muslim terror outfit isn’t “defeated.”

However, Donald Trump is wired to be all-knowing all the time, or so he would have us believe.

Except that I don’t believe a single word that flies out of his mouth.

What? GOP is about to stand up to POTUS? Wow!

I had to blink once or twice, shake my head a bit, clean my eyeglasses and rub the sleepy stuff out of my eyes to make sure I wasn’t hallucinating.

The U.S. Senate Republican caucus is poised to issue a stern rebuke of Donald J. Trump, who continues to exhibit shocking, stunning, jaw-dropping naivete regarding foreign policy crises.

The Senate is planning to push forward an amendment that warns the president about the dangers of a “precipitous withdrawal” from Afghanistan, given the ongoing threat posed by the Taliban and the Islamic State.

Trump (in)famously declared ISIS to be “defeated” in Syria. He is wrong. The Senate is going to respond by saying in a resolution that ISIS and al-Qaida pose a “continuing threat” to the United States and our allies around the world.

So, there you go. The Senate GOP majority has finally grown a set of . . . you know.

Trump vs. Intelligence Brass

Let’s just ponder for a moment a remarkable U.S. Senate committee hearing.

Donald Trump says the Islamic State has been defeated; he says North Korea no longer presents a nuclear weapons threat; he stands by his decision to pull the United States out of a deal that bans Iran from obtaining nukes.

Then we heard this from our nation’s intelligence leadership, CIA Director Gina Haspel, FBI Director Christopher Wray and Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats:

  • ISIS has thousands of fighters and is planning guerrilla attacks against innocent victims and nations it considers to be enemies.
  • North Korea is working toward developing nuclear weapons and that those weapons are likely to pose a direct threat to the United States of America.
  • Iran is continuing to comply with the agreement that seeks to prevent the Islamic Republic from obtaining nuclear weapons.

I am left to ask: What in the name of national security is the president of the United States thinking?

Oh, I know the answer. He isn’t thinking.

Intelligence chiefs do it again: they’re contradicting Trump

Those pesky intelligence professionals are at it once more.

Donald Trump says “ISIS is defeated.” The intelligence community says “not so fast.” The Islamic State is still planning terror attacks. They’re still recruiting members. Their ranks still number in the thousands.

Yet the president would have us believe that ISIS in Syria has been dealt a mortal blow. They’re gone. Destroyed. Wiped out.

ISIS isn’t defeated

CIA Director Gina Haspel and Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats told members of Congress today that they are not willing to buy into the commander in chief’s seat-of-the-pants “assessment” that ISIS is done for as a national security threat.

Who do we believe? I’ll stick with the intelligence pros any day of the week. Trump, as I’ve noted before on this blog, doesn’t know what he’s doing, what he’s talking, nor does he know to whom he is talking. He thinks the nation comprises hundreds of millions of rubes who buy into every single lie that flies out of his mouth.

Haspel and Coats did say today that ISIS has been “weakened” by sustained U.S. and allied attacks. For that I am grateful. The organization isn’t defeated, they said. ISIS is still capable of inflicting serious damage, causing significant misery. ISIS keeps taking responsibility for terror attacks against Muslims, which of course belies the notion that our war against terror is in fact a war against Islam; as Presidents Bush and Obama have declared, it is no such thing, that the terrorists aren’t “religious leaders,” but merely are religious perverts.

I am now wondering how the president is going to react to this contradictory testimony. Might there be more firings in store?

Trump doesn’t ‘know’ his key anti-ISIS diplomat? Huh?

Brett McGurk, who I do not know, was appointed by President Obama in 2015. Was supposed to leave in February but he just resigned prior to leaving. Grandstander? The Fake News is making such a big deal this nothing event!

— Donald Trump

Let’s consider this statement for a moment, OK?

It came from the president’s Twitter fingers. He doesn’t “know” the man who has resigned as the administration’s top diplomat who works with forces that seek to destroy the Islamic State.

Brett McGurk quit to protest the manner in which the president announced the planned withdrawal of 2,000 troops from Syria. Trump declared that ISIS is “defeated.” So he’s leaving the fight to, I guess, the Russians and the Turks.

Defense Secretary James Mattis also quit to protest the president’s decision and the manner in which he arrived at it.

But for the president to say — again, via Twitter — that he doesn’t know the man charged with working to destroy the pre-eminent terrorist organization speaks volumes about the president’s astonishing inattention.

Think of it. Donald Trump declares his intention to destroy the Islamic State. He campaigned for the presidency saying he knows “more about ISIS than the generals, believe me.” He said ISIS’s destruction would be among his major foreign policy priorities.

And he doesn’t “know” the guy charged with leading the diplomatic effort in conjunction with our allies?

Astonishing.

Brett McGurk’s resignation is far more than a “nothing event.”