Thursday, September 04, 2014

What an national FLAILEX looks like

In the likely event that you missed it, I recommend you watch CNN's Christiane Amanpour's interview Tuesday with Brett McGurk, Deputy U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Iraq and Iran. Brett is a smart guy with a tough job - and if anyone should have this wired, he should.

He doesn't, and it isn't his fault. He is trying to make sense of the nonsensical; trying to keep a very slowly spinning plate in the air. He is trying to sell bread being cooked at 120F. Until the President decides to decide and stop planning to plan, I don't think this helps anyone.

There are disconnects both real and cognitive that need attention - here are a few.
“We are putting the features in place, developing a broad regional coalition, a broad international coalition, working to get a new Iraqi government stood up, working to get our plans in place. So stay tuned,” Brett McGurk, Deputy U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Iraq and Iran, told Amanpour.
Stay tuned? The world doesn't work that way very well.

Let's look at the map, shall we?

Who are the "regional coalition" partners? Who is in the region? Jordan, Turkey, Iran, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia - and if you widen the circle a bit; Lebanon, Bahrain, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, and even Egypt in a stretch.

So, what does he say about the 4:05 mark?
... humanitarian operation with us, the UK, France, and Australia ... with our air force conducting targeted airstrikes ...
Let's speak as adults.

What we have are the martial members of the Anglosphere plus France. The only thing regional about that is ... well ... nothing. 

So far, all we have are the usual gathering of Muslim Arabs waiting for their Christian mercenaries to do their wet work for them.

I get the lead from the front "follow me" ethic (I thought we led from behind now? Oh, nevermind.) - but that is so Eurocentric, Western, and ... well you know the drill.

Where are the Arab armies? Where is the Muslim outrage about the medieval cancer that is consuming their religion?

They have been with us before. In DESERT STORM Egypt fought with us with 40,000 troops, 5,000 of them special forces. Heck, even Syria fought with us 14,500. Saudi Arabia and other Arab nations did as well.

Turkey? Don't get me started with Turkey. Huge armed forces. Their back yard - heck Amerli is a Turkman village for the love of Pete. Once again, Turkey hasn't failed to fail.

In the broader neighborhood yesterday we had a start;
The United Arab Emirates voiced readiness Wednesday to back world efforts to confront the threat from jihadists, amid calls by Western powers for an international fight against the Islamic State.

The UAE affirms "its solidarity with regional and international efforts against terrorist threats... and its readiness to take needed measures to confront this phenomenon in line with UN Security Council Resolution 2170," its foreign ministry said.

The resolution, passed last month, seeks to cut funds and the flow of foreign fighters both to the Islamic State, which has seized swathes of territory in Syria and Iraq, and to Al-Qaeda's Syrian affiliate, Al-Nusra Front.

The UAE said it "stands against terrorist threats facing our region and the world, especially with the dangerous human rights violations by terrorist groups in Iraq, Syria and other Arab and Muslim countries such as Yemen, Somalia, Libya, and Afghanistan suffering from... movements such as IS, Al-Nusra, and Al-Qaeda."
UAE with Egypt did do some bombing in Libya. Tripoli still fell - but it is the thought that counts. Why nothing so far in Iraq but talk? Stay tuned ... indeed we shall.

If we are to maintain our credibility - we have a lot more work to do. A lot more. 

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