First, it is announced that will be sending military advisers to Iraq. It’s supposed to be limited, but that will last until someone gets killed there, and then the military and Republican pressure for escalation, and we are back in a war:
President Obama said Thursday that he would deploy up to 300 military advisers to Iraq to help its struggling security forces fend off a wave of Sunni militants who have overrun large parts of the country, edging the United States back into a conflict that Mr. Obama once thought he had left behind.
Warning that the militants pose a threat not just to Iraq but also to the United States, Mr. Obama said he was prepared to take “targeted and precise military action,” a campaign of airstrikes that a senior administration official said could be extended into neighboring Syria.
Mr. Obama’s calibrated military moves — coupled with his pointed warning to Iraq’s Shiite prime minister, Nuri Kamal al-Maliki, to quell his country’s sectarian fires, and his announcement that Secretary of State John Kerry would embark on a diplomatic campaign — opened a risky new chapter in the president’s reluctant engagement with Iraq.
Advisers and airstrikes ……… Jeebus.
BTW, while we are at it, it should be noted that the Obama administration is pressuring Maliki to step down as PM, which is probably a good thing, but one of the front runners to succeed him is ……… Wait for it ……… Wait for it ……… Wait for it ……… Ahmed f%$#ing Chalabi:
Iraqi officials said Thursday that political leaders had started intensive jockeying to replace Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki and create a government that would span the country’s deepening sectarian and ethnic divisions, spurred by what they called encouraging meetings with American officials signaling support for a leadership change.
President Obama implicitly added his voice on Thursday to the call for change, saying any Iraqi leader must be a unifier. He declined to endorse Mr. Maliki.
The jockeying began as a series of meetings with American officials were held here in which, according to at least two participants, they saw the first indications that the Americans would like to see a replacement for Mr. Maliki, whose marginalization of non-Shiites since United States forces left Iraq in 2011 has made him a polarizing figure.
At least three people, who like Mr. Maliki are all members of the Shiite majority, have emerged as possible candidates to take over as prime minister, with more potential nominees in the wings as parties negotiate alliances from the recent elections. Any prospective successor must convince Iraq’s Sunni Muslims and its ethnic Kurds that he can hold Iraq together, as well as vanquish a Sunni-led insurgency that has escalated into a crisis threatening to partition the country.
It is far from clear, however, whether any of the suggested successors could gather enough votes. The names floated so far — Adel Abdul Mahdi, Ahmed Chalabi and Bayan Jaber — are from the Shiite blocs, which have the largest share of the total seats in the Parliament.
Mr. Mahdi came within a vote of winning the prime minister’s job in 2006 and previously served as one of Iraq’s vice presidents. He is viewed as a moderate who has long worked well with the Kurds.
Mr. Chalabi is a complex figure who has alternately charmed and infuriated the Americans but has ties both to them and to Iran. His biggest liability could be his uncompromising support for the systematic purge of many Sunnis from government jobs after the American-led invasion that toppled Saddam Hussein and his Baath Party a decade ago. Mr. Chalabi now says he supports terminating the basis for that purge, the so-called de-Baathification law.
Seriously, Ahmed Chalabi?
We lost Iraq and Afghanistan well before the current actions by ISIS, it’s time to stop throwing good money after bad.
And we can’t help here, because our state security apparatus has been too busy surveilling our selfies on Facebook to accurately pick targets in Iraq:
Army general Martin Dempsey, chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, told a Senate panel on Wednesday that “until we can clarify this intelligence picture” the US would have difficulty knowing who it would be attacking from the air, indicating military as well as political reluctance to any return to the skies above Iraq.
Your tax dollars at work.