Tag Archives: Defeat

After a tough fight to take Ramadi, Obama hands it back to Islamic State

Control of Iraq (click for larger image)
Control of Iraq (click for larger image)

(Source: Political Geography Now)

First, let’s start with and article from Breitbart News about Obama’s retreat from Iraq:

There is no commitment to America’s fighting men and women that President Barack Obama has not broken. When he ran for office in 2008, he promised to leave a residual force in Iraq to secure that country against external meddling and internal collapse. When he took office, President George W. Bush handed over a relatively stable and secure Iraq, thanks to the “surge” Obama opposed, and thanks to the sacrifices made by thousands of Americans, killed and wounded in battle.

Yet in 2011, Obama withdrew all combat troops–which is likely what he intended to do all along–and left Iraq before the job was done, allowing terrorists to regroup and sectarian rivalries to re-emerge. By pulling out troops, he also removed the only remaining strategic threat to the Iranian regime. Today, ISIS is running rampant across the region, and he and his sycophants assure the American people that they are winning the war against the “junior varsity” terrorist caliphate.

[…]“I don’t think we’re losing,” Obama says. That is because he has won, politically. But our troops paid the price.

Now an article from famous war journalist Michael Fumento, in Investors Business Daily.

He writes:

Ramadi is a city of vast importance, both strategic and symbolic. It’s the city that al-Qaida in Iraq chose as its headquarters, and it became the most fiercely contested area in the country. It’s why SEAL Team 3 of “American Sniper” fame was stationed there and became the most decorated SEAL unit since Vietnam.

Many experts consider the Battle of Ramadi and the “Anbar Awakening,” engineered by Capt. Travis Patriquin, the actual turning point of the war. Patriquin — who a few months after briefing me on his brilliant plan was killed in Ramadi — got the Sunni chieftains to join the Americans and Iraqi security forces to defeat al-Qaida.

Yet, bizarrely, the Obama administration wrote off Ramadi last month, declaring that defense of an oil refinery took precedence — as if we couldn’t do both. (Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey claimed, “It has no symbolic meaning.” Now Dempsey says Islamic State “gains in Ramadi are a serious setback for its long-suffering inhabitants.”)

In any event, within days the refinery was out of danger. Yet, the administration still refused to defend Ramadi.

[…]…[O]n no day previously did the U.S. launch more than a handful of sorties in defense of Ramadi, and on many days it flew none.

Yet, area assets include hundreds of strike aircraft, most of which can fly several sorties a day. These comprise F-16s, F-15s, F-22s, A-10s, B-1 heavy bombers, helicopters, and Reaper and Predator drones among U.S. forces, plus aircraft of 11 other coalition nations.

A single Reaper can carry a mix of 14 bombs and missiles, meaning it’s capable of that many airstrikes. Cruise missiles are also in theater, and the U.S. can hit with heavy B-52 and B-2 bombers from anywhere in the world.

Yet with this massive armada and with assets on the ground to help identify targets, the administration seems unable to find and strike more than a handful of targets daily. A machine gun here, a truck there. By comparison, during the 1968 siege of Khe Sanh, American aircraft dropped roughly 1,300 tons of bombs daily — five tons each day for every North Vietnamese soldier besieging the base.

But it’s not just Ramadi that Obama has neglected. Fact is, the so-called air war against IS is a fraud. Rarely are more than a couple of dozen targets struck in a day throughout both Iraq and Syria.

Obama is simply keeping U.S. air power grounded.

[…]…[G]enerally, Obama seems simply clueless when it comes to prosecuting war, stuck at pre-school level. (Even grade-schoolers know that bombs are worthless unless you actually drop them.)

This is as bewildering as Obama’s trading the top five Taliban in captivity for one American deserter, as I wrote in these pages last June.

It’s time for Congress and the presidential candidates to make this an issue. Alas, for Ramadi it’s too late. IS has scored a huge coup and the slaughter of our allies already has begun.

This is why it’s important when you elect a President that you elect one who understands the value of projecting military force and the threat of military force abroad. The next time we get attacked by terrorists trained in Iraq, maybe then we will realize the cost of abandoning the crossroads of the Middle East to the enemy. You can’t just end a war by unilaterally backing out of it, because it sounds nice. That’s how you lose a war. To win a war, you have to be decisive, use overwhelming force, and stay on until the region is stabilized.

Left-wing media turning on Obama over his foreign policy failures

Dr. Stuart Schneiderman has read all the left-wing news sources and found some surprising views.

Excerpt:

The news hasn’t really reached the public, but Obama-supporting media outlets are starting to see the mess that the Obama/Clinton/Kerry foreign policy has produced.

It is so bad that columnists are not even trying to moderate their negative judgments.

From Frida Ghitis on the CNN site:

America’s foreign policy has gone into a tailspin. Almost every major initiative from the Obama administration has run into sharp, sometimes embarrassing, reverses. The U.S. looks weak and confused on the global stage.

This might come as happy news to some opponents of the administration who enjoy seeing Barack Obama fail, but it shouldn’t.

America’s failure in international strategy is a disaster-in-the-making for its allies and for the people who see the U.S. model of liberal democracy as one worth emulating in their own nations.

On Russia, she continues, the verdict is clear:

Relations with Russia have fallen off a cliff, making the theatrical “reset” of 2009 look, frankly, cringe-worthy.

Syria, of course, is even worse:

Obama dramatically warned Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad, as he slaughtered his people by the thousands, that if he used chemical or biological weapons, he would cross a “red line.” The line was crossed and not much happened. Syria is crumbling, self-destructing in a civil war that I, for one, believe could have turned out quite differently if Washington had offered material and diplomatic support for moderates in the opposition. Fears that the opposition would be dominated by extremists became a self-fulfilling prophecy.

The centerpiece of the Obama/Clinton foreign policy initiative was Egypt. You know how that has worked out:

But it is Egypt where America’s foreign policy fiasco is most visible.

It was in Cairo in 2009, where the newly elected Obama, still reflecting the glow of sky-high expectations, launched his campaign to repair relations with the so-called “Muslim World.”…

Nobody knew what would happen in Cairo’s Tahrir Square a few years later. But today, the same people who yearned for democracy despise Washington. When Egyptians elected a Muslim Brotherhood president, Washington tried to act respectfully, but it showed a degree of deference to the Muslim Brotherhood that ignored the ways in which the group violated not only Egyptians’ but America’s own standards of decency and rule of law.

As tensions in Egypt grow between Islamists on one side and the military and anti-Islamists on the other, there is one sentiment shared by all: Both sides feel betrayed by Washington.

Egypt’s most powerful man, Gen. Abdel Fatah al-Sissi, said, “You [the U.S.] left the Egyptians; you turned your back on the Egyptians, and they won’t forget that.”

It’s not just CNN, though. He has quotations from articles in the radically, radically leftist New York Times and the left-wing extremist New Yorker, too. The New Yorker is disgusted with the way that Obama has handled Libya. It’s getting so bad that not even Obama’s biggest cheerleaders can ignore it.

Obama’s retreat defies military commanders and emboldens terrorists

The Heritage Foundation analyzes Obama’s decision to cut and run in Afghanistan.

Excerpt:

President Obama’s plan for a hasty withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan risks squandering the hard-won gains made on the battlefield in southern Afghanistan over the last ten months.

U.S. military commanders on the ground in Afghanistan had reportedly requested a slower pace of withdrawal to afford them the opportunity to consolidate recent gains against Taliban insurgents.  President Obama has denied his military commanders flexibility to determine the pace and scope of withdrawal based on conditions on the ground, and instead appears to have based his decision largely around the U.S. domestic political calendar.

The plans for rapidly withdrawing U.S. troops from Afghanistan also risks upending the major achievement of eliminating Osama bin Laden across the border in Pakistan.

Bin Laden’s death and an aggressive drone campaign in Pakistan’s tribal border areas have put al-Qaeda on its back foot.  The Administration deserves credit for accomplishing this crucial objective.

However, it is short-sighted to use bin Laden’s death as justification for hastening the U.S. troop draw down in Afghanistan.  Announcing rapid withdrawal of U.S. forces will likely bolster the morale of the Taliban and encourage them to stick with the fight.  Since al-Qaeda has not yet dissolved as an organization and its relationship with the Taliban remains strong, reducing military pressure on the Taliban in Afghanistan could benefit al-Qaeda and provide it a lifeline at a critical juncture in the fight against terrorism.

The withdrawal plan will signal to both our Afghan allies and enemy forces that the U.S. is more committed to withdrawing its forces than the long-term goal of stabilizing the country. The U.S. made a grave error in turning its back on Afghanistan after the Soviets departed in 1989. President Obama’s speech will stoke fears that the U.S. is getting ready to repeat a similar mistake.

Obama’s announcement on rapid troop withdrawals from Afghanistan will further discourage Pakistan from cracking down on the Taliban leadership that finds sanctuary on its soil. The speech will reinforce Islamabad’s calculation that the U.S. is losing resolve in the fight in Afghanistan and thus encourage Pakistani military leaders to continue to hedge on support to the Taliban to protect their own national security interests.

And more from the Wall Street Journal.

Excerpt:

President Obama delivered a remarkable speech last night, essentially unplugging the Afghanistan troop surge he proposed only 18 months ago and doing so before its goals have been achieved. We half expected to see a “mission accomplished” banner somewhere in the background.

Not long ago, Secretary of Defense Robert Gates spoke about only a token drawdown this year, but he’s now on his way out of the Pentagon. This time Mr. Obama overruled his military advisers and sided instead with Vice President Joe Biden and his political generals who have their eye on the mission of re-election. His real generals, the ones in the field, will now have to scramble to fulfill their counterinsurgency mission, if that is still possible.

[…]In justifying the withdrawal, Mr. Obama repeatedly stressed the damage we’ve done to al Qaeda. Yet most of those successes have been mounted from Afghanistan, including the killing of Osama bin Laden. Mr. Obama stressed that he’ll continue to press Pakistan to cooperate in attacking terrorist havens, but his accelerated withdrawal schedule will make that persuasion harder. The Pakistan military will now almost surely not act against the Afghan Taliban. The Pakistanis will press instead for a “reconciliation” between the Afghan government and Taliban leaders, who will be the most relieved by last night’s speech.

Republican reactions to Obama’s decision to cut and run, taken from the left-leaning Washington Post.

Excerpt:

Likewise from House Republican Policy Committee Chairman Tom Price (R-Ga.) came a blast:

“The brave men and women of our military continue to risk their lives to ensure that Afghanistan does not once again become a safe haven for terrorists who seek to kill Americans and our allies. . . . President Obama must lead. Leadership in this instance means making decisions based on conditions on the ground, listening to our military commanders and not changing strategy for political purposes. If the president is unwilling or unable to lead with resolve and commitment, if he continues to telegraph our strategy and tactical decisions to the enemy, then he should admit to the country that his administration will not support the fight that is necessary, and bring our brave men and women home now.”

[…]Sen. Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) had this statement:

“I am concerned that the President has not followed the recommendations of General Petraeus on the timing of our withdrawal from Afghanistan. The General was successful in Iraq by maintaining American momentum while the Iraqi army grew to the size needed to maintain long-term security. To repeat his victory formula in Afghanistan, we would need to maintain military momentum against Al Qaeda and the Taliban until the Afghan army reaches critical mass of 400,000 troops— estimated to be achievable by 2014. We withdrew our support and ignored Afghanistan in the 1990s and paid a high price in 2001. We should learn from that mistake and back the Petraeus strategy.”

I’m anxious to hear the reactions from General Petraeus and the other battlefield commanders.

Democrats switching to the Republican party in droves

This is from National Review. (H/T ECM)

One from Georgia:

The Democratic defections continue in the Georgia Legislature.State Rep. Bubber Epps on Monday became the latest Democratic state lawmaker to switch his allegiance to the Republican Party… Epps is the eighth Democratic state lawmaker to switch sides since the Nov. 2 general election. Republicans now hold 113 seats in the 180-member House. Democrats control 64 seats, there is one independent and two seats are open.

And one from Louisiana:

State Rep. Noble Ellington of Winnsboro, a prominent Democrat for more than 20 years in the state House and Senate, says he is likely to switch to the GOP.“I’m 95 percent sure,” he said Wednesday.Two state senators — John Alario of Westwego and John Smith of Leesville — recently switched from the Democratic Party. Alario, a former two-time House speaker and a fixture in Democratic state politics for nearly four decades, said he made the change official last week.Ellington said he will probably make his final decision early next month.“I think at this point it would probably be hypocritical for me to remain in the Democratic Party because I find myself farther and farther away from what has become the liberal philosophy of the national party,” he said. “My way of thinking, which falls along a more conservative line, has been shrinking within the party.“At least nationally, the Republican Party seems to fit my philosophy more than the current Democratic Party.”

He documents cases from five different states.

Michele Bachmann analyzes Obama’s latest foreign policy blunders

Democrats do not understand foreign policy.

She’s very intense in this video. She’s not happy with the way the country is being run. She’s concerned. But on the upside, she’s speaking on these issues very naturally – lots and lots of details fit within a structured argument.

Recent Michele Bachmann stuff