Tag Archives: Iraq

Are snowflakes and libertarians right to worry that killing Iranian terrorists will start a war?

Neville Chamberlain Obama: peace in our time
Neville Chamberlain Obama: peace in our time

I talked to a few progressives and libertarians on the weekend. They seemed to think that Trump’s decision to sanction two Iranian generals would lead to war. Now, I asked the libertarians and progressives a bit about how World War 2 started. They didn’t know anything about how it started. Let’s see what Trump did in Iran, and then look at WW2 history to see if it is likely to stop or start a war.

Before I start, I just want to say that someone shared a post by far-left filmmaker Michael Moore claiming that Americans had ever heard of Soleimani or the Quds Force. Here are my previous 134 posts on Iran, my previous 9 posts on the Quds Force, and my previous post on Soleimani. Speak for yourself, Michael Moore.

First, who is Solemani, and what is the Quds Force? The New York Times explains:

More than any other American military operation since the invasion of Iraq, the assassination yesterday of Maj. Gen. Qassim Suleimani, the head of Iran’s Qods Force of its Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps, is a seismic event. The killings of Osama bin Laden and Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the leaders of al-Qaeda and the Islamic State, were certainly meaningful, but they were also largely symbolic, because their organizations had been mostly destroyed. Taking out the architect of the Islamic Republic’s decades-long active campaign of violence against the United States and its allies, especially Israel, represents a tectonic shift in Middle Eastern politics.

[…]In Lebanon, Mr. Suleimani built Lebanese Hezbollah into the powerful state within a state that we know today. A terrorist organization receiving its funds, arms and marching orders from Tehran, Hezbollah has a missile arsenal larger than that of most countries in the region. The group’s success has been astounding, helping to cement Iran’s influence not just in Lebanon but farther around the Arab world.

Building up on this successful experience, Mr. Suleimani spent the last decade replicating the Hezbollah model in Iraq, Syria and Yemen, propping up local militias with precision weapons and tactical know-how. In Syria, his forces have allied with Russia to prop up the regime of Bashar al-Assad, a project that, in practice, has meant driving over 10 million people from their homes and killing well over half a million. In Iraq, as we have seen in recent days, Mr. Suleimani’s militias ride roughshod over the legitimate state institutions. They rose to power, of course, after participating in an insurgency, of which he was the architect, against American and coalition forces. Hundreds of American soldiers lost their lives to the weapons that the Qods Force provided to its Iraqi proxies.

I think this part is worth emphasizing – Solemani was the aggressor in the Iraq embassy attack, and he has a record of attacking American armed forces:

Soleimani, who was designated and sanctioned by the U.N., E.U., and U.S. alike, directly approved Tuesday’s U.S. embassy storming in Baghdad by Iranian proxy militia Kataib Hezbollah, and was credibly assessed by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo as actively planning more “imminent” attacks against hard American assets in the Middle East, has been directly active in the mass murder of Americans. He personally oversaw the mass arming of Shiite Iraqi insurgents and it is estimated that the IRGC-QF targeted and killed over 600 Americans in Iraq from 2003–2011. The State Department asserts that this personally amounts to a whopping 17% of all deaths of U.S. military personnel during the Iraq War.

So, far from Trump’s response being disproportionate, this was actually a long-overdue response. It was even overdue from Trump.

The message that Iran got after 8 years of Obama was clear: acts of aggression committed by Iran against the United States and her allies would be rewarded, including the $1.7 BILLION payoff from the Obama administration. The Obama administration’s policy was isolationism and appeasement. And this was fine with Democrat voters, because not a single Democrat voter (or libertarian ) knew anything about Iran, the Iran deal, Soleimani, or the Quds Force. They are low-information voters.

Now let’s see how World War 2 started.

Here is a helpful lecture by military historian Victor Davis Hanson.

Germany re-armed in 1936. Austria was annexed in 1938. The Rhineland was re-occupied in 1938. Czechoslovakia was invaded in 1939. And the allied democracies did nothing to stop Hitler. Similarly, Japan also re-armed, broke treaties and invaded neighbors. And the allied democracies did nothing to stop them, despite having superior planes, tanks, and ships. This allowed the Axis powers time to research better weapons, re-arm, and gain a strategic advantage. The Axis powers could have been stopped early on, at a much lower cost in blood and treasure. It was the libertarians and the progressives with their policies of isolationism and appeasement that made World War 2 much worse than it needed to be.

VDH explains:

Hitler assumed the United States either could not or would not offer much military help to his intended European targets.

Why, then, did a relatively weak Nazi Germany between 1939 and 1941 believe that it could take on much of the world, and inspire Axis partners such as Italy and Japan to follow its suicidal lead?

The answer is obvious. British and French appeasement, Soviet collaboration and American isolation had together convinced Hitler and his Axis allies that the victors of World War I were more eager to grant concessions at any cost than were the defeated.

In the lecture, VDH explains that we know from the writings of the leaders of Germany and Japan that they interpreted the isolationist / appeasement policies of the libertarian progressives as weakness, and this is what caused them to re-arm and attack their neighbors. Prior to the historical start of WW2, the Western nations had better tanks, planes and ships than the Axis powers. But they refused to use them to deter the Axis powers. And that’s why World War 2 was much more costly and bloody than it needed to be.

Finally, I should quickly note that America pursued a different strategy in the Cold War, under Ronald Reagan. Reagan was villified by the libertarians and progressives for taking a strong stand against communism. Instead of appeasing and isolating, he put America on a war footing, making aggression costly to the Soviet Union. This approach worked to avoid an actual World War 3. Although his critics attacked him for being pro-war, his tough approach was exactly what was needed to cause the bully to back down.

Si Vis Pacem, Para Bellum

Why are Western feminists silent about rapes committed outside the United States?

Yazidi sex slave survivor Nadia Murad
Yazidi sex slave survivor Nadia Murad is awarded the Nobel Prize

My personal opinion on rape (a violent sexual attack that results in genital penetration without consent) is that the attacker should be killed or castrated (if male). Is the left against rape? They don’t seem to tell women how to minimize risk, and they don’t seem be concerned about rapes committed by their interesectional allies. Take a look at this article from the Daily Signal.

Excerpt:

As feminists were busy peddling their “War on Women” narrative in the U.S., Yazidi sex slave survivor Nadia Murad was honored with the Nobel Peace Prize for fighting a real War on Women in the Middle East.

Nadia was honored for her efforts to end the use of sexual violence as a weapon of war, together with Dr. Denis Mukwege of the Democratic Republic of Congo, who has been a relentless healer and advocate for women.

[…]Nadia was abducted in northern Iraq in August 2014, when ISIS took over her village. Militants gave the Yazidi people—a Kurdish and Arabic-speaking religious minority—two choices: Convert to Islam or die. Refusing to give in, Nadia watched men get massacred and family members march to their graves.

At just 21 years old, she was kidnapped alongside an estimated 3,000 other Yazidi women and girls, traded as sex slaves from one ISIS fighter to another. She was forced to pray, dress up, and apply makeup in preparation for her rape, which was often committed by gangs.

How much have we heard from the Western feminists about this, as opposed to Christine Ford’s fairy tale?

While any comparison between Nadia’s story and the accusations leveled against newly minted Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh would be completely unfair, it is fair to wonder how news of uncorroborated allegations of gang rape brought by porn lawyer Michael Avenatti can overshadow a gang rape survivor-turned-women’s advocate being honored with the most prestigious award in the world.

For years, it seemed the world didn’t care about Nadia’s story and the thousands of others like it. It took two years for then-Secretary of State John Kerry to declare crimes against Yazidis, Christians, and Shiite Muslims genocide, and the United Nations as well.

[…]…the Obama administration did little to hold ISIS accountable for its crimes or to alleviate the suffering of survivors. The Trump administration is trying to right those wrongs by providing aid to the most vulnerable victims of ISIS genocide, but a lot of work remains to be done.

The author, Kelsey Harkness, wonders why American feminists get so involved with unsubstantiated charges, when there are real rapes going on regularly in other countries.

Let’s face it: the only people who are in a position to stop the rapes going on in places like Iraq are the U.S. Armed Forces. It certainly isn’t Code Pink. And how does the secular left treat the Armed Forces? They want to cut their funding, retreat them out of countries where women have no rights at all, and destroy their fighting ability by pushing liberal policies on them. If you’re not in favor of the American Armed Forces being properly equipped and doing their jobs to keep our enemies in check, then you’re not in favor of someone being there to protect Yazidi women from rape. Period. End of issue. Everyone who voted for Obama, and withdrawal from Iraq, voted to let ISIS rape Yazidi women.

What about Hillary Clinton?

What’s amazing to me is how people on the secular left in America want everyone to believe that they are the party who cares the most about women. But as I’ve argued before, most men and women who support Democrats do so because want to have irresponsible recreational sex without consequences. That is their main issue. But then they turned around and (in 2016) voted for a woman who covered up credible accusations of sexual assault and even rape against her husband, in the 2016 presidential election.

Here’s a story about Hillary Clinton from the Daily Wire:

During a CBS “Sunday Morning” interview, correspondent Tony Dokoupil asked Hillary if her husband should have stepped down after his affair with Monica Lewinsky — and his blatant lie to the American people when he said “I did not have sexual relations with that woman.”

“Absolutely not,” she said.

“It wasn’t an abuse of power?” Dokoupil asked.

“No. No.” Why, you ask? Hillary said the relationship was not an abuse of power because Lewinsky “was an adult.” At the time of the affair, Clinton was 49, Lewinsky was 22.

Bill Clinton was also accused numerous times of sexual assault. In 1994, Paula Jones initiated a sexual harassment lawsuit against Clinton, claiming that he pulled out his penis and told her to “kiss it.” In 1998, Kathleen Willey alleged that Clinton groped her in a hallway in 1993. That same year, Juanita Broaddrick alleged that Clinton had raped her in the spring of 1978. Bill also carried on an affair with lounge singer Gennifer Flowers, and Arkansas State Troopers said they often procured women for the then-governor.

When I think about how secular leftists supported the biggest RAPE APOLOGIST in the history of our nation, it seems ridiculous to me that they would try to present themselves as caring about women. What they care about is recreational sex and abortion, and they’ll abandon real women who need real help if that gets them what they want.

What do Democrats think about North Korea?

Last point. Democrats love to lecture us all on how wonderful things are in atheist countries that have socialism. Well, North Korea’s official state religion is atheism, and they have full-blown communism- the government owns all the means of production. What is it like to be a woman there?

When was the last time you heard a Democrat criticize North Korea? How could they – North Korea is everything they aspire to. And the U.S. Constitution is everything they hate.

Trump defeated ISIS: Islamic State has now lost 98% of their territory

Islamic State operates in the red areas now, green = retreats
Islamic State retreats: light and dark green = previous ISIS areas, red = current ISIS areas

(Source: U.S. State Department via Business Insider)

I spent some time during my winter vacation reading through a whole bunch of military history books… “Lone Survivor”, “13 Hours” and “Red Platoon”.

In Thirteen Hours, I found out how the embassy in Benghazi was attacked, and then defended by security personnel at a nearby CIA outpost. The security personnel requested assistance over and over, and explained carefully that this was a planned terrorist attack, with pre-sighted indirect fire from mortars. All the requests for support were ignored by the Obama administration. Later on, Obama’s friend Susan Rice came out to assure us that the Obama administration had not failed to protect the ambassador, because the planned terrorist attack was just some minor protest violence caused by a YouTube video.

In Red Platoon, I found out about how U.S. forces were attacked in Eastern Afghanistan, near Pakistan, but no reinforcements were available because the entire army and air force was off looking for Private Beau Bergdahl, the deserter who Obama traded five Taliban commanders to get back. Is trading five experienced Taliban commanders for one deserter with the rank of Private a good deal? I don’t think so. Bergdahl was later convicted of desertion, by the way. At the time of the swap, Obama’s friend Susan Rice assured us that Bergdahl served honorably and was worth the five Taliban commanders.

In Lone Survivor, I found out about how how a 4-man team of Navy SEALs were discovered by Afghanistan civilians while conducting surveillance on a Taliban commander. Because they were afraid of the progressive mainstream media, and limited by the Obama administration’s pro-terrorist rules of engagement, they had to release the civilians. In gratitude for their lives, the civilians then immediately reported them to a nearby Taliban base. As a result, 3 of the 4 Navy SEALs were killed in action, and the fourth grievously wounded. He is very careful in the book to explain the costs of the mainstream media’s pro-terrorist bias, and the damaging effects of the Obama administration’s pro-terrorist rules of engagement (ROE).

Elsewhere, the pro-LGBT Obama administration gave convicted traitor Private Bradley Manning a free taxpayer-funded sex change, and then pardoned him for giving away our most important military secrets to WikiLeaks. Then Team Obama gave Iran a big boost in their development of nuclear weapons, including $400 million in untraceable cash. This is the same Iran that was killing our soldiers via IEDs in Iraq.

This is a snapshot of how the Obama administration handled foreign policy and national security during their eight-year reign of error. This is not even to mention the disasters in Syria, Egypt and Libya. It was the worst foreign policy presidency ever. And remember, Obama inherited a victory in Iraq, after George W. Bush’s successful surge. Obama turned that victory into a defeat by retreating prematurely instead of winning the peace. ISIS was created by Obama’s withdrawal from the battlefield.

Things have changed now that Donald Trump took over. He immediately gave the military more autonomy to go after our enemies, and now after one year, we have the results.

Fox News reports:

ISIS has lost 98 percent of the territory it once held — with half of that terror group’s so-called “caliphate” having been recaptured since President Trump took office less than a year ago, U.S. military officials said Tuesday.

The massive gains come after years of “onerous” rules, when critics say the Obama administration “micromanaged” the war and shunned a more intensive air strategy that could have ended the conflict much sooner.

“The rules of engagement under the Obama administration were onerous. I mean what are we doing having individual target determination being conducted in the White House, which in some cases adds weeks and weeks,” said retired Air Force Lt. Gen. David Deptula, the former head of U.S. Air Force intelligence. “The limitations that were put on actually resulted in greater civilian casualties.”

[…]The latest American intelligence assessment says fewer than 1,000 ISIS fighters now remain in Iraq and Syria, down from a peak of nearly 45,000 just two years ago. U.S. officials credit nearly 30,000 U.S.-led coalition airstrikes and regional partners on the ground for killing more than 70,000 jihadists. Meanwhile, only a few thousand have returned home.

The remaining ISIS strongholds are concentrated in a small area along the border of Syria and Iraq. ISIS, at one point, controlled an area the size of Ohio.

During the Obama administration, a lot of evil things were happening at the hands of evil men in the Middle East. I would like the American people to vote with their minds instead of with their feelings. Foreign policy and national security should be important, and they are certainly too important to be trusted to the radical left. We can do better than blame-America-first Democrats.

Was withdrawing American troops from Iraq a good thing for world peace?

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

I really enjoyed this article from David French in National Review.

It says:

In Tuesday night’s debate, Democratic vice-presidential nominee Tim Kaine defended the indefensible — a strategic retreat from Iraq that threw away the fruits of American military victory, helped enable a terrifying genocide, and empowered America’s enemies. Even worse, he did so while spouting a pack of deceptions and half-truths that exhibited a child’s understanding of American strategic interests.

Where to begin? First, it was stunning that Kaine brought up as an accomplishment America’s dramatically reduced overseas deployments — as if the only measure of strategic success is the number of Americans in harm’s way. He said it was a “very, very good thing” that instead of 175,000 deployed, we now have only 15,000.

Well, yes, if America’s enemies were defeated or contained. Instead, American retreat created power vacuums that our enemies filled. Jihadists control more territory, have more men under arms, and are more effectively attacking America and American allies than when Hillary Clinton became secretary of state. Those are facts that make American withdrawal look less like an accomplishment and more like an inexcusable retreat.

Moreover, we didn’t have to maintain 175,000 troops in the field to hold on to our hard-fought gains. Kaine made the choice binary — maximum or minimum. Yet our defeat of al-Qaeda in Iraq (the precursor to ISIS) was so comprehensive that the presence of only a small number of American combat troops could have prevented the kind of blitzkrieg we saw in 2014, when ISIS overran large parts of Iraq and Syria. There was never a question of keeping massive numbers of troops in the field. The question was whether we’d keep any troops in Iraq, and the Obama administration said no.

And that brings me to Kaine’s central deception. He still clings to the old, discredited line that America had no choice but to pull troops out of Iraq because the Bush-era “status of forces” agreement mandated their removal. Yet comprehensive reporting in the New York Times and The New Yorker magazine tells a very different story — of an administration that was unwilling to commit the roughly 10,000 to 16,000 (not 175,000) troops needed to maintain stability and of an Iraqi government that was unwilling to risk political capital at home for the sake of a merely nominal American presence. In other words, both sides blundered, badly.

As any number of strategic thinkers have noted, the results weren’t just predictable, they were predicted — by President George W. Bush himself. Speaking in 2007, Bush said that if troops were withdrawn before commanders said Iraq was ready, then:

  • It would mean surrendering the future of Iraq to al-Qaeda.
  • It would mean that we’d be risking mass killings on a horrific scale.
  • It would mean we allow the terrorists to establish a safe haven in Iraq to replace the one they lost in Afghanistan.
  • It would mean we’d be increasing the probability that American troops would have to return at some later date to confront an enemy that is even more dangerous.

All of these things happened. All of them. ISIS has committed genocide. It blitzed through Iraq, threatening Baghdad and even Kurdistan, and it has created a nation-sized jihadist terror state, one that is shrinking only because — yes — American troops have returned.

David French was deployed to Iraq, and saw Americans killed there. Then Obama pulled out our forces, giving the enemies of America a great victory. A bit later, the Islamic State (ISIL) formed, and began to take control, committing atrocities unthinkable to most of the naive people who voted for Obama. Retreat from Iraq created a mess, and we should learn from that failure. You can’t just pull Western troops out and expect everything to magically fix itself.

Is Trump right to say that Bush lied about the Iraq war, and there were no WMDs?

There was a debate on Saturday night, and Donald Trump started screaming like an unhinged psychopath not once, not twice, but THREE TIMES.

Red State introduces the meltdowns:

In Saturday’s CBS Republican presidential debate Donald Trump was the biggest loser. It wasn’t even close. Worse, the Donald was whiney, uncivil and so very un-presidential. He threw Trumpertantrum after Trumpertantrum, interrupted again and again and was booed over and over.

Here they are:

You can listen to all three meltdowns and read the transcripts in the Red State article. Let’s look at them.

The third statement about Planned Parenthood has already been turned into an ad by Ted Cruz, who was called a liar by Trump in the debate. The new Cruz ad shows Trump saying exactly what Cruz said that he said about Planned Parenthood on the Sean Hannity show.

I’m going to cover the “George W. Bush lied us into war and there were no WMDs there” statement below, and then this afternoon, I’ll cover the “Putin is a leader and there’s no evidence that he assassinated anyone” statement.

Here’s the part of the transcript that’s relevant:

DICKERSON: … On Monday, George W. Bush will campaign in South Carolina for his brother. As you’ve said tonight, and you’ve often said, the Iraq war and your opposition to it was a sign of your good judgment. In 2008, in an interview with Wolf Blitzer, talking about President George W. Bush’s conduct of the war, you said you were surprised that Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi didn’t try to impeach him. You said, quote: “Which, personally, I think would have been a wonderful thing.” When you were asked what you meant by that and you said: “For the war, for the war, he lied, he got us into the war with lies.” Do you still believe President Bush should have been impeached?

[…]TRUMP: You do whatever you want. You call it whatever you want. I want to tell you. They lied. They said there were weapons of mass destruction, there were none. And they knew there were none. There were no weapons of mass destruction.

Two points to make about this.

Chemical weapons found in Iraq
Chemical weapons found in Iraq

First, we did find WMDs in Iraq – lots of them. And this was reported in the radically leftist New York Times, of all places.

Read it:

Five years after President George W. Bush sent troops into Iraq, these soldiers had entered an expansive but largely secret chapter of America’s long and bitter involvement in Iraq.

From 2004 to 2011, American and American-trained Iraqi troops repeatedly encountered, and on at least six occasions were wounded by, chemical weapons remaining from years earlier in Saddam Hussein’s rule.

In all, American troops secretly reported finding roughly 5,000 chemical warheads, shells or aviation bombs, according to interviews with dozens of participants, Iraqi and American officials, and heavily redacted intelligence documents obtained under the Freedom of Information Act.

Second point, three different reports found that George W. Bush did not lie about the WMDs, nor did he pressure the intelligence agencies.

Excerpt:

Everyone was convinced that Saddam had WMDs. It remains a fact Saddam used WMDs against and his own people. The intelligence and common wisdom that Iraq still possessed such weapons at the time we liberated Iraq proved to be wrong, but that doesn’t equate to a lie. So lets go over the facts again.

The Bipartisan Senate Select Committee Report On The U.S. Intelligence Community’s Prewar Intelligence Assessments On Iraq found no evidence of political pressure to change the intelligence community’s judgments related to Iraq’s weapons programs. At pages 284-285 the report states:

Conclusion 83. The Committee did not find any evidence that Administration officials attempted to coerce, influence or pressure analysts to change their judgments related to Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction capabilities.

[Redacted]

Conclusion 84. The Committee found no evidence that the Vice President’s visits to the Central Intelligence Agency were attempts to pressure analysts, were perceived as intended to pressure analysts by those who participated in the briefings on Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction programs, or did pressure analysts to change their assessments.

Besides that report, two other independent investigations came to the same conclusion.

The Robb-Silberman Commission On The Intelligence Capabilities Of The United States Regarding Weapons Of Mass Destruction likewise found “no evidence of political pressure.” At pages 50-51 the Robb-Silberman report states: The Commission found no evidence of political pressure to influence the Intelligence Community’s pre-war assessments of Iraq’s weapons programs. As we discuss in detail in the body of our report, analysts universally asserted that in no instance did political pressure cause them to skew or alter any of their analytical judgments. We conclude that it was the paucity of intelligence and poor analytical tradecraft, rather than political pressure, that produced the inaccurate pre-war intelligence assessments.

The British Butler Report, Review Of Intelligence On Weapons Of Mass Destruction similarly “found no evidence of deliberate distortion.”

Trump can say anything he wants, but the facts are what they are.

Trump supporters in denial

I know 3 Trump supporters, and I’ve tried to speak to them about things like eminent domain, support for bank bailouts, single payer health care, touchback amnesty, Planned Parenthood support, support for Vladimir Putinadultery and divorce, support for the gay rights agenda, four bankruptcies, etc. Their response has been do deny the evidence. Trump never did those things, all the news articles are lies, and all the videos of Trump saying those things are fake. I expect better than that from Trump supporters. This time, the stakes are as high as they could be: 4-5 Supreme Court picks.  This is the ballgame for America.