Obama the New War President
Politico wrote on September 23:
“With his new offensive against Islamic State terrorists in Syria, Barack Obama has a chance to revive his presidency, but the only way he can do that is to become a brand-new president, one who will be almost unrecognizable to his supporters…
“So is Obama now a war president? As air strikes in Syria commenced Monday, there was no longer any doubt that this is his new role… what is happening now no longer falls into the category of cleaning up old wars… This is a wholly new war, Obama’s very own, and it is out in the open…
“It’s not that Obama has been shy about using force in the past six and a half years. But he has preferred to do it covertly…
“The risk today… is that Obama will be forced to compromise on his pledge of no new boots on the ground. In his Sept. 10 speech, he said: ‘It will not involve American combat troops fighting on foreign soil.’ And yet as many as 1,700 U.S. troops are now acting in a vague role as advisers and trainers in Iraq, and it is reasonable to think that some U.S. operatives are helping to direct air strikes into their targets in Syria. The question is whether that can continue, or whether Obama will be forced to widen U.S. involvement…”
Quite a Different Message
US News wrote on September 24:
“Obama appears to be edging toward justifying a larger war. On Tuesday, he said the current attacks in Syria—which are opposed by the Syrian government—are designed to send a message “to anyone who would plot against America and try to do Americans harm that we will not tolerate safe havens for terrorists who threaten our people.” He also said the conflict will be lengthy and difficult.
“Obama… is now sending a far different message than he did when he ran for president. That message was so impressive that Obama won the Nobel peace prize shortly after taking office in 2009 because of his stated commitment to working for peace around the world and ending the U.S. wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Bild Online wrote on September 26:
“That’s how quickly it can happen, Barack Obama—from being the Winner of the Peace Nobel Prize to becoming War President… What has gone so terribly wrong?… In one word: Weakness. His motto, ‘leading from behind’ is devastating. … Obama leaves behind a world of chaos…”
At War for Generations to Come?
Chicago Sun Times wrote on September 24:
“America will be at war for generations to come… It is impossible to feel optimistic about prospects for peace in Syria, or true democracy in Iraq or an end to Muslim sectarian strife anywhere in the Middle East. It’s hard to feel optimistic even about the ‘broad coalition,’ including Arab states such as Jordan and Saudi Arabia, that Obama has pulled together to fight ISIS, which he called a ‘network of death.’
“Obama gave no hint as to just how fragile and queasy that coalition really is. All five Arab nations on board have declined to even mention the United States in their official statements of support… This war, and others to come, could go on for years…”
German analysts stated that the new war would go on for at least 20 years…
A Divided and Deeply Inconsistent Coalition…
The Huffington Post wrote on September 25:
“The U.S. administration… is between a rock and a hard place: Saudi Arabia desperately wants Assad’s head on a plate and volunteers to fund the ‘war’ effort for that end. But, for Obama to assent to Iranian-Russian conditions [to leverage the ‘war’ precisely (and only) at ISIS in Syria and Iraq]– and thereby indirectly strengthen President Assad — he will cause outrage in the Gulf and amongst the ‘moderate’ Syrian exile insurgents. By doing as the Gulf wishes (attacking Assad’s forces), however, he will almost certainly tip Russia, Iran and Hezbollah into overt opposition and escalation, which will greatly complicate the war on ISIS in Syria (and in Iraq, too).
“Turkey, too wants to ‘use’ the war on ISIS, but the Turkish immediate objective is not to weaken ISIS, but rather to help ISIS undermine the Syrian Kurdish semi-autonomous region that lies adjacent to Turkey’s own restless (and far from autonomous) Kurds.
“… in the final analysis, the deep inconsistency — and likely cause of this whole enterprise’s ultimate failure — is simply the paradox that the West’s allies of choice will not, and cannot, be true ‘partners’ to this ‘war.’…”
“Why the Military Campaign Against ISIS Will Fail”
The Times of Israel wrote on September 26, republishing an article which had appeared in The Globalist:
“No matter how much Washington and its allies may wish otherwise, the military campaign against ISIS will fail, possibly with disastrous consequences. Surprisingly, this outcome is not dependent on the issue that is currently so hotly debated – whether or not there will be ‘boots on the ground’ (and whose).
“To understand why, one needs to consider the dynamics and legacies of history. In the ultimate analysis, the existence of ISIS (the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant) can be ascribed in good part to the fact that… there was no reformation in the world of Islam…
“If one bears in mind the immense contribution made by the Arab world to science and civilization in centuries past — and indeed the fact that not that long ago cities like Baghdad, Damascus, Beirut, Cairo and Alexandria were booming global centers of commerce and creativity — notably in the arts — then one can arrive only at one conclusion. The panorama of the Arab world today is indeed depressing and discouraging. Compared with most other parts of the world, it is in regress as opposed to progress.
“It can only be remedied by the Arabs themselves, based on a profound reform and indeed renaissance of Arab society… by virtue of insight — and not by external military force. Until and unless these reforms — this reformation and renaissance — occur in the Arab world, all Western interventions will fail, and indeed in all probability make the situation worse. The proposed battle to ‘the gates of hell’ against ISIS will suffer the same fate…”
Deja Vu as UK Heads Back to Iraq
Deutsche Welle wrote on September 26:
“The UK Parliament voted in favor of joining the military action against the ‘Islamic State’ in Iraq… The move was approved on Friday by a vote of 524 in favor to 43 against.
“The decision makes the UK the latest country to join the anti-IS coalition. As well as the Arab states taking part in the US-led military campaign against the terrorist militia ‘Islamic State,’ France has already bombed targets in northern Iraq. Denmark too announced on Friday that it was sending seven F-16 planes to join the campaign, while Belgium and the Netherlands have also sent combat aircraft…
“It seems that the West is now irrevocably set on another bloody adventure in the Middle East, less than three years after US troops were finally withdrawn from Iraq following a nine-year war.
“That war is now widely seen as a mistake in the UK – former Prime Minister Tony Blair’s fall from popularity was largely down to his support for it – and Cameron on Friday was eager to suppress the obvious comparisons… a study published in April this year by UK-based think tank the Royal United Services Institute found that ‘there is no longer any serious disagreement’ that Britain’s participation in the 2003 Iraq war contributed to the radicalization of many young Muslims in Britain.”
Mr. Cameron told the UK Parliament that the military engagement would go on for “years.” It was noted in the press that the UK was acting cautiously—even though the UK Parliament authorized military actions – because of distrust towards the USA.
Boots on the Ground
Deutsche Welle wrote on September 27:
“General Martin Dempsey, chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, said that between 12,000 and 15,000 US-trained and –armed rebel fighters would be required in Syria to defeat IS… Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt has also offered seven F-16 fighter jets… for use over Iraq, not Russia-ally Syria… Germany has committed weaponry, humanitarian aid and training for Iraqis either fighting against or displaced by the ‘IS’ advance, but has ruled out direct military intervention. The first German weapons deliveries arrived in Iraq on Friday.”
Die Zeit Online reported on September 26 that the USA is in need of 15,000 Syrian rebels to fight for the coalition and against ISIS. According to Der Spiegel Online, dated September 27, 2014, Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan indicated some willingness to support fighting against ISIS, provided, among other conditions, that there would be boots on the ground.
The Huffington Post wrote on September 28 that House Speaker John “Boehner also said he believes that at some point the United States will have to send combat troops to fight the Islamic State. ‘At the end of the day, I think it’s going to take more than airstrikes to drive them out of there,’ Boehner said Sunday. ‘At some point, somebody’s boots have to be on the ground.’ Asked if those boots had to be American, Boehner said, ‘We have no choice.’”
Was There Really an Imminent Threat from Khorasan?
The website of Kansas.com (linked by the Drudge Report) published the following article on September 26:
“European counterterrorism specialists say their American counterparts never mentioned an imminent plot by al-Qaida operatives in Syria to attack Western targets and didn’t brief them on the group that’s supposedly behind the plan, a previously unknown terrorist unit that American officials have dubbed the Khorasan group.
“The interviews with the specialists, from two European NATO allies with close intelligence ties to the United States, raise questions about why the United States used its first series of airstrikes on the Islamic State, also known as ISIS or ISIL, in Syria to also attack eight installations belonging to the Nusra Front, an al-Qaida affiliate that anti-government rebel groups consider an important ally in their fight to topple the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad… U.S. officials… said the strikes were intended to break up a plan for an imminent attack.
“The European specialists, who meet regularly with U.S. officials on terrorism issues… said… [such] an omission [to warn them]… seemed unlikely if the plot were truly imminent.”
“Germany’s Military Feet of Clay”
The Local wrote on September 25:
“On Thursday at 10.30am a German military plane left Bonn for the Senegalese capital Dakar. It was carrying ten tonnes of supplies and a field hospital to help fight Ebola in Liberia. Almost nine hours earlier, but 12 hours late, a Dutch air force flight took off from Leipzig taking military equipment to Kurds in Iraq fighting the Islamic State (Isis). This is the role Germany wants its military to play on the world stage – transporting humanitarian aid and where necessary military trainers and equipment to help in the world’s trouble spots. But its military appears unfit for the task.
“Last week, the first military trainers being sent to join the Kurds were delayed after their own Transall aircraft broke down. Much of the Bundeswehr’s equipment is not combat ready. Defence Minister Ursula von der Leyen defended the Bundeswehr in the media on Wednesday, describing it as ‘highly capable’…
“German units are still in Afghanistan. Others are providing air defence in Turkey, hunting pirates off the coast of Somalia, and training troops or providing logistical support across Africa. But politicians’ promises that Germany will use its troops and material to intervene abroad and provide disaster relief, as in Iraq and West Africa, are placing a heavy load on the already strained Bundeswehr.
“… just 24 of the air force’s 56 Transall transport planes, which will be critical for the Iraq and West Africa missions, [are] fit to fly. The air force is close to overload with its fighter planes also well under half strength. Helicopters, too, are a weak point, with half the navy’s fleet grounded and only 16 of 83 CH-53 transport helicopters flight ready.
“There are also problems with the army’s Boxer personnel carriers and the navy’s frigates. Just 70 of the 180 armoured vehicles and seven of the 11 ships are in fighting condition… Germany spent €48.8bn, 1.4 percent of GDP, on its military in 2013, well below the target of two percent confirmed at a NATO summit in Wales in early September.”
Even though the German people might not like it, politicians will very soon work on substantially improving the Bundeswehr and bringing it up to speed.
Eric Holder’s Resignation Long Overdue
The Washington Times wrote on September 25:
“The nation thirsts for a successor who goes back to the old model, where the attorney general doesn’t check party affiliation before deciding whether to act or what to do… The next attorney general will have an uphill battle in repairing the damage done to the integrity of the Justice Department. John Fund and Hans von Spakovsky, authors of ‘Obama’s Enforcer: Eric Holder’s Justice Department,’ cite inside sources who describe Justice as ‘racialized and radicalized’ under Mr. Holder ‘to the point of corruption.’… Mr. Holder has consistently put partisan politics at the top of his agenda.
“He bashes America as a ‘nation of cowards’ because Americans don’t want to listen to harangues about race… It’s not a good sign that Al Sharpton, the noted theologian and race hustler, says that he is ‘engaged in immediate conversations’ with the White House about the selection of Mr. Holder’s successor…”
The involvement of the infamous and highly objectionable Al Sharpton—who truly gives religion a bad name—is a matter of the greatest concern.
The Huffington Post wrote on September 28: “Holder has agreed to remain in his post until his successor is confirmed by the Senate — so, given the current state of D.C. dysfunction, he may be AG for some time to come.”
NEXT: Julia Pierson Resigns as Secret Service Director
The Washington Post reported on October 1:
“Julia Pierson resigned as Secret Service director on Wednesday after just 1 1/2 years on the job following a series of major security lapses that eroded President Obama’s confidence in her ability to run the agency tasked with protecting him.
“Pierson’s abrupt departure — one day after Obama expressed full confidence in her — came as lawmakers from both parties were calling for her ouster after her halting performance during a Tuesday House hearing.
“A decisive factor in the president’s change of heart, aides said, was that he learned only from news accounts Tuesday that a private security guard with a gun and a criminal history had not been screened before being allowed to board an elevator with him last month in Atlanta.”
Embarrassing as this latest resignation is for President Obama’s now lame-duck administration, the world is being given more and more evidence that America is no longer a dependable or even a capable ally.
“Married Couples Now a Minority in US”
“Married couples have become a minority in the United States during the past few years, while those married pairs with children comprise just one in five households… married couples living together, with or without children, accounted for 48.7 percent of households…
“In 2012, women living without a mate accounted for 15.2 percent of households, while men living without one comprised 12.3 percent. ‘Other family households’ accounted for 17.8 percent, mostly unmarried couples living together, with or without children, and to a lesser extent married couples living apart…
“The consistently decreasing percentage of Americans who are married is surely related to the rising percentage of U.S. babies born to unwed mothers… 36 percent of the generation of Americans born from 1993 through 2012, who are beginning to turn 21 this year, were born to an unmarried mother.”
Russia Puts Pressure on EU Against Ukraine
The EUObserver wrote on September 26:
“Russian energy minister Alexander Novak has warned that EU states which re-export gas to Ukraine will face cut-offs… Hungary, Poland, and Slovakia earlier this year began shipping Russian gas to Ukraine in order to help it cope in winter after Russia stopped supplying Ukraine in a price dispute which is bogged down in legal arbitration.
“Earlier this month, Russian gas flows to Poland temporarily dropped by 45 percent and to Slovakia by 10 percent in what was blamed on technical reasons. For its part, Hungarian gas distributor FGSZ on Thursday said it will no longer supply Ukraine ‘until further notice’ also due to ‘technical reasons’ linked to increased demand at home. But Ukraine transit firm Naftogaz said in a statement the decision is political.
“… two recent EU-brokered deals, on a ceasefire in east Ukraine and on EU-Ukraine free trade, have attracted criticism. The ceasefire, agreed on 5 September, has seen Ukraine pass laws to let pro-Russia rebels stay in place in Donetsk and Luhansk and to create a buffer zone between the two forces… [Regarding the] EU-brokered trade deal… Russian leader Vladimir Putin has said in a letter to the EU commission… that he will impose trade sanctions on Ukraine if it starts to make any pro-EU economic reforms in the next 15 months. He added that the substance of the trade treaty must be modified to meet Russian demands.”
EU Condemns Russia
The Local wrote on September 26:
“The EU condemned Russia on Friday for barring entry to the German leader of the Green fraction in the European Parliament who flew to Moscow to observe a trial of a Ukrainian pilot accused of espionage… Rebecca Harms, who co-chairs the Greens group in the European Parliament, said she was refused entry on Thursday despite holding a diplomatic passport. She said she was then sent on a flight back to Brussels after authorities told her they objected to her voting for sanctions against Russia…
“European parliament president Martin Schulz said he would lodge a formal protest with the Russian embassy in Brussels over the treatment of Harms. ‘I strongly denounce this grave diplomatic incident which is a worrying setback for relations between the European Parliament and Russia,’ he said.”
“Japan’s Cabinet Rocked by New Claims of Links to Neo-Nazis”
The Independent wrote on September 28:
“Japan’s government is weathering accusations of links to far-right groups that promote racism and hate speech. Several members of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s cabinet, including the Police Minister, have been forced to deny their neo-Nazi links after photographs surfaced of them posing with far-right figures…
“Mr Abe’s government has raised eyebrows with its far-right profile. Sixteen cabinet members belong to the League for Going to Worship Together at Yasukuni, a Tokyo shrine that honours leaders executed for war crimes. Sixteen support Nihon Kaigi, a nationalist think-tank that advocates a return to ‘traditional values’ and rejects Japan’s ‘apology diplomacy’ for its wartime misdeeds.
“Many belong to a parliamentary association that… deny many wartime atrocities… In August, Mr Abe sparked controversy when he paid tribute to soldiers, including war criminals, who gave their lives for ‘the foundation of the fatherland’. The tribute was sent to a temple housing a monument to 1,000 ‘martyrs’ who fought in the Second World War…”
Pope: Pray to Angels!
CNA reported on September 29:
“On Monday’s feast of the archangels Pope Francis spoke of the ongoing battle between the devil and mankind, encouraging attendees to pray to the angels, who have been charged to defend us…
“Pope Francis concluded his homily by encouraging those present to pray to the Archangels Michael, Gabriel and Raphael, and to recite the prayer to Saint Michael often.”
While this may represent Catholic doctrine, suggesting that we should pray to angels flies in the face of what Jesus Christ taught in Matthew 6:9 in which He said we are to pray to the Father.