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Author Topic: Obama's Leadership  (Read 18598 times)
andreisdaman
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« Reply #325 on: December 21, 2015, 09:37:06 AM »

Why are you being dishonest? 

I don't think its dishonest to call someone out when their only sources come from the propaganda network......why the sensitivity all of a sudden.....HuhHuh?...I know all my destructions of you have been brutal, but I still like you...,no hard feelings.... Cheesy
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« Reply #326 on: December 21, 2015, 09:41:08 AM »

In other words, you are too stupid to understand that ISIS isn't really that big of a threat.  A familiar refrain. 

Obama cites weak messaging, media saturation for Americans' ISIS fears
By Kevin Liptak, CNN White House Producer
Mon December 21, 2015 | Video Source: CNN

Honolulu (CNN) President Barack Obama acknowledged in an interview released Monday that his administration may have fumbled its anti-ISIS communications strategy, but he insisted the plan itself was working and suggested saturated media coverage of the group could be fueling terror fears in the United States.

In the past few weeks, the White House has sought to step up its messaging efforts on counterterrorism, scheduling a prime-time television address and visits to the Pentagon and National Counterterrorism Center in an attempt to better explain progress made against the Islamic State group.

But Obama conceded those efforts, prompted by an ISIS-inspired attack that killed 14 people in San Bernardino, California, came after inadequate efforts to relay the work of a U.S.-led coalition in combating ISIS.

"We haven't on a regular basis, I think, described all the work that we've been doing for more than a year now to defeat ISIL," Obama told NPR in an interview taped before he departed for his holiday vacation in Hawaii. He called the communications blunder a "legitimate criticism of what I've been doing and our administration has been doing."

But he also pinned Americans' renewed unease about terror attacks on U.S. soil to blanket media coverage of ISIS attacks. The November ISIS terrorist massacre in Paris, which left 130 people dead, led to "a saturation of news about the horrible attack there," Obama said in the interview.

"If you've been watching television for the last month, all you have been seeing, all you have been hearing about is these guys with masks or black flags who are potentially coming to get you," he said in the NPR interview. "So I understand why people are concerned about it."

"Look, the media is pursuing ratings," he added later. "This is a legitimate news story. I think that, you know, it's up to the media to make a determination about how they want to cover things."

Obama has come under fire from Republicans for his ISIS strategy, which they have labeled weak and ineffective. But even some Democrats, namely those lawmakers up for re-election next year, have privately worried that Obama has appeared flat-footed in responding to the terror rampages in France and California.

A public relations push to better explain his plan, which began with a rare Oval Office address at the beginning of December, came as Americans increasingly said in polls they doubted his ability to protect them from terrorist attacks.

But he's resisted calls to fundamentally alter his strategy against ISIS, which has relied on airstrikes and small numbers of special operations forces to take out key ISIS leaders. He's castigated GOP opponents of his plan for not laying out specifics of their own proposals and deemed what they have offered as untenable.

"If the suggestion is that we kill tens or hundreds of thousands of innocent Syrians and Iraqis, that is not who we are and that would be a strategy that would have enormous backlash against the United States. It would be terrible for our national security," he said in the interview.

He offered slight praise for one GOP candidate, Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, for offering up specifics of a plan, which would include sending at least 10,000 U.S. ground troops to fight ISIS.

"Lindsey Graham one of the few who has been at least honest about suggesting: here is something I would do that the President is not doing. He doesn't just talk about being louder or sounding tougher in the process," he said.

Pushing back on Republicans
In speaking about ISIS, Obama has sought to push back against Republican plans to curb refugee entry into the United States and, in the case of Republican front-runner Donald Trump, ban all Muslims from coming into the country.

Those plans, Obama has claimed, only fuel jihadist recruiting propaganda and diminish the character of the United States. In the interview Monday, he said that candidates such as Trump were taking advantage of an angry segment of the populace for political gain.

"Blue-collar men have had a lot of trouble in this new economy, where they are no longer getting the same bargain that they got when they were going to a factory and able to support their families on a single paycheck," he said. "There is going to be potential anger, frustration, fear. Some of it justified, but just misdirected. I think somebody like Mr. Trump is taking advantage of that. That's what he's exploiting during the course of his campaign."

Obama said some opposition to his agenda could be fueled by ingrained resistance to an African-American commander in chief, citing "specific strains in the Republican Party that suggest that somehow I'm different, I'm Muslim, I'm disloyal to the country."

"In some ways, I may represent change that worries them," he said.

"I think if you are talking about the specific virulence of some of the opposition directed towards me, then, you know, that may be explained by the particulars of who I am," he added later.

http://www.cnn.com/2015/12/21/politics/barack-obama-isis-interview/index.html

and just for the record, ISIS is not YET a threat to our homeland...they are more of a threat to the Russians, Europeans, and the middle east....granted, Obama did downplay the threat...that was a mistake on his part....his JV comment definitely came back to haunt him......but he and the US is doing more than any other country to stop ISIS...he has killed many of their leaders and ISIS is no longer seizing territory......the fact that they are in Iraq is due to the cowardice of the Iraqi army and they are in Syria because Assad would not step down when his people asked him to....its not Obama's fault or George Bush's fault either
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« Reply #327 on: December 21, 2015, 09:54:29 AM »

I don't think its dishonest to call someone out when their only sources come from the propaganda network......why the sensitivity all of a sudden.....HuhHuh?...I know all my destructions of you have been brutal, but I still like you...,no hard feelings.... Cheesy

This is so blatantly dishonest I don't even need to comment.   Other than what I just said.  Smiley
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« Reply #328 on: December 21, 2015, 09:55:54 AM »

and just for the record, ISIS is not YET a threat to our homeland...they are more of a threat to the Russians, Europeans, and the middle east....granted, Obama did downplay the threat...that was a mistake on his part....his JV comment definitely came back to haunt him......but he and the US is doing more than any other country to stop ISIS...he has killed many of their leaders and ISIS is no longer seizing territory......the fact that they are in Iraq is due to the cowardice of the Iraqi army and they are in Syria because Assad would not step down when his people asked him to....its not Obama's fault or George Bush's fault either

The people of San Bernardino would disagree with you.

And the fact they ran through Iraq is squarely the fault of President Obama.  

And for the record, none of this has anything to do with the president's condescending remarks and poor leadership. 
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« Reply #329 on: December 21, 2015, 09:58:51 AM »

This is so blatantly dishonest I don't even need to comment.   Other than what I just said.  Smiley

"Dishonest" seems to be your favorite word.....I guess the mirror doesn't lie.....you stopped being fair a long time ago...sitting on the fence and pontificating seems to be your only relevance now..you don't even take a stand.....just speeches and ramblings... I guess Obama's black skin really has had that much of an affect on you Cheesy Cheesy
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« Reply #330 on: December 21, 2015, 10:02:18 AM »

"Dishonest" seems to be your favorite word.....I guess the mirror doesn't lie.....you stopped being fair a long time ago...sitting on the fence and pontificating seems to be your only relevance now..you don't even take a stand.....just speeches and ramblings... I guess Obama's black skin really has had that much of an affect on you Cheesy Cheesy


I use it when it applies. 

And there you go, playing the race card.  Typical. 
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« Reply #331 on: December 21, 2015, 10:09:39 AM »

The people of San Bernardino would disagree with you.

And the fact they ran through Iraq is squarely the fault of President Obama.  

And for the record, none of this has anything to do with the president's condescending remarks and poor leadership. 

you're absolutely amazing....and so wrong I don't know how you sleep at night..the Iraqi Army was a well trained army with the latest equipment and billions of dollars in hardware...they also VASTLY outnumbered ISIS on the battlefield....they turned chicken and ran....a country has to be able to fight for itself and they chose not to.......and they kicked us out......its really weird again that you refuse to blame Maliki..but yet you love to blame Obama....

TRULY AND UTTERLY STRANGE

as for San Bernadino, we ourselves as christian Amedricans are killing more of us than any outside group....both by whites and blacks in the suburbs/rural areas/schools/and inner cities
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« Reply #332 on: December 21, 2015, 10:10:35 AM »

I use it when it applies. 

And there you go, playing the race card.  Typical. 
I played it for laughs......but again you have become so sensitive you wouldn't see that
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« Reply #333 on: December 21, 2015, 10:19:29 AM »

you're absolutely amazing....and so wrong I don't know how you sleep at night..the Iraqi Army was a well trained army with the latest equipment and billions of dollars in hardware...they also VASTLY outnumbered ISIS on the battlefield....they turned chicken and ran....a country has to be able to fight for itself and they chose not to.......and they kicked us out......its really weird again that you refuse to blame Maliki..but yet you love to blame Obama....

TRULY AND UTTERLY STRANGE

as for San Bernadino, we ourselves as christian Amedricans are killing more of us than any outside group....both by whites and blacks in the suburbs/rural areas/schools/and inner cities

It's obvious the Iraqi was not "a well trained army" and able to fight without our support.  We left because of the president's desire to "end the war in Iraq."  He failed.  Miserably.  I know that's a difficult pill to swallow for an Obamabot. 

You are equating the murder of the people in San Bernardino to "christian Americans"?  Ok.  This is obviously a waste of time.  lol
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« Reply #334 on: December 21, 2015, 10:19:52 AM »

I played it for laughs......but again you have become so sensitive you wouldn't see that

Sure.  Just joking.  Right.   Roll Eyes
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« Reply #335 on: December 21, 2015, 10:23:21 AM »

It's obvious the Iraqi was not "a well trained army" and able to fight without our support.  We left because of the president's desire to "end the war in Iraq."  He failed.  Miserably.  I know that's a difficult pill to swallow for an Obamabot. 

You are equating the murder of the people in San Bernardino to "christian Americans"?  Ok.  This is obviously a waste of time.  lol

it is a waste of time.......but I suspect with you, any subject concerning Obama is......especially if he's not to blame
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« Reply #336 on: December 21, 2015, 01:48:40 PM »

It's obvious the Iraqi was not "a well trained army" and able to fight without our support.  We left because of the president's desire to "end the war in Iraq."  He failed.  Miserably.  I know that's a difficult pill to swallow for an Obamabot. 

You are equating the murder of the people in San Bernardino to "christian Americans"?  Ok.  This is obviously a waste of time.  lol

He followed teh plan bush laid out to a T, one the GOP wanted.
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« Reply #337 on: December 21, 2015, 01:57:46 PM »

He followed teh plan bush laid out to a T, one the GOP wanted.

Wrong.
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« Reply #338 on: December 21, 2015, 02:27:12 PM »

Wrong.

again.....ABSOLUTELY AMAZING...you simply have no shame...facts be damned
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« Reply #339 on: December 21, 2015, 02:28:58 PM »

again.....ABSOLUTELY AMAZING...you simply have no shame...facts be damned

You don't care about the facts. 
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« Reply #340 on: December 21, 2015, 02:30:00 PM »

You don't care about the facts. 

you're obviously posting whilst facing a mirror
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« Reply #341 on: December 21, 2015, 02:32:55 PM »

you're obviously posting whilst facing a mirror

If you say so. 
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« Reply #342 on: January 22, 2016, 07:37:24 PM »

The president thinks he is the smartest guy in the room.  He's not. 

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pDHireIp2Zk" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pDHireIp2Zk</a>
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« Reply #343 on: March 22, 2016, 01:59:24 PM »

The president started his administration with a world butt kissing tour, throwing us under the bus.  He is ending it by inviting criticism of our country--the greatest in world history--by a communist dictatorship with little respect for human rights.  I cannot wait for this man to leave office.

Obama Welcomes Castro Criticism Of The United States
by Charlie Spiering
21 Mar 2016


President Obama welcomed criticism from President Raul Castro on issues in the United State, particularly on race relations and economic inequality.

“President Castro has also addressed what he views as shortcomings in the United States around basic needs for people in poverty and inequality and race relations and we welcome that constructive dialogue as well,” Obama says. “Because we believe that when we share our deepest beliefs and ideas with an attitude of mutual respect that we can both learn and make the lives of our people better.”

Obama described the meeting with Castro earlier today as a “frank and candid” particularly on issues of human rights, but suggested that America has its own problems as well.

“I actually welcome President Castro commenting on some of the areas where he feels we’re falling short because I think we should not be immune or afraid of criticism or discussion as well,” he said.

Castro also demanded that the United States end the trade embargo with Cuba and return the territory from Guantanamo Bay before the two countries could expect full diplomatic relationships.

“The blockade stands as the most important obstacle. That’s why its removal will be of the essence to normalize bilateral relations,” Castro said. “In order to move forward towards normalization, it will also be necessary to return the territory illegally occupied by the naval base.”

Obama blamed Congress for not doing enough to end the Cuban trade embargo, although he insisted there were still ways to be “flexible” under the existing law.

“Frankly, Congress is not as productive as I would like during presidential election years,” he said.

http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2016/03/21/obama-welcomes-castro-criticism-of-the-united-states/
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« Reply #344 on: March 24, 2016, 10:57:42 AM »

Obama Dances The Tango While The World Burns

President Barack Obama kisses the dancer after doing the tango with her during the State Dinner at the Centro Cultural Kirchner, Wednesday, March 23, 2016, in Buenos Aires, Argentina.AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais
by CHARLIE SPIERING
24 Mar 2016

President Obama is enjoying a taste of Latin America culture, spending the evening at a state dinner in Argentina. After dinner, two dancers appeared to perform a tango dance for the President and the First Lady.

At one point, the female dancer asked Obama to dance and after initially resisting, he got up to dance while the First Lady danced with the male dancers.

According to the pool reporter, many guests began videotaping the presidential pair dancing with their partners.

During a press conference earlier in the day, Obama insisted that he would continue on his Latin America trip in spite of the terrorist attacks in Brussels. Thirty-one people were killed in the attacks and an estimated 270 were wounded.

Disrupting his schedule, Obama said, would only send a message to the terrorists that they were succeeding in making the world afraid.

“It is very important for us to not respond with fear … we defeat them in part by saying, ‘You are not strong. You are weak,’” Obama explained when asked by reporters why he attended a baseball game with Raul Castro in Cuba after the attacks.

He argued that it was important to visit countries in Latin America to promote good things like fighting climate change and creating jobs.

“We have to make sure that we lift up and stay focused as well on the things that are most important to us because we’re on the right side of history,” he added.

http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2016/03/24/obama-dances-while-the-world-burns/







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« Reply #345 on: March 25, 2016, 02:04:55 PM »

So we learned from our leader this week that you can defeat ISIS by telling them they are weak, dancing publicly and attending a baseball game with a dictator in the hours after a massacre is ok, we invite criticism from a communist dictatorship, and communism and our democracy are morally equivalent.  Not a good week. 

SHOCKING! Obama Tells Argentinian Youths There’s Little Difference Between Socialism, Marxism and Capitalism (VIDEO)
Jim Hoft Mar 25th, 2016

Barack Obama told an audience of Argentinian youths there really was not a big difference between capitalism, socialism and communism — Just pick something that works.

Unbelievable.

This man is so destructive, so harmful and so ignorant.

The Independent Sentinel reported:


Barack Obama told an audience of Argentinian youth that the differences between socialism and capitalism make interesting conversation but just pick whatever works. The ideological-left US president suddenly doesn’t have an affinity for ideology.

He said in the past there was a sharp division between communists, socialists and capitalists but that is merely an intellectual argument and it’s not so today.

The Marxist in the White House is erasing the lines between two dangerous ideologies and the one that made the US great, just as he erased our borders. This is a man who would be at home in communist China.

“So often in the past there has been a division between left and right, between capitalists and communists or socialists, and especially in the Americas, that’s been a big debate,” Obama said at the Buenos Aires town hall.

“Those are interesting intellectual arguments, but I think for your generation, you should be practical and just choose from what works. You don’t have to worry about whether it really fits into socialist theory or capitalist theory. You should just decide what works.”

For Obama, high taxation, wild spending, government agency domination over the people and heavy regulations work which tells you what he is.

http://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2016/03/shocking-obama-tells-argentine-youths-theres-really-no-difference-socialism-marxism-capitalism-video/

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BadFTesAPzY" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BadFTesAPzY</a>
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« Reply #346 on: March 28, 2016, 08:59:29 AM »

Fidel Castro lectures Obama after Cuba trip
By NICK GASS 03/28/16

Fidel Castro ripped into the president, bringing up Obama's relative youth. | AP

President Barack Obama did not meet with Fidel Castro during his historic visit to Cuba last week, but apparently that does not mean that Castro did not have any thoughts about el presidente norteamericano in his country.

Castro ripped into the president and his words during the visit in El Granma, the official state newspaper of the Cuban Communist Party, bringing up Obama's relative youth, the failed Bay of Pigs invasion in 1961 and the role of both countries in ending the apartheid in South Africa and elsewhere on the continent in an article titled "El hermano Obama."

"Native populations do not exist at all in the minds of Obama," Castro wrote. "Nor does he say that racial discrimination was swept away by the Revolution; that retirement and salary of all Cubans were enacted by this before Mr. Barack Obama was 10 years old."

Referring to the 1961 failed invasion of the Bay of Pigs, Castro wrote of the U.S.' "mercenary force with cannons and armored infantry, equipped with aircraft ... trained and accompanied by warships and aircraft carriers in the U.S. raiding our country. Nothing can justify this premeditated attack that cost our country hundreds of killed and wounded."

Castro referred also to Obama's invocation of both countries' role in the end of apartheid in South Africa, remarking upon his country's 1975 intervention in Angola backing the leftist People's Movement for the Liberation of Angola against other U.S.-backed revolutionary forces. Ridding apartheid South Africa of nuclear weapons "was not the goal of our solidarity," he wrote, "but [rather] to help the people of Angola, Mozambique, Guinea Bissau and other fascist colonial rule of Portugal."

In referring to the origins of South Africa's nuclear weapons, Castro mentioned the "help that racist South Africa had received from [Ronald] Reagan and Israel."

"I do not know what Obama has to say on this story now," Castro wrote, adding, "although it is very doubtful that I knew absolutely nothing."
"My modest suggestion is to reflect and do not try now to develop theories about Cuban politics."

Cuba "has no need of gifts" from the United States, Castro concluded. "Our efforts will be legal and peaceful, because it is our commitment to peace and brotherhood of all human beings living on this planet."

http://www.politico.com/story/2016/03/fidel-castro-obama-221279#ixzz44DJgTpBw
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« Reply #347 on: April 12, 2016, 09:23:11 AM »

Is it November yet? 

Obama’s ‘classified’ comments strike nerve
By Julian Hattem - 04/11/16

President Obama’s latest defense of Hillary Clinton has struck a nerve with both the GOP and government leakers such as Edward Snowden.

The president’s comments — “there’s classified and then there’s classified” — suggested some classified information is more sensitive than other classified information, uniting in scorn critics across the political spectrum.

To advocates for government transparency, the remarks stunk of duplicity by suggesting that federal classification rules are arbitrary and don't apply to the Democratic presidential front-runner.
“If only I had known,” tweeted Snowden, the former National Security Agency (NSA) contractor who fled the country in 2013 before leaking reams of classified documents about global surveillance. Snowden is now facing multiple federal charges for his leaks.

“For a lower rank-and-file person, that’s not a defense you can ever use,” said Bradley Moss, a lawyer who handles matters related to classified information.

Conservatives saw new reasons to worry that the administration cannot be trusted to adequately investigate Clinton's exclusive use of a private email server as secretary of State.

Obama “concede[d]” that Clinton “mishandles classified information” and then “twist[ed] to defend her,” blared the Republican National Committee.

“It leaves you with a sense that he is reaching his thumb toward the scale,” said Ron Hosko, a former high-ranking FBI official. “I think it is, as I said, unnecessary and, from an investigators’ point of view, not at all beneficial.”

White House spokesman Josh Earnest was forced to defend the remark, which he said was a sign of the “disputes in the national security bureaucracy” about how to treat classified information that has been widely discussed in the media.

Obama made the comments in an interview with “Fox News Sunday” in response to a question about Clinton’s “homebrew” setup.

“There’s stuff that is really top-secret, top-secret, and there’s stuff that is being presented to the president or the secretary of State, that you might not want on the transom, or going out over the wire, but is basically stuff that you could get in open source,” Obama said.

The government does have different levels for the sensitivity of classified material, ranging from “confidential” to “top-secret.” But criminal charges for mishandling classified information are largely blind to the distinction.

Obama has often prided himself on leading “the most transparent administration in history,” and in fact the number of new classified documents has declined under his watch.

Yet at the same time, the Obama administration has been pilloried for its poor responsiveness under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), with requests that can take years to fulfill and record levels of agencies withholding documents. Additionally, more leakers have faced charges under the 1917 Espionage Act under this president than all others combined.

Trying to split hairs with Clinton’s setup, his critics say, is hypocritical.

“I can’t make an excuse for someone mishandling a confidential document by saying, ‘Oh it was just confidential,’” said Moss, referring the lowest level of classification. “I’ll get laughed out of the room by security.”

The White House said on Monday that Obama has never asked for or received a classified briefing about the federal investigations concerning Clinton’s machine.

“His knowledge of the case is based on public reporting,” Earnest told reporters.

But if Obama had not been kept abreast of the investigation related to Clinton’s machine, then critics were left wondering why he would seek to characterize the contents of the roughly 2,000 emails now considered classified.

“How does he know?” said Hosko.

“For the president to weigh in on what might be the facts or might be wildly erroneous, I think it does little to help preserve the view of the integrity of the investigation and that it isn’t being politicized,” he added. “His comments certainly influence people.”

According to the State Department, none of the material on Clinton's machine was marked as classified at the time it was sent.

Obama’s distinction about what should and should not be classified will serve as little solace to journalists filing FOIA requests or people charged with mishandling sensitive documents. But they will surely be cited in legal briefings nonetheless, potentially undermining the government’s moral high ground.

Just last Friday, the Navy reportedly brought charges against Lt. Cmdr Edward Lin for handing classified information over to other countries, including potentially China and Taiwan. 

“Now does this guy get to pick and choose what’s classified and what’s not classified?” said Morgan Wright, a cybersecurity consultant who has worked with the U.S. government.

“Can you imagine now the legal arguments that people are going to create because of this?”

If nothing else, Obama opened his administration up for jokes at his own expense.

“Anyone have the number for the Attorney General?” Snowden tweeted on Sunday.

“Asking for a friend.”

http://thehill.com/policy/national-security/275887-obamas-classified-comments-strike-nerve
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« Reply #348 on: April 19, 2016, 10:38:56 AM »

The saddest piece of Barack Obama’s legacy

Iraqi soldiers show a flag they seized from the Islamic State on April 9 in Kharbardan during operations to recapture the northern Nineveh province, whose capital, Mosul is the main hub of the Islamic State in Iraq. (Safin Hamed/Agence France-Presse via Getty Images)

By Jackson Diehl Deputy Editorial Page Editor
April 17, 2016

Shortly after the fall of Iraq’s second-largest city, Mosul, to the Islamic State in June 2014, a delegation of senior officials from Iraqi Kurdistan visited Washington with a troubling question: From where, they asked, would the force come to retake the city? The Iraqi army was too shattered, and the Kurds were too weak, and outside powers such as Turkey and the United States were unwilling to commit ground forces.

A lot has happened in the nearly two years since then. Among other things, the Obama administration has retrained nearly 20,000 Iraqi troops, dispatched some 5,000 U.S. trainers, Marines and special operations forces to the area, and launched more than 11,000 combat air sorties against Islamic State targets. Yet when another senior Kurdish delegation circulated through Washington last week, their question about Mosul was unchanged: Who is going to do this?

“We heard a plan is close to being drawn up” for retaking the city, said Qubad Talabani, deputy prime minister of the Kurdish Regional Government in Iraq, who recently met in Baghdad with Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi and the senior U.S. commander in the theater, Lt. Gen. Sean MacFarland. “But we got a sense there are gaping holes in that plan.”

U.S. officials have lately been talking up what they say has been the growing momentum of the war against the Islamic State. They say President Obama, who has repeatedly called it his top priority, has asked for an “acceleration” of the campaign.

To listen to the Kurds, however, is to appreciate the towering obstacles that still must be overcome before the two most important cities held by the jihadists, Mosul in Iraq and Raqqa in Syria, can be retaken. Missing is not just adequate numbers of forces, but also funding, political leadership and that most elusive of goods in the Middle East: a workable vision of what happens the day after the bad guys are dispatched.

It doesn’t help that Iraq is suffering through an economic and fiscal crisis caused by the drop in oil prices and yet another political emergency in Baghdad, where a besieged Abadi has been trying without success to introduce a new cabinet. Those upheavals have left Kurdistan, an autonomous region, broke: Its fighters, the peshmerga, have not been paid in three months. Talabani was in Washington in part to appeal for U.S. financial aid, without which the Kurdish forces probably could not be mobilized for a Mosul offensive. The Kurds asked for $200 million a month; the Pentagon suggested $50 million.

No White House decision on funding the Kurds has been made. Even if the money is forthcoming, the question remains: Who will conduct the street-by-street combat Mosul will require? The terrorists have built defensive berms across the city, seeded mines and IEDs and, the Kurds say, loaded mustard gas into artillery shells. An assaulting force might confront the chemical attacks that U.S. troops expected but never faced in 2003.

Iraqi army forces quickly faltered last month when they tried to begin clearing operations near the city of Makhmour, about 70 miles south of Mosul. That’s when 200 U.S. Marines were secretly sent to the area to establish a “fire base” with artillery. Even with that support, the Iraqis have managed to take only a handful of villages. “We all know the Iraqi army is not ready yet,” Falah Bakir, Kurdistan’s chief of foreign relations, told a group of Post journalists.

The Pentagon is now talking about establishing more fire bases on the way to Mosul, and sources say hundreds more special operations forces and other troops may be deployed as the campaign unfolds. Commanders hope that thousands of Sunni tribesmen being trained as security forces can be used to secure the liberated city. But that still raises the question of whether Iraqi Shiite militias backed by Iran will be allowed to join the assault, as they are pressing to do. If so, they may plunge into sectarian bloodletting with the Sunni population.

Such complexities probably explain why Abadi and MacFarland have yet to show a completed campaign plan to the Kurds. Even more remote is a strategy for postwar governance in Mosul and other Sunni-populated areas that would supplant the Islamic State with something the local population would support. Talabani reckons a Sunni jurisdiction inside a federal Iraq might be an answer, but there’s no sign that the Shiite-dominated government in Baghdad, its allies in Iran or even the Sunnis themselves would agree to it.

All this points to a stark bottom line: There will be no liberation of Mosul in 2016. The Islamic State will outlive the U.S. administration whose lapses in Syria and Iraq helped to create it. It will be the ugliest piece of Barack Obama’s legacy.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/the-ugliest-piece-of-barack-obamas-legacy/2016/04/17/f83182d8-026d-11e6-9203-7b8670959b88_story.html
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