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Iraq on the Edge

Uh-oh.

A day after taking over Mosul, Iraq’s second-largest city, ISIS militants gained nearly complete control of the northern city of Tikrit, witnesses in the city and police officials in neighboring Samarra told CNN.

Heavy fighting erupted inside Tikrit — the hometown of former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein — as the military tried to regain control, the sources and a police official in Baghdad said.

According to the witnesses in Tikrit and the Samarra police officials, two police stations in Tikrit were on fire and a military base was taken over by militants.

The governor of Salaheddin province, of which Tikrit is the capital, was missing, according to the sources.

More here.

ISIS is an Islamic group so vicious, Al-Qaeda cut ties to them. They have taken over the Western part of Iraq as well as parts of Syria. US-trained Iraqi forces have apparently been feeling before them.

It’s not clear what’s going to happen here. I doubt they have the ability to attack Baghdad itself. But it’s pretty clear that the Iraqi government doesn’t have the ability to deal with them. My best guess is that we are in for a long and brutal civil war.

Does this mean we shouldn’t have left? I’m not sure what having American troops in the way would do, other than get a lot of our people killed. This is what I feared when we went into Iraq — that toppling Saddam would rid the world of an evil dictator but leave Iraq with an ongoing religious and ethnic struggle. And I don’t see that going back in would stop it.

Iraq is asking for help in the way of airstrikes. That might help and it is of low risk. But we can’t keep bailing out the Iraqi government forever. Eventually, like Afghanistan, Iraq is going to have to decided whether they want to live under a bunch of head-chopping wackos or not.

32 comments

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  1. West Virginia Rebel says:

    The government apparently has plans to evacuate that huge embassy we built. It’s got it’s own mall. How much did we pay for that place, again?
    West Virginia Rebel recently posted..Spanish BugMy Profile

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  2. AlexInCT says:

    Is it too early to say “I told you so”? When you put inept fucks in charge of things adults should be, things will go wrong. Thank you progressive idiots. Seriously, the next time some progressive complains about how other people than them don’t know how to do things, I hope someone punches them in the mouth for it. All progressives know to do is pretend they know what to do and then to fuck things up. They are idiots.

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  3. Seattle Outcast says:

    I think that if we need to root the Taliban out again we should start with nukes. You know, just to show people that we’re tired of fucking around….

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  4. Hal_10000 says:

    Holy shit:

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2014/06/12/isis-just-stole-425-million-and-became-the-worlds-richest-terrorist-group/

    Alex, much as I’d like to blame Obama for this, I can’t. As I noted, I feared that Saddam was the only thing holding that country together and this sort of chaos and perhaps an Islamist state might be the result of toppling him. A lot of people expressed that concern but were over-ruled by the neocon fucks who claimed we would create a permanent democracy because they had these theories, you see, about how America could remake the world.

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  5. AlexInCT says:

    Alex, much as I’d like to blame Obama for this, I can’t.

    Then you are not paying attention to the fact that Obama and his people did their best to make sure Iraq, and soon Afghanistan, both end up in the loss column. When the leftards told us Iraq was a lost cause a long time ago they meant it. They would do anything and everything to assure that was the case. And it looks like they are getting their way right now in Iraq. They made every move they could to guarantee this exact outcome ever since they have could. Afghanistan is soon to follow.

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  6. richtaylor365 says:

    I have to agree with Alex on this one. Obama’s fingerprints are all over this, whether he cares to admit it or not. He is the one that wanted out of Iraq at all costs, he was the one that ignored his military commanders and refused leaving a residual force, and he was the one that refused air strikes on clear AQ staging points, something that would have been very easy to do at the time.

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  7. hist_ed says:

    I don’t think Obama ever said to himself “Yeah let’s do what we can to lose Iraq.” I think he just doesn’t care that much. He wants to be the great anti-war candidate. Other than Obamacare, that has to be his legacy: He got us out of two wars. Now we can probably add the statement “By losing.”

    The blame partly lies with Bush as well. We should have gone in, knocked the shit out of the Iraqis and then found some brutal dictator to be our bitch and given him a shitload of guns and money and then left (through Tehran).

    I think islamist victory is inevitable in Iraq. Read the news on this, tens of thousands of Iraqi army soldiers just ran away, abandoning their weapons. ISIS may just be able to carve out their own kingdom with chunks of Iraq and Syria.

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  8. hist_ed says:

    “But we can’t keep bailing out the Iraqi government forever. Eventually, like Afghanistan, Iraq is going to have to decided whether they want to live under a bunch of head-chopping wackos or not.”

    The problem is that the head chopping wackos, once they take control, tend to export themselves to neighbors and to us. I really think we need to re-asses the whole fucking ball of wax. We are in a generational conflict akin to the Cold War. It may well take decades. Ignoring that these people want to take over the world and kill us isn’t going to change their mind.

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  9. AlexInCT says:

    I don’t think Obama ever said to himself “Yeah let’s do what we can to lose Iraq.” I think he just doesn’t care that much.

    I disagree, hist_ed. I think Obama, and a most of the other progressives that believe the shit he does (especially those he has surrounded himself with), wanted us to lose this one. Harken back to the Vietnam age, where the progs took to teaching the American people the lesson that we can’t win wars, because that then means we will only fight the warskinetic actions they approve of. These people have had a big bone with America being a super power, double so because the ideology they empathize with – communism – was defeated by the America they despise. That’s why Obama promised us fundamental change, too. Remember Murtha and countless others declaring us the bad guy and talking about how we already had lost? They meant it.

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  10. Seattle Outcast says:

    Hey, let’s toss in a nuclear Iran run by fanatic Islamofascists and see what a great party that makes.

    Obama’s policies toward the Mid-East and North Africa have been nothing short of fucking stupid from day one. The only thing that explains it is the fiercely denied fact that Obama is, at his core, essentially muslim in his worldview.

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  11. West Virginia Rebel says:

    Knock, knock.

    Who’s there?

    Iran.

    Iran who?

    Iran here as fast as I could:

    http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/news/world/middleeast/iraq/article4116273.ece
    West Virginia Rebel recently posted..Clinton ChangeMy Profile

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  12. HARLEY says:

    i cant believe that these fartknockers are easily over throwing the Iraqi Gov, but fighting a bloody stand still in Syria..
    Who was funding and arming these assholes, someone has been? Iran the Saudis? CIA?
    Given what i have seen of their movement into Iraq it would have been easy as hell to flank them and grind them down, but alas is seems the Iraqi army is more incompetent than any one realized or on the take.. and the very public lack of support from the US sends a signal far and wide and not just to the isis goons.

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  13. Section8 says:

    Well the army in some of those towns may have been weak, but it doesn’t exactly sound like the citizens are welcoming these clowns with open arms either. Hopefully there will be some regrouping and they can fight them back. And to think we might have helped out these raiders by bombing Syria. That was an Obama plan along with other morons like McCain.

    At the end of the day this isn’t all Obama’s fault. It’s a combination of Bush ineptness, our pals across the pond and the American hating Left here at home. Here’s the real issue… Whether you agreed with going into Iraq in the first place, and I was not a big fan, the overwhelming and over the top hate directed towards us by the diplomacy mavens in Europe is a big factor in what is going on today. The alliances from at least a public standpoint are over. At this point in time would you sign up or have your kid sign up if one of our “allies” were attacked? I bet 15 years ago it would be probably yes if the needed us. Today I bet it would be no fucking way.

    Basically while we were in Iraq, little blame was put on insurgencies for carrying out heinous acts and instead redirected towards us, i.e. America is the real terrorist, not to mention the Americans can’t even read a map, are stupid, lazy, etc. What’s left is we have no interest in bothering with that shit again, Europe won’t do jack shit to help anyone, and groups like this are emboldened. It’s the same with Putin. You don’t think he paid attention to how this all went down over the last decade? He knows there is no real alliance to stop him. Get used to more of this. A lot more. What we need to do is strengthen our defenses at home and get out of the liability NATO. Europe and the rest can defend themselves because this is only the beginning.

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  14. CM says:

    At this point in time would you sign up or have your kid sign up if one of our “allies” were attacked? I bet 15 years ago it would be probably yes if the needed us. Today I bet it would be no fucking way.

    Do you think families all over Europe wanted their kids to fight Bush’s pre-emptive war in Iraq, which the vast majority of the world very clearly considered to be a bad idea? It’s a bit rich to put any blame on them now.

    Is it too early to say “I told you so”? When you put inept fucks in charge of things adults should be, things will go wrong. Thank you progressive idiots. Seriously, the next time some progressive complains about how other people than them don’t know how to do things, I hope someone punches them in the mouth for it. All progressives know to do is pretend they know what to do and then to fuck things up. They are idiots.

    Right through the looking glass that one.

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  15. Section8 says:

    “Do you think families all over Europe wanted their kids to fight Bush’s pre-emptive war in Iraq, which the vast majority of the world very clearly considered to be a bad idea? It’s a bit rich to put any blame on them now.”

    Did I even mention that as a reason? Did I say the issue was that not enough of them joined in on the fighting? Let me know maybe there’s some text that’s not showing up on my screen that somehow got posted under my id.

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  16. CM says:

    Not directly, but the “diplomacy mavens” reflect the views of the populations they serve. The way Bush went into Iraq did colossal damage in so many ways and for some time. The method to get to the invasion was a cluster-fuck of epic proportions. The aftermath was just as much a complete disaster in terms of the message it sent. Insurgencies and radicals got EXACTLY what they were wanting all along. They just needed to wait it out. It doesn’t even remotely rely on people “hating America” or it being “over the top” or believing that “America is the real terrorist”. Sure, many will hold that view, but it’s not needed for European leaders to avoid getting involved. The whole thing was always going to be fucked for generations.

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  17. Section8 says:

    ” It doesn’t even remotely rely on people “hating America” or it being “over the top” or believing that “America is the real terrorist”. Sure, many will hold that view, but it’s not needed for European leaders to avoid getting involved. The whole thing was always going to be fucked for generations.”

    Actually I should clarify the mavens comment. It also had to do with the European smugness of “diplomacy” while trash talking its most powerful ally including the populace of its most powerful ally. Brilliant diplomacy, some of it at government level, some of it at the populace level. If you think that means nothing, that’s your call. We do have eyes and ears over here you know. I’m just telling it like I see it. I doubt Americans would now rush to the aid of our friends across the pond. I can assure you 20, 30 years ago any attack over there and people would be ready to head over the next day. But then again as I hear there was never any real threat anyhow and the cold war was just American hype. Luckily the next one that’s coming we’ll leave to you to worry about. Hopefully.

    But if you don’t think Putin will make further moves, as well as these bands of terrorists, that’s your call as well. By they way they entered Iraq via Syria I don’t think Bush invaded Syria. I suppose we could argue Iraq would be safe if the iron fist of Saddam were still around. If you want to argue that as somehow a better and more peaceful ending that’s fine too. If you want to pretend that the propaganda of every death over there was due to the US, insurgent or not that’s your call as well. I disagree. I do agree we should have not gone in to begin with, but once there it would have been best to wrap it up as quick as possible. Giving insurgents a pass due to the vitriol toward America did have an effect, whether you want to recognize it or not. Either way, I don’t give a shit whether you agree or not. A new age is here. I’m more interested in future state and my country’s involvement in it. You want to blame our lack luster view towards our allies on American (fill in whatever reason you want) then knock yourself out.

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  18. richtaylor365 says:

    But, but, Bush !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Every time.

    Here, this should make you feel better;

    Image and video hosting by TinyPic

    Right click the image and you can make it desktop background, you can get them in mouse pads to.

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  19. Xetrov says:

    Ahhh, Iraq. CM’s favorite topic risen from the dead. Talk about beating a dead horse…sorry, unicorn.

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  20. hist_ed says:

    This is just great: http://www.militarytimes.com/article/20140612/NEWS08/306120062/How-did-800-ISIS-fighters-rout-2-Iraqi-divisions-?sf27271811=1

    800 ISIS fighters equipped with small arms and machine guns apparently defeated two full divisions of the Iraqi army–division equipped by us. And now the fucking Iranians are sending troops to help out the Iraqi government. Yes, the foreign policy is a success: we are now totally irrelevant and, no doubt, despised, in Iraq.

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  21. Xetrov says:

    200 US Contractors are apparently surrounded on an airbase, and the US Government is thus far doing dick to help them.

    http://www.wnd.com/2014/06/200-u-s-contractors-surrounded-by-jihadists-in-iraq/

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  22. Hal_10000 says:

    Yeah, I was mulling a post on that hist_ed. I think one thing that comes out of this is that Obama’s claim that he’d defeated Al-Qaeda is complete and utter shit. ISIS is a descendant of AQI.

    It also tells you something about his foreign policy that Iran may end up saving our Iraq policy. if you’d told me that ten years ago, I’d have said you were crazy.

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  23. Argive says:

    I think one thing that comes out of this is that Obama’s claim that he’d defeated Al-Qaeda is complete and utter shit. ISIS is a descendant of AQI.

    Under Obama, the US has pretty well crushed what we might consider “core” al-Qaeda. But new branches like AQI pop up all the time. Trying to destroy these groups wholesale is like squeezing Jello. Also, I find this whole situation rather ironic, considering that one of the main reasons why there are no US troops currently stationed in Iraq is because Nouri al-Maliki refused to sign any withdrawal agreement that allowed for a permanent US presence there. I bet al-Maliki kinda regrets that one.

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  24. richtaylor365 says:

    considering that one of the main reasons why there are no US troops currently stationed in Iraq is because Nouri al-Maliki refused to sign any withdrawal agreement that allowed for a permanent US presence there

    Yes, that is the official story, crafted be those weasels currently in power to save their bacon and give them an alibi just in case things went south. Too bad other sources from the military, those not needing as much backside protection, have given a different story, one where Obama did absolutely nothing to press the issue, did nothing to protect and secure whatever gains had been won up until that point, and paints him as an amateur, a failure at what past presidents with even a minimal amount of diplomatic savvy could have achieved. Obama got a clean break, which was what he wanted all along.

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  25. Argive says:

    It is possible to believe both that al-Maliki wanted no US troops in Iraq and also that Obama didn’t do enough to press the issue. Though I haven’t seen any of these other sources you mention.

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  26. Section8 says:

    Would we have wanted to keep troops there though? At what point does the new government take responsibility? This wasn’t a case of chaotic internal disruption. This was more less an organized outside invasion and the army took off. Why should our troops at that point have to play the role of baby sitter? Not to mention after the British left the borders weren’t laid out the best. There are lots of various groups that want nothing to do with each other.

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  27. Seattle Outcast says:

    I’m hoping that the various sides end up killing each other for some time and eventually run out of ammo and bodies.

    Then we nuke whatever is left…..

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  28. hist_ed says:

    “Would we have wanted to keep troops there though? At what point does the new government take responsibility? ” We currently have troops in Germany, Japan and South Korea, decades after winning those wars.

    Remember that the Iraq war was essentially won when Obama took over. I don’t know if having 10k US soldiers stationed there permanently would have made things sweetness and light, but keeping them there just in case might have been a good idea.

    Again, my option one end game would have been to find a strongman son of a bitch, set him up with guns and money, and tell him to not fuck with us.

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  29. AlexInCT says:

    Again, my option one end game would have been to find a strongman son of a bitch, set him up with guns and money, and tell him to not fuck with us.

    That or we start fighting wars like people that want to win do. Throughout history the side that wanted to win broke the other side’s will to fight by piling on the nasty. If we are not able to break the things we need to and pile the bodies as high as we need to, to make the other side quit, lets not do wars anymore. It doesn’t matter how sophisticated, advanced or badass your military capability is when you are unable to actually put it to use. All this clean and sober kinetic action we engage in these days is a recipe for failure. This is why I fear we will one day all be speaking Mandarin of bowing towards Mecca. We have pussies making the call. We don’t fucking even hang pirates like we used to anymore, and it has again become a lucrative trade. Go fucking figure.

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  30. Thrill says:

    Al-Maliki made us leave because the Iranians insisted on it and he wanted a free hand to advance his sect’s interests at the expense of the Sunnis. I mostly blame him for the whole state of affairs.

    Obama, as usual, has reacted a day late and a dollar short but I have to wonder if airstrikes are even a good idea. ISIS seems to know how to shoot down Syrian jets and it would be pretty awful to have an American pilot captured, held for another GTMO trade, and then for it to come out that he was shot down with anti-aircraft weaponry the Obama Administration dumped on the rebels in Libya.

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  31. CM says:

    But if you don’t think Putin will make further moves, as well as these bands of terrorists, that’s your call as well.

    No, that certainly doesn’t reflect my opinion.

    I suppose we could argue Iraq would be safe if the iron fist of Saddam were still around. If you want to argue that as somehow a better and more peaceful ending that’s fine too.

    Saddam certainly kept things under tight control but I never advocated doing nothing. I think think keeping things in check while supporting a democratic opposition was a much better option, even if it took decades to get to the point where a revolution could take place. But there is no one obvious ‘solution’. I just though the one they chose was one of the worst of them all.

    If you want to pretend that the propaganda of every death over there was due to the US, insurgent or not that’s your call as well. I disagree.

    Not sure I understand what you mean by this….the propaganda of every death?

    I do agree we should have not gone in to begin with, but once there it would have been best to wrap it up as quick as possible. Giving insurgents a pass due to the vitriol toward America did have an effect, whether you want to recognize it or not.

    How were they given a pass?

    Either way, I don’t give a shit whether you agree or not. A new age is here. I’m more interested in future state and my country’s involvement in it.

    Fair enough.

    You want to blame our lack luster view towards our allies on American (fill in whatever reason you want) then knock yourself out.

    All I’m saying is that Bush did a significant amount of damage in the method he went into Iraq (so much cynicism and deception). If you and others want to downplay that and put up pictures of unicorns and dismiss it all with “but, but, Bush” then knock yourselves out. This current situation, and what might be done about it, stems largely from that decision. And in working out what to do now, you surely have to factor in why you got there in the first place.

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  32. HARLEY says:

    ISIL, can conquer. but can they govern? i think not…..
    Iran, i think will be picking up the pieces.

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