Category Archives: Military

Kerry, Qatar, Hamas, and Turkey

140729Israel, Egypt, Jordan, and the Saudis want Hamas out and Fatah in in Gaza. So what did John Kerry  do? He met with Islamist Turkey and Qatar to come up with a cease fire agreement that keeps Hamas in power and its rockets and tunnels intact. The Israeli cabinet unanimously rejected the deal. Israel has Hamas on the ropes. Hammas is without friends – save for Turkey and Qatar – which is why Krauthammer called Kerry Hamas’s lawyer.

Here’s David Harsanyi in The Federalist:

Perhaps because of tragic loss of life, the United States would rather see a ceasefire than Hamas dealt a mortal blow. And that is almost certainly one of the reasons Hamas uses Palestinians as human shields.

Thomas Sowell , looking way back, says ” ‘Cease-fire” and “negotiations” are magic words to “the international community.” But just what do cease-fires actually accomplish?”

In the short run, they save some lives. But in the long run they cost far more lives, by lowering the cost of aggression…

At one time, launching a military attack on another nation risked not only retaliation but annihilation. When Carthage attacked Rome, that was the end of Carthage.

Looks like mutual assured destruction all around is the key to world peace.

The Washington Post’s David Ignatius calls this Kerry’s big blunder:

Kerry’s error has been to put so much emphasis on achieving a quick halt to the bloodshed that he has solidified the role of Hamas, the intractable, unpopular Islamist group that leads Gaza, along with the two hard-line Islamist nations that are its key supporters, Qatar and Turkey. In the process, he has undercut not simply the Israelis but also the Egyptians and the Fatah movement that runs the Palestinian Authority, all of which want to see an end to Hamas rule in Gaza.

The State Department’s response to Kerry criticism? Well, this is “not the way allies treat each other.”

The Bear is Loose

140719bear-loose

The president is a bear in his own mind. When he takes a scripted trip outside the White House to mingle with the people he likes to say “the bear is loose”.

Here’s Matthew Continetti in the Washington Free Beacon on Obama and the real bear – Russia.

Boots on the Ground

140614BootsPresident Obama is fond of insisting he won’t put boots on the ground. Even when no one is asking. But now he’s putting 275 pairs of “boots on the ground” to protect American assets as the Iraqi army melts away before ISIS terrorists. Here’s Dick Cheney in a controversial WSJ op-ed last week:

Watching the black-clad ISIS jihadists take territory once secured by American blood is final proof, if any were needed, that America’s enemies are not “decimated.” They are emboldened and on the march… When Mr. Obama and his team came into office in 2009, al Qaeda in Iraq had been largely defeated, thanks primarily to the heroic efforts of U.S. armed forces during the surge. Mr. Obama had only to negotiate an agreement to leave behind some residual American forces, training and intelligence capabilities to help secure the peace. Instead, he abandoned Iraq and we are watching American defeat snatched from the jaws of victory.

Cheney goes on to call Obama a fool. It’s hard to argue.

In the face of this threat, Mr. Obama is busy ushering America’s adversaries into positions of power in the Middle East. First it was the Russians in Syria. Now, in a move that defies credulity, he toys with the idea of ushering Iran into Iraq. Only a fool would believe American policy in Iraq should be ceded to Iran, the world’s largest state sponsor of terror… American freedom will not be secured by empty threats, meaningless red lines, leading from behind, appeasing our enemies, abandoning our allies, or apologizing for our great nation—all hallmarks to date of the Obama doctrine. Our security, and the security of our friends around the world, can only be guaranteed with a fundamental reversal of the policies of the past six years.

On the other hand, Kirsten Powers, still blames Bush.

She says none of this would have happened if Saddam Hussein were still around. “At least he was secular by Arab standards”. That’s hard to argue too. Note for next cartoon: Saddam – “Miss me yet?”

Personally I’m 0 for 2 on wars with Iraq. I was against the first one. When Saddam invaded Kuwait I figured both sides wanted to sell us oil and it wasn’t worth breaking things and killing people over which one got to do it. Besides, April Glaspie may have given Saddam reason to think he had a green light on rape and pillage in Kuwait.

As it turned out, Saddam had been stockpiling weapons of mass destruction before the first Iraq war. In light of that , and in the shadow 9/11, I was in favor of the second Iraq war. That put me in the same boat as Kerry, Hillary, and most of the rest of the Democratic leadership. The difference is I didn’t switch sides when WMD weren’t found in Iraq. Once you’re in a war it’s still better to win than lose. That’s where I admire Bush - that and his ability to draw pictures in the bathtub. He didn’t give up on the sacrifices made in Iraq, even though just about everyone else did - Dems and Republicans alike. He found Petraeus and won the war.

 

Saving Private Ryan

140606-saving-private-ryanMad Magazine did a great satire on the Saving Private Ryan movie poster. It was titled Trading Private Bergdahl  “they got five taliban leaders, we got one deserting weasel”.

In the actual movie, a Lincoln channeling General George Marshall gives orders to find Private Ryan. The hapless job falls to platoon leader Captain Miller.

During the search, Miller has to decide whether to keep a German prisoner or press on to find Ryan. He releases the Jihadi, er German, only to have come back later in the flick and kill one of his men.

When they finally find Ryan, Miller tells him all his brothers have been killed in battle and he has orders to bring him home. Ryan refuses saying the men he is with are his brothers now and he won’t leave them behind. Not exactly a Private Bergdahl moment, but hey, it’s a movie.

Even though they’re way outnumbered by the Germans, Captain Miller and his men stay, and they all get killed. Not really, but Captain Miller does. Miller’s dying words to Private Ryan are, “earn this”.

Saving Private Ryan

To further prove life is unfair, Private Ryan lost out to Shakespeare in Love for Best Picture in 1998.

Anyway, I thought this might be a good way to mark the 70th anniversary of D-Day.

 

Bergdahl Not Left Behind

140603-bergdahlThe U.S. swapped five Taliban commanders from GITMO for one hostage/POW (depending on whose definition you believe). That would be one jihadi for each of Bowe Bergdahl’s five years of captivity. The swap may have been illegal because the president failed to consult with Congress - something Jay Carney promised would happen a year ago. 

The official government story was that Bergdahl was “captured on the battlefield“. His comrades say he either deserted or went AWOL. They also claim that lives were lost searching for him. The Washington Times say opportunities to rescue Bergdahl were declined on the grounds he wasn’t worth the risk.

Bergdahl Not Left Behind

President Obama justified the high price paid for Sgt. Bergdahl saying, “We never leave our men and women in uniform behind.”