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The Worst Defeat for the United States Since 9/11
Townhall.com ^ | January 8, 2014 | John Ransom

Posted on 01/08/2014 6:17:31 AM PST by Kaslin

Two years after Obama declared that the administration has decimated Al Qaeda worldwide, Al Qaeda has delivered the most devastating blow to the United States since the 9/11 attacks that precipitated America’s war on Islamic terrorism.

The fall of the Iraqi Anbar province towns of Ramadi and Fallujah recently to foreign fighters under control of Al Qaeda, called the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, represents not just a tactical defeat in Obama’s “Smart Power” strategy, but a strategic surrender of the entire U.S. foreign policy conception for the last 50 years.

“US policies and leaders in three years have destroyed a state system that earlier generations evolved over decades,” said an intelligence analyst who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he is not authorized to speak with the press. “The U.S. has nothing to show for it but suffering and has nothing to replace it with.”

Anbar province is strategically situated, sharing a border with Saudi Arabia, Syria and Jordan. While Jordan and Saudi Arabia remain tenuously allied with the United States, the spread of military operations by Al Qaeda out of Syria and into Iraq must mean that they will continue to cast around for more reliable allies than the Obama administration has proved to be.

“US policy makes no sense to anyone in the region,” the analyst continued. “In the view of the US administration, however, the US is consistent in trying to promote democratically elected government, despite the total irrelevance of that concept to region.”

The analyst further observed that the administration has crafted the ridiculous foreign policy conditions in which they support what the Al Qaeda rebels are doing in Syria in opposing that government, while the administration opposes the same rebels across the border in Iraq who are trying to topple the government installed through the Iraqi elections.

The rebels on both sides of the Iraq-Syria border, the self-styled Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS/ISIL), has been Al Qaeda since 2004 and mostly consist of foreign fighters.

In the fall of 2012 the administration tried to paint a very different picture of the strategic situation for Al Qaeda.

"The intelligence picture shows that al Qaeda's core is a shadow of its former self,” said Obama’s National Counterterrorism Director Matt Olsen in September 2012 as the administration was making its case for a second term.

A year earlier then-Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta said that the war against Al Qaeda was all but won: "I'm convinced that we're within reach of strategically defeating al Qaeda."

As late as November 1st, 2012 wearing his flight jacket as commander in chief Obama told a crowd on the campaign trail: “Thanks to sacrifice and service of our brave men and women in uniform, the war in Iraq is over, the war in Afghanistan is winding down, al Qaeda has been decimated, Osama bin Laden is dead.”

Not quite the “mission accomplished” speech George Bush indulged in from the deck of an aircraft carrier. In fact, it’s much, much worse. Because the comeback for Al Qaeda has been armed and fueled by Obama’s incomprehensible foreign, military and strategic policies in the Middle East and North Africa, starting with arming Al Qaeda in a bid to topple Libyan strongman Muammar Gaddafi in the spring of 2011. Since then American arms and American money has been helping to rebuild Al Qaeda in Africa, Syria, Iraq and throughout the Arab world. And it’s not just the stability of Iraq at stake anymore: Jordan, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia and Israel are all affected.

Each in turn now have very real concerns about the spread of fighting to their own country, an eventuality that never was contemplated while Bush was in charge.

One young Marine who supported operations in Ramadi when the fight was in doubt back in 2004 told me he was “irritated” by the loss of the town to the same Al Qaeda fighters that they chased out previously.

“The people in that town relied on us to protect them. They didn’t like Al Qaeda then,” said the Marine who supported the 2nd Battalion 4th Marines, “and they probably don’t like them now. 80 to 90 percent of those fighters weren’t even Iraqi anyway.”

A Navy veteran of Enduring Freedom, who walked the sand in Iraq, told me that he had been watching the situation “unfold for a while now. It’s incomprehensible to me,” he said “that we lost so much there and these guys just threw it all away.”

Like the Marine veteran, he didn’t want his name used for fear of retaliation from the Obama administration.

Tony Marsh, a U.S. contractor who helped with elections in Iraq has no such scruples. He blasted the administration for squandering the “sacrifice of American soldiers who in 2004 fought and won a bloody battle against Al Qaeda in Iraq’s Anbar Province.”

“From day one,” said Marsh, “president Obama has sent a very clear message that this is not a fight he or his Administration have the stomach for. Al Qaeda has been biding its time when they can finally emerge, unopposed by U.S. forces, to rebuild their networks and reaffirm their fight against the west. We see them doing that now in Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan and large parts of Africa.”

This defeat is worse than the Tet Offensive, the highly successful new years attack staged by the communists in Vietnam in 1968. While ultimately defeated by U.S. and Vietnamese forces, Tet was widely seen as convincing many that the war in Vietnam could not be won.

But here’s the difference. We can’t just walk away from the Middle East, as we did Vietnam. There is too much at stake for the United States and the West in the region. Recent developments show just how farsighted the Bush administration was in trying to prevent the very eventuality that Obama’s guns and money have enabled in Iraq and across the Middle East.

Whatever else one might say, it’s clear Bush had more strategic sense in his middle finger than Obama has in his whole administration.

Just think of that.


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Culture/Society; Editorial; Syria; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: alqaeda; alqaedairaq; barack0bama; fallujah; georgewbush; iran; iraq; iraqwar; middleeast; ramadi; syria; waronterror

1 posted on 01/08/2014 6:17:32 AM PST by Kaslin
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To: Kaslin

Positively Nixonian on Obama’s part.

Furthermore, someone should tell him that ‘decimated’ means cut by 10%. That means that 90% of AQ was still active. Bravo, O.


2 posted on 01/08/2014 6:22:09 AM PST by rarestia (It's time to water the Tree of Liberty.)
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To: Kaslin

Obama represents the Democrats perfectly. They are dangerously stoopid.


3 posted on 01/08/2014 6:23:45 AM PST by Blue Collar Christian (Vote Democrat. Once you're OK with killing babies the rest is easy. <BCC><)
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To: Kaslin

Obviously, we need to go back. But a draft and war tax should be implemented so we can all share in the fun.


4 posted on 01/08/2014 6:25:42 AM PST by Wolfie
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To: Kaslin

Because the comeback for Al Qaeda has been armed and fueled by Obama’s incomprehensible foreign, military and strategic policies in the Middle East and North Africa, starting with arming Al Qaeda in a bid to topple Libyan strongman Muammar Gaddafi in the spring of 2011. Since then American arms and American money has been helping to rebuild Al Qaeda in Africa, Syria, Iraq and throughout the Arab world. And it’s not just the stability of Iraq at stake anymore: Jordan, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia and Israel are all affected.


Incomprehensible?

Obama’s plan is unfolding just as he planned it.

It’s just incomprehensible to Americans that they twice elected a President who is working for Al-Qaeda


5 posted on 01/08/2014 6:25:51 AM PST by rdcbn
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To: Kaslin

Defeat for Iraq? Sure.

Defeat for America? Nope.


6 posted on 01/08/2014 6:26:49 AM PST by BenLurkin (This is not a statement of fact. It is either opinion or satire; or both.)
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To: Blue Collar Christian

Obama.....”Present”.


7 posted on 01/08/2014 6:29:45 AM PST by Don Corleone ("Oil the gun..eat the cannoli. Take it to the Mattress.")
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To: BenLurkin

Agreed. The real defeat is our suicidal immigration policy and a wide open border.


8 posted on 01/08/2014 6:31:58 AM PST by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
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To: rarestia

Nixon was far more pragmatic in foreign affairs. The Current Occupant now squatting in the Oval Orifice is a surrender monkey that would embarrass the French at their most craven moments.

This time, it is surrender to the contenders for whom shall be established as the Worldwide Caliphate. Right now, there is a huge struggle between the Sunni (supported by Saudi Arabia) and the Shi’ite (supported by Iran), the victor of which shall set as its ultimate goal to overcome every other ideology/belief system in the remainder of the world.

Communism was once like that. Makes a person almost wistful and nostalgic for the Cold War.


9 posted on 01/08/2014 6:32:02 AM PST by alloysteel (Those who deny natural climate change are forever doomed to stupidity. AGW is a LIE.)
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To: Wolfie
Obviously, we need to go back.

Why?

But a draft and war tax should be implemented so we can all share in the fun.

That would drop public support for the war from very, very low to non-existent.

10 posted on 01/08/2014 6:35:08 AM PST by DoodleDawg
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To: rarestia

More specifically, decimated means 10% killed internally as a disciplinary measure for poor performance on the field of battle.


11 posted on 01/08/2014 6:35:59 AM PST by 5thGenTexan
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To: Kaslin
Bush's strategy was flawed and he was fortunate to find a general in David Petraeus.

Petraeus really began attracting Washington's attention in 2003 with his command of the 101st Airborne Division in Baghdad, Iraq, and, later, in Mosul. He had written his doctoral thesis about counterinsurgency in Vietnam, and had continued to refine his ideas during tours in places like Central America and Bosnia.

Petraeus soon began enacting what is now known as the "hearts and minds" approach to winning supporters among the local populations. His approach called for more troops and more investment in nation building, which ran in opposition to President George W. Bush's strategy at the time. However, when the administration changed its course in Iraq in 2006, Petraeus's rise to the top continued.

12 posted on 01/08/2014 6:48:16 AM PST by Hostage (ARTICLE V)
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To: Kaslin
“US policy makes no sense to anyone in the region,” the analyst continued.

It makes no sense to anyone except the, ahem, geniuses, in the administration. We are going to reap the whirlwind because of those idiots.

13 posted on 01/08/2014 6:50:11 AM PST by Rummyfan (Iraq: it's not about Iraq anymore, it's about the USA!)
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To: Wolfie

Obviously, we need to go back.

<><><><><

How many troops and for how long? What precisely is the mission? How will we accomplish building a nation this time? How will the US fix the Sunni - Shiite issue? The Kurds?


14 posted on 01/08/2014 6:51:35 AM PST by dmz
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To: rarestia
...someone should tell him that ‘decimated’ means cut by 10%. That means that 90% of AQ was still active.

Who dares tell the king his new clothes are imaginary?

15 posted on 01/08/2014 6:59:44 AM PST by Standing Wolf (No tyrant should ever be allowed to die of natural causes.)
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To: Kaslin

How does one sat “Tet” in Arabic?


16 posted on 01/08/2014 7:04:45 AM PST by Repulican Donkey
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To: Kaslin
This defeat is worse than the Tet Offensive, the highly successful new years attack staged by the communists in Vietnam in 1968. While ultimately defeated by U.S. and Vietnamese forces, Tet was widely seen as convincing many that the war in Vietnam could not be won.

While the author's larger argument has merit, he unfortunately miscasts the Tet Offensive as a U.S. defeat. Did we suffer losses? Of course, but when that battle was over, the enemy was no longer able to field an effective combat force. It took them close to two years after we left to mount a new offensive and breach the accords.

17 posted on 01/08/2014 7:06:12 AM PST by frog in a pot ("To each according to his need..." -from a guy who never had a real job and couldn't feed his family)
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To: Kaslin

Why did Hillary and Obama use American taxpayer funded facilities, personnel, equipment and funds to overthrow the government of Libya? This article states that Hillary and Obama supported and supplied Al Qaeda to overthrow the government of Libya. Isn’t Al Qaeda our enemy? What if FDR had helped Hitler overthrow Switzerland? Isn’t this treason?


18 posted on 01/08/2014 7:08:58 AM PST by blueunicorn6 ("A crack shot and a good dancer")
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To: rdcbn; Kaslin
Incomprehensible?

Obama’s plan is unfolding just as he planned it.

It’s just incomprehensible to Americans that they twice elected a President who is working for Al-Qaeda

The scary part is not that the President is doing this its that the military, the intelligence agencies, the State Department, and most of CONgress is going along with this.

19 posted on 01/08/2014 7:10:55 AM PST by Count of Monte Fisto (The foundation of modern society is the denial of reality.)
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To: FReepers

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20 posted on 01/08/2014 7:15:52 AM PST by DJ MacWoW (The Fed Gov is not one ring to rule them all)
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To: frog in a pot

I was always waiting to head north, but those orders never came.


21 posted on 01/08/2014 7:23:13 AM PST by onedoug
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To: dmz

You raise many important questions. Each of the answers will involve a concept that includes our continuing presence and some degree of restructuring, just as was required in Japan and Germany after WWII. Otherwise, as we can see today in Anbar province, we almost certainly will be unable to effectively correct the problem.

You and I no doubt agree that we should never sacrifice American lives piecemeal for no more than a short-term and obviously incomplete solution and then expect the problem to correct itself.


22 posted on 01/08/2014 7:26:56 AM PST by frog in a pot ("To each according to his need..." -from a guy who never had a real job and couldn't feed his family)
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To: Kaslin

If this latest deliberate action with Fallujah and Ramadi were an aberration with this administration, we could call it stupid. Sadly, the motive behind this destruction of our national security interests is consistent with everything else Obummer is doing. It conforms perfectly to a much, much more sinister and deliberate agenda. Yet, this “in your face” treason is depressingly dismissed with disingenuous terms like stupid or ignorant. These euphemisms only provide a cheap excuse for not calling the acts treason and criminal. Even if no one wants to take any action against this WH traitor, we need to be honest and call him and his actions what they really are.


23 posted on 01/08/2014 7:29:08 AM PST by iontheball
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To: Don Corleone

Yep.


24 posted on 01/08/2014 7:32:12 AM PST by Blue Collar Christian (Vote Democrat. Once you're OK with killing babies the rest is easy. <BCC><)
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To: Count of Monte Fisto; rdcbn; Kaslin
It’s just incomprehensible to Americans that they twice elected a President who is working for Al-Qaeda

Al-CIAda is a Western operation. Saudi intel works for the CIA. Well, really it works for the masters of the CIA, the US/UK financial elites. This is why the Bush family and the Saudis are such great friends, because the Bush family is a family that works for the masters.
25 posted on 01/08/2014 7:33:34 AM PST by PieterCasparzen (We have to fix things ourselves)
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To: onedoug
... but those orders never came.

Perhaps for the better, and certainly for the better in your case.

For those that may not know, we did what we could in VN over the years at great cost and with the always present potential of igniting a much wider conflict. When it appeared SVN was secure, we relied on the accords.

Thereafter, our intention was to continue to at least remotely support SVN, particularly in the face of any breach of the accords but the leftists in our government, of course, prevented that.

26 posted on 01/08/2014 7:53:48 AM PST by frog in a pot ("To each according to his need..." -from a guy who never had a real job and couldn't feed his family)
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To: frog in a pot

I was still ready. But if one will not go after communists, they will certainly sweep in on all one knew and loved.

Just look at us today.


27 posted on 01/08/2014 8:05:15 AM PST by onedoug
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To: Kaslin
...a strategic surrender of the entire U.S. foreign policy conception for the last 50 years.

I'm calling BS on that assertion. 50 years ago, our foreign policy conception was containment of the Soviet Union, period. What's more since that policy became moot with our victory in the Cold War, the U.S. was on the same side as Al Qaeda in the Balkans in the 1990's giving Sunni Islamists an airforce first in Bosnia then in Kosovo (and still supports the KLA -- AQ's Albanian arm -- in the theft of Kosovo from Serbia) and in central Asia, supporting the Chechens diplomatically. It's only for the past 12 year that the U.S. has actually had a half-hearted anti-Al Qaeda policy thanks to their ingratitude expressed in the 9/11 attacks.

28 posted on 01/08/2014 9:30:51 AM PST by The_Reader_David (And when they behead your own people in the wars which are to come, then you will know...)
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To: dmz

Sarcasm, but it’s what I’m hearing from a few talking heads. Obviously, neither they nor their children will be going, and it’s all on the national credit card, so why not?


29 posted on 01/08/2014 10:05:06 AM PST by Wolfie
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To: Wolfie

Missed the sarcasm. My bad.


30 posted on 01/08/2014 10:16:55 AM PST by dmz
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To: Kaslin
[Art.] “....these guys just threw it all away.”

Exactamundo-bump.

"These guys" are Communists and they hate us, is why.

31 posted on 01/08/2014 2:06:36 PM PST by lentulusgracchus
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Read later


32 posted on 01/10/2014 11:34:32 PM PST by CovenBuster (Bustin' up liberal covens from coast to coast)
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