Home » Air » Syria Airstrike in Iraq Complicates ISIL Equation

Syria Airstrike in Iraq Complicates ISIL Equation

by Mike Hoffman on June 25, 2014

Syria Fighter JetFollowing early reports that U.S. drones had struck targets in northern Iraq on Tuesday, it turns out that Syrian aircraft had executed the attacks on the Islamic State in Iraq and Levant. Pentagon officials would old say the U.S. has “no reason to dispute these reports.”

The brazen attack inside Iraq is a signal how  Syria and northern Iraq have devolved into one battlefield, a defense analyst said.

“The border between Syria and Iraq has effectively been erased,” said Colin Kahl, a senior fellow and director of Middle East Security Program at the Center for a New American Security. “There is one battle space, so I would expect that you would see Syrian forces who are battling [ISIL] hit on both sides of the border.”

This is especially complicated should those battles take place in the air. The U.S. is already flying surveillance flights over northern Iraq to monitor movements of ISIL. The U.S. military is also scouting potential targets for airstrikes should President Obama order them.

President Obama said airstrikes are on the table, but yesterday Secretary of State John Kerry said Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki must pursue a unified government and lessen the Shia influence before U.S. airstrikes would be ordered.

But now Syria has beaten the U.S. to the punch raising the question whether a U.S. airstrike in northern Iraq means the U.S. is supporting Bashar al-Assad’s government in Syria.

And don’t forget Iran. The predominantly Shiite country of Iran has interests in stamping out the potential threat of ISIL. There are reports that Iranian special forces have again flooded over the Iraqi border to bolster Moqtada al-Sadr’s militia to ensure ISIL does not take down Baghdad.

So if the U.S. launches airstrikes, there’s a possibility a U.S. fighter could fly by an Iranian F-14 and a Syrian MiG-25 on the way to northern Iraq.

Syria’s strike changed the equation and made a complicated situation even tougher for the U.S. to navigate.

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{ 93 comments… read them below or add one }

Dickie Cockpit June 25, 2014 at 11:54 pm

I'm looking for the establishment of a greater Kurdistan.

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ronaldo June 26, 2014 at 12:35 am

Maybe not a bad thing. The Kurds are the only ones that seem to have their act together over there….and not hostile to Israel

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John Deere June 26, 2014 at 3:38 am

No chance. Turkey is a NATO member and would block any attempt to create a Kurdish State.

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dogfighter June 26, 2014 at 10:41 am

wrong,

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ronaldo June 26, 2014 at 11:38 am

Dear Mr. Deere,

Turkey could care less so long as it does not need Turkish real estate to make it happen. Armenia ? Besides, it there is a true Kurdish homeland in Iraq then the pressure is off.

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Inside Man June 26, 2014 at 2:51 pm

Wrong Mr.Deere, i read alot of international news and Turkey's own president actually came out and said his country supports Kurdish independence (because in the end, it would benefit Turkey to have a gas & oil supplier who isn't restricted by Baghdad!)

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majr0d June 26, 2014 at 10:18 pm

It's a short term move. It undermines Iraqi sovereignty. A Kurdish state on Turkey's border gives ideas to the Kurds living in Turkey and Iran.

ISIS is a bigger threat right now. Turkey doesn't want a second front but after ISIS is eliminated Kurdistan will be at risk. There is P L E N T Y of history of the Turks crossing the border into Iraqi Kurdistan and Turkey has a L O N G history of suppressing the Kurdish minority.

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Dickie Cockpit June 27, 2014 at 12:12 am

Greater Kurdistan. I mean all the Kurds, together. A piece of Syria, a piece of Iran, a piece of Turkey and so on. All the Kurds. I hear nothing but insane nonsense out of this part of the world. Let the Kurds have their country.

Guest June 27, 2014 at 4:51 pm

Until recently, the Government of Turkey has let Sunni terrorists cross their borders to destabilize Syria. The Turks are "rethinking" their position, now that ISIS terrorists have captured Turks in Iraq.

I agree, the Turks and Kurds have been fighting each other for many years.
In fact, the Turks have killed far more Kurds then Saddam ever did.

Peter June 26, 2014 at 3:05 pm

For what it's worth I'd go along with that. Of all the people in that area they have been downtrodden the most. And they've still organised well in a military sense with a reasonable human rights record.

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Dickie Cockpit June 29, 2014 at 3:52 pm

Apparently the Israelis agree.

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jamesb June 26, 2014 at 12:12 am

Obama is patiently waiting ……
No diplomatic deal on the religious issue?
No US stuff….
Sounds Good to me…..

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jack June 26, 2014 at 12:55 pm

Obama is a coward. He's scared to take any action and waiting for someone else to do it.

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Bernard June 26, 2014 at 1:44 pm

Does it really matter what action he takes? Baggers get offended even by his golf swing. Being angry at him is what you live for.

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inside man June 26, 2014 at 2:57 pm

Call Obama what you want, but there will be consequences to getting involved in this war, like Qatar's ambassador to the US said that if we get involved than we are declaring war against Sunni Muslims (66% of muslim population) and ISIS even said they would carry out attacks on americans if we get involved.

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Dave June 26, 2014 at 5:14 pm

But they wont attack the US if we don't get involved? What a lot of you don't seem to understand is the US didn't and/or isn't creating the radicals or making them hate us. They hate everything and everyone that isn't them and they want to cut off our heads. Since when do we listen to someone who is part of a corrupt government anyway? You just quoted someone from Qatar like we should take their advice. That person probably has family members that are part of ISIS or they have contributed to ISIS. I cant believe how ignorant and naive some of you can be.

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Auyong is wrong June 30, 2014 at 12:48 pm

What you seem to be missing, Dave, is that the US has been building up the radicals with support and is still, talking of giving them even more support, in Syria!

blight_ June 26, 2014 at 8:28 pm

More plausible deniability to let them fight it out. Arm Iraq, arm the gulf states, let the gulf states arm ISIS. More money as everyone buys American hardware. Ta-da!

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majr0d June 26, 2014 at 10:20 pm

Yes arm both sides and watch as one who you helped make stronger wins. Assume they won't be a threat to US interests.

It worked great with Iran/Iraq and Afghanistan/Russia…

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blight_ June 26, 2014 at 10:23 pm

We're already arming Iraq directly and the gulf states indirectly.

I don't think anyone in DC really knows which horse to back.

dj June 26, 2014 at 7:55 pm

Although the Kurds may be the best soloition for northern Iraq, there human rights records aren’t that great. Also if the Iranians and Syrians are helping Iraq and the Americans launch an airstrike and happen to run into a Syrian or Iranian jet. Who’s to say they wouldn’t shoot the US jet down or at least try to. I think the answer is not to intervene. The enemy of my enemy is my friend. Let them kill each other for a while, while we protect Israel, put pressure on the Iranian nuclear program, and make sure this thing doesnt spill into Europe. We may not like it but we are at war with an enemy who does not in the foreseeable future look as though they will be giving up.

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Lance June 26, 2014 at 12:40 am

Why not we allied with Japan in WW1 and with Soviet Russia in WW2 why not Syria now to crush AL Qaeda. Think take out the real enemy first Syria was never a attacker on the US despite Obama Sunni support.

Bet MiG-29s where used in attack strikes or SU-17s. MiG-25s are short range interceptor not a attack plane.

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ronaldo June 26, 2014 at 11:44 am

Was I asleep when someone brought up the relevancy of a Mig 25 in this thread ?

You people are just whacko sometimes.

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rtsy June 26, 2014 at 6:45 pm

"So if the U.S. launches airstrikes, there’s a possibility a U.S. fighter could fly by an Iranian F-14 and a Syrian MiG-25 on the way to northern Iraq."

Maybe start reading the entire article before you comment.

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BlackOwl18E June 26, 2014 at 5:01 am

This is another situation where Arab-Islamic forces are fighting each other and we should just sit back and watch. The more they spend fighting each other the less they spend focusing on us.

We need to sit back, let them fight it out, and deal with the winners. Best case scenario: the winners are reasonable people. Worst case scenario in most instances: the winners hate our guts and want to fight, but they'll at least have been weakened from killing off the losers, leaving less work for us.

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deusvolt June 26, 2014 at 7:30 am

Assad is not Islamic. Unfortunately US government is friends with the most fundamentalist extreme Muslim rulers on the planet – Saudi Arabia, Qatar &co, and are helping them supply arms to Islamist armies such as ISIS.

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BlackOwl18E June 26, 2014 at 9:53 am

I said ARAB-Islamic forces. ISIS was a Saudi project. The Syrians are not our friends, the new Iraqi government is not our friends (at least not until they need us), and Iran is the only one that seems to have the ability and the will to beat ISIS. Oh, I don't think Iran is our friend either.

There are no good guys in this fight. We should just let them destroy each other to their heart's content.

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blight_ June 26, 2014 at 10:33 am

In Game of Thrones terms, we should be Varys, not Ned Stark.

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majr0d June 26, 2014 at 10:27 pm

"Worst case scenario in most instances: the winners hate our guts and want to fight, but they'll at least have been weakened from killing off the losers, leaving less work for us."

Didn't work with Germany when they invaded Poland, France, Russia etc. Didn't work in Syria as we saw the Islamists hijack a secular rebellion that has now jumped a border.

Sometimes the bad guy gets better at waging war and develops better weapons, organizations and an overall capacity to wage war.

Isolationism isn't wisdom.

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Guest June 27, 2014 at 1:33 pm

Actually Major Rod, if the US would have stayed out of WW I, Vietnam and Iraq (in 2003), the US and the rest of the World would be a lot better off.

WW I was the # 1 disaster because US intervention in WW I led to Hitler, the Nazi Party and WW II. Both Europe and the rest of the World, would have been much better off, if Germany Won WW I.

Following the French into South East Asia was another blunder and I believe, the start of America's economic and moral downfall.

75% of the American People now believe that the US (Bush) Invasion of Iraq in 2003 was a major blunder.

The so called Spanish-American War was another total lie. It was a "Land Grab",
plain and simple.

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majr0d June 27, 2014 at 1:50 pm

You ignored all me historical examples.

Isolationists wanted us to stay out of WWII.

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Guest June 27, 2014 at 3:42 pm

With all do respect Major Rod, that was a very weak "Counter" coming from You! Perhaps you are "worn out" from defending the Bush disaster in Iraq. If so, very understandable Major Rod.

To repeat, if the US stayed out of WWI and let Germany "Win", there would have been NO Hitler, No Nazis, NO WW II and probably NO strong Soviet Union as well. Western Europe would have been far stronger today and the US wouldn't be on the verge of Bankruptcy, trying to serve as the "World's Policeman".

blight_ June 27, 2014 at 3:15 pm

It would have been better off if Austria and Serbia hadn't called in their friends. You don't think Germany started WW1 do you?

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majr0d June 27, 2014 at 4:02 pm

Oh don't go start confusing him…

Guest June 27, 2014 at 4:37 pm

My "Point" was this. – The US should have stayed OUT of WW I.
The US lost a lot of Blood and Treasure defending the British Empire.
(The Brits ended up losing their Empire anyway, after WW II)

Had Germany WON WW I, there would have been NO Hitler, NO Nazis,
NO WW II, NO strong Soviet Union after WW II, probably NO North Korea and most probably No Vietnam War. Europe wouldn't be a basket case today and the US wouldn't be going Bankrupt.

Iamme June 28, 2014 at 6:48 am

A clear winner between these 2 will leave them to focus and would enable them to concentrate on what they really want. May be this ends up as a operation clean up, and then they do not have to worry about any rats among the. Nice thinking but this may not work. There are 2 planners, and THE ONE has a better plan, Always.

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blight_ July 2, 2014 at 5:05 pm

The Middle East is a complex soup of petty dictators who want land and power and will manipulate ancient religious grudges to stay in power and to expand their own. The Saudi princelings who come to the US aren't all crazy Salafis. But back home there are plenty of those, exploiting sympathetic people with money.

It's like a more radical version of the United States. Our country is divided ideologically which feeds two parties' of think tanks and consultancies (and some religious denominations). But these factions don't overtly go out of their way to inspire holy war for Ayn Rand or birth control overseas.

The winner might be in a position to rapidly consolidate gains and become dangerous. Most likely the Gulf States and Iran/Iraq/Syria will pump money into their respective proxies just to avoid going head to head with each other. Both nations will be heavily bled, but neither will really pay the price for their sins. It does give Iran and Iraq excuses to suppress their Sunnis and Kurds, and gives the Gulf States excuses to crack down on their Shia.

In the game of thrones, guess who suffers?

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tlc June 26, 2014 at 5:29 am

Syria use of chimerical weapons propaganda did not get much milage.
Plan B. The Ol’ Zion cross boarder Syrian Jet attack……where’s the beef? Oops! Where is the evidence? AWACS systems grounded?

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Jerry June 26, 2014 at 7:15 am

The comments here suggest that more understanding of Syria is in order. No chemical weapons use by the Syrian govt. has ever been shown to be a fact. Those closest to the sites found it likely that sarin gas had been used by the Syrian rebels. The charges came at a time when the Syrian govt. forces were mopping up much of the country; the last thing they needed was gas–and the obvious invitation from the charges to get the US involved in aiding the rebels. That is, the govt. had nothing to gain and everything to lose by using gas, while the rebels had everything to gain from trying to pin it on the Assad people. This civil war, which is now mostly over–won by the govt. which is largely popular in the country–would probably never have started without the opposition's expectations that the US would get involved as it had just before in Libya. Assad is not the demon he is projected by the media as being. He just got re-elected overwhelmingly (and incl. support from refugees in neighboring countries). Syria passed a new constitution shortly before the war began–a constitution that assures all sorts of freedoms lacking in the Arab countries supported by the US (e.g. Saudi Arabia, Qatar). The Assad govt. is secular and has protected Christian and other minorities. A radical Islamimic govt. is what would most likely take over were his govt. to fall. The US should withdraw its covert support for the rebels and support Assad.

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Peter June 26, 2014 at 3:01 pm

That is one of the truer posts I've seen about the Syrian situation. To my mind a group of discontented people jumped on the Arab Spring bandwagon expecting Western support. OK, I'll admit, they may well have grievances but there is no way that the "rebels" were a majority. At least until outside Jihadists started joining in. Part of the problem is that we always seem to want to side with the underdog, even when they're in the wrong.

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Dave June 26, 2014 at 5:07 pm

Assad is not the demon he is projected by the media as being? OMG, are you 12? You are so far off base here. You couldn't prove anything you just said. Not a single word. Assad is dropping barrel bombs indiscriminately all over Syria. What a guy! And then Peter chimes in and shows his ignorance as well. No wonder America is as weak as it has ever been.

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Juramentado June 26, 2014 at 10:18 am

The US will mostly limit airstrikes to Southern Iraq and immediate areas around Baghdad. Without extensive Tanker Support, long range strikes in the hotspots North and West would put most tactical aircraft (in this case US Navy strike fighters are the primary asset currently in the area) at the very edge of their operational radius. Putting tankers over hostile territory is not recommended. So by virtue of those circumstances, the US has built themselves a kill box limitation, so it's highly unlikely a SuperBug would pass an Iranian or Syrian jet on the way to a strike.

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Jewbacca June 26, 2014 at 7:26 pm

Don’t worry we have bombers in the region.

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hibeam June 26, 2014 at 10:31 am

I guaran-damn-tee you that Syrian airstrikes in New York City would be frowned upon by this administration. Severely frowned upon.

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blight_ June 26, 2014 at 10:34 am

They've learned from our mistake in Vietnam. Take the fight to the border-crossing enemy. Leave none alive.

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blight_ June 26, 2014 at 6:13 pm

If we annihilate ISIS, then we give a boost to Assad, Hezbollah and Iran.

If we regime-change Assad, it makes ISIS' life easier, pleases the Gulf States who then send Salafi radicals at us because we are pro-Israel.

The Salafis will find some reason or another to hate our guts. If it's not about the ISIS it'll be our policy of arming Israel. They hate our guts. We will never make the Arab on the street happy, especially those who realize that their dictators who exhort them to hate America and Israel rely on American weapons to stay in power themselves.

The Arab on the street will be played as long as it seems that there is little incentive to go to a democratic system of governance, since anti-Americans can run on a ballot and get elected. Obviously the moment our Gulf Cartel pets turn against us we will put them down and switch to a democratic mode of governance, on the assumption that sowing instability in a democracy will cripple a nation-state and prevent it from turning on the US. Almost as good as installing your own dictator.

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James Moore June 26, 2014 at 11:07 am

Wasn’t it proven it was the rebels who used the chemical weapons in an effort to get the U.S involved?

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rtsy June 26, 2014 at 11:47 am

No, it wasn't. In truth there has been no proof either way of who used Sarin gas in Syria, but common sense says that it was the Assad regime. If it were the rebels than the Assad regime had little to no control over it's stockpiles, which is highly unlikely. Furthermore, if the rebels had access to Sarin gas and were willing to use it they probably would have targeted the regime itself, not civilian populations.

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Hank June 26, 2014 at 12:57 pm

Obama and his stooges support ISIS. They provided training and support for these rodents. Now that ISIS/ISIL are attacking Iraq he doesn't know what to do. LOL!

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hibeam June 26, 2014 at 1:20 pm

So true but few Americans know this stuff. When did the news media become a branch of the Democratic party?

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ronaldo June 26, 2014 at 1:54 pm

About the same time as Fox news went Duck Dynasty in it's relevance

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Dave June 26, 2014 at 5:16 pm

Proof you never watch Fox news. Explain to me why Fox news is the highest rated news channel and why all of the liberal channels are rated so low? Do yourself a favor and watch something that tells the truth.

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Rob June 26, 2014 at 3:17 pm

if the hardline extremists are now concentrated in this area, it may be worth it if Syria Jordan Turkey USA Saudi Arabia Iran and Iraq just unite, end this madness

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Auyong Ah Meng June 27, 2014 at 12:35 am

I am wondering something here….as i understand it…the ISIS is an organization fighting and dying for Allah/God/Universal super being…i also understand ISIS stated the infidels tools i.e. weopons/medical supplies, thoughts/religion and etc are un-clean to their Allah/god/super-being…

Question here is…why are they using un-clean weopons / medical supplies / treated water / radio equipment / etc that was use or produced by the un-clean….by using, does that not make ISIS leaderships/warriors of super being un-clean themselves….ISIS should use their own manufactured weops and supplies….if they have to make their own steel schimitars/sabre or wholly own manufactured needle + cow string to sew up wounds etc …their super being will find them to be true warriors/followers of his truth….

Isn't that so….all you clean brave warriors of your Allah.

Sad.

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Rob June 27, 2014 at 8:39 am

Because they are scavengers living off whatever they can find or take. Current situation gives them no political status & it is common for an enemy to use weapons taken from battles. Further complicated by Sunni militia that once fought Al quada now some crossed over to fight the Iraqi government. It's all a lose/lose scenario for them any ways. If they take over Iraq we will come back in full force. At best they will become another left over terror group forced to do only random attacks.

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blight_ June 27, 2014 at 9:16 am

You underestimate their perception of the west and western-derived goods.

They have no interest in returning to the 10th century…only imposing 10th century values on a 21st century world.

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Rhys F June 27, 2014 at 5:57 pm

What is even more cynical of the mullahs is their take on "martyrs" Suicide bombers are just that, Suicide, and hence sent under the Koran to serve Shaitan in hell. The praise for martyrs in the Koran dying in battle comes from the concept of a rear guard, i.e. 50 martyrs staying in a pass to block and stay a superior enemy (say 1000) while the rest of the group (200 maybe) use the time to get out of range and regroup elsewhere for a new campaign/attack.
Suicide bombers walking calmly into a crowd and detonating a du-pont vest on the other hand are not Martyrs by the Korans definition but Suicides. And there's no way to argue the religious leaders sending out suicide bombers don't know that.

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Auyong is wrong June 30, 2014 at 12:42 pm

ISIS is an American/Israeli proxy to do the dirty work of their foreign policies which are about "regime change". There is nothing genuinely Islamic about such a proxy.

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TonyC. June 27, 2014 at 8:27 am

Complete chaos and breakdown in security. At least Sadam kept a lid on it.

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crackedlenses June 28, 2014 at 8:30 pm

That's what we get for starting a war without cleaning up after ourselves; once the shooting starts "what ifs" and "oh my we shouldn't be there" go out the window….

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Guest June 27, 2014 at 9:01 pm

Too many cooks in the kitchen, that's a pretty dry tinderbox already, It'll take a really small spark for this to get even more out of hand.

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Aatif Rahman June 28, 2014 at 6:39 am

ISIL end up conquering Syria and set up tone for WW3.

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Aatif June 28, 2014 at 6:44 am

Things will continue like this until there is a clear winner, Europe herself is weak now only one who is expected to put up good fight is USA, but doubts are will they set foot on grounds on trust air strikes only. Secondly, USA army have not came across ground battle with good fighters in recent history, leave out Afghansitan they have a lot of home work done and experience from USSR's defeat in Afghanistan this is completely different field, and different race. Finally, what if Afghans joins hand in hand with ISIL and engage a good amount of USA army in Afghanistan. Winter is just around the corner and Afghans have been more active during this time, it seems we may have a clear winner this time but I see blood a lot of blood.

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Auyong is wrong June 30, 2014 at 12:51 pm

rosy, it did in the 1980s, when America helped Saddam in his war against Iran. Anyway, who used chemical weapons in Syria, has not been proven.

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Rob July 2, 2014 at 3:07 pm

Militants are now using some of our hardware & vehicles. We should be doing more

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blight_ July 2, 2014 at 4:57 pm

Time to ship the Iraqi Army some TOW missiles (or let Iran do it with their Toophans, copies of whatever Reagan gave them in Iran-Contra).

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majr0d June 26, 2014 at 11:05 pm

I don't disagree DC doesn't know what to do. In exchange for being able to say "mission accomplished" by leaving Iraq no one there thought about what Maliki, Iran and the Islamists would do when we walked away.

It's like walking away from a house with termite eggs found in a corner and being surprised that years later the house is on the verge of condemnation. If we help Iraq as it is we will be plowing the field for Iran to reap the harvest. Stand back and ISIS could potentially grow stronger and undermine Jordan, Lebanon (more than it is) and Saudi Arabia.

No one wants to start over again but the termites won't stop eating and they are looking at the whole neighborhood. This is going toi get a lot worse before it has a chance at getting better. Instead of rebuilding a house we may be stuck rebuilding a whole neighborhood with all the coast in money, time and blood necessary.

Such is the price demanded for "lead from behind" leadership and/or isolationism.

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majr0d June 27, 2014 at 1:06 am

Sure, get Syria, Turkey, Iraq and Iran to agree.

And do it in the middle of all this fighting…

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blight_ June 27, 2014 at 10:23 am

If the Assad regime falls and the Iraqis fail to retake Kurdistan, they can establish a de facto state even without the Turkish or Iranian bits.

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majr0d June 27, 2014 at 12:24 pm

That's a lot of "if's". Add "If" Turkey lets Kurd independent enclaves to exist on their border and "if" Iran lets a Kurd independent enclave to exist on its border.

What you describe sounds more like two enclaves than a nation…

You also assume ISIS would allow the Kurds in Syria autonomy who aren't as well armed, trained or politically organized as Iraqi Kurds which have been ruling themselves since '91.

It's possible but so is Mideast peace…

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majr0d June 27, 2014 at 4:02 pm

Weak?

No. It only takes one torpedo to obliterate a life raft.

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blight_ June 27, 2014 at 4:33 pm

Now that I think about it, if WW1 was a German win the people that became the Nazis would have done hte same for different reasons. Instead of being angry about German defeat, they would ride the coattails of victory and be pro-Germany militaristic ideology and spin it into a Manifest-Destiny-Germany-Uber-Alles ideology.

We can spin hypotheses all we want, but without the benefit of a time machine calling our timeline better than one of a infinite number of alternates is uninformative.

————

Western Europe would have been far stronger if there had been a UN and an Interpol. The Black Hand would've been hunted down as criminal dogs and extradited, and there would've been no war. WW1 really exposed the danger of going to war for stupid reasons as it weakens a nation-state, and what you're fighting for better be worth the risk. If the Hapsburgs were told that their empire would be shredded after WW1 they would've chosen other means to preserve their honor.

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Guest June 27, 2014 at 4:30 pm

The "once great" Major Rod grabbing at straws. Unable to debate FACTS any longer? So Sad!
You have come a long way Major, unfortunately, its been all down hill.

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blight_ June 27, 2014 at 4:49 pm

"The US should have stayed OUT of WW I." Oh, we tried. Wilson tried to bring it to a peaceful resolution. I don't challenge the assert about losing blood and treasure either; though I think it's subjective and thus to some "a lot" was lost and to some "not much" was lost.

Had Germany won WW1…no Hitler? Probably not, but instead it would be old Prussian military families seeking manifest destiny? No Nazis? Perhaps, but the Prussian military aristocracy (which already had a history of invading France) would be twice as strong with France under its belt.

And since the USSR signed a peace with Germany it would mean a strong Communist nation that wasn't utterly destroyed by Hitler (which in your vision, does not exist). It would be /stronger/, since the Soviet Union was growing quite nicely during the '20's and '30s. And instead of going Warsaw Pact and dumping so much of its resources into military spending and occupying the Warsaw Pact, it might've diversified its economy and become an actual Great Power. And a stronger USSR is what makes so much trouble.

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Guest June 27, 2014 at 5:05 pm

You bring up some "good points" but the Nazis sprang up from the bitterness of the WW I Peace Accords. I don't think the World would
have seen a Hilter in the 1930s, had Germany won WW I.

It's my view that the two Wars (I & II) destroyed Europe and as a result, this will be an Asian Century, with China becoming a World Economic and Military Powerhouse. Western Europe today, is a Military basket case, they still depend on an nearly Bankrupt US to defend their Borders.

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Guest June 27, 2014 at 5:16 pm

Did Wilson really "Try" to stay out of WW I? That's debatable.
Wilson ran for President, by telling the American People that he would stay out of WW I. After Wilson was elected, he changed his mind.

By the way, check out how the US Government "treated" WW I Vets after the war was over. It was One of the saddest chapters in US History.

The so called "Peace Treaty" that Germany and the Soviet Union signed was just a diversion, to give Hitler time, to deal with France & England, before he attacked the Soviet Union.

And finally, with a strong Germany Economy in Central Europe, in the 1930s & 40s, I don't think Communism would have had much "traction".

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majr0d June 27, 2014 at 5:22 pm

You look funny in the water holding on to the life ring of the Titanic claiming victory.

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Guest June 27, 2014 at 6:08 pm

Life rings and torpedoes? Haven't we already established Major Rod, that You are NOT a "Naval Expert"?

Didn't I already School You Major Rod, on the Chinese anti ship missiles, (DF-21D) that are a clear and present danger to US Aircraft Carriers in the Western Pacific?

Better to stick to what You "know", Major Rod, the high Seas
are better left to Navy and Marine Personal. Both past and present!

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blight_ June 27, 2014 at 7:35 pm

Re point 1 I'll have to double check.

Re point 2 I am well aware of the Bonus Army. That mess fell to a different president to deal with, combined with a serious depression. Suffice to say if we didn't throw money at the VA today the Bonus Army would probably come back, and it wouldn't be pretty.

Re point three, I was thinking of Brest-Litovsk; not the Molotov Pact. Brest-Litovsk put Imperial Russia/Kerensky Caretaker/USSR/Civil-War-infighting-Russia out of the war to destroy itself, and freed up German divisions for other duties. Amusingly as part of the post-war intervention German divisions went back into Russia, along with the US and the UK in a failed attempt to depose the communists.

Re point 4: If Germany had taken over western Europe Communism would probably be right where it was in the internecine years. They would have political representation but little chance to do anything. Communism made little progress until Soviet tanks installed communism, and that was after the actual recession of the thirties (where fascists exterminated German communists), WW2 and massive post-war instability.

The aid of the United States was pretty useful at pushing back communism with dollars, but it didn't work in Yugoslavia or Greece. But military coups are just as good at repelling communism.

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Guest June 27, 2014 at 9:52 pm

Re point 3: – I knew there were US, British, French & other Troops in Russia after WW I but I didn't know German troops were sent to Russia after the War. I believe the US Troops were called the "Polar Bear Div". In real terms, the so called allied Powers were sick of War by 1919 and there was no real "WILL" to stop the Russian Civil War.

Re point 4: – Had Germany "Won" WW I, the Germans could have dealt with the Russians (Soviets) on One Front in 1941.
(There would have been No War with the Western Powers as they were also Non Communist.)

Keep in mind, the Germans win WW I = No Hitler, No Nazis and a strong European United Front against Communism in
the 1930s, 1940s and 1950s. etc— An early NATO if you will.

WWI & WW II were the "Keys" to the destruction of the West and the currant transfer of Power to Asia. The US has simply delayed the process but we can't stop it.

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majr0d June 27, 2014 at 11:10 pm

Are you the same "guest".

The DF21 hasn't demonstrated a capability to strike a moving target. Check out Dec '13 Air Force Magazine http://www.airforcemag.com/MagazineArchive/Pages/

The "money quote",

"Perhaps the most salient observation regarding this system is that the Chinese have yet to conduct an end-to-end test of it against a moving target at sea.”

You're over estimating your ability to teach.

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Guest June 28, 2014 at 12:51 pm

Major, You and I know, that the Chinese steal American & European technology all the time.

The Chinese are already working on a 2nd generation ASBM, using "hypersonic glide vehicle technology", allowing a warhead to search for the currant location of an "enemy" Aircraft Carrier.

Because of the the "battle" over Islands in the Western Pacific, the Japanese are also deploying anti-ship missiles (type 88) near the Senkaku (Diaoyutai) Islands.

I assume You know about the anti ship missiles that were stored in a Syria Port and "blown up" by the Israeli Air force.

Will anti ship missiles make Aircraft Carriers "Obsolete"? Some type of defense will need to be developed, or the Carriers will have to stay far away from hostile shores. (My View)

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Guest June 28, 2014 at 4:39 pm

Humor aside Major, I know You are always "a good debate".
Even though I win most of the debates, I know You are "sharp" and well grounded in the knowledge of land warfare.

How can I forget the time when you told me that Tora Bora was an "impregnable fortress" in the Fall of 2001. And that I schooled You that "impregnable Fortresses" can be taken by skill and daring, Like the German Airborne attack, on the "impregnable Fortress" of Fort Eben-Emael in May of 1940. Using low tech gliders no less.

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Guest June 30, 2014 at 1:30 pm

What say You Major? – ____________

20 years of Lies about the Iraqi "Threat" to the USA have finally come to pass. The "Lies" are now True! On June 29, 2014, the most violet Terrorist group in recent History has declared a Caliphate in Parts of Iraq and Syria.

In large part because of the 2003 Invasion of Iraq, which totally destabilized the Country. The biggest Foreign Policy Blunder in US History, the 2003 Invasion of Iraq = ISIS and the rapid spread of Islamic terrorism across the Middle East and North Africa.

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majr0d June 30, 2014 at 11:14 pm

AQ was defeated in Iraq. Our premature departure in 2011 is much more responsible for the current stet of affairs than the initial invasion of Iraq.

If in your Bush Derangement Syndrome you want to reach that far back to be fair you have to speculate what Saddam would have done with Iran developing nukes and the US embroiled in a fight with AQ.

One can easily envision a mideast with two nations seeking nuclear weapons and assisting AQ.

Ignoring of course your inability to be fair.

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Guest July 1, 2014 at 1:13 am

Iran & Iraq "used" to fight each other (1980-88), while the US armed both sides and watched them kill each other. Then "We" just had to get involved.

Did the US Military really "defeat" AQ in Iraq?
(In the face of a much stronger enemy force, (surge) a guerrilla group goes "underground".)

AQ is a multi Country Terrorist/Guerrilla Group
that has gotten stronger, not weaker in recent years. They are now spread out over much of the Middle East and North Africa. (I consider ISIS part of the madness, even as they have "split off" from AQ Central in Pakistan.)

The bottom Line Major: – The US Government "lit the fires" of Islamic terrorism in Afghanistan, in the 1980s. The Islamics found out they could "defeat" a Super Power (USSR) and that started the ball rolling. (And by the way, while the US Government Funded & Armed the Islamic Guerrillas in Afghanistan (1980s), We
KNEW that Pakistan was building a Nuke.)

Just look at all the "Recruits" from Europe & even the US, going to the Middle East, to fight for ISIS and the other groups. Are You willing to bet, that this isn't going to Result in Blowback, in Europe or the US? Of course it is.

The US Government helped light the fires of Islamic terrorism in Afghanistan, Libya, Syria & Iraq. And now We can't put out those Fires!

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Guest July 1, 2014 at 12:14 pm

What say You Major Rod? – ______________

A few years back, I predicted that the Iraqi Government would be sorry, that they agreed to sign an Arms Deal with the US.
I hit the nail right on the head. The Iraqis are in desperate need of military supplies now and Obama is stalling. The Russians are shipping fighter aircraft as we speak. US military hardware is better BUT there are ALWAYS strings attached.

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Guest July 1, 2014 at 12:26 pm

By the way Major Rod, "if" AQ ever got their dirty hands on a NUKE, I think Iran would be one of the Countries that they would seek to destroy.

The Shia and the Sunni have "only" been fighting each other since the 7th Century. The Iranian Gov has been fighting a Sunni Terrorist Group (Jundailah), that is an AQ off shot. To say that the Iranians would give a NUKE to AQ is pure nonsense.

As for Iraq in the Saddam Era, the Iraqi Military was "Build UP" in the US Press by the Pentagon, some members of Congress and of course, the Military-Industrial Complex.

WHY? = Because after the downfall of the Soviet Union, the Military-industrial Complex needed an EXCUSE to keep the Defense Budget Spending going. The Iraqi Military of the 1990s (post Gulf War) and early 2000s was a true paper tiger. Saddam not only didn't have NUKES, he didn't have an Iraqi Army willing to fight for him!

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majr0d July 2, 2014 at 11:19 pm

Yes the US defeated AQ in Iraq. It ceased to be a combat effective force. That's according to none other than Michael Morell, former deputy director of the CIA under Obama,

Islamic terrorism has it seeds in Pakistan (if not even further back, google Muslim Brotherhood) that chose the winners and losers of US aid and the world's hands off approach to Afghanistan after the US left. Nice try at spouting the blame America first revisionist version of history.

Syria may well breed blowback.. Who's in charge of US policy?

As for what you said whenever I know not. "Guest" is anonymous.

I just ignored the rest of your irrelevant comments.

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Guest July 3, 2014 at 12:21 am

Did we not use "Islamic terrorism" to defeat the Soviets in Afghanistan. Of course, we did! That War was "their Blood and Our Money". About One Million Afghans died between 1979 & 1989 in the Afghan-Soviet War.

I see You didn't address One very important comment I made. – The CIA ignored the Fact, that Pakistan was attempting to build a NUKE, while the US was Funding the Afghan "Freedom Fighters" in the 1980s. How did that work out Major?

From Nigeria, to India, to the Philippines and many places in between, Islamic terrorism is a growing Worldwide menace.
The Iraq fighting was one temporary "Victory" in an ongoing War.
A Terrorist Group doesn't usually "Surrender". This isn't Cornwallis at Yorktown.

By the way Major, "be careful what You Wish for". You got rid of Wiener in NYC and got a Radical LIBERAL Mayor instead. (LOL) Mr Wiener would have been the better choice after all!

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Guest July 3, 2014 at 10:42 am

Lets also keep in mind Major, that it was One of Osama Bin Laden's 9/11/2001 "Goals", to draw the US Military into Invading Muslim Countries. (Like Iraq)
Did President Bush walk right into a "Trap".

By the way Major, Muslim Radicals are "Recruiting" like crazy in US Prisons.
We as a Country spend Billions to prevent terrorism on US soil and yet, the Experts will tell you, it's only a matter of time before we get hit again. Did the war in Iraq "prevent" more attacks on US soil? I don't think so.

Which is the better handgun, from your viewpoint? 1911 or beretta?

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majr0d July 3, 2014 at 12:36 pm

You are misstating OBL goals out of ignorance or a conscious effort to deceive. You seem to have plenty of both. OBL wanted the US to invade Afghanistan. That hardly equates to "Muslim COUNTRIES". (More like country)

The war in Iraq provided a battleground for radicals to congregate and be killed though that wasn't a planned result.

Whether it prevented attacks is unknowable. What is an undeniable fact is we have had successful attacks since 2009.

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majr0d July 3, 2014 at 1:23 pm

"Did we not use "Islamic terrorism" to defeat the Soviets in Afghanistan."

No. Where was the widespread use of suicide bombers, acid blinding of girls that went to school or murder of children suspected of being spies. Again you are willfully misrepresenting what terrorism and unconventional warfare are.

I didn't discuss Pakistani nukes since they are irrelevant to the issues of our involvement in Afghanistan, Iraq, Islamic terror or any of the other various topics you try to inject in the conversation. Weiner? I got rid of Weiner? Seems he did that all on his own. You give me too much credit (and it's irrelevant to the subject)

You are wasting my time.

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