Sunday on ABC’s “This Week With George Stephanopoulos,” network senior foreign affairs correspondent Martha Raddatz said President Barack Obama’s military advisers are “really worried” his insistence on no U.S. boots on the ground to combat ISIS will not work.
“Gen. Dempsey is the president’s principal military adviser. He also makes a pledge to the Senate when he goes up there to tell the truth as he sees it. But what they might have to do is call in those forward air controllers. You need those to carry out strikes, to get accurate strikes. If you don’t have them, it really limits the targets and that’s what the military is really worried about here and they are also worried if this plan doesn’t work and, frankly, the president hasn’t explained if this strategy doesn’t work what he’ll do next after saying ISIS is such a threat.”
Let’s remember that Obama is planning to use air strikes by US aircraft (with an occasional fly over from an Arab nation so he can say it’s a “coalition” effort) and boots on the ground will be supplied by locals or “coalition partners.” This strategy is based on what he calls a successful strategy that’s worked for the last four years in Yemen and Somalia.
Tonight, in his highly anticipated speech announcing a strategy to address the Islamic State and the ongoing conflicts in Syria and Iraq, President Obama will compare his plans to what the United States has been doing in Somalia and Yemen to address al-Qaeda affiliates and violent jihadi groups in those places over the past several years. (See the excerpts here.)
The big question would be, how’s that working out in Yemen? Here’s the situation on the ground there, as of last week, BEFORE President Obama announced his ISIS strategy.
Scores of al Qaeda militants have moved into Yemen’s capital San’a in an attempt to exploit swelling political unrest and destabilize the government, officials said.
While President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi’s government is bogged down with protests in the capital by the Houthis—a Shiite Muslim political and militant group—at least 60 al Qaeda militants have slipped in over the past few weeks and joined sleeper cells, according to Yemeni officials.
Although Yemeni officials said al Qaeda’s strength in Yemen is growing, the U.S. administration is holding up its counterterrorism strategy in the country as a model for the campaign against the extremist group Islamic State…U.S. officials say their counterterrorism program in Yemen is effective, pointing to the 2011 battle of Zinjibar…
We’d encourage you to read that one again.
Got that? al Qaeda is attacking, and according to some reports have taken and are holding up to half of Yemen’s capitol city in the last two weeks. The President is modeling his ISIS strategy on what’s happening in Yemen against a significantly smaller force – ISIS is reportedly over 30,000 hardened fighters, al Qaeda of the Arabian Peninsula numbers in the low thousands and doesn’t have the armaments that ISIS has. They’re basing their confidence of success on ONE battle fought three years ago.
As you read that, remember that the ObamaCare website, a relatively easy project especially when compared to fighting terrorists, still isn’t working.
This is about to get really, really nasty and the President is not up to the task. All he knows about foreign affairs and military operations he learned playing Risk. He’s putting US soldiers, sailors, and Marines at risk simply so he can say he is “doing something.”
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