Being President is a really tough job. It’s even harder when you’re an incompetent schmuck and Barack Obama is finding that one out the hard way. Democrats running for office are running away from him like he’s got Ebola, the New York Times has crawled off the sinking ship, Robert Gates wrote a book and noted that Barack was an empty suit, and now it’s Leon Panetta’s turn.
The difference now is that Panetta is the first hard core Democrat to note that the Would-Be-Emperor has no clothes.
“The White House was so eager to rid itself of Iraq that it was willing to withdraw rather than lock in arrangements that would preserve our influence and interests,” Panetta wrote.
Through the fall of 2011, the main question facing the American military in Iraq was what our role would be now that combat operations were over. When President Obama announced the end of our combat mission in August 2010, he acknowledged that we would maintain troops for a while. Now that the deadline was upon us, however, it was clear to me–and many others–that withdrawing all our forces would endanger the fragile stability then barely holding Iraq together.
Privately, the various leadership factions in Iraq all confided that they wanted some U.S. forces to remain as a bulwark against sectarian violence. But none was willing to take that position publicly, and Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki concluded that any Status of Forces Agreement, which would give legal protection to those forces, would have to be submitted to the Iraqi parliament for approval.
That made reaching agreement very difficult given the internal politics of Iraq, but representatives of the Defense and State departments, with scrutiny from the White House, tried to reach a deal. We had leverage. We could, for instance, have threatened to withdraw reconstruction aid to Iraq if al-Maliki would not support some sort of continued U.S. military presence. My fear, as I voiced to the President and others, was that if the country split apart or slid back into the violence that we’d seen in the years immediately following the U.S. invasion, it could become a new haven for terrorists to plot attacks against the U.S. Iraq’s stability was not only in Iraq’s interest but also in ours. I privately and publicly advocated for a residual force that could provide training and security for Iraq’s military.
To my frustration, the White House coordinated the negotiations but never really led them. Officials there seemed content to endorse an agreement if State and Defense could reach one, but without the President’s active advocacy, al-Maliki was allowed to slip away. The deal never materialized. To this day, I believe that a small U.S. troop presence in Iraq could have effectively advised the Iraqi military on how to deal with al-Qaeda’s resurgence and the sectarian violence that has engulfed the country.
President Obama was more interested in saying…
Let’s be really clear here asshole President Obama. YOU didn’t end anything, anywhere. All YOU did was pull out our troops for purely political purposes. YOU wanted a reason to pat yourself on your scrawny little back so YOU ignored the advice of your military advisers and your Secretary of Defense, a life long Democrat and former officeholder.
YOU, sir, turned what you and your Vice President claimed was a “victory” in Iraq into what the US Marines frequently refer to as a clusterf**k.
Mr. President, YOU have now taken us back to war in Iraq, and also in Syria. Except all YOU’RE doing is allowing for dropping of random bombs here and there, YOU’VE undertaken the Lyndon Johnson strategy from the Vietnam war where only targets selected by YOU can be hit. It didn’t work 50 years ago and won’t work now and your military commanders have told you so. YOU, of course, will blame them for the failure of YOUR strategy.
One of these days Mr. President, you are going to find yourself under the Hope & Change Bus, and we can’t wait. You are SO pathetic and SO incompetent that even left leaning historians will most likely turn your presidency into an asterisk.
They’ll probably blame your failure on your white side.
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