Thursday, June 19, 2014

Iraq 3.0?

If you do not appreciate my “night time martiniesque” sense of humor (dry and dark) STOP READING, please!

So I am not an expert on international politics or military strategy. But some things are obvious even to an aging guitar hero like myself.

The United States screwed up in Iraq. We repelled the Iraqi army from Kuwait with the help of the world. And we left Saddam Hussein in place. But there really was no viable alternative. Was there?

Then every intelligence organization on the planet determined that the Iraqi government was hiding WMDs. And the United Nations (I am no fan of the U.N.) determined that we must go and secure them. But only after the French and Russians stalled for time. The Iraqis used that time to fly the WMDs into Syria where they are now being used in the mess there. Then, when the WMDs were successfully removed and hidden again, the United States invaded Iraq (timing is everything after all). And the American Government did what it does best. They killed people and broke things. That is what armies are supposed to do. One of the things that we (they did it in my name whether I like it or not) broke was the Iraqi government and another was the Iraqi military. The USA attempted nation building in Iraq (a fools errand). It has not worked.

And now Iraq brings us another challenge. Some of the most vicious terrorists on the planet, ISIS, are about to conquer Iraq. Along with the people and lands of Iraq come 20% of the worlds oil. If we allow this to happen this extraordinarily vicious terrorist organization will be filthy rich. And that means they will be able to buy all kinds of nasty things from the Chinese, Russians and yes... the French. So what is a forward thinking person to do?

There are options. And all of them are bad. These are just the first three I could think of.

1.) Leave it alone and take our chances that being rich is good enough to take the terror out of the terrorists. ( yeah... that will happen)

2.)Send a quarter million or so soldiers into Iraq again and capture it. Then occupy the place long term to protect it from future invasion. (that will make us REAL popular with all the cool countries)

3. Nuke the oil fields in Iraq. That way, no one can use that oil for a few thousand years. That makes it worthless to the terrorists. And it would make the environmentalists happy. What's a little nuclear fallout among friends? But the price of gas at the pump will skyrocket to levels we could never have imagined. (can you say global depression?)

What is a responsible Super Power to do? What do you think? Better yet, who has the stones to make the decision? I don't think that I do.

I think that I know what the Libertarian course of action should be. Initially... nothing. Well I would probably already have evacuated the American Embassy in Baghdad to mitigate the danger. But if there are American diplomats and/or citizens in the embassy and they are left alone, the United States doesn't have a dog in this hunt. However... if the ISIS terrorists attack the Baghdad installation... that is another matter altogether. Contrary to many of my libertarian friends, I subscribe to the asymmetrical battle strategies put forth by folks like Jeff Baxter. If we are attacked, the U.S. Air Force should rain “daisy cutters” down on these guys until there is nothing but sand and dust. But like I said earlier, we have a responsibility to protect our people and mitigate the danger before it gets to that point.

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