Monday, May 18, 2015

Iraqis forces -- exactly as inept as they were one year ago

BBC News reports, "A day after Islamic State (IS) militants completed their capture of Ramadi, Shia militias are assembling east of the Iraqi city ready for a possible counter-attack."  Having lost the city to the Islamic State, they're now set for a counter-attack.

How is this different than a year ago?

Last June, the Islamic State seized Mosul.

The Iraqi military fled.

Over the weekend, the Islamic State -- which still controls Mosul -- seized Ramadi while the Iraqi military fled.

This after how many millions (more) US tax dollars have been spent training them?

You can argue that things stand today exactly where they stood a year ago.

No improvement at all.

And you can click here for the Guardian's post of the Iraqi military fleeing Ramadi and the Islamic State.

This fleeing is disturbing.

Especially when you grasp that they didn't just flee open spaces in Ramadi.

Reuters notes, "Earlier, security sources said government forces evacuated a key military base after it came under attack by the insurgents, who had already taken one of the last districts still holding out." They couldn't even hold their own military base.

Every time they flee, the Islamic State gets a stronger foothold and if the military confronts them -- if! -- it's much harder to do that after they've taken a city.


Mosul remains under control a year later.

What does it really say about the Iraqi military and the Iraqi government that they want to act militarily and talk about doing so but they refuse to do so.

There is no progress.

Barack's spent over a billion on Iraq -- between weapons, US forces and 'aid' -- since August and for what?  Where is the progress?

Despite Barack declaring that the only solution was a "political solution," no real work has been spent on that. Instead it's been empty promises and the focus has been on the military which, as we see again today, continues to falter and fail.

What's the end game, Barack?

Is the US going to remain in Iraq forever to prop up the US-installed government?

Reuters notes, "The Pentagon said on Sunday that Islamic State militants had gained the advantage in fighting in Ramadi and that if the western Iraqi city fell, the U.S.-led coalition would support Iraqi forces 'to take it back later'."

Elissa Smith is the person being quoted on "to take it back later."

Someone should ask the Pentagon and the White House what that statement means.

US forces were already flying overhead and dropping bombs during the failed attempt.

So exactly what does it mean when the Pentagon says that US forces will "support Iraqi forces" now?

Jim Muir (BBC News) offers an analysis which includes:

The fall of Ramadi is a disaster for the Iraqi army and government, and especially its Prime Minister, Haider al-Abadi.
After the recapture of another provincial capital, Tikrit, at the end of March, he announced the start of a similar campaign to "liberate" Anbar province (the country's biggest) and flew to Ramadi to kick it off.
Now Ramadi has gone, and along with it the military command centre for the whole province. A few days before the final collapse on Sunday, Mr Abbadi said he would not allow it to fall.
It did. 

Bonnie reminds that Isaiah's latest The World Today Just Nuts "Hair Crimes" went up last night.

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