September 24, 2014

Airstrikes in Syria a yawner


The NYT did its level best for the president and fellow Democrats in describing the attack against ISIS in Syria as a "fierce" opening blow:
The intensity of the attacks struck a fierce opening blow against the jihadists of the Islamic State, scattering its forces and damaging the network of facilities it has built in Syria that helped fuel its seizure of a large part of Iraq this year.
Firstly, this is not the opening blow in the war on terror, or even ISIS. The U.S. has already bombed ISIS positions in Iraq.  And of course the opening blow versus ISIS actually came from ISIS in the form of beheading Americans.  But that's just arguing semantics.  The real problem is that the word fierce doesn't accurately capture the nonchalance or the irrelevance of the latest Obama move.  Once again, the NYT is cheer leading for the Obama administration.

True, the president has ramped up his war on terror game (but let's not call it that, shall we?) by bombing inside Syria, much to the glee of Iranian hardliners who want to keep their Syrian puppet in place.  But that really doesn't solve the problem of ISIS, which will require boots on the ground. Not that I'm suggesting America putting boots on the ground, I'm just pointing out the reality of the situation.  

True, the president is taking out ISIS strongholds and fighters, but that will only be successful in the short term.  ISIS can easily adapt Hamas' tactics of hiding behind civilians and the American public (and certainly this president) does not have the stomach for ignoring human shields.

True the president has 5, count 'em 5!, Arabic allies in the latest campaign.  Remember when the press screamed about the lack of a coalition when it only involved a mere 40 or so countries?  And no one has yet stepped up in the boots-on-the-ground mandate the president tried to impose on "anyone but the U.S.". The clock is ticking.

So yeah, it's a yawner.  The president is doing the minimum he thinks is necessary to get past the midterm elections, period.  He should not be given credit for that.  There was a pretty low bar in fighting ISIS, even lower than in combating Russia in its Ukrainian ambition, and the president once again, managed to not clear the bar. 

Yawn.
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