Since those savage attacks Friday in Paris I hear more than ever how President Obama still has no strategy to defeat ISIS. This implies that at least some of his critics do.
Most of the criticisms come not because he lacks a strategy, but because it is contingent on events and is working slowly. Critics argue we should do more bombing and send more of our troops over there and work harder at developing our coalition. Some of that may be true, but it isn’t radically different from what Obama is already doing.
Here I only want to deal with the bombing. It could be more effective if used more broadly and less discriminately, but it would also kill many more innocents trapped under ISIS rule.
Our air attacks in Syria and Iraq have been called a joke because there are so relatively few of them. Why? Because President Obama has placed tight restrictions regarding collateral damage to civilians.
I heard yesterday morning that truck columns carting oil were not bombed out of concern for the drivers of those trucks who seem more likely innocents than terrorists. I think that is admirable in the president, but perhaps too admirable given the situation.
Yes, I’m saying there must be a degree of accepted collateral slaughter in war. However, unlike a character in the TV show Homeland, I don’t think the answer to ISIS is to turn its stronghold “Raqqa into a parking lot.”
Yes, we could wipe them off the face of the earth, but for how long and how would that leave us? Leaving aside the likelihood that this action would only spawn more of a Muslim jihad against us, which is exactly what ISIS wants. How about where it would leave us as a people, what it would do to our souls and how would the rest of the world view us?
It is not simply because of our military and economic power that we are viewed as the world leader.
To defeat ISIS we will undoubtedly make deals with the devil. Just this morning I heard that Russian and U. S. air forces are now “cooperating” in attacks on ISIS and I would bet the Russians are not as finicky as we have been about collateral damage.
War is hell and many innocents have died and are going to die in the battle with ISIS. I’m just saying we need to take moral responsibility for our actions and take a measured approach, realizing this is not a video game, but landscapes filled with flesh and blood like our own.
From this perspective Obama does not seem nearly as feckless as his critics portray. I want to see those who argue for sterner measures and more of them to be pressed to answer what degree of slaughter are they actually proposing with their grand plans?
Donald, since your strategy for dealing with ISIS has been: “To bomb the sh_t out of them.” Are you proposing a totally indiscriminate slaughter? Or if not, what are you proposing?