Iraqi unrest, Syrian unrest, and ISIS/ISIL/Daesh

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  • #126
nsaspook
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If that's their strategy it's a mighty poor one unless your plan is to just kill people by blowing it up, you can't just turn the water off for very long. It's a high value target that they have to defend and reinforce if they plan to keep it, there's little tactical advantage.
Let's see what happens.
http://www.washingtonpost.com/world...0ab-47b9-889c-d3b00343470f_story.html?hpid=z2

Kurdish and Iraqi officials said that Sunday’s operation was going better than expected and that the dam would soon be under full government control. “We expect to finish this within hours,” said Helgurd Hikmat, a spokesman for the Kurdish forces, known as the pesh merga.

A U.S. official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the situation, also said that the operation had “made significant progress.” But he said that recapturing the dam would take time “because there are a lot of IEDs,” or roadside bombs.
Two weeks is how long they held it:
 
  • #127
reenmachine
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Killing the men.Impregnating their women.Brainwashing their children unless they kill them instead.

Imagine that happening to you, the moment before they kill you, standing there like a sitting duck with dozens of other men on your side, defenseless, knowing your child and wife are in the hands of monsters and you're not going to be there to protect them anymore.Life ends there.
 
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  • #128
jim hardy
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I dont like to think about that.

Great line in "True Grit"

"Ya can't serve papers on a Rat ."
 
  • #129
nsaspook
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http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/art...journalist-James-Wright-Foley-warning-US.html

American photojournalist James Wright Foley has been beheaded by ISIS forces
...
It came as President Barack Obama on Monday announced that Kurdish peshmerga troops, supported by U.S. jets, had recaptured the strategically important Mosul Dam, hailing the offensive as a 'major step forward'.

The dam had given the militants control over power and water supplies, and any breach of the vulnerable structure would have threatened thousands of lives.

As the U.S. military strikes the Islamic State group in Iraq, Syrian President Bashar Assad's forces also stepped up their own campaign against militant strongholds in Syria.
 
  • #130
jim hardy
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Keep that up and they're gonna make somebody mad.


If you kill enough of them, they stop fighting.
Curtis LeMay
 
  • #132
Dotini
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It seems the American freelance journalist James Foley was executed by a Briton, "John the Beatle", but only after he wouldn't or couldn't fetch a $100,000,000 ransom.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/wor...eaded-journalist-is-Londoner-called-John.html

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/21/w...sed-for-ransom-before-killing-journalist.html

This map, published by the Independent, is somewhat at variance with the map seen above in Astronuc's post. In particular, there are seen several points of connection between ISIS and Turkey, and another node with Jordan.
http://www.independent.co.uk/incoming/article9681939.ece/ALTERNATES/w1024/web-iraq-graphic.jpg
 
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  • #133
nsaspook
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It seems the American freelance journalist James Foley was executed by a Briton, "John the Beatle", but only after he wouldn't or couldn't fetch a $100,000,000 ransom.
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Kidnapping, ransom and murder sounds more like old school mafia tactics than jihad. I'm sorry for the families but anyone held by these criminals should be assumed as lost forever.

The picture of ISIS as the spawn of Assad seems accurate but if the choice is between ISIS and Assad, I'll take Assad because at least someone (Russia) has some control of his behavior.
Screen_Shot_2014-08-20_at_11.21.31_AM.0.png
 
  • #134
Astronuc
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Islamic State 'beyond anything we've seen': US
http://news.yahoo.com/us-must-defeated-syria-well-iraq-201552159.html

Hagel warned that the Islamic State is better armed, trained and funded than any recent militant threat.

"They marry ideology and a sophistication of strategic and tactical military prowess. They are tremendously well funded. This is beyond anything we have seen," Hagel told a news conference.
Deranged people with military weapons.
 
  • #136
mheslep
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Kidnapping, ransom and murder sounds more like old school mafia tactics than jihad. I'm sorry for the families but anyone held by these criminals should be assumed as lost forever.

The picture of ISIS as the spawn of Assad seems accurate but if the choice is between ISIS and Assad, I'll take Assad because at least someone (Russia) has some control of his behavior.
Screen_Shot_2014-08-20_at_11.21.31_AM.0.png
Control? A quarter million killed in the Syrian civil war, three million refugees, 650 people killed by nerve gas, an attempt at a nuclear reactor? IS has international financing as well, but Ill not be counting them as controlled.
 
  • #137
nsaspook
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Control? A quarter million killed in the Syrian civil war, three million refugees, 650 people killed by nerve gas, an attempt at a nuclear reactor? IS has international financing as well, but Ill not be counting them as controlled.
I completely understand but imagine if a group like ISIS had the same capabilities and was fighting a war to the death with forces supported by the west and others. Influence might be a better word than control in Syria but Russia has reigned in actions in Syria that would have caused an international response but don't care about 'normal' internal security matters as long has he pays in cash and Assad doesn't care about anything else but saying in power with the help of Russia.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs...wont-give-up-syria-no-matter-what-obama-does/

Deals can be made about secular things like money and power but I don't see much room for bargaining with the ideological alignment of ISIS to reestablish a system of governance known as the Caliphate.
 
  • #138
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This is a fascinating view inside the situation and minds of the ISIS. Actual journalism by Vice News. I won't embed this video because it's very graphic at times. Your choice.

 
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  • #139
Ryan_m_b
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This is a fascinating view inside the situation and minds of the ISIS. Actual journalism by Vice News. I won't embed this video because it's very graphic at times. Your choice.

I first found out about Vice at uni and thought they were just for for fun (they still do some quite amusing, if odd, features) but in recent years I've really started to see some quality journalism. Far better than a lot of mainstream sources.
 
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  • #140
nsaspook
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http://www.defenseone.com/ideas/2014/08/gen-allen-destroy-islamic-state-now/92012/?oref=d-river

Bottom line: The president deserves great credit in attacking IS. It was the gravest of decisions for him. But a comprehensive American and international response now — NOW — is vital to the destruction of this threat. The execution of James Foley is an act we should not forgive nor should we forget, it embodies and brings home to us all what this group represents. The Islamic State is an entity beyond the pale of humanity and it must be eradicated. If we delay now, we will pay later.
It will take more than military force to eliminate the reasons ISIS has grown so quickly as the root problems in the area will still exist without them but it's something that must happen first before any political solution IMO.
 
  • #141
Dotini
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IMO, defeating ISIS may well require the US to play nice with its erstwhile enemies Iran, Russia and Assad, and play rough with its erstwhile friends Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait, Turkey and Jordan.
 
  • #142
nsaspook
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IMO, defeating ISIS may well require the US to play nice with its erstwhile enemies Iran, Russia and Assad, and play rough with its erstwhile friends Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait, Turkey and Jordan.
It does and it makes be worry that the current US team might not be up to the challenge of managing the brutal tactics our 'friends' will use to defeat ISIS on the ground if we move beyond containment to eradication.
 
  • #143
Dotini
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It does and it makes be worry that the current US team might not be up to the challenge of managing the brutal tactics our 'friends' will use to defeat ISIS on the ground if we move beyond containment to eradication.
I have a great deal of admiration and respect for Chuck Hagel. Martin Dempsey I also like. Alas, I am worried about our State Department.
 
  • #144
nsaspook
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I'm 100% sure the DOD can handle any task given but I see the possible endgame for ISIS being very messy as we must attack ISIS fighters in Syria with US based weapons to destroy the cross-border supply lines and equipment to isolate the fighters in Iraq and then let Syria retake it's territory as a likely condition of any deal. When their line break and some are on the run don't expect people who have been brutalized by them to just let them go back home. The pictures won't be pretty.
 
  • #145
mheslep
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Russia has reigned in actions in Syria
I'm unaware of any reigning in by Russia. Can you name an example? Syria continues to gas people.

I'm aware of some slight reigning in of Syria by the U.S., namely the disposal of some chemical weapons.
 
  • #146
mheslep
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I'm 100% sure the DOD can handle any task given ...
Recent U.S. military record with guerrilla wars is mixed, not perfect. Military success in Iraq, yes. Afghanistan, not so much.
 
  • #147
nsaspook
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Recent U.S. military record with guerrilla wars is mixed, not perfect. Military success in Iraq, yes. Afghanistan, not so much.
This is not guerrilla warfare where they come out at night and disappear into the shadows freely mixing with non-combatants. In the cities its urban combat that our troops are very well trained for but I don't expect us to get much involved in that directly.

Afghanistan is a case where bombing them to the stone-age can't work because the Russians already did that in the 80s.
 
  • #148
nsaspook
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I'm unaware of any reigning in by Russia. Can you name an example? Syria continues to gas people.
As I said the limits on Assad are those that would cause another international response (like ISIS is doing now) that would threaten Russian interests in the area. Internal security matters including possible use of chlorine gas as a chemical agent (a pulmonary irritating agent instead of a explicit chemical weapon and deadly neurotoxin) IMO haven't reached that threshold.
 
  • #149
Ryan_m_b
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This is not guerrilla warfare where they come out at night and disappear into the shadows freely mixing with non-combatants. In the cities its urban combat that our troops are very well trained for but I don't expect us to get much involved in that directly.
If the US put troops forward to combat IS you can bet your bottom dollar it would become guerrilla warfare. Thousands of civilians have flocked to IS and given that they aren't a state army they can melt back into civilian life, or across the borders back into Syria. There's also the question of what US troops would actually achieve. If they halt this advance what's to stop IS coming back? Or other groups taking advantage of local dissatisfaction.

Afghanistan is a case where bombing them to the stone-age can't work because the Russians already did that in the 80s.
I really hope this is some sort of bad sense of humour because if not it doesn't reveal anything good about you. You realise that any sort of mass bombing is going to hugely affect the civilian population? Terrorist groups can easily jump borders and find shelter elsewhere. The people who live there: not so much. And if their infrastructure is "bombed to the Stone Age" then they are going to experience abject poverty. The sort which is a) horrific any human being should live through and b) a great way to radicalise people and create more terrorists.
 

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