Sunday, June 15, 2014

Matt 24 watch, 241b: US President Obama goes golfing while Iraq burns . . .

Iraq burns
This weekend, Mr Obama has gone golfing while Iraq suffers a spreading invasion by an Al Qaeda offshoot whose specialty seems to be mass beheading of captives.

Meanwhile, former US Secretary of State and presumed Democratic Party presidential candidate, Mrs Hilary Clinton, is reported: as indicating that:

"I agree with the White House’s rejection and reluctance to do the kind of military activities that the Maliki government is requesting, mainly the fighter aircraft to provide close support for the army and also to go after targets,” the former secretary of State said on BBC’s “Newsnight.” 

Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki reportedly asked the Obama administration to launch airstrikes against militants from the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). The group, with ties to al Qaeda, has seized control of a swath of the Middle East including part of Syria through central Iraq.

The White House, however, has so far refused to provide direct military help, even with a number of lawmakers calling on Obama to launch airstrikes as ISIS advances toward Baghdad . . . .

Clinton said that al-Maliki must step up and defuse sectarian tensions by creating a broader governing coalition.

“That is not a role for the United States,” Clinton said. “There needs to be a number of steps that Maliki and his government must take to demonstrate that he’s committed to an inclusive Iraq — something he has not done up to date.”
Al-Maliki must demonstrate that he is a leader for all Iraqis, and “not just a sectarian slice of the country,” she added.   ["Clinton: Don’t provide military aid to Iraq," in The Hill, Fri. June 13, 2014]
Time for a dose of reality.

When it politically suited the same White House, it intervened using aircraft that turned a no-hope uprising into the overthrow of Ghaddafi's regime in Libya. But, when it was strongly counselled that a stabilising small force in situ would pay great stabilising dividends, it determined to do a post-Vietnam style dash. With all too predictable -- nay, predicted -- results. Indeed, in 1972 the Vietnam war was tactically won, but with an alienated at-home public, the US did not expend adequate effort on stabilisation.  Predictably, North Vietnam bided time, built up resources and again attacked. Millions paid the price, in Vietnam and Cambodia.

If you doubt me, let us again listen to US Senator McCain:

(And, cf the discussion here.)

As of now, we are looking at a contest between ISIS intending to create a renewed Caliphate from Lebanon to Baghdad, with more to be gobbled up and subjugated under a barbaric and cruel Islamist totalitarianism shortly thereafter, and Mahdist Iran seeking to recreate the Persian empire from Iran to the Mediterranean, with onward hostile intent backed by nukes. With a worried Turkey looking at being dragged in . . . which may re-open the door to a new radicalised Ottoman Empire.  (Cf. discussion here.)

Just look at a map:

  None of which bodes well in a world where the Black Flag Army mideast- then- world- conquering Mahdist hadith is again a serious ideological factor.

Let us remind ourselves of what flags are being brandished in Iraq:

. . . and of what could easily be done to such convoys of mass-beheading terrorists:

Where, in a June 11 2014 article, Eli Lake of The Daily Beast reports:
two senior Iraqi officials told The Daily Beast that Iraq indeed has asked for the United States to conduct air strikes inside the country since November, when Maliki visited Washington
In an interview Wednesday, Iraqi Ambassador Lukman Faily declined to discuss any specifics of the Iraqi military requests to the United States. But he did say, “We are asking for almost everything short of boots on the ground.” Faily described the requests as falling into the category of “counterterrorism cooperation.”
“The United States has capabilities in the region. They have the ability to help us,” he said. “We have made requests. They are aware of this. There is an urgency now. We hope they understand the sense of the urgency we are dealing with now.”

 Something is grievously wrong here, as counter-terrorism co-operation that is "urgent" does not depend on resolving longstanding and obviously difficult issues within Iraq and between Iraq and Washington.

(NB: Click here to see a broader view of the wider pattern of Islamist violence and intent. Amir Taheri's article here considerably understates the case and tries just a bit too hard to distance Islamism and strategic intent from its obvious theological roots and historical roots in classic Islam, but is worth reading as a first step to a deeper understanding of Islamist strategic intent. Islamism is a religiously motivated global conquest ideology and sees the renewal of a Mid-East spanning caliphate as a first step to that goal. In that pursuit, the very brandishing of black flags serves to point to the infamous Black Flag hadith and its global conquest vision. Indeed, this hadith -- which Taheri somehow fails to discuss -- can be seen as a pivotal manifestation of the theological roots of Islamist eschatology.)

Of course, none of these developments bodes well for Israel, Jordan and Egypt.

Nor, for stability in the Persian Gulf (thus, price of oil and global economic stability).

The dominoes are lined up, and are already wobbly, just waiting to fall.

On fair comment: this shows all the signs of being a major geostrategic failure by the leading oceanic power, based on manipulative domestic politics and a blind hostility to the West as the imagined source of the World's ills.

Basic  like it or lump it geostrategic lesson:
 the world's leading oceanic power (whatever grouses we may have about it) fosters global prosperity by guarding the global trade routes and choke points, and by maintaining balance of power based stability in the Eurasian landmass, the world's historic geostrategic chessboard. Where also, a global trading orientation tends -- tends, there are no guarantees -- to foster a culture of freedom.
In our time, that power is the USA, having inherited that status as a consequence of two world wars that broke Britain's back. Britain, since the late 1600's - 1805, had become the dominant maritime power.

Geostrategic failure by the leading oceanic power, on the other hand, opens the door to chaos and power grabs, as well as piracy. (BTW, terrorism is a form of piracy, with ideological motives. But you can bet that a lot of pockets just got lined with a good slice of the US$ 400+ millions looted from the banks in Mosul.)

We have geostrategic failure, in a situation where by 2008, the war in Iraq was won, and a stabilising force could reasonably have been put in place. 

And BTW, the similar intent in Afghanistan points to destabilising Pakistan -- which is armed with nuclear weapons and means to deliver them.

Geostrategic failure has consequences, and geostrategic failure is what we are plainly seeing here.

Some would say, the prophetic end times chess pieces are being moved into place.

I say, geostrategic irresponsibility is irresponsibility, and it is high time that the American public wakes up to geostrategic reality.  The American Public, pundits, policy makers and spin doctors, as well as the succession of Administrations over the past several decades, have some serious explaining to do. With a particular responsibility adhering to this administration.

And, beyond that, I do believe Eph 4:9 - 24 in light of Ac 27, makes it plain that church leaders have a responsibility to equip the people of God for sound minded citizenship and leadership in the community. That, DV, I intend to take up and further address.

Surely, a nuke armed world of chaos, piracy and terror is in nobody's genuine interest. END