Nearly a week has passed since President Obama at last announced his tardy strategy for dealing with Isis, the jihadist organization Obama now calls a huge threat only months after dismissing it as the "junior varsity" of jihadism. There's been no shortage of activity, as distinguished from action, from the Obama administration.
Here are five things to consider as we discuss this latest insertion of US military personnel, money, and weaponry into, potentially, another Mideast quagmire -- this one being pitched as the "good" or "justified" Iraq War.
I have attended and written about many conferences, and whatever the subject, they all seem to follow the same format -- speeches by famous coaches, former presidents and great athletes, all who have been paid enormous amounts of money for their time. I didn't realize an alternative existed until I attended The Nantucket Project
The White House formally submitted its $500 million request to Congress on June 26. The money would go to train and equip "appropriately vetted" members of the Syrian opposition. That's a lot different from "moderate rebel forces," and it is yet another indication that we simply do not know who the "moderates" are in Syria.
Well, we can all relax now. Senator John McCain, who was wrong about Iraq, wrong about the surge in Iraq, wrong about the surge in Afghanistan, wrong about Libya, and wrong about most everything else pertaining to US security, has "vetted" the Syrian rebels he now wants to send arms to.
In 2008, as you'll recall, the overwhelming frontrunner finished third in Iowa behind Barack Obama and John Edwards. She ended up just a weekend of furious Bill Clinton campaigning in New Hampshire away from being stampeded from the race at its very beginning.
Senate Republicans voted unanimously last week for elections that are competitions of cash, with candidates who amass the most money empowered to shout down opponents. The GOP rejected elections that are contests of ideas won by candidates offering the best concepts.
As the US increasingly becomes more embroiled in the Syrian civil war over the next few years, there will be the distinct possibility of "mission creep". Wikipedia defines mission creep as "the expansion of a project or mission beyond its original goals."
Where have you gone, John McCain? A nation turns its lonely eyes to you. Just like the lyrics of Mrs. Robinson, a lot of us wonder what has happened to our country. Where is the pride, the honor, the love for our fellow countrymen?
It almost sounds as if Mr. McCain is more concerned that he let down the "good guys" in Syria than he is about the possibility that his ideas and his judgment may be dead wrong, and that America (and the world) could pay dearly for listening to him.
There is a common refrain these days voiced by politicians who want to blame President Obama for ISIL. It is an extremely shallow argument. But it's a convenient one for those who do not like Mr. Obama, his leadership style, or his foreign policy in the Middle East -- or all three.
Secretary of State John Kerry said on September 8 that the formation of a new Iraqi government was "a major milestone" for the country.
Mr. President: "Don't do stupid stuff" really is a smart mantra when it comes to foreign policy. It means don't rush to action because people like John McCain and Lindsey Graham demand it. You were right in 2002. Rely on that same judgment now.
Until now, President Obama's foreign policy appeared to be based more on reason than emotion. However, the rise of ISIL may have cost Obama his equanimity. After promising to strictly limit the mission in Iraq, Washington is preparing to expand the war to Syria. Instead, the administration should push other nations into the lead.
Across the world, various news sources are reporting on the terrors of ISIS. We know that they are intolerant, violent and well-organized; this last piece is perhaps the most frightening. But what is truly driving our fear of ISIS?
The swift and dramatic rise of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) and the group's de facto transformation from a terrorist organization into a terrorist government with a potent army is daunting and scary. But it's not totally unexpected.