Archive for the ‘ISIS’ Category

Instead of maintaining the Trump foreign policy, Joe Biden essentially said that the US is heading back to the bad old days of the Obama administration. The Trump administration’s foreign policy was known for standing up to ISIS, China, Iran and North Korea.

NoKo hasn’t tested a nuclear device in 3 years. Further, they haven’t fired an ICBM in 3.5 years. Trump stood up to China while negotiating a bilateral trade policy with them. He imposed tariffs on China to let them know he wasn’t fooling around. The trade deal reflects President Trump’s America First priorities. Unfortunately, Biden plans on changing that to an internationalist, America leads-from-behind position.

In his presentation yesterday, Biden said “It’s a team that reflects that America is back. Ready to lead the world, not retreat from it. They embody my core beliefs that America is strongest when it works with its allies. Collectively, this team has secured some of the most defining national security and diplomatic achievements in recent memory — made possible through decades of experience working with our partners.”

That’s what pacifist gibberish sounds like. When he said “this team has secured some of the most defining national security and diplomatic achievements in recent memory”, what he’s referring to is that John Kerry embarrassed the USA while negotiating the JCPOA and the Paris Climate Accord. Compare those ‘accomplishments’ with President Trump, Secretary Pompeo and Jared Kushner negotiating normalization agreements between Israel and the UAE, Bahrain and Sudan.

Let’s not forget that ISIS started on Biden’s and Kerry’s watch because they pulled out of Iraq too soon. Further, Russia invaded Crimea on Biden’s and Kerry’s watch, too.

The world has changed since Biden last held office. Almost 75,000,000 voters expect politicians and diplomats to make smart decisions. Biden, Blinken and Kerry have gotten most things wrong during their careers. The question now is whether voters will hold Biden accountable for his routinely foolish decisions. As Robert Gates once said in his book, Biden has been wrong about every major foreign policy issue over the past 40+ years. Unfortunately, I don’t expect that to change, mostly because he hasn’t noticed that he’s made any mistakes.

Listing President Trump’s accomplishments is a lengthier responsibility than Democrats admit. In virtually every category, there’s something historic to talk about. That’s why a Biden administration better tread lightly. That’s why President Obama’s legacy is getting belittled by serious people.

Economy

First, President Trump’s record is filled with historic accomplishments. President Trump’s policies directly resulted in the lowest minority unemployment rates in history. Wages for blue collar workers grew twice as fast as for white collar workers. Pre-COVID, consumer confidence and small business were at all-time highs. Best of all, people were leaving the poverty rolls in major numbers. That’s because President Trump listened to Sen. Tim Scott in implementing Sen. Scott’s Opportunity Zones provisions into the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.

Next, President Trump worked with Congress to get rid of the Obama-Biden regulations that’d hurt the energy industry. That led to the US becoming energy independent and the largest energy producer in the world. (Under Obama, we were reliant on oil from the world’s hotspots. The result? Gas prices are cheap and home heating bills are affordable again.

Most importantly, President Trump started bringing our medical supply chains home while increasing medical manufacturing in the USA. As a result of CCOVID, we found out how reliant we are on China for PPE, the manufacture of antibiotics and other pharmaceutical products. Thanks to President Trump’s leadership and Peter Navarro’s work, those supply chains are coming home.

It remains to be seen if Joe Biden will continue with this or if he’ll foolishly reverse course. Biden’s biggest supporters are Wall Street financiers and globalists. That bunch hates President Trump’s America First policies.

COVID

I wrote here about the White House Fact Sheet on the actions President Trump took to combat COVID. It’s worth repeating some of the details of what he did:

  1. At the President’s urging, private companies shifted production to supplying masks, ventilators, hand sanitizer, testing supplies, and more.
  2. President Trump has acted under the Defense Production Act more than 30 times to ensure we have the supplies we need.
  3. President Trump understood early on that in order to defeat this virus once and for all and protect Americans, we need a vaccine and therapeutics.
  4. President Trump revolutionized the clinical trial process to ensure Americans get a safe vaccine as quickly as possible, by providing unprecedented investments in leading vaccine candidates to simultaneously produce them as they are tested and developed.

In other words, President Trump took actions that saved millions of lives. He used the DPA to build a national stockpile of PPE. Most importantly, he funded the vaccine that we’re only weeks away from getting.

Foreign Policy

President Trump demolished ISIS, stared down China, renegotiated trade deals, negotiated the Abraham Accords and put Russia and Iran in boxes. President Trump also killed Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and Qassim Suleimani.

I’m betting that Aaron David Miller’s article was either written by the DNC. Either that or it was preapproved of by the DNC. This shouldn’t be taken as the writings of someone serious.

For instance, Miller wrote “Trump was great for Netanyahu. But there’s a lesson in Ben Gurion’s reply to JFK. With admiration and respect around the world for the United States, particularly in the Middle East, Israel is stronger. And on that score, president-elect Joe Biden will be better for Israel, strengthening bipartisan American support for the Jewish state and pursuing policies abroad far more effective in enhancing Israel’s security and well-being.”

Admiration and respect for the United States is exceptionally high right now. If it wasn’t, President Trump’s diplomats wouldn’t have secured agreements for the Abraham Accords. President Trump’s diplomats also reached agreement with Kosovo and Serbia. Later, President Trump’s diplomats negotiated a peace deal and normalization of relations between Israel and Sudan.

Further, it’s insulting for Miller to write that President “Trump was great for Netanyahu.” President Trump moved the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to its rightful home in Jerusalem. Then he recognized that the Golan Heights were part of Israel. These are major substantive accomplishments that improve Israel’s security long-term. President Trump got them accomplished in 47 months. Joe Biden didn’t get them done in 47 years.

But Trump’s pro-Israel gestures mask a weakening of American credibility and reputation around the world, and an assault on the bipartisanship and shared values so critical to the resilience of the U.S.-Israel relationship. Trump’s approach to Iran, withdrawing the United States from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, and his faulty approach to the Israel-Palestinian peace process have degraded Israel’s security, not enhanced it. Iran is ramping up its nuclear program, while prospects for progress, let alone a resolution of the Israel-Palestinian conflict remain remote.

That’s a breathtakingly foolish statement. President Trump’s policies were moving the Middle East toward isolating Iran and Iran’s terrorist proxies. The Obama-Biden policies created ISIS, gave Russia implicit permission to restart its expansionist policies and essentially let Iran run Iraq. That’s before talking about the lapdog position Obama-Biden took towards China.

When it came to foreign policy, Obama-Biden didn’t have any credibility. Further, this doesn’t include President Trump’s rebuilding of our military. That’s before talking about President Trump insisting that NATO nations pay their fair share. Each of those Trump policies built international credibility.

Last week, Rep. Omar tweeted out another tweet questioning politicians allegiance to the United States. Later last week, the House passed a watered-down resolution condemning hate. This week, Democrats tried pretending that Rep. Omar’s statement wasn’t anti-Semitic:

Speaker Pelosi must think that we’re totally gullible if she thinks we’ll believe that crap. Pelosi is also trying to get people to believe that Rep. Omar’s statement about allegiance to foreign governments was just a comment about special interest groups.

Rep. Omar sent a letter to a judge asking for leniency for men trying to become ISIS terrorists. If Rep. Omar is questioning the allegiance of Americans who also support Israel, it’s only fitting that we can question her allegiance to the US while she supports leniency for ISIS.

Sean Davis’s op-ed about the 10 undercovered stories of 2017 reminded me of the different approach taken towards ISIS. In a speech to the nation on Sept. 10, 2014, President Obama said “Now, it will take time to eradicate a cancer like ISIL. And any time we take military action, there are risks involved, especially to the servicemen and women who carry out these missions. But I want the American people to understand how this effort will be different from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. It will not involve American combat troops fighting on foreign soil. This counter-terrorism campaign will be waged through a steady, relentless effort to take out ISIL wherever they exist, using our air power and our support for partner forces on the ground. This strategy of taking out terrorists who threaten us, while supporting partners on the front lines, is one that we have successfully pursued in Yemen and Somalia for years. And it is consistent with the approach I outlined earlier this year: to use force against anyone who threatens America’s core interests, but to mobilize partners wherever possible to address broader challenges to international order.”

Actually, that’s what happens when the United States military isn’t unleashed. Early in his administration, President Trump gave the generals the authority to do whatever it took to demolish ISIS. As I write this post, ISIS is virtually eradicated. ISIS’s strongholds in Mosul and Raqqa have been destroyed. Here’s how Davis described the situation:

Islamic State was crushed in Raqqa and Mosul

A year ago, the Islamic State wasn’t just on the rise in the Middle East, it was firmly in charge, with wide swaths of the region under its control. But in October, U.S.-backed forces completed the total liberation of Raqqa, the Islamic State’s Syrian capital. That followed the liberation of Mosul, a major Iraqi city captured by the Islamic State in 2014. In less than a year, Trump and his national security team accomplished what the previous administration suggested was impossible.

Listen to President Obama’s excuse-filled statement about the war against ISIS:

Here’s the part to focus on:

This is going to be a long-term campaign. There are not quick fixes involved. We are still in the early stages. As with any military effort, there will be days of progress and there will be periods of setback.

Actually, Mr. President, there was a quick fix. We just needed a real commander-in-chief who was serious about wiping out ISIS. Clearly, you didn’t fit that description. Further, it’s apparent that President Trump fits that description. It’s worth noting that President Trump has the advantage of having Gen. Jim Mattis as his Defense Secretary.

It’s likely that this is an underreported story because it would expose President Obama as the lackluster commander-in-chief that he was. The disgusting part is that I don’t have hope that we’ll learn from the Obama mistake. I don’t think we’ll learn from it because Obama’s supporters won’t admit that he’s a failure both on the national security front and the economic front.

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Rumor has it that ISIS preferred the Obama administration over the Trump administration. We don’t know that for certain because ISIS hasn’t issued a statement on the issue, mostly because ISIS is too decimated these days to do much of anything. ISIS is too busy dodging bombs to issue more than a monthly rah-rah statement. When the Obama administration was in office, ISIS had time to actually recruit terrorists and plan terrorist attacks. That isn’t happening during the Trump administration.

Seriously, this article lays out what’s happening. The article’s opening paragraphs start by saying “ISIS has lost 98 percent of the territory it once held — with half of that terror group’s so-called ‘caliphate’ having been recaptured since President Trump took office less than a year ago, U.S. military officials said Tuesday. The massive gains come after years of “onerous” rules, when critics say the Obama administration ‘micromanaged’ the war and shunned a more intensive air strategy that could have ended the conflict much sooner.”

Predictably, the Obama administration attempted to push back. Predictably, it was feeble:

“This was a top priority from the early days of ISIS gaining the type of territorial safe haven in particular, there was recognition that safe havens for terrorist groups can mean terrorist plots that extend — not just into the region — but to Europe and conceivably into the United States,” said Joshua Geltzer, author of “US Counter-Terrorism Strategy and al-Qaeda: Signalling and the Terrorist World-View,” now a visiting professor at Georgetown Law School.

I don’t care if ISIS was a top priority for the Obama administration. It isn’t whether it’s a top priority. It’s whether the strategy employed is effective. Clearly, the Obama administration didn’t take things that seriously.

This report spells things out beautifully:

I’ll leave you with this parting thought:

Deptula thinks the ISIS fight would have ended much sooner if then-President Obama had given his military commander in the field more authority. He compared President Obama’s actions to President Lyndon B. Johnson during the Vietnam War. “Obama micromanaged the war,” Deptula said. “We could have accomplished our objectives through the use of overwhelming air power in three months not in three years.

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Notch another foreign policy victory for President Trump. This morning, Raqqa was liberated from ISIS. It seems like forever ago that people were being told that we couldn’t affect regime change in Syria without the threat of ISIS taking over the government. Overthrow, Democrats told us, meant deposing Assad, then watching while ISIS took over. Apparently, President Trump and Gen. Mattis didn’t get that memo.

According to the article, “The Syrian city of Raqqa was liberated from ISIS fighters Tuesday, a commander with U.S.-backed Syrian forces said. The loss deprived the terror group of the capital of its so-called caliphate, which has dwindled from a land mass spanning two countries to a sliver of space in Syria. The last group of Islamic State militants had been holed up Tuesday in a stadium in the Syrian city of Raqqa, their last stand in the fight over what was the terror group’s de facto capital as U.S. backed, Kurdish-led forces close in around them.”

It’s fun hearing that “the last black ISIS flag raised in the city had been taken down.”

This article summarizes things nicely:

The Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), an alliance of Kurdish and Arab militias backed by a US-led international alliance, has been fighting ISIS inside Raqqa since June. SOHR said 3,250 people were killed in the five-month battle, including 1,130 civilians.

A witness said fighting appeared to be almost at an end with only sporadic bursts of gunfire. Militia fighters celebrated in the streets, chanted slogans from their vehicles and raised a flag inside Raqqa stadium. An SDF spokesman said the alliance would capture the last ISIS areas in the city within hours.

Notice that the SDF started their offensive in June of this year. President Trump’s strategy to empower generals on the ground paid dividends because they weren’t micromanaged from the Oval Office like they were during the Obama administration.

President Trump’s goal was defeating ISIS. President Obama’s goal was to do as little as possible because he wanted his legacy to be of an anti-war president. That meant sacrificing military victories to pay for political victories.

Thankfully, we’ve got a real commander-in-chief now.

After ISIS’s rise, President Obama was forced to take action against his will. He really didn’t want to send troops back into Iraq. Initially, the Obama administration announced airstrikes. Predictably, they didn’t have much of an effect. Now that President Trump has increased pressure on ISIS, ISIS is getting exposed as being terrible fighters. This article highlights how ISIS has crumbled.

The article starts by saying “The Islamic State group once drew recruits from near and far with promises of paradise but now bodies of jihadists lie in mass graves or at the mercy of wild dogs as its “caliphate” collapses. Flies buzz around human remains poking through the dusty earth in the Iraqi town of Dhuluiyah, 90 kilometres (55 miles) north of Baghdad, at a hastily-dug pit containing the bodies of dozens of IS fighters killed in 2015. They should have ended up in the stomachs of stray dogs,” local police officer Mohammed al-Juburi told AFP. ‘We buried them here not out of love but because we wanted to avoid diseases.'”

Farmer Shalan al-Juburi is quoted as saying “We buried them with bulldozers. Even in the ground they are still mired in their own filth. They said that they would go to paradise to enjoy the gardens of delights, but this is how they ended up.”

But as Iraqi forces in Anbar now look to oust the jihadists from their final footholds, operation commander Mahmoud al-Fellahi insisted any jihadists killed will end up in mass graves. A similar fate befell IS members in the city of Mosul, the group’s largest urban stronghold in Iraq that it lost in July. There, a senior Iraqi commander told AFP, authorities used earthmoving equipment “to bury the jihadists after we collected information on their identities and nationalities”.

During President Bush’s surge, he benefitted from the Anbar Awakening. Once the people saw that they had a reliable military partner, the people started helping al-Qa’ida strongholds. It didn’t take long to defeat al-Qa’ida.

Unfortunately, thanks to President Obama’s politicization of US foreign policy, the US quickly lost the ground it had gained during the Bush administration. Now that we’ve got a legitimate commander-in-chief again, the tide quickly turned. This video offers a nice summarization:

Buck Sexton’s op-ed opens with grim news for ISIS. Sexton’s opening paragraphs start with “ISIS’s reign of terror is rapidly coming to an end. Within a matter of days, the jihadist menace that shocked the world for years with its pathological sadism will lose its final strongholds within the Syrian city of Raqqa. It has taken 5 months of bloody struggle but the de facto capital of the Islamic State will soon be entirely in the hands of the U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).

Across the border in Iraq, the process of rebuilding the devastated city of Mosul is underway after its liberation from the so-called caliphate in July. There are still areas of ISIS control in both Iraq and Syria, but the jihadists have lost over 60 percent of the territory they once held. Their sources of funding are drying up, hostile forces surround them, and ISIS can no longer count on tens of thousands of recruits to flood into Syria to replenish their ranks.”

ISIS sprang to life during the Obama administration. It’s on the verge of elimination in the early days of the Trump administration. That pretty much sums up the difference between the 2 administrations. Strategic patience was replaced by devastating strikes on ISIS strongholds. The key part of Sexton’s op-ed is where he said ISIS’ “sources of funding are drying up, hostile forces surround them, and ISIS can no longer count on tens of thousands of recruits to flood into Syria to replenish their ranks.”

People questioned when President Trump bombed that airfield in Syria shortly after his inauguration. They questioned whether he had a strategy. 6 months later, it’s clear that he has a strategy for victory in Iraq and Syria. This paragraph is important:

On the Syrian front, the world was faced with the lose-lose choice of a collapsing Assad regime and an ascendant ISIS. Now, ISIS’s leadership is on the run, and its fighters are surrendering by the hundreds. Not every militant wants to be among the last suicide bombers for a crumbling caliphate.

When ISIS was first getting started, they were seen as the strong horse. People were travelling to Syria and Iraq to join ISIS’ cause. That definitely isn’t happening at the same rate today. The fight isn’t won but it’s clear who owns the momentum.

The Trump Doctrine is developing a bit at a time. President Trump’s acceleration of hostilities against ISIS is hurting the terrorists. President Trump’s applying of pressure on China is causing hardship for China and North Korea. President Trump’s delegating authority to his in-theater generals is improving the military’s morale, too. These things aren’t happening accidentally.

It’s understatement saying that it’s encouraging to see these Syrians taking the fight to ISIS.

This article in the Pi-Press is disgusting in its dishonesty. In the article, the ‘reporter’ says that “Trump’s highly controversial order suspends refugee admissions for 120 days and bars all immigration for 90 days of citizens from seven Muslim-majority countries with terrorism concerns: Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. Those now being barred from the country include refugees who have already been thoroughly vetted by U.S. agencies.”

Either this reporter is telling an outright lie or he’s incredibly ignorant of the truth. Though Politifact attempts to sweep things under the carpet, the fact remains that FBI Director James Comey testified that “We can only query against that which we have collected, and so if someone has never made a ripple in the pond in Syria in a way that would get their identity or their interests reflected in our database, we can query our database till the cows come home, but … there’ll be nothing show up, because we have no record on that person.”

Politifact tried spinning things by saying “But did James Comey actually say the FBI “cannot properly vet” people coming from the Middle East? No, he didn’t. Beruff is distorting a point Comey was making about a flaw in the vetting process, but he was reiterating the system in place was actually much better than it had been in the past.”

Here’s the real exchange:

Ranking member Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.) asked Comey, “Mr. Director, before this committee, [FBI] Assistant Director [Michael] Steinbach said that the concerns in Syria is that we don’t have the systems in place on the ground to collect the information to vet. That would be the concern. Databases don’t hold the information on these individuals. Is that still the position of the department?”

“Yes, I think that’s the challenge we’re all talking about, is that we can only query against that which we have collected, and so if someone has never made a ripple in the pond in Syria in a way that would get their identity or their interests reflected in our database, we can query our database till the cows come home, but we’re not gonna—there’ll be nothing show up, because we have no record on that person,” said Comey. “That’s what Assistant Director Steinbach was talking about,” he added.

Not having verifiable data to compare against isn’t “a flaw in the vetting process.” That’s admitting that it’s impossible to vet people. Here’s video of FBI Director Comey’s testimony:

That’s pretty open-and-shut testimony.

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