Paul Revere by Cyrus Dallin, North End, Boston



Wednesday, September 10, 2014

President Obama Addresses the Nation on ISIS

"We will conduct a systematic campaign of airstrikes against these terrorists. Working with the Iraqi government, we will expand our efforts beyond protecting our own people and humanitarian missions, so that we’re hitting ISIL targets as Iraqi forces go on offense," 

Obama said in remarks as prepared for delivery. "Moreover, I have made it clear that we will hunt down terrorists who threaten our country, wherever they are. That means I will not hesitate to take action against ISIL in Syria, as well as Iraq. 

This is a core principle of my presidency: if you threaten America, you will find no safe haven."


“So tonight, with a new Iraqi government in place, and following consultations with allies abroad and Congress at home, I can announce that America will lead a broad coalition to roll back this terrorist threat," Obama said Wednesday. 

"Our objective is clear: we will degrade, and ultimately destroy, ISIL through a comprehensive and sustained counter-terrorism strategy.”


Infidel753 said...

What we will actually end up doing, as I hope and believe Obama realizes, is carrying out airstrikes to help the Kurds go on the offensive. I see no reason to think the new Iraqi government will be any less useless than Maliki's. The Kurds have won several major victories against ISIL, while the Iraqi government's forces haven't done jack except to run away and leave ISIL piles of US-supplied heavy weapons -- though that may be changing now that they've got Iranian advisers. But there is no such thing as "Iraq" any more, even if Obama has to pretend otherwise for diplomatic reasons.

I suppose the Kurds are part of that "broad coalition". By six months from now, Iran will be as well, even if nobody admits it.

And don't even get me started on Syria.

This is probably the most complex foreign-policy situation the US has ever gotten involved in. Thank goodness we've got a President who at least gathers actual information about problems before making decisions, instead of going by gut instinct.

Now on to the usual rants from Republicans who don't know a Yezidi from a Yemeni but will denounce Obama for not indiscriminately bombing the crap out of everything.

Rational Nation USA said...

I agree with your assessment Infidel753. At the same time I worry that the strategy may not be enough. That being said the President is moving forward and will no doubt adjust if and when circumstances require it.

The neocons and T-Pee'ers are out in force already on Fox. Can't wait to read the rightwing screamers on their blogs tomorrow.

Jerry Critter said...

If Bush and Cheney were in charge, we would probably have troops on the ground in both Syria and Iraq and be creating more new terrorists than we are killing.

Dave Miller said...

As is typical, House Republicans are not happy and do not believe what the pres is proposing will do the job.

But like the blogosphere, most of them have no suggestions themselves. At least Ted "Bomb them all Back to the Stone Age" Cruz and Phil "Convert or Die" Robertson of Duck Dynasty fame, had the courage to voice their unrealistic ideas.

skudrunner said...

It was a good thing Bush was President on 911 because he did an exemplary job of calming the nation and the world.

Regardless of anyone's hatred of him he stepped up and lead the nation through a very difficult time.

Only time will tell the impact and results from the speech last night. I guess we couldn't expect specifics and we sure didn't get them

Shaw Kenawe said...

And if you recall, skudrunner, the nation and political parties rallied around the president, even though we all knew 9/11 happened on his watch. I don't recall any pol telling the nation that we had a disconnected, disengaged, weak president after the worst attack on American soil in our history.

It's a damn shame the opposition can't let go of their all-consuming hatreds to show solidarity with our American president the way we Democrats did on 9/11.

There is a difference in attitudes in the two parties, one is driven by hatred the other by a sense of loyalty to the American president when our nation is facing a crisis.

We've not seen a speck of that loyalty to this country's president since Jan. 20, 2009.

Shaw Kenawe said...

Dave M: "As is typical, House Republicans are not happy..."

The House Republicans and the TPers in particular are not happy because our American president is BREATHING! They're a bunch of malcontents who cannot rise above their personal hatreds. We saw the result of such toxic hatred when Jo Joe Politico would not retract 3 blatant lies--which were all refuted with solid evidence--from his blog. He just couldn't bring himself to do the decent thing. That's all I need to know about the sort of people who stamp their feet and bellyache over everything from Mr Obama's foreign and domestic policies to the color of a suit he wears.

The only way to deal with it any longer is to ignore the whole unhappy, unreasonable, hate-filled lot of them.

It's a very, very personal matter to me now, Dave. I'll tell you why in a private email later today.

Take care.

Shaw Kenawe said...

Infidel753, I appreciate your comments because you are one of the few who actually knows the region and knows the history of the factions fighting each other.

I don't know enough about the whole bloody mess to be able to predict anything. But I am grateful Big Dick Cheney is not any part of the decision-making process.

Shaw Kenawe said...

RN and Jerry, the easiest thing in the world is to second guess anyone on strategy and not be the one who has to make difficult decisions.

Rational Nation USA said...

RN and Jerry, the easiest thing in the world is to second guess anyone on strategy and not be the one who has to make difficult decisions.

Ain't that the truth!!! Spent most of my working life in supervision and management responsible for results which always required making decisions, there was never a shortage of criticism from those who never had to make a single decision.

Funny how that works isn't it Shaw?

(O)CT(O)PUS said...

A shared comment for both Shaw and RN:

A reference to Obama’s “Michael Corleone Dilemma” caught my attention. It also reminds me of this Winston Churchill quote: “It is a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma …

If getting out of the family business is analogous to the USA getting out of Iraq, Obama is certainly dealing with a dilemma. Yet, I think the Winston Churchill quotation is more apt. This time around, there are dilemmas and riddles and mysteries, and the enigma is multi-layered.

A war-weary American public wants to disengage from Iraq; the rising threat of a savage entity tugs in the opposite direction.

Is ISIS the existential threat as claimed by our defense and foreign affairs establishment? This time around, the American public will want to vet all claims – having been burned by past fear mongering and false declarations of WMDs that never materialized.

Obama claims there will be “no boots on the ground” – reassuring words when your intended audience is a war weary American public. Suppose, however, your intended audience is the savage entity? Do you really want to say “no boots on the ground” when what you really should say is “all options are open!”

Finally, there is the layer of hyper-partisanship and the voices of nullification that blame Obama for anything and everything – for doing too little too late, for doing too much too soon, for waking up in the morning, for turning right or turning left on camera.

Is Obama’s Grand Strategy of the “willing and unable” a realistic one, or merely the best available compromise given a bad set of options?

Shaw Kenawe said...

Good question with no easy answer.

It's a shame our other political party doesn't believe in the word "compromise." Or civility.

Dervish Sanders said...

bush took advantage of the shock of a nation and lied us into two unnecessary wars. It was a terrible thing that this POS was president when 9/11 happened. If Gore, who was actually elected president, had been in office 9/11 might have been prevented.