It is imperative to understand national security objectives at the strategic level and be able to articulate them in order to achieve success in a military endeavor — a war. When the “fog of war” exists in the brains of those who are supposed to formulate strategic goals, then the results are, well, exactly what we see happening right now.
As the UK Independent reports, ” The US Secretary of State, John Kerry, suggested that preventing the fall of Kobani was not a strategic US objective. “As horrific as it is to watch in real time what is happening in Kobani, you have to step back and understand the strategic objective,” he said. “Notwithstanding the crisis in Kobani, the original targets of our efforts have been the command and control centres, the infrastructure.” Mr. Kerry said he expected Turkey to decide “over the next hours, days” what role it would play against Isis.”
The first problem with Kerry’s insidious statement is what exactly is our strategic objective? President B. Hussein Obama stated it was to degrade and destroy ISIS. If that’s the case, then your efforts are “enemy oriented” and therefore you strike at its basic capability to conduct operations, especially offensive operations. In other words, wherever the enemy masses and presents itself, you strike.
Regarding what has happened in northern Syria in Kobani, how can it be that ISIS was able to conduct a maneuver operation and get into position to attack Kobani? Where did the ISIS forces come from and what are our intelligence and surveillance methods and platforms to track the enemy and its movements? Latest reports are that the US has run a total of 14 strikes against ISIS in the vicinity of Kobani – a whole 14 strikes?
“ISIS tried to enter the city today with tanks, and a big truck full of weapons to bomb The People’s Protection Units (YPG) in the centre, but YPG were ready and they blew up the truck at about 4pm local time,” Zara Misto, editor of Welati.com, who has been reporting from inside Kobani since the beginning of the battle, told The Independent.”
From a strategic perspective, if ISIS can seize another city and more terrain, that means it is extending its operational reach and located right along the border with Turkey, it’s much easier to receive more recruits coming in from the “supposed” NATO ally.
Furthermore, from a strategic perspective it means the loss of Kurdish fighters which are the best bulwark against the spread of ISIS — therein lies the main reason why the Turkish tanks sit and watch. ISIS is strategically destroying their enemy — our best ally in the region outside of Israel would be an independent Kurdistan.
The combat operation being waged in Iraq and Syria — which has no name — is a prime example of an administration without a clue about strategic objectives — only political ones. Kobani’s fall to ISIS would have massive strategic implications — one of which to demonstrate that even under the supposed gathering of coalition air strikes, ISIS is not deterred. That’s a powerful recruitment tool for an Islamic terrorist army that has been gaining 3,500 recruits per month since the beginning of this year.
The map below shows exactly how ISIS has a moved into position to lay siege to this Kurdish city of some 60,000. A huge massacre of Kurds will be no doubt propagandized and displayed on social media to show the weakness of the West. It will also serve to further demoralize the Kurds who stand to be destroyed due to the feckless nature of Obama and his lack of support. As well, Obama’s self-declared best friend, Recip Tayyip Erdogan, does nothing and allows this to evolve — and Turkey is supposed to be a NATO ally. Instead Erdogan’s forces have cracked down on Kurds in Turkey who make up approximately 25 percent of the country’s population.
The Independent says, “The south-eastern city of Diyarbakir, the de facto Kurdish capital in Turkey, suffered the worst violence and highest death toll. A curfew was extended until Thursday after at least eight people died during the protests. Diyarbakir is one of six cities that remained on lockdown. “The city is under curfew until 6am and nobody can come in or out. There were no police on our streets last night – just us and them,” said Bayram Baran, a 25-year-old lawyer from Diyarbakir.”
Erdogan and Turkey are demanding the U.S. support efforts to fight against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad — which truly is not part of our strategic objective – whatever it may be in the mind of Obama. We should not be held hostage by Erdogan, who certainly knows what his strategic objectives are – starting with the destruction of the Kurds. And based on Kerry’s comments, it seems the Obama administration is presenting a facade of assistance with paltry air strikes, but isn’t fully arming and supporting the Kurds to degrade, defeat, and eventually destroy ISIS. Regardless, the heart of the Kurds remains strong.
As The Independent reports, “Ekrem Ahmad, 40, a mechanic from Kobani said: “I’m happy to see Kurds as well as British, American, French and German people protesting in support of Kobani. It really raises our morale. “The governments may not give us weapons, but their people give us hope.”
And where is Mr. Hope and Change himself? Why, he’s off doing fundraisers of course.