The media, our representatives in the Federal Government, the President with the full backing of his Cabinet and the vast majority of Americans all believe that the battles for Afghanistan and Iraq have been won; and now that the troops are finishing up any untied strings and heading home for good. Nothing could be further from the truth and there is only one place to pin the blame, President Obama and Congress. They will likely claim that they are simply responding to the wishes and desires of the American people, and that holds a fair amount of validity. The problem is that Congress and the President are elected to serve the people, defend the Constitution from all threats foreign and domestic, to act as the adults in their relationship with the citizenry and to treat the people with respect by telling them the truth along with advise as to what choices are available along with a predicted result for each and after educating the citizenry the country can, as a whole, come to an educated consensus. Thus far none of these discussions have taken place and it is as much the blame of the mainstream media as it is the President, his administration and the members of Congress. The impression that has been put forth is a picture of Iraq and of Afghanistan each with a steady government that the United States have greatly aided and who is indebted to the United States and its military and will be one of the closest allies which the United States can rely upon in the future. If only that was even ten percent of the truth.
Let us begin with Iraq and open up some eyes to what is coming. The Iraqi Shiites can hardly wait for the last American to exit their country. They have already demanded and forced the United States military to sequester their personnel onto one of two main base locations, one in Baghdad in what was called the Green Zone where the government offices and the sprawling complex which is the United States Embassy and the rest isolated out at Camp Liberty in the middle of the desert miles from any town or other habitation. The American forces have to clear any operational moves or simple troop movements with their Iraqi advisors, though I am tempted to refer to these advisors as overlords as their decisions are usually final. Iraq has already aligned with Iran and is allowing Iran to supply Bashir Assad in Syria overland crossing central Iraq thus aiding Assad in his slaughtering of his own people as well as jihadists who have joined the battle against Assad in the name of al-Qaeda and/or the Muslim Brotherhood. Despite what the public back in the United States has been fed about Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, he was the most ardent of the Shiite candidates and was all but hand-picked by the true leader of Iran, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
Even as the troops from the United States and their allies were pulling out from their station points in Iraq in preparation to return home, the Shiite leadership of the government began a cleansing of the Sunni influences within the government wherever they were able. This has caused great amounts of friction and building animosity which is what has led to the drastic increases in terror attacks mostly in central Iraq. These ambushes will only increase and there is a possibility that the Sunni Muslims in Iraq will ally with the Kurds in the north and either begin an endless struggle for dominance against the Shiite loyalists in the south or possibly declare their independence. Whichever direction they should decide to move, once all the foreign forces have left or dwindled to the point of inability to influence or prevent fighting, then a war of some degree will break out and continue with no end in sight. This could become a winner take all take no prisoners blood feud and will not be pretty.
The last item about Iraq is that the leadership of the United States has misplayed their hand so pathetically by abandoning the only real friends they had won in Iraq, the Sunni and many of the Kurds, simply in order to get out as fast as possible and damn the consequences. Thus the result was a power vacuum which left a shaky balance between the three sects within Iraq with the Kurds relatively safely entrenched in the north and the Shiite in control in the center and south with the Sunni mostly in the center and at the mercy of the Shiite except in a few towns and cities closest to the Kurdish provinces. The result was a purge of the Sunni by the Shiite with Iranian backing followed by the Shiites seeking vindictive reprisals over the years of suffering they had suffered under the Sunni rule of Saddam Hussein. This is what will lead to a vicious civil war and possible bloodbath. The Sunni in Iraq, if any should survive, will never forgive the United States, who they trusted and joined making the surge a success, for abandoning them leaving them at the mercy of their historic rivals. The result is that every sector of Iraqi society now despises the United States because each one perceives that the United States deceived them and treated them poorly. We are leaving Iraq feeling greater animosity towards the United States than when the United States arrived or any time since. Iraq has resulted in a failure.
In Afghanistan we have played the political game poorly and what makes matters worse, we got caught at the game. Afghani President Hamid Karzai was an ally of the Americans who now feels betrayed after he became aware that the government of the United States had opened up negotiations with the Taliban without consulting or informing Karzai. He immediately opened his own dialogue with them and soon the situation became exactly what one would expect, the Taliban began playing the American and Karzai off of one another. This only served to deepen the rift that was forming between the two countries. Then there were a number of accidents and the beginning of the drone war operations all of which resulted in injured and murdered Afghani civilians. The United States admitted to a few civilian casualties and held the position that the greater majority of those killed were al-Qaeda and other jihadists and terrorists. Karzai saw the picture far differently and his protests only grew angrier and louder as the bodies piled up and the United States appeared not to care and refused to change their method of engagement. This eventually came to a head and President Karzai forced a curtailment of the drone war and a rewriting of the Rules of Engagement (ROE) for United States and allied troops which served to make these troops operations extremely difficult and eventually resulted in numerous additional casualties and deaths as troops were often denied air or artillery support under the new ROE. Another change was the demand that the United States and allied troops not carry their arms when within the wire back at major camps and bases. This is what has allowed for what is known as Green on Blue attacks. Green on Blue attacks are where Afghani police or military, who are trained by the United States and their allies, shoot often killing their American or allied counterparts. These shootings usually happen within the compounds of the major bases where the American and allied troops are disarmed by regulations and are unable to defend themselves. There has been no explanation provided by the Afghan government and seemingly no investigations or steps have been taken to address these disastrous and often fatal attacks. Needless to point out that these attacks are but a symptom of the animosity felt towards the United States and allied presence in Afghanistan. Afghanistan will return to the tribal and fractional confrontations and hostilities as soon as the United States and allied troops depart. There is a distinct possibility, maybe even inevitability, that the Taliban will once again rise to power and the terror training bases reopen returning to business as usual which spawned 9/11. Needless to point out but Afghanistan will end up being a complete disaster.
Then there is the Arab Spring, or as we here at BTC have called it since very early on, the Arab Winter. As was pointed out here, the people being supported by the United States fall into three categories, the Muslim Brotherhood, al-Qaeda aligned terrorists, other terrorists who possibly are aligned with Iran. President Obama may make grand speeches about the democracy revolutions and the youth with the use of social media bringing a change to these Muslim countries such as Tunisia, Egypt, Libya, Yemen, and possibly Syria, but that is a pipe dream. Yes, there were many youth who demonstrated for hope and change and they received change without any hope. The beneficiaries of the revolutions spreading across the Arab world thus far have been the Muslim Brotherhood with a definitive victory in Egypt where they now control the Presidency, are on their way to control of both houses of the Parliament, have taken over the majority of the courts, and have replaced almost all of the higher officers in the military. The sole grand accomplishment in Egypt was to replace a military backed dictatorship where regular election frauds were held with a Muslim Brotherhood military backed dictatorship where regular election frauds will be held in the future. In Tunisia the Islamists have gained the majority of the Parliament but have been blunted to some extent and who will win out has yet to be decided. Libya has dissolved into a fractional state where different tribes now control their own parts of the country and terrorist groups roam freely and are carrying their revolution into the neighboring countries. The most closely covered has been in Mali where French forces are assisting the Mali government forces in containing the terrorists in the north of the country. Nigeria is another front which has had numerous assaults by Islamist terrorists, mostly from the Boko Haram terror group. The Boko Haram terrorist fighters have bombed and burned numerous churches in the north and into the center of the country often during services killing and maiming numerous Christians as well as torching neighborhoods and stores owned by Christians. The situation threatens to devolve into a civil war in Nigeria as the violence builds just as it has already become in Mali.
The final front is Iran and their aligned forces which include Bashir Assad in Syria, Hezballah which rules Lebanon by overt military threat, Hamas in Gaza, the IRGC and affiliated terror units which operate worldwide including a large base in the tri-state area of South America on the borders of Brazil, Paraguay and Argentina shared borders meet. Iran also has made allies with Venezuela and Nicaragua while also wooing additional South and Central American countries including Brazil, Peru, Argentina and others. Iran is also suspected of working towards attaining nuclear weapons. Iran has apparently made an agreement with North Korea under which the two countries share rocket and nuclear research and design information. Many believe the two have been working to perfect a special type of nuclear weaponry which is quite different than the normally perceived nuclear ballistic weapons which are largely destructive due to their explosive properties. The kind of weapon Iran and North Korea are researching is a low yield high Gama burst device which has an explosive component of only one to twelve kilotons but discharges an enormous Gama ray burst which causes a massive EMP pulse which can be destructive to unshielded electronic devices and networks such as power grids and communications systems which would include television, radio, phone, internet, and electronic generation systems. Such a devise, it has been suggested, could theoretically be so destructive that one warhead detonated over the Kansas City to St Louis areas would take out almost all electronic equipment and power from the East Coast to the Rocky Mountains and possibly all the way to the Sierra Nevada Mountains. The other advantage of such a weapon is it does not require any hardened heat shield as it does not need to reenter very far into the atmosphere before being detonated and thus is far lighter allowing for a more powerful device to be placed atop a launch vehicle.
The truth is that between the economic time bomb which is the European Union and the budgetary and debt problems plaguing the United States when combined with the problems spreading through the Middle East and North Africa and throwing in the axis being built between North Korea and the areas of Iranian influence there are more than sufficient potentials for serious problems and likely scenarios which result in confrontations which could easily explode with little or no notice that one might believe that governments have not been exactly truthful as they peddle the idea that all is going to be just fine. President Obama has on many an occasion claimed that the United States does not have a spending problem. If President Obama means that the United States has no problem spending, then he has been truthful; otherwise he has been misleading the American public. The claims that the Arab Spring will result in Western style liberal democracies throughout the Arab world is wishful dreaming at best and foolish lies which can only end poorly at worst. The claims that Europe and the United States are experiencing an economic recovery and the end of their financial woes is just around the corner are simply a misrepresentation of reality. The stock market is showing gains simply in proportion to the rate of increase in the money supply from the three sets of Quantitative Easing with a simple delay built in as the stock market is almost always a lagging indicator of such forms of stimulus. The actual value of the majority of stocks has not changed very much but is only representing the soon to be realized inflation which will balance the stock gains out through higher prices across the board. Behind almost every rosy picture the media and politicians are attempting to sell is a large amount of fertilizer. We live in what the Chinese might call interesting times, and to them interesting times is a form of curse. Perhaps that is the one piece of truth, we are in interesting times and China just launched their first aircraft carrier on their way to having a blue water navy comparable to that of the United States, and President Obama’s cuts to the military, the Navy in particular, is making their task all the easier.
Beyond the Cusp