Beyond the Cusp

August 24, 2014

What if ISIS Terrorists Have Access to a NATO Country’s Passports?

What would be the response from the leadership and citizens of the other NATO nations say if they realize that it would take only a small amount of effort for terrorist fighters while training to enter Syria could be granted passports from the NATO country where their training was conducted? This is not just some silly figment of an overactive imagination but an actual potentiality which may have already been realized. One must consider that one of the aims of ISIS and those assisting their Jihadist nightmares is to implant sleeper cells within European nations and especially within the United States. ISIS had made repeated references and threats to carry out attacks on the United States even more deadly than the al-Qaeda attacks on the World Trade Towers, Pentagon and a foiled assault brought down by the actions of the passengers in a determined and desperate breaching of the cockpit over a field outside Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. ISIS Leader and self-proclaimed Caliph, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, was a former prisoner held in the United States run Camp Bucca near Umm Qasr in Iraq released by President Barack Obama in 2009. His release was likely part of the winding down of the United States efforts in Iraq and simply part of the preparations for the closure of the detention facilities. Still, there are those who claim that his time spent in United States custody is behind his deep seated hatred and is what had fueled his burning desires to take revenge against his captors and the entirety of the American people. But how does al-Baghdadi’s hatred for the United States and the West in general translate to the possibility that ISIS trainees were possibly provided with passports from a NATO nation which would make their entrance into any European NATO country and from there possible ready access to the United States? That is where things get interesting and also affirm those who have suggested that Turkey’s membership in NATO be revoked as Turkey appears to have joined the jihadist efforts and turned against the core beliefs and mutual interests of the rest of the NATO alliance members.

 

The proof comes via evidence produced proving that Turkey has acted as a clearing house and operated training centers for future ISIS members and new recruits. Walid Shoebat has posted a video “showing the ISIS training centers in Turkey” on August 20, 2014. <a href=http://shoebat.com/2014/08/20/leaked-video-isis-training-center-turkey/</a> Walid Shoebat reported that “as far back as March,” there existed ISIS “training centers in Orfa, Ghazi Antab and Antakia (Antioch) set up by the Turkish government for more terrorists to be sent to Syria.” Within the video one hears the speaker calling to “Destroy and blow up our enemies, victory is near…young men, enroll, land and win…young men it’s our religion attack with your weapons and win…spread throughout the earth and raze the strongholds of the unbelievers.” This video makes a mockery of the claims by United States, European and other Western leaders who have yet dared to identify ISIS threats by their proper title, Jihadist terror. The most egregious example of oversimplification and missing the mark was the recent statement by President Obama stating, “The ISIL speaks for no religion. Their victims are overwhelmingly Muslim, and no faith teaches people to massacre innocents. No just god would stand for what they did yesterday and what they do every single day. ISIL has no ideology of any value to human beings…people like this ultimately fail. They fail because the future is won by those who build and not destroy.” Additionally, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Martin Dempsey stated that, “ISIS will only truly be defeated when it’s rejected by the twenty-million disenfranchised Sunni that happen to reside between Damascus and Baghdad.” Such a naiveté which completely ignored the hundreds, if not thousands, who have flocked to the rallying cry declaring ISIS to be the new Caliphate and their apparent invincibility presupposes that a sizeable number of those twenty-million Sunni living between Baghdad and Damascus have not already joined ISIS if for no other reason than to survive and follow what they perceive as the strong horse. The few bombings which have assisted the brave and seasoned Kurdish Peshmerga Militias gain a routing to relieve some numbers of the besieged Yazidi and to retake the Mosul Dam has at least made a small start at turning the front around but it will take far more of the same continuing over a prolonged time-frame, something which President Obama may shy away from with the midterm elections approaching this fall.

 

As far as the distant future of ISIS one can only believe that they have overstretched their ability to hold supply lines and command and control coordinating their forces and thus will not be able to push further in the immediate future and may even face serious pushback providing Western nations, especially the United States, will continue to provide air support and provisions to keep the Kurds and potentially the Iraqi forces capable of continuing to operate at their full potential. For such a sustained effort it will be necessary for President Obama to face both the Congress and the American people and give a full accounting of the extent and the reasoning for the partial return of United States military efforts in Iraq even if these efforts are restricted to only air support and provisions to arm those fighting ISIS on the ground. Should there not be an effort by President Obama to express the United States intentions to fully support the forces engaging ISIS in Iraq to the American people then it is very probable that he does not intend to continue with the air strikes for much longer which would place the entire weight of support most likely on French and British air squadrons and the resupply might prove to be beyond anyone other than the United States to provide thus very possibly stymying any efforts by both the Kurds and the new Iraqi government. Such a failure would prove short-sighted and would lead to a disaster in the making. ISIS received a huge logistical advantage when they swept into Iraq and the Iraqi forces fled the battlefield leaving their supplies and literally tons upon tons of United States front line weaponry including armor, assault rifles, trucks and munitions enough to keep ISIS supplied for a respectable period probably extending a few months into the future. This is the minimal period for which those fighting against ISIS will need to be furnished with weapons, munitions and air support. Should ISIS not be contained in Iraq then the future of the region will be questionable and something the Western nations should be motivated to avoid. Further, it should become a top concern for Western intelligence resources to investigate whether any ISIS or other jihadists who were given training in Turkey by the Turkish government were provided with Turkish passports and if so, the names on the documents would be critical need to know information in order to protect their borders and homelands. This will be made all the more difficult as the United States as well as much of the rest of NATO have very poor and shallow intelligence within the jihadi ranks and even less human intelligence operatives in place and infiltrated into the ranks of ISIS. Further, relying on Turkey to be forthcoming would be a fool’s errand and a waste of Western efforts and resources. NATO should operate under the assumption that Turkey has joined with the jihadist forces and is no longer a reliable ally. Their membership in NATO needs to be reviewed and probably suspended for the safety of the rest of the NATO nations.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

August 23, 2014

Revulsion or Revolution, The ISIS Conundrum

First perhaps we need clarify that we here at BTC refuse to recognize the terrorist bands which makeup ISIS and have declared themselves a new name of IS claiming that they are now an actual nation state and the home to the new Caliphate. Due to this decision not to honor the declarations of an overgrown terrorist group on the order of Hezballah, al-Qaeda, the Taliban and Muslim Brotherhood and their delusions of statehood, we will continue to use their initial name ISIS, the name of a terrorist group which terrorizes through such horrific actions as beheadings leaving the heads on poles as a display of their hold and threat on an area, crucifixions, mass graves, rapes and slavery including sexual slavery among other depraved actions in order to terrify, cower and intimidate those it holds the power of the sword and a legitimacy spelled in the spilling of blood. Should our doing so be perceived as an insult then all the better as we could not be more proud than to be detested by such as ISIS.

 

The beheading of American photojournalist James Wright Foley provided the Western world the unavoidable definition of the barbarity which is ISIS, or as they now refer to themselves, merely IS. This is not to minimize the horrors which included the mass murders of Christians, some by a torturous crucifixion, the attempted genocide of the Yazidi Peoples, rapes and enslavement of numbers of women and children, forced conversions, mass killings, burial of victims alive and other horrors, all of which had been reported in many newscasts since ISIS initially broke out of Syria sweeping across western and central Iraq. The sickening and repugnant video which was released this past week which included the threat to further behead other American and Western hostages being held by ISIS such as Steven Joel Sotloff, also an American journalist captured in Syria covering that civil war, should the United States continue their campaign assisting those resisting further ISIS advances. The United States limited bombing efforts have been described as being an assist enabling the Kurdish forces to turn back the advances of ISIS and even gaining back some ground which provided the Kurds with access to a route to rescue a number of Yazidi families and individuals as well as retake the Mosul dam which had ISIS carried out their threat to destroy the dam would have caused massive casualties and damage on the cities and villages downstream potentially past Baghdad all the way to the Persian Gulf.

 

The brutalities and threats to life, civility and modernity posed by ISIS through its ideals and definitions of Islam as practiced and brutally applied by their leadership is now unavoidable by the leadership of the Western nations. This new clarity of threat that is ISIS screams out for unified action to prevent the further spread and genocidal purification of the population threatened by the advance of ISIS. Somehow, such an effort appears to be quite slow in developing and consists mostly of sporadic bombing by the United States and the early return to Washington by President Obama and similarly British Prime Minister David Cameron will also curtail his vacation plans and return to London. Any announcement of a change in tactics and applying force on the ground with the application of troops has been noticeably silent thus far making any such reaction at best slow in materializing. The purported American war weariness appears to have not been broken by the acts from ISIS including the beheading of James Wright Foley and threats to behead Steven Joel Sotloff along with other American and Western hostages. Whether these emotions will show signs of weakening is verily a contestable premise with many claiming that there appears to be no limit to the ability of the people, or at least the media portrayal of the people, to ignore current events and remain cocooned in their isolationist tranquility. This political inertia also readily ignores the presence of American military advisors who are stationed in the Kurdish capital of Irbil in support to the Peshmerga Militias who are currently confronting the Islamic State forces.

 

The future horizon holds its hopes on the new leadership in Baghdad as Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki is set to step down offering a glimmer of hope for a more stable Iraq in the face of the challenges ahead due to ISIS threats and a situation which President Obama on Monday called “a promising step forward.” Still, this remains something which, if it will actually signal any improvement, is a distant solution in a situation demanding immediate responses. The main available and viable presence which can and has already made advances in not only stopping the advances by ISIS but has actually tuned the tides and retaken lands formerly consumed by ISIS as they swarmed out of Syria and across Iraq, has been the Kurds from their semiautonomous lands in northern Iraq. It has been those Kurdish Peshmerga Militias who relieved much of the siege of the Yazidis and retook the critical infrastructure of the Mosul Dam both with limited but sufficient assists from United States airstrikes. This would be the perfect time to fully assist the Kurdish forces while simultaneously recognizing their independence and rewarding them with the statehood they had been promised at the resolution of World War I but were later denied this promise when oil was discovered in their promised areas and the British already had an advantageous contract with the leadership they had approved for Iraq. Kurdistan could become the first best weapon which could possibly circumvent the necessity for Western troops to place boots on the ground limiting the Western support to mostly a bombing campaign with some need for close air support in those cases where such would prove critically necessary, something not all that different than what President Obama has already committed to perform and perhaps a doubling of efforts.

 

The real challenge the ISIS threat might pose would be an attempted invasion beyond Iraq. The probability of ISIS turning their forces towards Turkey is almost completely out of the question as Turkey is either a current ally or a future ally of ISIS and stands for much the same application of extreme Islamist Sharia. Their turning to the east and into Iran would also be unlikely as ISIS lacks the manpower and military abilities to take on Iran as they are equipped with elite forces, airpower, heavy battle tanks and huge numbers of troops. Turning west into Jordan poses a similar problem even if on a lesser scale as far as numbers of troops capable of being fielded. Jordan does possess an air force but might turn to their western neighbor, unofficially of course, and request that Israel aid the Jordanian efforts through timely air support as necessitated. That pretty much leaves southward as ISIS’s most likely and viable choice. This would narrow their choices to Saudi Arabia or Kuwait. This choice is also dictated by geography and the self-imposed imperative whereby ISIS desires to avoid any direct confrontation with Iran. This forces ISIS into taking a western approach around Baghdad and also leaving room between themselves and Jordan which brings them to the northern border of central Saudi Arabia. This would place the ISIS penetration points somewhere west of the main Saudi Arabian oil fields and east of the main Saudi Arabian main military airfield which houses their squadrons providing the initial line of attack or defense from Israel. This airfield is home to a large contingency of United States provided F-15s and F-16s, some of which are very probably the latest and most modern variety available for export.

 

Such an attack would be in line with the ISIS announced agenda of facing and defeating the Islamic leadership which they view as impure. They have previously listed the Royal Family of Saudi Arabia as the pin-up leaders representing impure and non-Islamist governance which is in need of being destroyed and replaced with the pure Islamic governance which only ISIS is capable of providing. Additionally, should ISIS gain a sufficient foothold in the Saudi Peninsula, they could conceivably gain control over major parts of the Saudi Arabian oilfields, and an area heavily populated with Saudi Arabia’s minority Shiites. This would add additional impetus for ISIS fighters as they would not only be working to place their extremist purified Islamism over what they view as an unholy governance, they would also be able to force these Shiite, more accurately non Sunni, apostates in the eyes of ISIS to convert before the cleansing sword of the ISIS elite leadership. This could serve ISIS as a further recruitment piece of propaganda similar in scope but potentially far more significant in the numbers of new recruits under their control. This is what ISIS defines themselves by, areas and numbers under their control, a measure which they will only accept as sufficient by their control and rule over the entire world. As absurd as such a claim may sound, to the fighters and leadership of ISIS this is exactly what their entire purpose by which success is defined. Many also believe that they cannot be defeated and that their quest to rule over all of mankind is a blessed undertaking in Jihad and their success is guaranteed for as long as their actions receive the approval and support of Allah. Perhaps this would be a good place to define the difference between the Judeo-Christian G0d and Allah; the two are not simply separate manners for naming the same entity. The most readily and easiest way of showing this is actually cut and dry. Where G0d of the Jews and Christians is defined as the G0d of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, Allah is the god of Abraham, Ishmael, and Mohammad. They are as different as composed tranquility and chaotic ferocity. The reported actions, proclivities and self-definitions all prove the violence and explosive animosities which lie at the root of ISIS and from where its adherents derive their power and strength.

 

The hope is that the burning vehemence with which their new recruits are empowered with will consume them so completely that soon only the smoldering husk of ISIS will remain; a fragile structure that the slightest breeze is capable of destroying. The fear is that the only two results which will result from the efforts of ISIS, either their dream of an Islamist Sharia governed world will remain and will resemble a charred husk of uniformity enforced by the swords what molded it or the destruction of ISIS and the breaking of their swords before they carve up any more of the globe. The former will be the inevitable should the Western world refuse to engage and defeat ISIS militarily while at this juncture the later would be readily achieved with the timely application of overwhelming force of a full deployment of the entirety of the ready response forces which are available to NATO in case of any emergency, and if this does not so qualify then those forces are as useless as a chaperone on ones’ wedding night.

 

We are facing a challenge to civilization similar to the buildup to World War II when Germany could have been defeated as a response to their aggressive claims on northern Czechoslovakia or their poisonous interference in the Austrian elections and subsequent near bloodless invasion. Should ISIS remain uncontested and thus gain a foothold in the Saudi Arabian oilfields, then they will have gained a source of power, influence and financial riches beyond anything any previous Islamists have been capable of attaining. Sure the Taliban and al-Qaeda had control of Afghanistan and parts of the tribal regions of Pakistan and the financial largess of Osama bin Laden’s fortune and Hezballah influences the every move by the Lebanese government and the benefit of Iran providing them with weapons and their other necessities, ISIS would be gaining size and an endless cash flowing in that they could take their time and build a modern, well equipped and sizeable military force which would provide them with sufficient force that they could likely intimidate major Sunni Arab nations and potentially beyond to bend before their threat and surrender to ISIS approved governance. Add their increased ability would make Iran vulnerable to an ISIS attack which is currently out of the question today and such an accomplishment by ISIS would provide them with the arms to threaten Europe, North America and the remainder of the globe with their gained possession of Iranian nuclear and missile capabilities and power. The best thing would be for ISIS to be confronted now and not be left to Saudi Arabia, the GCC member nations and Israel to ally solely for the end of ISIS. Threats to the balance of power and the injection of a radical and extremist group be they anarchists, religious or Islamist like ISIS can produce alliances between some of the most divergent and even antagonist powers. Right now the plans and thoughts should be centered on how to and with what forces ISIS can be utterly and completely defeated in such a manner that no other groups will dare push that challenge point again. Let us hope that the leadership of the world awakens and deals with this challenge which thus far they have ignored pretending it is not there. Unfortunately, pretending that ISIS does not exist will do little to actually realize ISIS not existing but will more likely set up the scenario where many lives will be senseless sacrificed and far too much property and infrastructure will be destroyed making the worldwide repairs and recuperations unnecessarily long and arduous. Will the world awaken or are we doomed to once again repeat history by not answering the threat of the screaming barbarians at our gates.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.