Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Yes. Next Question

This is going to be the easiest question I'll answer all day (even easier than "Would you like another Bass Ale, sir? They always call me "sir." Why do they do that? Oh yeah, I've gotten to the "sir" stage of life): Can US defeat Islamic State without help from Assad?

If I may be so bold, yes we can.

Do recall that we defeated the previous incarnation of these jihadi nutballs when they were called al Qaeda in Iraq and when Assad was actively hosting their Baathist allies in Syria and facilitating the funneling of suicide bombers into Iraq.

So yeah, we can defeat ISIL in Iraq and bomb ISIL in Syria without Assad having one goddamn thing to say about it even as we offer aid to non-jihadi Syrian rebels, too.

I actually have some hope for sanity from that article which started off with such a poor title question:

After a flurry of speculation recently that President Obama might overcome his distaste for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to go after Islamic State militants in their base inside Syria, the White House is speaking out: There will be no cooperation with the Assad regime.

I've long since abandoned hope of American smart diplomacy. Now I just hope that not doing stupid stuff is within our grasp. Refusing to rescue Assad would be a nice start.

Next question, please.

UPDATE: This article warns us against falling into Assad's trap of saving his odious regime to work with him to attack the Islamic State in Syria. Indeed, we must put Assad under greater pressure to keep him from exploiting even our strikes on ISIL in Syria without Assad's cooperation:

How to avoid the ambush? Demonstrate real hostility toward Assad, whose removal for the sake of neutralizing ISIS is even more justified than the ouster of Iraq's Nouri Al Maliki.

If we fall for Assad's trap, Assad really will have given us a lesson in smart diplomacy.