Thursday, September 04, 2014

What's the Distraction Now?

President Obama once said that fighting in Iraq was a distraction to fighting the al Qaeda and Taliban jihadis in Afghanistan.

So as president, he let Iraq coast on the momentum of the Bush years' victory and escalated (twice) in Afghanistan.

He could ignore Iraq as a front in the war on terror because his supporters denied we even fought al Qaeda in Iraq.

His base minimized the fact that we did actually fight al Qaeda jihadis in Iraq in the years we were distracted in Iraq, by arguing that our presence caused the jihadis to flock to Iraq.

Now the president is withdrawing from the "good" and "necessary" war in Afghanistan by the end of his second term without planning for leaving assets in place to fight and defeat the jihadis.

This is after we left Iraq in 2011, which you'd think would have allowed him to focus on the good and necessary war.

Of course, jihadis flocked to Iraq even without our military presence there. Inconvenient for the narrative, that is.

And now that jihadis have conquered large swathes of Iraq, we have so far failed to decisively intervene despite the passage of 8 months since the fall of Anbar and three months since the fall of the northwest (and a year since the Pentagon warned us that jihadis were getting too strong in Iraq).

I can only assume that the Iraq War is still distracting America from fighting jihadis. Because as I've noted before, our president seems blind to fighting jihadis in Iraq, unable to reconcile the "bad" distraction war in Iraq that he "responsibly ended" in 2011 with the good war on jihadis that until now our president thought must be taking place everywhere but Iraq.

Or maybe golf is the distraction now. There's certainly strong evidence for that.

Unless Vice President Biden vows to pursue jihadis to the gates of the membership-only, country club golf course, that's a real possibility, no?