AS CRITICISM CONTINUES TO MOUNT OVER FADED CELEBRITY IN CHIEF BARRY O'S LACK OF PLANS TO ADDRESS THE ISLAMIC STATE 8 MONTHS AFTER HE BEGAN BOMBING IRAQ, THE WHITE HOUSE IS ON THE DEFENSIVE.
SPOKESPERSON JOSH EARNEST FACED THE PRESS TODAY AND SWEATED LIKE A STUCK PIG.
AFTERWARDS, HE TOLD THESE REPORTERS, "THE PRESS NEEDS TO GIVE THE BIG O A BREAK. HE ONLY STARTED BOMBING IN AUGUST AND IT TOOK US UNTIL JANUARY TO CONVINCE HIM THAT ISIS WASN'T A SATURDAY MORNING SUPER HERO SHOW."
WIPING HIS BROW, EARNEST EXPLAINED, "EVERY TIME WE'D TELL HIM HE HAD TO DEAL WITH ISIS, HE'D LAUGH AND SAY, 'YEAH, YEAH, RIGHT AFTER I SEND CAPTAIN CAVEMAN TO TAKE OUT THE ANT HILL MOB.'
Yesterday, Holly Williams (CBS News -- link is text and video) reported on the Bard Brigade -- Shi'ite thugs fighting in Iraq -- fighting the Islamic State and fighting any Sunni civilians they can get near. Williams characterized them as possibly "effective" and then went on to note last week's massacre of Sunnis (over 70) carried out by Shi'ite militia members (according to survivors).
That renders them ineffective.
There is no chance that they "may be effective."
They could kill X number of IS members a day, they would still not be effective.
That's because their targeting of Sunnis is exactly why the Islamic State got a foothold in Iraq and continues to thrive there.
As long as the Iraqi government continues to use these thugs, the Islamic State continues.
This is basic but Jen Psaki prefers to to play the public fool at the US State Dept such as today in the press briefing when she thought she was 'cute' during this exchange with Al Quds' Said Arikat.
QUESTION: Now, I know this is probably a question better addressed to the Pentagon, but there’s a great deal of talk about postponing the much-anticipated spring offensive, but there’s a political dimension to it. It seems that a great deal of differences between Sunni and Shiite --
MS. PSAKI: Are you referring to – in Iraq?
QUESTION: Yes, yeah. In the fight against ISIL, in the fight or in the effort to reclaim or retake, liberate Mosul. So there seems to be a lot of bickering and infighting among Sunni and Shiites and so on. My question to you – that General Austin was there, of course, Mr. McGurk was there the week before, I think, or maybe a couple weeks before. What are you doing in terms of bringing all these different points of views together, having the Kurds, the Peshmerga, and the central forces working together?
MS. PSAKI: Well, let me first say on the first part I have no confirmation of that or validation of that, and my suspicion is your information is inaccurate.
On the second piece, there are a range of steps that we’re taking. Obviously, we work closely with the Government of Iraq. As you know, one of the efforts that the anti-ISIL coalition is very focused on is not only boosting their capacity but taking steps to go after ISIL in Iraq. We have – and you are right; most of this in terms of technicalities is best posed to the Pentagon, and they can get into specifics – let me finish – as they often do. And so I would certainly encourage you to pose this question to them.
But I would also add that, in addition to the efforts of the coalition countries, that Prime Minister Abadi has been taking steps to – greater – create greater unity to better incorporate different forces underneath the Iraqi Security Forces. That is something that has been ongoing. It’s not new now, but they’re continuing to take steps on.
QUESTION: I guess my point, or the thrust of my question, is the following: That while there was a great deal of enthusiasm, let’s say, a month ago among the Sunni tribes who was working with Prime Minister Abadi, there is less of that enthusiasm because they feel that much of what they have been promised has not been delivered. They are a bit skeptical about the national guard that is being formed and so on.
I wonder if you could – if you have any information, to begin with, that you can share with us on this.
MS. PSAKI: Well, Said, I have nothing to validate your view or your opinion, and I haven’t --
QUESTION: It is not opinion. I mean, that’s --
MS. PSAKI: -- seen those reports that you’ve mentioned. So I don’t think anyone should take that as fact. The national guard is part of the Iraqi Government’s long-term restructuring plan of the Iraqi Security Forces into a federalized security force. This is something that they’ve asked for United States – the United States for assistance to help further define and develop the program. We’re working with the government and providing advice based on our previous experiences. The national guard would not replace, but rather augment a restructured multi-sect and multiethnic federal security force as well as address a key demand that many leaders from across Iraq have called for over the last 10 years. It’s been in the process of being implemented for a couple of months now, but obviously, it’s not at full completion.
Poor Jen. She didn't come off cute, she came off like an ass -- and an uninformed one at that.
For example, this morning Alice Fordham (NPR's Morning Edition) reported today on this reality and notes, "[Sheikh Ahmed] Dabash's views are typical of a broad spectrum of Sunnis in Iraq Islamists, tribes, one-time supporters of Saddam Hussein. They feel victimized by Iraq's Shi'ite-led government and many fight against the Shi'ite-dominant army either joining ISIS or aligning with them -- even if they find the group extreme."
Fordham notes how the US feels the (still not formed) Iraqi national guard is the solution but Sunni leaders feel differently.
Jen Psaki missed that report -- how uninformed and ignorant is she?
Al Quds reports the long planned spring offensive to retake Mosul just got kicked back and the decision was made after US Gen Lloyd Austin shared his observations about the current state of Iraq following his visit to the country last week.
There is no plan, there is no forward movement.
And the window for new Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi to show change has been closing for some time.
We've noted that here, we've noted the lack of a political solution in Iraq and we've noted the White House's inability to aid Haider in pursing a political solution. Instead, US President Barack Obama has not just used the Pentagon to plan military strikes on Iraq and to build the so-called 'coalition,' he's diverted the State Dept from its mission of diplomacy to make it a mouth piece for a militant theocracy that worships exploding bombs.
And how's that working out?
David Alexander and Lisa Shumaker (Reuters) report:
"Quite frankly, we need to see in Iraq political outreach that addresses the fact that some 20 million Sunnis are disenfranchised with their government," Lieutenant General William Mayville told a hearing on global threats facing the United States.
Mayville, director of operations for the Pentagon's Joint Staff, told lawmakers he endorsed the current steady, deliberate pace of efforts to defeat Islamic State in Iraq and Syria because it gave the Iraqi government time to act politically, a step he said was necessary to resolve the crisis.
"I think it is very, very important that the pace of operations be such that ... the military lines of effort don't get out in front of the political lines of effort that must be achieved in order to get an enduring solution here," he told a panel in the House of Representatives.
Nothing's been accomplished but talk.
Empty words from Haider.
RECOMMENDED: "Iraq snapshot"