Monday, March 14, 2016

Editorial: More troops to Iraq?

Last week, a US general testified to Congress and floated the idea of more US troops on the ground in Iraq.

Senator Mike Rounds:  General Austin with regards to the challenges surrounding the retaking Mosul and Raqqa by December of this year coming up.  You've currently got about 4,000 ground forces, if I'm correct.  Is that enough?  Do you have enough to assist in your plans to retake Mosul and Raqqa?

Gen Lloyd Austin:  The, uh, the approach that we have used -- and continue to use, as you know, Senator, to use the indigenous forces in the operations on the ground and enable those forces with out aieral fires and other enablers.  As we look towards Raqqa and other and Mosul clearly there will be things that we want to do to, uh, increase the capability a bit to, uh -- to, uh increase the pace of operations and that will require some additional capability and we've gone through and done some analysis to see what types of -- what types of things we need to provide and that's, uh, we've made those recommendations.

Senator Mike Rounds:  Could you share those recommendations with this Committee?

Gen Lloyd Austin:  Uh, no, sir.  I would not care to do so because I have just provided those to my -- to my leadership.

Senator Mike Rounds:  But you have -- you have made those recommendations and you're waiting on a response to your recommendations at this time?

Gen Lloyd Austin:  Yes, sir, it's -- it'll work its way up the chain here.

Senator Mike Rounds:  If you were allowed to have, uh, more ground troops what would be the capabilities that you could accomplish?  Or what could you accomplish if you had more individuals on the ground there

Gen Lloyd Austin:  We could, uh, develop more, better human intelligence.  We could, uh, we could perhaps provide, uh, uh, more advise and assist teams at various levels.  We could, uh, we could increase, uh, our assistance in terms of providing help with some logistical issues and, uh, we could increase some elements of the special operations footprint.

And yet, as Ava and C.I. note, two Sunday chat and chews wasted time gas bagging and refusing to deal with issues like this.

Bill Van Auken (WSWS) noted:

The US must escalate its intervention in Iraq and Syria with more troops on the ground, both the outgoing commander of US military forces in the Middle East and his designated replacement told Congress in hearings on Tuesday and Wednesday.
Gen. Joseph Votel, the current head of the US Special Operations Command, who has been tapped by President Barack Obama to lead US Central Command (CENTCOM), which oversees both the ongoing intervention in Iraq and Syria and the continuing American occupation of Afghanistan, told the Senate Armed Services Committee Wednesday that an offensive to retake the Syrian city of Raqqa and the Iraqi city of Mosul from the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) “will take more resources” than the Pentagon currently has deployed in the region.

Who's talking about this publicly?

Where's the national dialogue?

AL MADA is reporting that the liberation of Mosul is being planned and will require US troops -- at least 180 of them.

And where's the national dialogue?

And when is President Barack Obama going to stand before the American people and discuss what is going on?

And when is the media going to devote significant time and attention to this?

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