Good day….This will be the last briefing for the week unless a situation requires immediate update.
The Kurds have entered Kobane from Turkey to help defend the town from the extremists……no reports on action yet…..
Item 1–The battle against ISIS has become a battle of propaganda………and so far the US is struggling to keep up with the militants.
The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant has a cruelly effective propaganda machine, said retired Marine Gen. John Allen, who is serving as President Barack Obama’s special envoy for the international fight. The U.S. and its allies can’t make major progress until they pursue an information campaign just as aggressively as the military one, Allen told a conference this week in Kuwait.
“I strongly encourage all of us, the participants, to set forth tangible work plans that will directly and rapidly counter Da’esh’s propaganda in the cyberspace and in the media,” Allen said. “Our responses must be agile. They must be flexible. And they must be tailored to quickly evolving events on the battlefield, and in the social and political spheres where Da’esh challenges all of us as coalition members.”
The Coalition has to work within rules….ISIS does not……and that explains the successes they, ISIS, is having with their propaganda.
Item 2–It seems that I am not the only one that questions this plan to fight ISIS…….
Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel issued a memo to National Security Adviser Susan Rice which was deeply critical of the administration’s military strategy in the ongoing ISIS war in Syria, saying the plan was “in danger of unraveling.”
The memo, described by officials familiar with it, centered on the lack of an endgame strategy as well as the inability of the administration to clarify its intentions toward the Assad government.
Hagel warned the fighting in Syria could go on for years without any clear end, and that Syrian President Bashar Assad was deriving benefits from the US campaign.
I like Hagel…to be honest we were both in the Infantry Division in the Mekong Delta South Vietnam…….he has a grasp of this for he was a NCO not some officer run was on the ground doing what all grunts do….fight.
Item 3–It looks like the Joint Chiefs learned little from Vietnam……
Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman General Martin Dempsey is urging the Obama Administration to agree to send the “military advisers” on the ground in Iraq to the front line in the Anbar Province, where they’d almost certainly end up in direct combat with ISIS.
Gen. Dempsey urged the US to make the deployment into “advise and assist missions” into Anbar Province, where ISIS controls the vast majority of territory, conditional on the Iraqi government arming Sunni tribes.
In case anyone is unclear….this is how the Vietnam nightmare began……are we ready for another?
Item 4–US airstrikes are not as successful as once reported……..
The invention of “Khorasan” as a faction in Syria was meant to disguise that the US attacks in Syria were targeting not just ISIS, but also Jabhat al-Nusra, the local al-Qaeda affiliate whose members were attacked under the guise of targeting Khorasan.
The attacks were unpopular among the “moderate” rebels the US is always talking up, who noted Nusra is a close ally of theirs. Or at least, they were a close ally.
These airstrikes seem to be driving wedges instead of stopping ISIS….this could get sticky….
Item 5–The leaders speak……
Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and Gen. Martin Dempsey gave mixed reviews Thursday to the progress made by U.S. and Iraq forces in the fight against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS).
The top U.S. military officials said the U.S. and Iraqis have suffered setbacks in efforts to protect Sunni tribes in Iraq and form a “moderate” opposition force in Syria.
“We are constantly assessing and reassessing and adapting” on a strategy to defeat ISIS that Gen. Ray Odierno, the Army chief of staff, has said will take three to four years, Hagel said at a Pentagon briefing with Dempsey, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
Hagel said that the “complicated” and evolving strategy depended on holding together a fractious coalition of Middle Eastern countries committed to the main goal of rooting out ISIS.
There is the problem……always playing catch-up….that is NOT a winning strategy…..this war will last for 50 years if all we do is adjust to what ISIS is doing…..if we cannot get ahead of them then all is a waste.
That concludes today’s briefing…..next briefing will be Monday.
Thanx for your time and attention.
Turn The Page!