War Requires a Strategy

Bill Neinast


The U.S. foreign policy is a disaster.  The U.S. in this case stands for utterly stupid.

On second thought, the U.S. could stand for the United States because our foreign policy is, if anything,  utterly stupid.  So either interpretation is appropriate.

This sad state of affairs was appropriately illustrated in a Summer Tribune Content Agency cartoon published in the Friday edition of newspapers.  President Obama is shown throwing down a pamphlet and shouting “Take this powerful rebuke Isis!”  The other half of the cartoon is a platoon of ISIS combatants howling with laughter and noting, “It’s a climate change pamphlet.”

Obama supporters will quickly note that the cartoon is false on its face because it has the President uttering the phrase ISIS.  They all know that the Obama Administration marches in lock step with ISIL.  

The facts, however, are that the President did say that his going to Paris, the location of one of the most recent terrorist massacres, for this week’s conference on Climate Change was a rebuke to ISIL.

This reminds some of Don Quixote’s battle with the windmills that he thought were ferocious giants.

Jokes and funnies aside, the U.S. foreign policy is a disaster. The nation that very recently was considered the leader of the world is currently not even leading from behind.

France, Turkey, and Jordan are currently on the front lines against Muslim terrorist organizations like ISIS.  Germany also joined the fight by providing transport and tanker planes and satellite surveillance to France and Turkey.

Meanwhile, Obama is doing his part by fighting climate change and praising Russia for its claimed fight against ISIS.  After all, one of the first acts of Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State was to hit the “reset button” with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.  So Vladimir Putin must be truthful when he says he is fighting ISIS when he is really in Syria to protect his protege Bashar al-Assad.

The strategy suggested here last week was to declare war, ignore the sovereignty of nations in which ISIS et al. are active, invoke Article V of the NATO Treaty, make Ukraine a NATO member, and revise the laws of war.

Someone asked if Congress would ever consider declaring war with such a strategy.  Unfortunately, the answer is, “No! Not now.”  

This strategy requires a bona fide Commander-in-Chief.  There is none at the helm today.

A real Commander-in-Chief operating under a declaration of war could tell Iraq, “An armored division with supporting units will be reinserted between Baghdad and the Syrian border either under a Status of Forces Agreement or as an occupying force, whichever form Iraq wants.”  Then begin actually destroying ISIS type forces and activities wherever they are found in Iraq, Syria, and elsewhere..

No combat mission would be undertaken with only U.S. personnel.  Every operation would have to include units of equal size from every partner.

Simultaneously, Russia and Iran should be told that their military units and missions will not be allowed in Syria or Iraq.  Any of their units and personnel found in the area will be treated as the enemy.

Enemy combatants captured on battlefields should be confined in GITMO as prisoners of war with high ranking leaders tried as war criminals under the precedents of Nuremberg and other international war crimes trials after WWII.

So here’s the perspective.

Until the U.S. and its allies begin acting like it is in a war, fear, periodic terrorist attacks like 9/11 and Paris, and the expense of security checks at airports and military installations will continue for generations. 

The permanent stationing of large contingents of American forces in Central Asia and parts of Africa will have to become as normal as the 70+ years of our troops being stationed in Germany and Japan.

Those permanent installations in the heartland of our former enemies resulted in peaceful, prosperous, and democratic areas in Europe and the Far East for three quarters of a century.  

A similar strategy is the best bet for long lasting peace in the current hot spots.    


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