Cracks Appear In The Coalition, Cite Lack Of U.S. Leadership, Lack Of Trust In U.S.; Jordanian Pilot Burned Alive After Sick Twitter Campaign?; Syrian Activists Claim To Have Pinpointed Where Murder Occured; Jordan Set To Escalate The Fight
Cracks appeared in the U.S. “Coalition” in the fight against ISIS as the Government of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) withdrew from the coalition — it was widely reported today; but, their break apparently occurred in December after the Jordanian pilot went down in Islamic State controlled territory in Syria. The UAE expressed concern with the potential safety of their own pilots — after the capture of the Jordanian piot; and, they sought U.S. assurances about any potential search and rescue options — should one of their own go down. The UAE has a tiny military and lacks the kind of sophisticated capabilities that a true search and rescue architecture requires in a denied/hostile area. Apparently, the White House and the Pentagon were unable to offer the UAE enough assurances or convince them that we would have their back. In light of the POTUS’s failure to follow through on his Syrian Red Line threat, the lack of trust is likely palpable. King Abdllah of Saudi Arabia was said to despise the U.S. President; and, felt he and the U.S. had abandoned a special relationship which had built respect and trust for five decades.
The loss of the UAE sends the wrong message; but, it is understandable — when viewed from their optiic of the geopolitical landscape. They do not see a United States that they feel they can depend on. The ‘coalition’ is more myth than reality; and, the Arab world along with many others see a lack of will and leadership from the United States and that is a very real problem. Whether you agree or not, it is how many in the Arab world and elsewhere — see the U.S. They view, whether fairly or not (I think fairly) that the U.S., under POTUS Obama lacks the will and fortitude to lead this fight. I do not know how you turn that around, when this White House and National Security team cannot clearly identify who the enemy is. These guys aren’t 10ft tall; and it doesn’t require decades to defeat. There are maybe 40K of those who are true believers; and, there is nothing like defeat that can make cowards of them all. The idea that we need decades to defeat them is fatuous. What is needed is the will, determination and action on the battlefield. Many of the arguments we’re hearing today about not getting involved, America’s too exhausted from 10 years of war, it’s not our war or concern, and so on — are eerily similar to those in the mid-to-late 1930’s, in America. Germany wasn’t our concern it was said. Not our war. And so on. But, much like then, the adversary got a vote. What we wanted, wasn’t what the adversary wanted. It took Pearl Harbor to “awake a slumbering giant.” What is it going to take this time? it was Plato that once said, “The Only Men Whom Have Seen The Last War, Are Those Whom Are Already Dead.” You don’t get war on your terms. And, you don’t get the war you think, or prepare for. You get the one the adversary plays — especially if you are on the defensive and reactive — rather than taking the fight to the enemy and turning the tables. Where are the Churchills’ and Roosevelt’s of today — or, are we left with Neville Chamberlin and Charles Lindburgh? This ‘war’ doesn’t require decades to prosecute. But, it does require, demand, clarity of vision, and the will, determination and wherewithal to prosecute — and, bring the doubtful along with you. For that, a leader who can be trusted is paramount. Otherwise, any coalition formed, will be weak and fracture at the sound of the first guns.
Meanwhile, the anger and disgust with the Islamic State’s brutal murder of the Jordanian pilot has ignited a “fire”of its own in Jordan; and King Abdullah is preparing to address his nation within hours — about where and how the Kingdom will prosecute the war against the Islamic State. When asked by U.S.lawmakers what he needed — he reportedly responded “bullets and bombs.”
In other related news, the power of Open Source is on full display, as Syrian activists have claimed to have pinpointed the exact location of where the murder took place. The DailyMailOnline is reporting that the “well-respected, anti-Islamic State, Syrian activist group, “Raqqa Is Being Slaughtered Silently,” (RIBSS), claim to have pinpointed the exact location where the murder took place, — by cross-referencing landmarks in yesterday’s video. Using a series of annotated graphics, the group argues that the barbaric murder took place in a compound in the far south of the city, a few hundred meters from the Euphrates River.” In the background of the video, the Syrian activists claim to have identified a watch tower — which it says forms a part of a compound near a tree-lined road on the very southern edge of the city. RIBSS then points out the same line of trees behind al-Kasabeh in a second image before the pilot apparently walks into a countryard where he is to meet his gruesome death.” The video also apparently shows a wall in the back of the compound,”‘ according to the activists, which the group claims to help pinpoint the exact location of the compound. FYI, this is only some 330 miles from Jordan’s capital — Amman.
“if proven correct, they could help coalition forces more accurately target bombing runs; and, surveillance operations — in its attempt to root out the jihadist executioners.
And, then there’s this. “thousands of Islamic State supporters reportedly took to Twitter, in the days after the Jordanian pilot was captured — to suggest sick methods of how the pilot should be executed. In essence, the Islamic State crowd-sourced how he should be executed. “The method of the murder raises the chilling prospect that the Islamic State may have been influenced by the Twitter campaign, which used the Arabic hashtag #SuggestAWayToKillTheJordanianPilotPig — to elicit ideas from the terror groups supporters. A second hashtag, labled “WeWantToSlaughterMoaz,” that suggested other brutal methods to execute the pilot.
The above about crowd-sourcing the Islamic State’s method of execution is all according to TheDailyMailOnline, and I do not know if Twitter was aware of this alleged crowd-sourcing of how to execute the Jordanian pilot; but, it is a question that unfortunately needs to be answered. Whether or not Twitter will comment or not, I do not know; but, if it is accurate — you have to believe someone knows; and, the information will eventually be leaked — it almost always is. And, if they did know, did the company tell anyone? The White House? The Government of Jordan? Or, in the aftermath of the Snowden leaks, was the company deliberately tuning a blind eye to this kind of thing — in the interest of protecting privacy? Or, did this occur and the company wasn’t aware; or, did not know? Lots of questions. V/R, RCP