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Old 08-28-2014, 03:18 AM  
Taco John Taco John is offline
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Rand Paul OpEd: How U.S. Interventionists Abetted the Rise of ISIS

How U.S. Interventionists Abetted the Rise of ISIS
Our Middle Eastern policy is unhinged, flailing about to see who to act against next, with little regard to consequences.

By RAND PAUL
Aug. 27, 2014 6:35 p.m. ET
As the murderous, terrorist Islamic State continues to threaten Iraq, the region and potentially the United States, it is vitally important that we examine how this problem arose. Any actions we take today must be informed by what we've already done in the past, and how effective our actions have been.

Shooting first and asking questions later has never been a good foreign policy. The past year has been a perfect example.

In September President Obama and many in Washington were eager for a U.S. intervention in Syria to assist the rebel groups fighting President Bashar Assad's government. Arguing against military strikes, I wrote that "Bashar Assad is clearly not an American ally. But does his ouster encourage stability in the Middle East, or would his ouster actually encourage instability?"

The administration's goal has been to degrade Assad's power, forcing him to negotiate with the rebels. But degrading Assad's military capacity also degrades his ability to fend off the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham. Assad's government recently bombed the self-proclaimed capital of ISIS in Raqqa, Syria.


U.S. President Barack Obama Getty Images
To interventionists like former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, we would caution that arming the Islamic rebels in Syria created a haven for the Islamic State. We are lucky Mrs. Clinton didn't get her way and the Obama administration did not bring about regime change in Syria. That new regime might well be ISIS.

This is not to say the U.S. should ally with Assad. But we should recognize how regime change in Syria could have helped and emboldened the Islamic State, and recognize that those now calling for war against ISIS are still calling for arms to factions allied with ISIS in the Syrian civil war. We should realize that the interventionists are calling for Islamic rebels to win in Syria and for the same Islamic rebels to lose in Iraq. While no one in the West supports Assad, replacing him with ISIS would be a disaster.

Our Middle Eastern policy is unhinged, flailing about to see who to act against next, with little thought to the consequences. This is not a foreign policy.

Those who say we should have done more to arm the Syrian rebel groups have it backward. Mrs. Clinton was also eager to shoot first in Syria before asking some important questions. Her successor John Kerry was no better, calling the failure to strike Syria a "Munich moment."

Some now speculate Mr. Kerry and the administration might have to walk back or at least mute their critiques of Assad in the interest of defeating the Islamic State.

A reasonable degree of foresight should be a prerequisite for holding high office. So should basic hindsight. This administration has neither.

But the same is true of hawkish members of my own party. Some said it would be "catastrophic" if we failed to strike Syria. What they were advocating for then—striking down Assad's regime—would have made our current situation even worse, as it would have eliminated the only regional counterweight to the ISIS threat.

Our so-called foreign policy experts are failing us miserably. The Obama administration's feckless veering is making it worse. It seems the only thing both sides of this flawed debate agree on is that "something" must be done. It is the only thing they ever agree on.

But the problem is, we did do something. We aided those who've contributed to the rise of the Islamic State. The CIA delivered arms and other equipment to Syrian rebels, strengthening the side of the ISIS jihadists. Some even traveled to Syria from America to give moral and material support to these rebels even though there had been multiple reports some were allied with al Qaeda.

Patrick Cockburn, Middle East correspondent for the London newspaper, the Independent, recently reported something disturbing about these rebel groups in Syria. In his new book, "The Jihadis Return: ISIS and the New Sunni Uprising," Mr. Cockburn writes that he traveled to southeast Turkey earlier in the year where "a source told me that 'without exception' they all expressed enthusiasm for the 9/11 attacks and hoped the same thing would happen in Europe as well as the U.S." It's safe to say these rebels are probably not friends of the United States.

"If American interests are at stake," I said in September, "then it is incumbent upon those advocating for military action to convince Congress and the American people of that threat. Too often, the debate begins and ends with an assertion that our national interest is at stake without any evidence of that assertion. The burden of proof lies with those who wish to engage in war."

Those wanting a U.S. war in Syria could not clearly show a U.S. national interest then, and they have been proven foolish now. A more realistic foreign policy would recognize that there are evil people and tyrannical regimes in this world, but also that America cannot police or solve every problem across the globe. Only after recognizing the practical limits of our foreign policy can we pursue policies that are in the best interest of the U.S.

The Islamic State represents a threat that should be taken seriously. But we should also recall how recent foreign-policy decisions have helped these extremists so that we don't make the same mistake of potentially aiding our enemies again.

http://online.wsj.com/articles/rand-...sis-1409178958

Last edited by Taco John; 08-28-2014 at 03:25 AM..
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Old 08-28-2014, 03:21 AM   #2
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Old 08-28-2014, 07:27 AM   #3
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So, leaving ISIS alone would be the way to stop them. Makes sense.
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Old 08-28-2014, 07:40 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Cochise View Post
So, leaving ISIS alone would be the way to stop them. Makes sense.
Doing nothing is always a better option than doing something incredibly stupid.

Actually, that's entirely beside the point made in the article. The point is that we need to think carefully what we do, so we don't end up aiding a group like Isis, or Saddam, or Al Queda, or any of the other terrorist groups America has supported in the past with weapons and aid.

That seems to keep having predictable blowback, and it astounds me so many americans have so little grasp of cause and effect.
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Old 08-28-2014, 07:42 AM   #5
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Wow, that's one weird article. One could just as easily argue that since we didn't intervene, that led to the rise of IS.
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Old 08-28-2014, 07:53 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Donger View Post
Wow, that's one weird article. One could just as easily argue that since we didn't intervene, that led to the rise of IS.
Only if one revises history on where libs and neo-cons wanted to intervene.

Had we done what many wanted in Syria, things would undoubtedly be worse.
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Old 08-28-2014, 08:11 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by WhiteWhale View Post
Only if one revises history on where libs and neo-cons wanted to intervene.

Had we done what many wanted in Syria, things would undoubtedly be worse.
Not necessarily. If we had armed FSA, I would argue that IS may not have risen at all.

And, how could it be worse than it is?
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Old 08-28-2014, 08:17 AM   #8
BucEyedPea BucEyedPea is offline
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How U.S. Interventionists: Donger, Cochise and Patteeu, Abetted the Rise of ISIS


I fixed the title.
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Old 08-28-2014, 08:27 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BucEyedPea View Post
How U.S. Interventionists: Donger, Cochise and Patteeu, Abetted the Rise of ISIS


I fixed the title.
We didn't intervene, you pin head...
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Old 08-28-2014, 09:22 AM   #10
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We didn't intervene, you pin head...
We did in Iraq...got rid of the old boss and got a new boss...worse than the old boss...paraphrasing "the Who."

I really dislike Obama. But those who excuse GW Jr. for his role in creating this mess are as blind as the Obamabots.

And yeah, I am prolly going to go to the dark side and support Mr. Paul during the next election. I disagree with his economic policy, but maybe, just maybe, he will get us out of the damned ME.

Which is more than I can say for HRC or any of the Rep nominees (other than Paul) likely to be nominated.
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Old 08-28-2014, 09:23 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Cochise View Post
So, leaving ISIS alone would be the way to stop them. Makes sense.
I've never really been a fan of either Ron Paul or Rand, but I don't think that is what the op-ed piece was saying.
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Old 08-28-2014, 09:24 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by oldandslow View Post
We did in Iraq...got rid of the old boss and got a new boss...worse than the old boss...paraphrasing "the Who."

I really dislike Obama. But those who excuse GW Jr. for his role in creating this mess are as blind as the Obamabots.

And yeah, I am prolly going to go to the dark side and support Mr. Paul during the next election. I disagree with his economic policy, but maybe, just maybe, he will get us out of the damned ME.

Which is more than I can say for HRC or any of the Rep nominees (other than Paul) likely to be nominated.
Yes, I know we did in Iraq. And I didn't agree with the decision to invade in 2003.
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Old 08-28-2014, 09:28 AM   #13
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I've never really been a fan of either Ron Paul or Rand, but I don't think that is what the op-ed piece was saying.
The article really doesn't say anything. We DIDN'T intervene against Assad and ISIS rose anyway.

I don't see how that bolsters Paul's point about not intervening...
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Old 08-28-2014, 09:33 AM   #14
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Not necessarily. If we had armed FSA, I would argue that IS may not have risen at all.

And, how could it be worse than it is?
Ummm... didn't a bunch of the FSA guys take their american aid and join ISIS?

Don't be naive. Things can always be worse. Haven't you learned that based on how every time the US intervenes we make shit worse?
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Old 08-28-2014, 09:36 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by WhiteWhale View Post
Ummm... didn't a bunch of the FSA guys take their american aid and join ISIS?

Don't be naive. Things can always be worse. Haven't you learned that based on how every time the US intervenes we make shit worse?
IMO, it's the globalists, that are in both parties, that have led to constant warfare. I read they now want some sort of regional economic pact for the Mid-East along the lines of the EU. Then they can really dictate, like they do to Europeans, how they're to be governed.
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