The White House, the Pentagon and the US State Department continue to take all possible measures to destroy the leaders and militants of the radical Islamist group calling itself the "Islamic State" (IS, formerly the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant - ISIS), and to prevent them from creating in Syria and Iraq's new caliphate. Today America and some of its coalition allies are trying to crush militant cells by inflicting aviation strikes at their places of deployment. However, some American media have already stated that in the near future, President and Supreme Commander of the US Armed Forces Barack Obama will still have to make a new decision to normalize the situation in this region by military means. And he really had to make that decision. In early November, America learned that another XNUMX of its troops would be sent to Iraq.
THE WHITE HOUSE GIVES AN IMPACT ON THE ISLAMIC STATE
Some Western and domestic analysts claim that the Arab spring of 2011 was the main cause of extreme destabilization of the situation in the Middle East. It led not only to the change of the governments of Tunisia, Egypt, Libya and Yemen, but also gave impetus to the growth of protest sentiments in Iraq and Syria, creating a wave of violence and almost complete paralysis of power.
After America and its allies overthrew the regime of Saddam Hussein in Iraq, the Sunnis in power lost all their powers, were prevented from participating in political processes and holding public office. In addition, they were subjected to severe discrimination in the economic sphere.
But the new power structures, consisting of representatives of the Shiite majority, were strongly divided and could not ensure effective governance of the country. Some of them focused only on Tehran or only on Washington, while the rest tried to take a compromise position and serve both of these countries at the same time.
The Shiite leadership of Iraq was united in only one thing: in holding actions aimed at discriminating against the Sunni minority. This internal policy of the new authorities of the country led to a sharp aggravation of the contradictions between the representatives of these faiths. A wave of large-scale terrorist attacks, as well as protest actions, swept through Iraq. The population of the Sunni provinces showed complete disobedience of the central government.
The monarchic regimes of the Persian Gulf and, above all, Saudi Arabia and Qatar, which were not satisfied with the cooperation of Iraq’s new authorities with Iran, sponsored the revitalization of radical Sunni groups through various channels. They provided them with financial, material and military assistance. It was in this way that the monarchies tried to loosen the power structures of Baghdad or even replace them with their Sunni-minded supporters.
The intervention of foreign policy forces in the internal affairs of Syria was conducted in an even more open form. The United States, its allies, the monarchies of the Persian Gulf, Turkey, Jordan and some other Arab countries openly supported the protest actions of local radical Sunni groups against Bashar al-Assad.
All of these countries, led by America, in every way contributed to the creation of the opposition Free Army of Syria (CAC) and did not pay practically any attention to the strengthening of a number of radical Islamic groups. They tried by all means, unsuccessfully, to overthrow the Assad regime by the hands of oppositionists and radical militants.
In such an environment, the IS fighters began to rapidly gain strength, and part of the CAC units, on mercantile and, to some extent, ideological considerations, went over to their side. Their leaders managed to control almost one third of the territory of Iraq, and they proclaimed the creation of an Islamic caliphate. This turn of events dramatically changed the situation in this region and dealt a completely unexpected blow to the White House. The leadership of the IG managed to create a powerful and fairly well-armed military structure and to unite with the idea of creating a caliphate most of the anti-government forces in Iraq and Syria. In addition, Islamist leaders have openly declared their intentions to continue jihad throughout the world, including Russia.
As priorities, the leaders of the IS militants announced their intention to include Kurdish regions of Syria and Iraq in the Caliphate, Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey, Kuwait and a number of other countries of the Persian Gulf. All these extremely aggressive intentions, military actions of jihadists and cruel demonstrative executions of Western citizens forced Washington to quickly form a coalition of Western countries and Gulf monarchies, which began to systematically launch air strikes against militant positions.
However, the losses of the Islamists were not fatal at all, and the air raids did not have any noticeable effect on the overall course of the hostilities. Militants quickly found shelter in various localities, where they began to actively act, using local residents as a cover. They began to disguise themselves well and successfully carry out all the necessary measures inherent in the partisan war.
The question of a ground operation by coalition forces is still under consideration in Washington. It will be resolved only after the White House gets some results after sending another batch of Pentagon instructors and advisers to Iraq. And the Iraqi army, as experts emphasize, is today in a state of almost complete demoralization and is not able to resist the IS formations, since it does not have sufficient combat skills. Its commanders and privates are not sufficiently prepared for military operations and, moreover, do not have the necessary professional skills to combat terrorists.
It should be noted that at present the ideas of radical Islam are gaining increasing appeal all over the world and the number of their adherents is growing rapidly. This is largely determined by the decline in the level of morality in Western countries and the false essence of their democratic and social values. The paradigm of strict norms of everyday life, promoted by radical Islamists, is becoming an increasingly acceptable model of behavior for millions of Muslims and even non-Muslims in very different regions of the earth. But that is not all. Strengthening the caliphate makes it very real threat of the emergence of jihad fighters who have gained combat experience in Iraq and Syria in various countries of the world, primarily in America and in Europe, as well as combining the armed formations of the IG group with existing Al-Qaida cells and the Taliban that will lead to a significant increase in global terrorism. And if this group is in a certain contradiction with Al-Qaeda, the Taliban have already expressed their readiness to act with it in one team.
OBAMA INCREASES NUMBER OF TROOPS IN IRAQ
According to the White House and the Pentagon, in early November, US President Barack Obama, despite numerous statements about the inadmissibility of increasing the number of US troops in Iraq, ordered Defense Minister Chuck Heigl to take all necessary measures to send 1500 troops there in the next few months. Of these, 900 will serve as military instructors, and 600 will serve as advisers. Thus, Washington is trying to correct its foreign policy mistakes that led to a powerful surge in opposition to America and Europe in the great Middle East by radical Islamists.
As stated by the US Department of Defense spokesman Rear-Admiral John Kerby, Pentagon instructors will train the Iraqi military, and advisers will increase the level of professional training of Kurdish armed groups. It is noted that the American specialists will not directly participate in the hostilities of the Iraqi army against the IG contingents, which are scheduled for next spring to return the territories seized by the Islamists, and above all the city of Mosul.
The Pentagon intends to establish several combat training centers in Baghdad and in the capital of Iraqi Kurdistan, Erbil. Similar training bases are expected to be deployed in other cities of Iraq, where 12 military personnel of the Iraqi Army brigades and three Kurdish Peshmerga militias will be trained. One of the training bases will be located in the Sunni province of Anbar, to the west of Baghdad, where there are fortified IS. The translation of American instructors and advisers, as the admiral stressed, will take from two to three months, and another six months may be spent on training brigades of regular Iraqi troops and peshmerga troops. In addition, American specialists will participate in the training of representatives of the Sunni tribes of this province, who have already participated in fights with the militants of the IG. This is a very significant fact, since the Shiite authorities of Iraq are in a state of sharp contradictions with the leaders of the Sunni tribes.
Currently there are about 1,4 thousand American troops in Iraq. 600 military advisers are stationed in Baghdad and Erbil, and 800 soldiers and officers are guarded by the US embassy and the capital’s airport. In accordance with the new decision of President Obama, the US military presence in Iraq will almost double, and the coverage of the country's military facilities of the Pentagon will be significantly expanded. This will give the US military department new opportunities to stabilize the situation in the region. Washington is trying to solve their problems by local forces. True, some American and international experts strongly doubt that in this way the White House will be able to achieve some tangible results in the war on terror and it will still be forced to involve its regular army in this task.
The decision of the Chief Armed Forces of the US Armed Forces to deploy additional troops in Iraq, as stated by Kerby, was caused by a request from the Iraqi authorities to assist in the fight against terror by radical Islamists and in an assessment by American military experts of the true level of professionalism of Iraqi military personnel. True, the US president has already solemnly assured the American public, which is extremely negatively disposed towards sending US soldiers and officers to Iraq, that he will not take a single step towards the start of a new war in the Middle East. However, his high-ranking military advisers have already announced that they will ask Obama to send additional troops to Iraq if the need arises. The head of the Central Command of the Armed Forces of the United States, General Lloyd Austin, recently said that if necessary, he would not hesitate to make such a request to the leadership of the Pentagon and the President of America.
The White House requested 5,6 billion from Congress to finance all these anti-IS measures and equip the Iraqi forces. Of this amount, the White House should be spent on direct training of Iraqi and Kurdish soldiers and officers. However, despite the fact that Washington has already spent more than one billion dollars to prepare the Iraqi Armed Forces, in June of this year they were defeated by militants in Mosul, the second largest city after the Iraqi capital. In the entrance of the spring campaign of the Iraqi Armed Forces next year it is planned to release it from the militants.
The famous American newspaper Wall Street Journal argues that parliamentarians are likely to authorize the allocation of the requested funds to the Pentagon. However, they may require from the president a review of the recently developed strategy of fighting the IS and prove that his efforts will be sufficient to completely defeat the latter-day militants. Speaker of the House of Representatives John Beyner said that the final decision on authorizing the shipment of advisers and instructors to Iraq would most likely have to be made by re-elected members of Congress.
According to the world media, Washington’s allies in the coalition in the Middle East also intend to send military advisers and instructors to 700 in Iraq. For example, Denmark has promised to send 120 instructors to Iraq. Similar statements were made by leaders of some other NATO countries.
Pentagon leaders argue that, after undergoing full training under the American program, the Iraqi Armed Forces will be able to more effectively protect their fellow citizens, state borders and national interests from the encroachment of the armed forces of the IG and ultimately completely destroy them.
REBUILDING BEGIN WITH YOURSELF
But not all military experts and analysts of the USA agree with this opinion. They also believe that the militants of the IG do not evoke any feelings, except disgust. However, experts doubt that the US has the moral right to solve the problems of the Middle East by military force. Part of the problem is that the White House administration’s strategy to combat radical Islamists does not so much get rid of the militants as it strengthens them and makes it extremely difficult to fight them even when all their actions are aimed at undermining the security of the United States and their allies and contrary to the interests of the West in the Middle East.
IS militants pose a serious threat to the power structures of Iraq and Syria. However, as experts say, they have a good example. The United States itself forcibly overthrew the legitimate governments of Iraq and Libya, and did so despite all the norms of international law. And for the last three years, Washington, like the leaders of the proclaimed caliphate, has been feverishly searching for ways to overthrow the Syrian government. In addition, Washington in every way covers Israel, from which the international community demands an end to the conflict with Palestine.
According to some experts, the statement that the United States is actually a greater threat to peace and stability in the Middle East than radical Islamists will not be an exaggeration. After all, it was the policy of America in Iraq, Libya and Syria that paved the way for the IS militants, which became a major political and power player in the Greater Middle East.
The fact is that many of the militant crimes that Washington has so strongly condemned and that serve as a justification for its new approaches to holding actions in Iraq and Syria were committed by the Pentagon troops, as well as in American society.
Formally, the motivation of US interference in IS affairs was the capture by its militants of more than 3 thousands of women from Iraqi Yezidi villages as hostages. They were placed in a concentration camp in the town of Tall Afar, east of the mountainous region of Sinjar, and subsequently subjected to cruel sexual abuse. These horrors gave Washington the moral right to begin actions to destroy radical Islamists. Something similar happened in 2001, when America stood up for the rights of Afghan women, whom the Taliban treated extremely harshly and practically deprived them of all civil rights, and started a war with them.
In the course of this war and the Iraq war, which began in 2003, the US military used sexual violence as fighting weapon. He was subjected to both captured Iraqi citizens and civilians. But even more terrible than violence against Afghan and Iranian women are the crimes that American soldiers committed against their comrades in arms.
According to statistics from relevant public organizations, every third woman who served in the army, during service, was subjected to sexual violence by colleagues. More than 80% of cases of such violence were not reported by them to their superiors, since the reports of victims were very rarely legalized and the rapists most often went unpunished. But the victims of their immoral actions for their complaints were very often subjected to social and disciplinary action by their commanders. They were prohibited from filing claims with the appropriate federal authorities in order to receive compensation for the damage caused, even in cases where the act of rape was proven. And they had to quit.
Such statistics are not much better among the US civilian population. Each of the five women who studied in American colleges was sexually abused, and very often the perpetrators of such crimes were not punished even when their victims reported these cases. This trend is quite broad in America. According to the White House, about one fifth of American women were sexually abused at some point in their lives. As in the armed forces, most of the crimes of their victims were not reported to the police, and most of the rapists were never prosecuted and did not bear the deserved punishment.
If crimes against thousands of women in Iraq and Syria justify the scale of mobilizing American fighters, which costs the federal budget nearly 10 million dollars daily, how much more America should be militarized so that tens of thousands of cases of sexual violence that occur every year go unpunished and undetected in the USA? This is the rhetorical question asked by American experts.
In addition to sexual violence among IS militants, unprecedented cruelty is widespread, which they fix by video equipment and then show on the Internet. These acts, including executions with cutting off the head, crucifixions on crosses, and even cases of cannibalism plunged both Americans and Europeans into shock.
It is quite obvious that American soldiers tortured and continue to torture captive Arabs and often take pictures of this obscene occupation in order to later recall their army service and show off their exploits to friends and acquaintances. Soldiers who have committed such abuses have never been brought before a US court. But those who tried to expose them, on the contrary, were subjected to persecution. In particular, Private Bradley Manning, who handed a secret video of the execution of Iraqi civilians from an American helicopter gunship and some other secret information to one of the journalists, ended up in jail for 35 for years.
There is a lot of evidence collected by the press about the servicemen, who told about the cruelty of their colleagues, who staged a massacre, destroying enemies and civilians, desecrated their corpses and even hunted for the sport for the locals. All this was recorded on film, and the “heroes” collected photographs. Some of them even collected parts of the bodies of their victims as trophies. And this is only a small part of the facts that the war correspondents were able to collect and publish in the media. The main and significant part of the crimes of servicemen who fought for the interests of America outside the United States, including violent actions in Iraq and Afghanistan, remained hidden from the American and world community and did not receive any press coverage.
Due to the fact that all these actions of the military were not taken into consideration by the American military and civil Themis, the authorities of Iraq and Afghanistan demanded that the White House grant them the right to try such war criminals in their courts. However, the administration of Barack Obama denied this request. As a result, the US was unable to conclude a security agreement with Afghanistan. And Iraq refused to grant the American military legal immunity, and America had to refuse to conclude an agreement defining the special status of its troops in that country. All this led to the fact that a certain vacuum was created in Iraq in ensuring national security. And this is exactly the situation that allowed the Caliphate jihadists to seize a significant part of Iraq and begin the battle for Syria. Experts believe that the crimes of the Islamists were largely due to America’s refusal to impose proper legal order in its own troops.
Experts insist that the Obama administration should be aware of the inadmissibility of permissiveness for the Pentagon and that the destruction of civilians by bombs and rockets is just as immoral as their extermination by militants.
Many residents of the United States and other Western countries were extremely frightened by the religious intolerance of radical Islamist IS, and their brutal persecution of many religious minorities in the Middle East, especially Christians. However, Washington also does not stand apart from such acts. White House policies in Iraq have led to a vivid manifestation of religious cruelty there.
The US military sent to the Middle East and Afghanistan were carefully processed by all anti-Muslim propaganda available to the Pentagon, the final stage of which was to advise soldiers and officers to "act like Hiroshima" during the "total war with Islam". In such a war, they no longer had anything to do with the observance of international standards for the treatment of civilians. It is for this reason that today a large number of American citizens who are imbued with ideas of white supremacy, neo-Nazism and other anti-humanism are serving in the US Armed Forces. They sincerely believe that they were participants in the holy wars and became their heroes upon returning to America. The negative institutionalization of Islam and the dehumanization of Muslims in the minds of American servicemen, in all likelihood, were the causes of their numerous war crimes.
Very strong anti-Muslim sentiment among the civilian population of America. However, according to experts, over the past 30 years, only 6% of terrorist acts in the United States have been carried out by Muslims. There are many other examples of the unjust attitude of the American authorities and ordinary US citizens to representatives of the Islamic world. Therefore, tolerance, experts insist, should be the basis of the behavior of US military personnel, since they are the main instrument for preserving or changing the world order.
Some American and international experts insist that the US federal leadership does not fully appreciate the true significance of the brutal medieval ideology. But the leaders of the IG, experts say, are not crazy fanatics at all. This is evidenced by the success of this organization in Iraq and Syria. She and al-Qaeda pursue a single and very clear goal: to create an Islamic caliphate in which the harshest form of Islamic law will operate.
To achieve this goal, the leadership of the IG has developed a very reasonable strategy for action. The group comprehensively took advantage of Iraqi Sunni discontent with the coming to power of the Shiites. They do not act "insanely" and "purely Islamist", but use modern methods actively practiced by other Islamic groups.
Experts note that although it seems that the leadership of the IG adheres to an absolutely inhuman ideology and openly demonstrates its extreme cruelty, in general it is guided by a rather rational strategy. The demonstration of their extreme cruelty is also not accidental: it is aimed at instilling fear into opponents and strengthening the influence of the IG.
If the purpose of this radical grouping was to destroy all the “infidels”, then it would hardly have begun to cooperate with the former military of Saddam Hussein. It should also be noted that if this group consisted only of crazy fanatics, it is unlikely that its leadership would be able to start selling oil. If the goal of this group was only the desire to force people to strictly follow Sharia law, then it would never arrange a children's festival in the territory of Syria controlled by it and would not open medical clinics there. All this means, experts say, that the wild barbarism of the IG should be taken into account with certain reservations.