Less than a week ago President Obama screeched the ISIS mission in Iraq “will not involve American combat troops fighting on foreign soil.”
Today, the president’s top military dog, Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told a Senate armed services committee, US troops could actually be involved in combat — mission creep in record time.
They’re word-playing the mission.
(Illustration found here).
Already and right now, there’s about 1,600 US boots on the ground, protecting embassy personal and serving as advisors to Iraqi military — it’s the “advising” part that’s literary playful.
Gen. Dempsey just wants to shift the definition — via the Guardian:
“If we reach the point where I believe our advisers should accompany Iraqi troops on attacks against specific [Isis] targets, I will recommend that to the president,” Dempsey said, preferring the term “close combat advising.”
It was the most thorough public acknowledgement yet from Pentagon leaders that the roughly 1,600 US troops Obama has deployed to Iraq since June may in fact be used in a ground combat role, something Obama has directly ruled out, most recently in a televised speech last week.
Dempsey, who has for years warned about the “unintended consequences” of Americanizing the Syrian civil war that gave rise to Isis, said he envisioned “close combat advising” for operations on the order of taking Mosul, Iraq’s second largest city, away from Isis.
He also opened the door to using US “advisers” to call in air strikes from the ground, something Dempsey said they have thus far not done but which the US Central Command leader, General Lloyd Austin, initially thought would be necessary when pushing Isis away from the Mosul Dam last month.
Obama’s prohibition on ground forces in a combat role was less ironclad than the president has publicly stated, Dempsey suggested.
“At this point, his stated policy is we will not have US ground forces in direct combat,” Dempsey said, to include spotting for US air strikes.
“But he has told me as well to come back to him on a case-by-case basis.”
‘Less than ironclad‘ — means exactly, what?
Maybe a better word would be, bullshit.
And the whole shebang: “Liberating Iraq would be a cakewalk.”