Commentary on the economic , geopolitical and simply fascinating things going on. Served occasionally with a side of snark.
Friday, October 10, 2014
Iraq / Syria Regional War Updates ( October 10 , 2014 ) - As ISIS Gains Mount, Growing Doubts on US Strategy ( Air strikes becoming ineffective , ground war looms ) ..... Tweets of the day - battle of Kobane in focus !
That’s fueled growing doubts about the US strategy against ISIS, to the extent that there even is a strategy. The losses are palpable, and that’s got the hawks pushing for even further escalation.
Former State Department adviser David Kilcullen warned that if anything, the US airstrikes were “going to improve the enemy’s quality by killing the stupid and unlucky ones and bringing more talented and savvy guys to the fore.”
Secretary of State John Kerry echoed the sentiment of other officials, that the strategy is a very “long-term” one, and that the recent ISIS gains aren’t going to change the strategy.
The reality is that the US knew it didn’t have a winning strategy when it entered the war, and sought to substitute an end-game strategy with an open-ended timetable and a huge coalition of hangers-on that don’t intend to actually do anything.
The situation in the Syrian Kurdish border town of Kobani (Ayn al-Arab in Arabic) continues to favor ISIS today, and the latest reports are that the Islamist faction has now seized more than a third of the town outright, and is continuing to take more all the time.
The latest ISIS push toward Kobani spans weeks of fighting, and has seen ISIS take over 350 Kurdish villages in the surrounding area, before finally forcing the Kurdish YPG militia back to the town itself, along the Turkish border.
Though the US maintains that the situation in Kobani is “not a priority” for their air war in Syria, indications are that US airstrikes have increased against ISIS around Kobani today.
The US has been striking ISIS forces around Kobani for quite some time, but Kurdish forces say it has been to little effect, and that ISIS continues to move forward irrespective of the bombardment.
The fall of Kobani has been seen as an inevitability for days now, and ISIS seems to believe the same thing, with reports this evening that some of the invasion force has fanned out around Kobani, trying to cut off the escape route of Kurdish fighters back into Turkey, believing those fighters would wind up crossing back into Syrian Kurdistan near Hasakeh and fight ISIS there.