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Fizzled: Assistance to Iraq rescinded or rejected

It appears more likely that Iraq is resisting “assistance” from the United States because, afterall, the U.S. has formerly attacked Iraq. Many people in Iraq don’t view Americans any more than meddlers in their internal affairs. Of course, the Sunnis who are influenced by al Qaeda and the new replacement, ISIL detest Americans. Today, we see evidence that the Maliki government and Shia leadership don’t want American assistance either. So, the message is clear to Obama, too little and too late.

Nouri al-Mailiki, his final days
Photo by Muhannad Fala'ah/Getty Images

American foreign policy in the Middle East appears to be naive, incomplete, and lacking substance. As reported earlier, Middle East policy is a scramble of soundbites.

“Secret U.S. Plan to Aid Iraq Fizzled Amid Mutual Distrust
The Obama's Administration Devoted Only a Handful of U.S. Specialists to the Task.


Updated June 21, 2014 7:19 a.m. ET

WASHINGTON—Amid growing signs of instability in Iraq, President Barack Obama authorized a secret plan late last year to aid Iraqi troops in their fight against Sunni extremists by sharing intelligence on the militants' desert encampments, but devoted only a handful of U.S. specialists to the task.

So few aircraft were dedicated to the program, which also faced restrictions by the Iraqis, that U.S. surveillance flights usually took place just once a month, said current and former U.S. officials briefed on the program.

Instead of providing Iraqis with real-time drone feeds and intercepted communications from the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham, the militant group that has overrun parts of Iraq, U.S. intelligence specialists typically gave their Iraqi counterparts limited photographic images, reflecting U.S. concerns that more sensitive data would end up in Iranian hands, these officials said.”

The notion of collaborating with Iran in addressing the situation is equally naive. Obama didn’t fall for it, but his green NSA staff might have.

Where is Iraq headed? It is going to become a three headed civil war. The Sunni and Shiite conflict will continue to spread as it has from Syria to Iraq and soon to Afghanistan. It will spread and engulf the Middle East into a hostile war among members of the same community.

While terrorist groups may spearhead the movement, they will eventually be reined in by religious leaders who won’t appreciate the competition and conflict with humanitarian values.

The best way for the U.S. State Department under Obama leadership to spend its time now is to develop a free world coalition to address the Middle East and violent jihad trend comprehensively. It is time for Americans to listen for a change instead of acting reactively and in haste.

Congress cannot be left out of the equation in this critical foreign policy development. Needed are ideas and collaboration among all parties in the U.S. government and political system.

In addition, it is imperative for Homeland Security to anticipate attacks from foreign terrorist groups who are likely to exploit a beachhead of immigrants here in the U.S.

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