President Obama deployed around 100 Marines to the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad to safeguard it from possible attacks from ISIS, (Islamic State of Irag and Syria), the Islamic radical insurgency, according to ABC News on Monday. The President's action follows territorial expansions by ISIS in Iraq after capturing the city of Tal Afar.
Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel deployed the USS George W Bush to the Persian Gulf from the northern Arabian Sea. President Obama is said to be weighing possible military options in Iraq. According to Pentagon spokesman Rear Adm. John Kirby, the deployment of the USS George H.W. Bush will give the President the flexibility he needs in the event that military action is required to protect not only the U.S. Embassy, but American citizens and economic interests in Iraqi region.
President Obama is said to be considering talks with Iran in hopes of attaining political reconciliation in Iraq, even though our nation's relationship with Iran has been precarious at best in recent years.
As an added precaution, large numbers of employees have been evacuated from the embassy, and 50 security personnel have been sent there, as well as the contingent of around 100 Marines.
Despite the evacuation, the embassy still is providing emergency services to U.S. citizens; although it is restricting all consular services, according to Jen Psaki, the State Department spokesperson. Psaki stated:
"Due to the relocation of personnel from Baghdad, the embassy will only be restricted in its ability to offer all consular services; but emergency services are always available to U.S. citizens in need at any embassy or consulate anywhere in the world."
Iraqi youth who have just reached their teens are volunteering to fight for their country. The youth are coming into a battle-weary military that has seen multiple atrocities, including photos of mass executions of iraqi troops provided by the jihadist group.
Up to 15 people were killed near the main thoroughfare leading to Baghad, as Iraqi forces responded with rocket launching helicopters. Explosions ensued, adding to the mass chaos near the entrance to Baghdad.
Senator Lindsey Graham (R,Sc), on the Sunday talk show "State of the Union, urged President Obama to take immediate action:
“If Baghdad falls, if the central government falls, a disaster awaits us of monumental proportions."
It has been eleven years and one month since President George W. Bush stood on the aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln and declared that our mission in Iraq had been accomplished on May 1, 2003. Since our initial involvement in the Iraq war since March of 2003, over 4400 Americans have been killed and over 100,000 wounded.
It is no wonder that President Obama is so carefully contemplating our options in the Persian Gulf as tensions mount in Iraq and children just entering their adolescence are entering the battlefield.