IRAQ

iraqIraq is a mess.  When Nouri al-Maliki (a Shiite) became Prime Minister eight years ago he was forced to have a government that represented Shiites, Sunnis, and Kurds.  All the factions had a place in the government and all had power in different areas.  When Obama announced we were leaving Iraq, Maliki started purging the government of all the other groups and concentrated the power in the hands of the Shiites.  The Kurd and Sunni areas were stripped of government aid.

When ISIS started marching into Iraq, the Iraq military (about 75,000 strong) laid down their weapons and fled as the advancing force of 10 to 15,000 came into the country.  The military was made up of mostly Kurds and Sunnis.  They would not fight and risk their lives for Maliki and the Shiites especially when the Sunni and Kurdish military leaders had been replaced with Shiites.

In recent elections for Parliament, the Shiites won the largest number of seats.  However, like the past elections, it was a minority of the total so a compromise government is again required.  The new President, Fouad Massoum picked Haider al-Adabi to replace Maliki as Prime Minister.  Adabi, a Shiite, is expected to pick a more inclusive government that represents all the various factions.  Maliki initially refused to leave power but has finally fallen in line with his party and will support the change in power.

ISIS has taken part of Iraq and Syria to create a new nation called the Islamic State.  They have given orders to behead all non Sunnis.  They have killed thousands of men, women and children in their attempt to cleans their country of all non believers.

Many of the non Sunnis have fled to the mountains in northern Iraq.  They have been surrounded by ISIS troops, and have survived by airlift of food and water supplied by Europe and the United States.

ISIS, which started out as a small group of radicals, has grown in numbers as they succeeded in taking land to start their country.  Many people who were members of al Qaeda left that group and joined ISIS because of their success.  ISIS has captured U.S. weapons left behind by the Iraq army as they fled.  ISIS has also stolen all the funds in the banks in the occupied land in Iraq and Syria.  They have captured oil wells.  Now ISIS is well equipped and well-funded.

The Obama Administration has told ISIS that we will not use American troops to defeat them.  We will supply air strikes to protect Americans in the embassy or other U.S. Government facilities, but will not strike at the heart of their organization.  Why we tell our enemies what we will or will not do is very surprising to me.  I bet it is very surprising to ISIS, too.

Although ISIS has stated they will not stop until they fly their flag over the White House in Washington, D.C., the American government has chosen to fight them on American land and streets rather than in the Middle East.

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