June 13, 2014

Iraq: 800 Militants Defeat 30,000 U.S. Trained Iraqi Soldiers

This isn't that shocking if you understand that we are not fighting a conventional enemy. We are fighting a radical ideology that permeates every part of the Middle East. It knows no boundaries. Its sole goal is to conquer all.

From Military Times:

The extremist group seizing vast swaths of Iraq this week is most likely fielding a small force of less than 1,000 fighters equipped with little more than small-arms weaponry and soft-shelled pickup trucks.

But the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, or ISIS, apparently has routed an estimated 30,000 Iraqi Army soldiers who were trained by the U.S. military and given billions in sophisticated American military equipment.

The stunning outcome reflects widespread desertions among the Iraqi units in the north as well as the Sunni-Shiite sectarian tensions that underlie the military battles, experts say.

"It's a relativity small force that managed to take the city [of Mosul], and its shocking that they were able to do that," said Charlie Cooper, who studies Islamic extremism for the Quilliam Foundation in London.

"To me, that suggests there is collusion or at least deliberate capitulation on the part of Sunni tribes in western and northern Iraq," Cooper said. "It's likely that this happened because Sunni tribes in the area let it happen."

No amount of training or equipment will change a belief system. We cannot fight an ideology with weapons. Until we understand that, we will never defeat Islamic terrorists.

All this mess reminds me of a story I posted a while back. Here's an excerpt, but it's worth a full read.

"You were a philosophy major or minor at that podunk little college you went to long ago," said the Time Traveler. "Do you remember what Category Error is?"

It rang a bell. But I was too irritated at hearing my alma mater being called a "podunk little college" to be able to concentrate fully.

"I'll tell you what it is," said the Time Traveler. "In philosophy and formal logic, and it has its equivalents in science and business management, Category Error is the term for having stated or defined a problem so poorly that it becomes impossible to solve that problem, through dialectic or any other means."

I waited. Finally I said firmly, "You can't go to war with a religion. Or, I mean... sure, you could... the Crusades and all that... but it would be wrong."

The Time Traveler sipped his Scotch and looked at me. He said, "Let me give you an analogy..."

God, I hated and distrusted analogies. I said nothing.

"Let's imagine," said the Time Traveler, "that on December eighth, Nineteen forty-one, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt spoke before a joint session of Congress and asked them to declare war on aviation."

"That's absurd," I said.

"Is it?" asked the Time Traveler. "The American battleships, cruisers, harbor installations, Army barracks, and airfields at Pearl Harbor and elsewhere in Hawaii were all struck by Japanese aircraft. Imagine if the next day Roosevelt had declared war on aviation... threatening to wipe it out wherever we found it. Committing all the resources of the United States of America to defeating aviation, so help us God."

"That's just stupid,' I said. If I'd ever been afraid of this Time Traveler, I wasn't now. He was obviously a mental defective."The planes, the Japanese planes," I said, "were just a method of attack... a means... it wasn't aviation that attacked us at Pearl Harbor, but the Empire of Japan. We declared war on Japan and a few days later its ally, Germany, lived up to its treaty with the Japanese and declared war on us. If we'd declared war on aviation, on goddamned airplanes rather than the empire and ideology that launched them, we'd never have..."

I stopped. What had he called it? Category Error. Making the problem unsolvable through your inability - or fear - of defining it correctly.

Read it all.

By DMartyr at 02:22 PM | Comments |