Last month, I noted the parlous situation of Iraqi Kurds and the unwillingness of President Obama to assist them in their effort to combat ISIS. Iraq’s Kurds must defend a 650 mile border, thanks to the collapse of the Iraq army in the north. And they receive virtually no arms from Baghdad, thanks to its animosity towards the Kurds. Yet Obama refuses to help.
Now, the Washington Post reports that ISIS has made its first significant inroads against the defenses of the overstretched Kurds. They have punched through to the northern town of Sinjar. Another town, Wana, has also fallen, leaving ISIS within striking distance of Mosul’s hydroelectric dam, the largest in the country.
In Sinjar, ISIS promptly blew up a Shiite shrine and ordered residents to convert or die.
The Obama administration, through State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki, stated that the United States is “gravely concerned” by the displacement of civilians and the loss of life. What’s next, a #SavetheShrines campaign?
Team Obama should be “gravely concerned” about more than displacement of civilians and loss of life. It should be concerned that the most extreme offshot of al Qaeda continues to ascend.
Above all, Team Obama’s grave concern should translate into action. Specifically, the U.S. should supply Iraq’s Kurds with arms and ammunition.
The need for such supplies could not be more obvious. Kurdish forces reportedly retreated from Sinjar because they ran out of ammunition. The Iraqi Kurds are known for their fighting prowess, but no force can fight without ammunition.
Why hasn’t Obama supplied the Kurds? Apparently, it has something to do with the niceties of Iraq’s constitutional framework. Obama, it seems, has more regard for that framework than he does for ours.
If Obama is prepared to ignore the U.S. Constitution to grant amnesty to millions of illegal immigrants who face virtually zero chance of deportation, he should be willing to overlook Iraqi formalities in order to help the Kurds defend themselves against our most implacable and barbaric enemy — a group that even Eric Holder finds “more frightening than anything.”
But Obama’s mission is the transformation of America, not so much its defense.