ISIS Threatens Baghdad

Iraq’s government is pleading for the return of American troops as ISIS has advanced to within eight miles of Baghdad:

Iraqi officials have issued a desperate plea for America to bring US ground troops back to the embattled country, as heavily armed Islamic State militants came within striking distance of Baghdad.

Amid reports that Isil forces have advanced as far as Abu Ghraib, a town that is effectively a suburb of Baghdad, a senior governor claimed up to 10,000 fighters from the movement were now poised to assault the capital. …

Iraqi government officials claim that while international attention has been focused in recent weeks on the Syrian border town of Kobane – where Kurdish fighters are still battling to keep advancing Isil gunmen at bay – Anbar province has been on the verge of collapse. …

The surge of jihadi activity has also led to speculation that the group’s operation in Kobane was part of an elaborate decoy mission orchestrated by Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the Isil ’caliph’.
Observers point out that while the capture of Kobane would not greatly increase Isil’s military clout, the capture of Ramadi or other cities in Anbar would be catastrophic both for the Iraqi government and Western hopes of attempting to contain the group.

Reportedly, there are around 1,500 American troops advising the Iraqi army around Baghdad–not enough. President Obama’s premature withdrawal of forces from Iraq, out of spite rather than any strategic motive, may one day rank among the colossal blunders of modern times.

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