Iraq, Afghanistan and the Fall of the Middle East

Not since the Iranian Revolution of 1979 and its aftermath has the Middle East experienced the level of turmoil that has occurred since 2011. Whereas earlier periods of upheaval–the Iran-Iraq War, the Lebanon War and the 1991 Gulf War–were relatively contained by the big powers, that of the past two years has spread across the region. The “Arab Spring” toppled pro-Western governments in Tunisia and Egypt and has brought Islamists into power. Libya’s Qaddafi has been overthrown and killed, to be replaced by a weak central government in what has effectively become an al-Qaeda fiefdom. Syria is wracked by a bloody civil war in which a host of players (Saudi Arabia and Qatar, Iran, and al-Qaeda, among others) are fighting to gain or keep control of the country. Jordan faces increasing pressure from it’s large Palestinian population and the Muslim Brotherhood, while Yemen and Bahrain are experiencing increasing instability due to their Shia populations, backed by Iran. Add to this list the Iranian nuclear crisis, the strategic encirclement of Israel by Iran and its proxies and growing instability in Lebanon, where Hezbollah effectively holds power, and a perfect storm for major regional war is brewing.

Two countries that serve as a fulcrum for such a conflict are Iraq and Afghanistan. Both are now key to the great power struggle for the Middle East between the United States and Iran. Both hold important geopolitical positions in the region. Iraq is the gateway between Iran and the Arabian Peninsula, while Afghanistan has for centuries held a position as a buffer between the Indian Subcontinent and such powers as Russia and Iran.

In both countries, the United States is on defense, while Iran is on offense.

First and foremost, there is Iraq. By the time Barrack Obama took office in January 2009, U.S. forces, thanks considerably to the 2007 surge, had brought about a considerable improvement in security in the country. As a result, Iraq’s government was able to establish its control though much of the country. This could have been used by the incoming administration to help establish Iraq as a buffer to Iran. Instead, President Obama showed little interest in using this situation for American advantage. The negotiations over the Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) were a case in point.

Signed between Washington and Baghdad in 2008, SOFA stipulated that all U.S. forces were to withdraw by December 2011, which was completed. However, efforts to renegotiate SOFA in 2011, to allow 10-12,000 U.S. troops to remain after the deadline for withdrawal, were rejected by Iraq’s government. Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, Shia and pro-Iranian, was strongly opposed to any changes to SOFA. In a 2010 interview with the Wall Street Journal, Maliki stated unequivocally that “The withdrawal of forces agreement expires on December 31, 2011. The last American soldier will leave Iraq.” Given that President Obama had made opposition to the Iraq War a major plank of his political career and 2008 campaign, he made little effort to dissuade Maliki. This despite private admissions by key Iraqi leaders that their country’s military was still heavily dependent on U.S. assistance. Thus, just 5,000 private contractors, hired by the U.S. Embassy, are left to provide support to Iraq’s 806,000-strong military and security forces.

Furthermore, these forces are divided along sectarian lines (70-80 percent of the army’s enlisted personnel are Shia) and are increasingly politicized. Both the security forces and  the military have been structured by Maliki to ensure personal loyalty to him. Officials close to the Prime Minister have been placed in key positions in both the Ministry of Interior (which controls the security forces) and the Ministry of Defense. The same process has occurred within the high command of the military.  This has enabled Maliki to establish an authoritarian style of leadership, one which rests on strong Shia support and is, not surprisingly, pro-Iranian. Teheran has shipped large quantities of arms to support the Assad regime in Syria via Iraq, and Maliki has refused to shut down this vital conduit despite American requests.

What all this means is that Iraq has effectively become a de facto ally of Iran. During the Iraq War, Teheran supplied large quantities of weapons to Shia insurgents, especially Moqtada al-Sadr’s Mahdi Army, itself defeated thanks to the U.S. surge. However, Sadr has since turned to politics, and his party is now the largest in Iraq’s parliament. This, combined with Maliki’s style of leadership and foreign policy, has seen a considerable increase in Iran’s influence over the past couple of years.

Given that armed conflict resulting from Iran’s continuing effort to develop nuclear weapons is a distinct possibility, Iraq’s strategic importance becomes apparent. An Iranian thrust into Kuwait and Saudi Arabia is made much easier thanks to a pro-Iranian government in Baghdad. Iranian forces could easily transit through southern Iraq, the country’s Shia heartland. Indeed, the presence established by the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps’ al-Qods Corps–specifically meant to spread Iran’s Islamic revolution abroad–in southern Iraq would make this go very smoothly, especially since this force is based near the Iraqi border. Given the increasingly close cooperation between Teheran and Baghdad in intelligence and security, Iranian forces could launch an attack from Iraq into the Arabian Peninsula, using insurgent and terrorist attacks (made simpler by the large Shia populations in Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, concentrated in the oil-rich coastal regions) as a prelude to a conventional invasion. The warning time available to U.S. planners would be greatly reduced, as would the ability to react effectively. Since this would be probably taken in concert with Iranian moves elsewhere (i.e. the Strait of Hormuz and by proxy against Israel), the danger of Teheran successfully waging war is considerably increased.

Then there is Afghanistan. Here, the threat is of a somewhat different variety. To be sure, Iran has been involved in supporting the Taliban, burying the hatchet (caused by the divisions between the Sunni fundamentalist Taliban and Shia Iran) in order to fight a common enemy. However, the Taliban present the greater danger for the United States and it allies. The growing effectiveness of Taliban forces, including a car bombing that killed a U.S. diplomat, the first since Benghazi in September 2011, along with Taliban infiltration of the Afghan National Army (ANA) and increasingly lethal attacks on U.S. and NATO forces, has called into question whether or not U.S. forces can be fully withdrawn by December 2014, when their combat mission is to conclude. Indeed, the situation is similar in this regard to that in Iraq in 2007. The government of Hamid Karzai is ineffective, unable to exercise its authority beyond Kabul. The ANA remains a less-than-effective force to say the least, and despite the guarded optimism expressed by Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Martin Dempsey that the ANA will take the lead combat role against the Taliban as early as May or June, this is not a realistic prospect.

Indeed, depending on a SOFA between Washington and Kabul, there may be a need for as many as 10,000 U.S. troops to remain in Afghanistan after December 2014 in both an advisory and combat (counterinsurgency) role. The much-touted surge undertaken by the Obama Administration has not had the success hoped for, while political efforts to incorporate “moderate” Taliban elements into a peace process have also been a failure.

There are two dangers facing the United States in Afghanistan. The first is in relation to Iran. In a scenario like the one described above, a general war between Iran and the West, Afghanistan would see a large force of U.S. troops–at present 66,000, along with 47,000 NATO ISAF troops–exposed to Iranian attack from the west (most likely by guerrilla forces, including al-Qaeda) and large-scale offensives by the Taliban in the east, especially in Helmand, Kandahar and Paktia. Given that land-locked Afghanistan could only be supplied by air, U.S. and Allied airlift assets would be hard-pressed to keep these forces supplied, a task made harder by full support from Iran for the Taliban. In effect, the West would be subjected to a massive siege, drawing off forces from other fronts to ensure their survival and weakening the overall combat potential of U.S. and Allied forces.

The second is from the Taliban and where it is concentrated. It is a Pashtun organization, which means that it has a strong presence both in Afghanistan and neighboring Pakistan. Indeed, the Pakistani ISI helped establish the Taliban as an effective force during the 1990s. As the killing of Osama bin Laden in Abottabad showed, there are considerable elements within the ISI, as well as the Pakistani government and military, that share the Taliban’s (and al-Qaeda’s) Islamist ideology. Here lies the danger. If, after 2014, all U.S. forces are withdrawn and the Taliban manage to take large parts of the country (including Kabul), Pakistan, regardless of the composition of its government, will enjoy considerable influence in Afghanistan. Even a nominally friendly government in Islamabad will be problematic for U.S. interests, as has been shown many times in the past few years. If a hard-line Islamic government were to come to power, however, then things would be much more dangerous. Given the strong influence of Islamism in Pakistani politics and society, and the presence of tens of thousands of veteran Pakistani Taliban in the country’s North-West Frontier abutting Afghanistan, this is a realistic prospect. This would place Pakistan–with its large armed forces, its long coastline along the Indian Ocean in proximity to the oil-rich Persian Gulf, and, of course, its nuclear weapons, including ballistic missiles–under a fundamentalist Islamic government.

This could lead to similar regimes taking control in much of Central Asia (where Islamism is also a powerful force), as well as a threat to the flow of oil from the Persian Gulf. It could also lead to war with India, which, needless to say, would be catastrophic.

Given these unacceptable prospects, the United States is unlikely to withdraw from Afghanistan within two years, despite President Obama’s promises. Given the war-weariness of the American public–not to mention those of Allied nations–the only realistic option will be to engage in a full-scale counterinsurgency campaign, in order to eradicate the most effective Taliban groups and force the remainder to cease fighting and make peace with Kabul. This will mean increased casualties, which will lead to additional loss of public support, and thus a race between successful completion of this goal and a forced withdrawal, the latter with the above consequences. The morale of the U.S. military, which faces major reductions in funding over the next several years under Obama Administration plans, would no doubt be eroded if withdrawal without victory was the course taken.

As for Iraq, the consequences of the failure of an effective SOFA has helped lead not only to increased Iranian influence, but to a resurgence of al-Qaeda, which has used Iraq as a base to wage war in both Libya and Syria. It has succeeded in the former, establishing an effective Islamist state that has projected force into both Algeria and Mali. It could succeed in Syria, where at least part of the country could fall under al-Qaeda control. This would no doubt lead to continued violence and instability with rival forces in that country. Worse, it could lead to al-Qaeda influence in Lebanon and even Turkey. Most worrisome, if al-Qaeda militias take control of Syrian chemical weapons, it could trigger Israeli (and probably U.S.) involvement, leading to a wider war with much deadlier consequences.

Whatever the course of events, the above scenarios would cause enormous destabilization in the Middle East. Add such wild cards as the unfinished “Arab Spring,” use of WMD by states as Iran and Syria and an Iranian-sponsored guerrilla and terror offensive against Israel, and the consequences only become more disastrous. At worst, the position of the United States in the Middle East–an area of vital concern to the West–might collapse, with results that, for the world as a whole, would be a catastrophe.

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  • AdinaK

    Here is where the west is at, and Israel in particular. To be sure, most of the "credit" is due to the machinations of the Pyromaniac-in-Chief –

    Without a scintilla of a doubt, none of the above could have happened, sans the following –

    The final blow back will be earth shattering…and it is not far off!!
    Adina Kutnicki, Israel

    • And so it goes

      Excellent reporting, Adina. And let it not be said that when the U.S. finally experiences the consequences of all this, that the American people are victims. We are not. Fifty-one percent of Americans (at least) voted for this and a significant portion refused to vote for Obama's opponent — ('cause he was a Mormon?). It is simply amazing how much harm we have brought to the world (not just Obama, but Clinton, Bush (both) and countless others. And yet we continue to pat ourselves on the back and talk about how great we are.

      • Rothschild

        I think it all started to be unmasked after JFK was assassinated, and
        then with RFK being a firm supporter of Israel, and also being
        assassinated, simply because he supported Israel…fear…then
        came over the political world (not the general public though) too the
        point where they resorted to having to hire actors, to pretend to be
        leaders (Reagan, a professional actor)…I think everyone knows Nixon
        was a crook, Carter weak (a coward) etc., so they, after JFK, including
        Obama got elected by pretending….acting…like they were presidential… but
        they needed to keep control of things, so they strengthened the
        military-industrial-complex, when what they should of done was abolished
        it, as well as the CIA.

    • Drakken

      Since I work in the region, I can tell you that war is coming and the bloody savages are sharping their knives for a go at Israel, so be safe.

      • EarlyBird

        Oh do tell, General, where you "work" in the region? You've mentioned you do "security," but is it Black Water security or Wal-mart security?

        • defcon 4

          Have you made your hajj yet Usman? Better do it soon, before something happens to your black rock.

  • Abbas

    Dream On your Rear End has been hit so hard, that you cannot sit comfortably for a long time to come.

    • Mike

      Abbas we cannot sit comfortably since you muslim terrorists are out to destroy mankind except for your own. You have no idea what it is like to live peacefully. You even enjoy killing your own.

      • Smote

        Your last sentence says it all.

  • pierce

    It is quite apparent, at least to this reader, that the time we spent in Iraq and Afghanistan has been a total waste. Both countries are now more corrupt than we arrived. Democracy as we know it will never work. What we need to do is mind our own business. Forget about rehabbing Syria, and Egypt, they won't listen because they too are corrupt, as is the whole Arab World.
    So it is about time we stop trying. There is no question our way works for us, and even that I am not so sure of anymore, considering the chaotic policies being pursued in DC, by our illustrious President.


      I TOTALLY AGREE! Who cares if Saddam buried hundreds of thousands in mass graves and gassed his own people! Their living contributed to Global Warming but I'd be careful what water I drank since their decomposing corpses could be tainting the water table.

      Who cares if the Taliban had a real "War on Women" and executed them for daring to go to school! Women should be covered up and to just stay home to keep it clean and to cook meals. I just hope they are never able to drive. We should do the same things here and really make our roads safe.

      Funny how many people who got on Bush for Iraq and Afghanistan were the same ones who screamed "Bush, Stop the Genocide in the Sudan" when it could stand to reason that that's what he was doing in Iraq and Afghanistan.

      I'm glad no action was taken in Rwanda and Uganda under Amin. Who cares if millions died. Again, Mother Earth needs to filter out a few million every now and then.

      So, yes, leave the world alone. Syria? Who cares! More resources for me and Pierce.

      "At least under Saddam, we had electricity." No AC or TV? "Bring back Saddam! Bring back Saddam."

      • And so it goes

        Pierce is right. What does it say in "The Art of War": Know your enemy. We ignored that. We deluded ourselves into thinking that muslim societies just needed U.S. democracy to put them right, never thinking that maybe the morass they were in was of their own making and desire and that if we try to change that for them, we are preventing them from going through what is necessary for them to change.

      • Drakken

        I am in full agreement with you Steve, so congratulations, a few of the leftist that visit here will put you in the same catagory as me!

      • EarlyBird

        No, Steve. We did not go into Iraq or Afghanistan for humanitarian reasons, though some humanitarian good came of each. Iraq was a spectaculary epic disaster for the Iraqis and American people. It weakened the US, strengthened Iran and hurt Israel. We added $1 TRILLION DOLLARS at LEAST to the US' debt. We asked over 4,000 Americans to give their lives, and 50,000 to be maimed. It led to AT LEAST 100,000 dead Iraqis, countless orphans and widows/widowers. We saved from them from Saddam by plunging them into horrific chaos.

        The primary reason for the current state of instability is not Obama's Egypt speech, as so many on this board state, but the Iraq War.

        I was initially for the war, but after a few years of defending a bad idea, I simply had to accept what an awful act that was. It does not make you un-patriotic, or "pro-Saddam," etc., to accept the failure that it was.

        • defcon 4

          The majority of civilian deaths in Iraq Usman, were not the result of the actions of Coalition forces, but muslime on muslime violence, except when it was muslimes killing Iraqi Christians… Get stuffed.

    • jacob

      Seems that in the removal of Saddam Hussein, the medicine was worse than the sickness !!!!

      I wonder who sold GWB the fable that democracy could be implanted within these animals, w/o
      first eradicating their "Religion" and above all, their clergy…!!!!!
      And with policy dictated by "Political Correctness" and fighting under "Rules of Engagement",
      may I ask what else was there to expect..????

      • Mary Sue

        Probably that guy that converted to islam in Saudi Arabia…

    • henry B

      Pierce: unfortunately you and I appear to be a part of a small minority of people who have ny understanding of the eternally TRIBAL mindset of the middle eastern nations and we are not going to be able to change that. It has been that way for thousands of years. That is their culture and their ideology. Your comments are right on target!!!

      • EarlyBird

        Not to mention, Henry, it's their country. We don't get to invade and occupy, kill and traumatize countless individuals because we decide we don't like their government, and then blame the resulting chaos on them for being animals.

        Saddam was a very manageable threat. We broke his wretched country open to become an even worse threat, and diminish American power and influence in the region, at a horrific human cost.

        • defcon 4

          You know Hajji, it's interesting you cry about Iraq, but have nothing to say about the fact your fellow islamofascist travellers in Iraq ethnically cleansed the entire Jewish populous of Iraq BEFORE the formation of Israel and are presently using the same tactics on Iraqi Christians (if there are any left).

    • N. Junaid

      But who says we have been there to teach them Democracy. War has had been a prfitable industry for us for over a hundered year. Too bad things have changed recently and even the most Hawkish of our Right wing Politicians know that. But we also have had another reason to keep the Middle East totally disturbed, One for our best buddy, Israel and 2nd being the richest and most powerful of the Christian World, we did take on the responsibility to act as Crusaders of a kind. Now we are reaping what we sowed all over the Muslim World. Unfortunately, while we have been busy doing that, we turned to be Importers instead of exporters and the Windfall War Industry started to Flood wash our economy. We forgot to invest in our economy as we took it for granted. In the mean time, our competators have manged to replace us in the Global business world. And thats the Bitter Truth. Lets re focus on OUR issues and reinvent ourselves as successful self reliant nation which we were. We defied our constitution which forbids going to War untill its forced upon us, much less Pre-emptive strikes and stuff like that. God Bless America.


    I CALL IT "PUTIN'S REVENGE!" The U.S. aided in the defeat of the Soviet Union in Afghanistan which one domino that led to their downfall and the fall of the Wall and Iron Curtain. KGB PUTIN had to bitter but the most bitter of all the die-hard Communists of the world, WERE OURS! During the sixties, the COMMUNIST PARTY USA teamed up the KGB to use "PEACE AS A WEAPON OF WAR" but the sixties was nothing compared to the massive recruitment of university students in the 1980's.

    The WORLD PEACE COUNCIL, LED BY THE KGB, set up the U.S. Peace Council run by CPUSA which then had affiliates in every state and MAJOR UNIVERSITY. The CPUSA then teamed up the KGB and Cuban DGI to takeover Central America and eventually to Mexico. (Zapatistas which are still being visited by university groups in their "fact-finding missions." In order to be invited, you have to have your facts straight before you even go.) THOSE STUDENTS, INCLUDING BARACK HUSSEIN OBAMA, ARE THE LEADERS OF THE U.S. TODAY! Research every one of Obama's "Circle of Communists" and you will be able to trace their activist roots back to a CPUSA FRONT!

    "PUTIN'S REVENGE." Putin is now aiding any group or country that seeks our defeat in Iraq, Afghanistan, and the whole Middle East. Look at Putin aiding Iran's nuclear program and Syria's Assad. Any meaningful sanctions are vetoed by Putin. Putin is now dictating, or ordering, Obama to stand down on missile defense and any action against Assad, a man who fits in perfectly with the Arab Spring radical takeover plan that surrounds ISRAEL, the main goal for destruction by Putin AND OBAMA!

    STOP THE PC CRAPOLA! Obama is a Soviet KGB DUPE and all of his "Circle of Communists" are LIBERALS SCREAMING TO BECOME TOTALITARIANS TO COME OUT! Just look at the CPUSA website and you will see that Democrats have the exact same talking points and issues of interest. Their main goal: THE DOWNFALL OF THE UNITED STATES AS REVENGE FOR THE DOWNFALL OF THE SOVIET UNION, A COUNTRY THEY LOVED MORE THAN THEIR OWN!

    • Smote

      Well said!

      Obama is nothing more than a useful idiot.

  • Chanameel

    There has been alot of ufo activity lately…

    Maybe we are going to meet our makers…..


    • solstcewitch13

      I sure as hell HOPE so.

      SCOTTY BEAM ME UP I am trapped on a planet with a whole bunch of lunatics!!!!!

    • And so it goes

      Sorry, Chanameel, the martians aren't going to get us out of this one anymore than the Saudis and the Chinese are going to get us out of our debt crisis. There comes a time when Americans are going to have to experience the consequences of our actions.

    • defcon 4

      The KGB is actively covering up the UFO activity.

  • Charles Wenzel

    It's just amazing to see how it is all unfolding: the pieces on the table taking their positions, the political in-fighting in America–the last super power–a dupe as a President whose every amateurish move both home and abroad helps to 'set the table'. This whole drama should have been made into a best seller…Oh, it was, it's called the Bible. The #1 best seller of all time that is rarely (in the scheme of things read and even less understood. Right again, God's word has declared, "Before you ask, I answer."

    • henryb

      Charles Wenzel:You are correct. The plan was written out for us and it is coming to pass exactly as God laid it out. " these things are written that you may know…"

  • BLJ

    I say turn Iran into the worlds biggest parking lot.

    Oh wait, we have a Muslim Brotherhood operative as C-in-C. Can't go there. My bad.

    • EarlyBird

      "I say turn Iran into the worlds biggest parking lot."

      Of course you do, you psychotic.

  • BS77

    My heart goes to the families of those THOUSANDS who have perished in Iraq and Afghanistan….wars that have gone on and on and on ………when the US pulls out of Afghanistan there will be no victory parades ….no, the Taliban will return…it won't be nice. What a disaster.

  • MC1215

    Obama pulls the U.S. out of the war and Radical Islam continues to spread in the Middle East and Africa.
    The idea this enemy is like the WWII enemy and you go about fighting thinking this enemy can be defeated in much the same time frame does not understand who Radical Islam is, how they think, and their End Plan.
    Obama knows who they are, he lived among them in Indonesia for a time, that is what make this more obvious, his enabling of Radical Islam to spread especially with Obama's 2009 apology speech in Cairo.
    I have many relatives who have fought in Iraq and Afghanistan and still there. They know why we must win, too bad Liberals do not understand this.

    • EarlyBird

      I have a couple relatives who've fought in both Iraq and Afghanistan, and they all agree that the entire enterprise have been poorly considered, designed and gone into to begin with.

      In other words, MC, you have the wrong definition of "win," if you think it means parking a bunch of soldiers abroad to have them shot at, or for that matter to use most any conventional military means against a culture. But, we've got the biggest and best military in the world, and to the guy who has a big hammer, every problem looks like a nail.

      • defcon 4

        I'll bet you have a couple of relatives in Hezbollah as well dontcha?

  • Rose

    America has been "blunder"ing since Viet Nam…as evidenced by our elected leadership.The United States Of America need a real purge starting at the office of the President, the Congress, the Federal Reserve, The Justice Dept. the IRS, and yes, the upper leadership of the military. We are a sick nation and we need an enema…along with a little blood letting..followed by a re-definition of values.

    • Drakken

      I am afraid you are going to get your wish soon enough Rose and the sad part is that this could have all been avoided.

    • mcwrath

      Why is Vietnam always brought up as though it was some military/political blunder…Was'nt supporting the south Vietnamise everybit as justifyable as defending south Korea against the invading comunnist north..( where are all the korean war films depicting the heroism of the defenders of freedom). If the democrat controlled congress had not withdrawn support for the war America would have held its forces in country and the NVA would not have broke the 73 paris treaty by overunning the south…and neither would the horrific kemer rogue have got control of cambodia.
      The difference is in recognising the nature of the enemy…calling Islam the ''religion of peace'' was the great self deception..It were better never to fire so much as a bullet rather than open the islamic books and give the source of the terror attacks a critical going over that it is in need of since the psychopath/sociopath prophet set to work – notwithstanding there would probably be plenty of bullets fired after that in anycase.

    • patriot077

      Amazing that I just finished reading the YoMoma comment as it disappeared. He commented that an earlier post had also been disappeared by FPM. There was nothing at all unusual about his commentary or topic other than the fact that both parties don't seem to understand the nature of the Islamist doctrine. You can read that on any site ….

      • EarlyBird

        This site does that a lot and frustrates people. It's about bad IT, not censorship.

  • PamM

    This is Obama's legacy, a direct consequence of his submission speech in Cairo in 2009 and his kowtowing to the Saudis and the Muslim Brotherhood. I expect he's feeling very pleased with himself and that the Brotherhood are delighted with the achievements of their protege. This is what happens when Muslims, even closet ones like Obama, gain power.

    We need to consider how the damage can be undone once the jihadist in chief has departed.

    • EarlyBird


      Obama did not invade either Iraq or Afghanistan. He didn't break apart Iraq and leave it open to Al Qued and Iran. He didn't put a hundred thousand or so troops in Afghanistan and hundreds of billions of dollars there in some mindless quest to turn it into some peaceful Western state. George W. Bush did all of these things.

      Both were already in flames years before Obama gave his magical speech, which supposedly incited a region filled with peaceful Jeffersonians to become fanatical Islamists.

  • Indioviejo

    What precisely do you mean by saying that I am posting too quickly? It is just another way of censuring certain people like me. I lost my post to your censors, and I can't believe you do equitably. I guess some pigs are better than others.

    • EarlyBird

      It happens to a lot of people. Horowitz doesn't run a professional chat site.

  • EarlyBird

    Very good analysis. But it doesn't bring a speck of background or criticism as to why we were in Iraq and Afghanistan to begin with, or that our adventures into Iraq is exactly what created a foothold for Al Queda and an opening to Iran.

    America will be suffering from neoconservative adventurism for decades still. Let's just hope Israel stays safe, the US stays out of it, and the jackals kill themselves off.

    • defcon 4

      "Israel stays safe"? Are you sure you didn't meant to write "Palestine"?