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The Last of the Yezhidis

August 7th, 2014 - 4:34 pm

The Obama administration has reached what one might call the ‘Pol Pot Aftermath’ of its Middle Eastern policy.  Michael Totten notes that ISIS is massacring the Yezhidis, people who practice “the original religion of the Kurds. ”  What is worse, according to the New Yorker magazine, this massacre is genocide. George Packer describes the travails of his friend Karim, who “spent years working for the U.S. Army in his area, then for an American medical charity. He’s been waiting for months to find out whether the U.S. government will grant him a Special Immigrant Visa because of his service, and because of the danger he currently faces.”

Tell him to try Mexico.

ISIS regards Yazidis as devil worshippers, and its fighters have been executing Yazidi men who won’t convert to Islam on the spot, taking away the women as jihadi brides. …

The Kurds began to run out of ammunition, and those who could retreated north toward Kurdistan. By dawn, the extremists were pouring into town. Later, ISIS posted triumphant photos on Twitter: bullet-riddled corpses of peshmerga in the streets and dirt fields; an ISIS fighter aiming his pistol at the heads of five men lying face down on the ground; Arab locals who stayed in Sinjar jubilantly greeting the new occupiers.

Karim had time to do just one thing: burn all the documents that connected him to America—photos of him posing with Army officers, a CD from the medical charity—in case he was stopped on the road by militants or his house was searched. He watched the record of his experience during the period of the Americans in Iraq turn to ash, and felt nothing except the urge to get to safety….

Prince Tahseen Said, “the world leader of the Yazidis,” has issued an appeal to Kurdish, Iraqi, Arab, and European leaders, as well as to Ban Ki-moon and Barack Obama. It reads: “I ask for aid and to lend a hand and help the people of Sinjar areas and its affiliates and villages and complexes which are home to the people of the Yazidi religion. …

Karim couldn’t help expressing bitterness about this. “I don’t see any attention from the rest of the world,” he said. “In one day, they killed more than two thousand Yazidi in Sinjar, and the whole world says, ‘Save Gaza, save Gaza.’ ”

Of course the Yazidis are not alone in facing extermination. For the first time in nearly 2,000 years there are no Christians in Mosul. What no power of evil has been able to be accomplish in two millenia was achieved in a trice by the most moral administration in American history; perhaps by accident, perhaps by carelessness, perhaps even by design, but achieved nonetheless.  Whichever way you look at it, that’s awesome.

The entire map of the Middle East has been transformed into a 21st century version of the European Bloodlands. But the most remarkable thing is this catastrophe was enabled in a fit of moral superiority. Roger Kimball, speaking to an audience in Sydney observed that most striking property of modern political correctness was narcissism.  For the ultimate source of leftist legitimacy is the view that they are better simply persons than the rest; able to make moral judgments no one else can.  Their self-regard is almost erotic. They’re in love with themselves. Or to paraphrase one the president’s campaign lines: ‘we are the people the world has been waiting for.’

We’re ready for our moral close-ups.

Something of this present tragedy was foreshadowed in the casual way with which the Left regarded the exodus of the boat people from Vietnam and the Cambodian Killing Fields as collateral damage; something ironic in an anti-war movement that finishes up empowering the greatest seaborne exodus in the history of the world and the massacre of millions.

But if there’s irony it escapes them. After all, ‘how could we have known,’ they ask, ‘that the people we supported were murderers?  We meant well.’

We meant well. And to make up for the sins of the past, the world is sentencing two two doddering officials of the Khmer Rouge regime (that’s ‘Red Khmer’ to those of us who can’t read French) convicted of ‘crimes against humanity’ to life.  And maybe 50 years from now they’ll round up some former ISIS fighters in wheelchairs and walkers and sentence them to life as well. As for the Yahzidis, they’ve been sentenced to death.

It’s just possible that the Left never loved either the Khmer, the Vietnamese, the Kurds or the Yehzidi. We know the left could never have any sympathy for the Christians to begin with. So who in the end, did they care for? Perhaps they never loved these far distant people on whom they never clapped eyes; only the thought that they did. They cared, in a word for themselves. Yet some may say, even now: ‘look! the Obama administration is air dropping some canned goods.’

Yesterday, a senior U.S. official told me that the Obama Administration is contemplating an airlift, coördinated with the United Nations, of humanitarian supplies by C-130 transport planes to the Yazidis hiding in the Sinjar mountains. There are at least twenty thousand and perhaps as many as a hundred thousand of them, including some peshmerga militiamen providing a thin cover of protection. The U.N. has reported that dozens of children have died of thirst in the heat. ISIS controls the entrance to the mountains. Iraqi helicopters have dropped some supplies, including food and water, but the refugees are hard to find and hard to reach.

These airdrops, unless accompanied by other measures, may only redouble the determination of ISIS to kill them. For they hate no one so much as those who receive American aid. Karim knew as much, which was why he burned the photos; why he brushed over all traces. A half-eaten MRE may prove a death warrant. Maybe they should drop them ammunition instead. No that would never do.  Those are for guns! and how much better the world would be if Kurdistan were only a gun-free zone.

But in any case they should recall the lines that Oscar Wilde wrote about the triumph of hypocrisy over courage.  He had it right.

Yet each man kills the thing he loves
By each let this be heard
Some do it with a bitter look
Some with a flattering word
The coward does it with a kiss
The brave man with a sword.

Here’s to lost causes.  Here’s to the last of the Yehzidi.

Update: President Obama has authorized “targeted airstrikes” to stop the Yehzidi genocide according to USA Today which reports that Obama said “today, America is coming to help”.

President Obama said Thursday he authorized “targeted airstrikes” if needed to protect U.S. personnel in Iraq, as well as airdrops of food and water to religious minorities in Iraq who are under siege from Islamic militants and trapped on a mountain top….

Obama attempted to assure the American public that it would not lead to U.S. involvement in a ground war there. The airstrikes would be used to prevent militants from reaching Irbil, the capital of the Kurdish region. Irbil is home to a U.S. Consulate and a joint U.S.-Iraqi security base.

In Obama’s gesture is an implicit lie. Nobody ever comes to a war “to help”. It’s not like stopping by a picnic or helping a neighbor move house, where you can participate as much or little as you want and then walk away. The only valid object of joining a conflict is ‘to win’, or at least, be on the winning side.  Fighting to look good is neither moral nor does it work. You don’t ever want to “help” and be among the defeated. For those in the field, defeated means dead.

Bombing once started makes enemies and kills people. Unless it is done for a definite object and terminal state in mind, then it is better not done at all.  Any action sufficient to ‘stop the genocide’ requires defeating ISIS. Either Obama aims to defeat ISIS or he is merely prolonging the agony. Lyndon Johnson was a great fan of “targeted airstrikes” in Vietnam. Johnson famously boasted of his fine grained control over the USAF.

“LBJ liked to pick bombing targets himself”. More strongly expressed in Vietnam Magazine, December 1997, by Air Force Major John Keeler (Ret) – who quotes LBJ as saying: “Those boys can’t hit an outhouse without my permission”.

Lyndon Johnson was in Vietnam to ‘send a message’. Ho Chi Minh was in it to win. How did that work out?

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Top Rated Comments   
This isn't going to end until islam is extinct, or everyone else is. - jsallison

I'm on the same page with you, J.S..

THANK GOD (or Gaia, for the leftist) that I'm not President of the U.S.A.. Knowing now what a President can do by executive action (which is just about anything), I could order troops into action. My orders:


First, I'd dispatch an emissary (say Dick Cheney, if he'd go, but there are plenty of other candidates). First step, Syria. Second step, Iraq. Tell them in no uncertain terms, that we'll accept their unconditional surrender if they agree to live under an American governor for 25 years, and to a U.S. based system of Constitutional law. The governor will appoint Supreme Court Justices from US military JAG officers, who will serve at the pleasure of the US President. No Sharai law. The US Bill of Rights is extended to those peoples, on day one. If they disagree, they're next on our target list. What's more, I'd make certain that they understand that any territory that American troops must fight on and for likely becomes U.S. Territory at the end of the conflict. If they lose, they lose everything. No US rebuilding plan. NO US aid. Famine, pestilence, and homelessness is their future.

AS SOON as ISIS is dispatched, I'd apply the same principle to every other conflict in the world. 1) No, the US will not stand back in isolation. 2) The US ALWAYS acts in it's own best interest, first and foremost. 3) The USA will be ruthless in use of military force, in the hope that we'll never have to use military force. 4) PAX Americana, under a U.S. style Constitution, rules wherever American troops touch foreign soil. If American's spill blood, they claim territory and land. If American's must fight, they fight to win with no secondary considerations. Collateral damage will be avoided when it's in American interests, but otherwise, hell is coming. 5) Islam is demonstrably a militant religion, and like ISIS, a clear and present danger to the U.S. Republic. The base assumption is that any American Muslim is a potential traitor, and any Muslim world wide, a potential threat to the peace and security of the USA. All other polices will be crafted accordingly. America might maintain friendly relations with Muslim countries, but she'll never trust them.

Now, I sound a bit like some middle school boy with a bit too much testosterone in his system, but that's the way I roll. "Good" and "Evil" are very simple, easy to understand concepts. It's not that complicated to sort this out. One just needs a clear definition of terms, such as "Evil", "Murderer", "Genocide", and such.

Yes, I'd eventually be hauled into a U.N. court for war crimes. However, 10's or 100's of thousands of innocents will remain alive, torture will greatly be diminished, and the bad guys will be dead - EVERY LAST ONE OF THEM. I'd put US death warrants on the heads of every known or identifiable member of ISIS, who escapes the final onslaught. Shoot on sight. Present the DNA evidence, collect your check.

Yep, I'd probably be the worse, most ruthless President in American history. I'd give no quarter to any man, woman, or child associated with ISIS, Al Quida, or other mass murders.

Oh, and yeah, one more thing. Message to the Mexican President. "You have 24 hours to release Tahmooressi in good health, and at the US border, with his vehicle, his weapons, and a check for $50,000 for his trouble. Otherwise, the US will consider this seizure of an innocent American an act of war, and will act within 25 hours."

Well, folks, there you go. I'm a dangerous, "right wing" Christian zealot, who has just friggin had enough of Obama's world vision. I have no patience any more, nor any regard for American Democrats, mass murderers, dictators, and their ilk.

But you guys find a way to get me elected, and this Islamic terror sh*t ends pretty damn quickly. So does the military draw down, and the "endless Obama economic recovery". After all, Obama has taught me how this Executive Order stuff really works, and work it, I will!

Take Gaza and Hamas, for example. Drive the Palestinians out of Gaza, period. Order them out. Set up way stations towards Jordan and Egypt. If the stay, the start and die of thirst. If they leave, the leave towards life and supplies. Then move the camps and resources, until they reach their "promise land". (Yes, Jordan and Egypt have a vote, or they can just keep pushing them to somewher
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
Paul Fussell's 1981 essay about an earlier war, "Thank God for the Atomic Bomb," notes the obvious ingredient of lack of front-line experience among the bien pensants who decried Truman's decision in 1945: " . . . I want to consider something suggested by the long debate about the ethics, if any, of that ghastly affair. Namely, the importance of experience, sheer, vulgar experience, in influencing, if not determining, one’s views about that use of the atom bomb. The experience I’m talking about is having to come to grips, face to face, with an enemy who designs your death. . . . John Kenneth Galbraith is persuaded that the Japanese would have surrendered surely by November without an invasion. He thinks the A-bombs were unnecessary and unjustified because the war was ending anyway. The A-bombs meant, he says, 'a difference, at most, of two or three weeks.' . . . Two weeks more means 14,000 more killed and wounded, three weeks more, 21,000. Those weeks mean the world if you’re one of those thousands or related to one of them. During the time between the dropping of the Nagasaki bomb on August 9 and the actual surrender on the fifteenth, the war pursued its accustomed course: on the twelfth of August eight captured American fliers were executed (heads chopped off); the fifty-first United States submarine, Bonefish, was sunk (all aboard drowned); the destroyer Callaghan went down, the seventieth to be sunk, and the destroyer escort Underhill was lost. That’s a bit of what happened in six days of the two or three weeks posited by Galbraith. What did he do in the war? He worked in the Office of Price Administration in Washington. I don’t demand that he experience having his ass shot off. I merely note that he didn’t."

The full essay can be read here:

Well worth the time. Fussell himself had been wounded twice in the European Theater, badly enough to be considered 40% disabled after the war, but was still judged to be well enough to participate in the scheduled invasion of Honshu.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
This isn't going to end until islam is extinct, or everyone else is.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (132)
All Comments   (132)
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George Packer?

29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
I just took a look – Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Turkey, UK, all NATO nations, and our supposed friends Kuwait, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and Egypt, all have first and second class attack aircraft; F-16A/B/C/D, F-15C/E, AV-8B, A-7, F-4, F-18A/B/C/D, Tornado IDS, Jaguar, EF-2000, Mirage 2000, Mirage IV. I don’t know what their ranges or air-to-air refueling capability and compatabilities are, but if they can get to Iraq, they can put bombs on targets, especially the relatively low tech IS barbarians. If they are air to air capable and compatible, the US can help them get there.
All these nations have a big piece of their oil supply or sovereignty threatened by IS.
The USA faces no immediate threat from IS.


Because g*dd*mned Going to Martha's Vineyard to Golf Tomorrow worthless despicable f***ing Buraq has p*ssed off every one of these nations with his weakness, insults, waffling, lying and all around pussiness, besides His not having the slightest interest or capability of putting together a coalition to kick some barbarian butts, that’s why.
Meanwhile, "USA" and "America" have become curse words in Kurdish.

29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
There is a special place in hell reserved for our current President. What a despicable POS.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
At some point, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Qatar, the US, and even Iran according to Michael Ledeen helped form ISIS.

ISIS has clearly spun out of control, ( who woulda thunk that?) and threatens the interests of Iran,Saudi Arabia, Syria, Iraq and the United States. No mean feat.

There are indications that SA and Iran have both woken up to the fact that their very survival is at stake. No so America.

Me thinks Obama has been shamed into bombing ISIS positions by the Pope, but our strikes are "limited" and from I can tell not aimed at wiping out ISIS at all.

Can anyone here tell me how serious our efforts are, or we just playing at "doing something" again? It would seem that given the situation at the Mosul
dam, we would have to boots on the ground to insure this effort doesn't backfire and cause a humanitarian disaster of epic scale.

29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
I don’t think most people understand, or will ever fully understand. I was listening to a local guy on the radio the other day, talking about the troubles in the Middle East. He was talking about the British and the French and the creation of artificial nations, and how what we were seeing was the Muslims violently re-aligning themselves.

He was not defending or justifying any of what’s going on. Just offering some analysis to his listening audience, and it was more information than a lot of them probably knew to begin with. Problem is, his frame of reference was the last 100 years, not the last 1000. He’s a pretty smart guy, former JAG Corps officer. Seems well-read, and not bound by ideology, but that was at best an incomplete accounting of history and context.

I just wonder how you even begin to reach all those “other” folks out there, unless something really bad happens to render all other considerations and deliberations moot. Then 100 years of history, or 1000 years, or last year, won’t matter. The only thing that will matter is what they did in that moment. We had a fleeting glimpse of that after 9/11. I don’t think anybody wants that, but that seems to be the road we’re on.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
100yrs ago the ME was pretty much under one command, wasn't caliphate but it was an empire that was constantly knocking on the Euro's southern door, If ya really think about it maybe it was actually a really good idea to break it all up into countries that would a!ways be at each others throats internally! If they go back to their normalized cooperative groupings we may really get a Caliphate that may consolidate the entire Moslem umma! Then what ya gone have...
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment

Western civilization can spend the next decade ( if we last that long )
Trying to contain and defeat the Jihadist forces of Islam.
We can keep struggling in the quest for the Democratization of Islamic states which we already did and failed at after investing billions in money and blood.
We can try to strengthen the so-called 'moderate branches of Islam, if there is one. They're either being cowed Into silence or winking and nodding to their Islamist brothers.
We can continue to use drones and special forces and police actions but so far That hasn't been effective. The violent Jihadists reproduce faster than we can neutralize them.
We can try making nice with the organizations of 'Soft-Jihadists' who advance Sharia and Jihad through usually peaceful and legal
Means (like the Muslim Brotherhood Obama's been backing for
The last six years) but that backfired.
The problem of violent Islamic Jihad is more widespread and virulent today than it was even at the height of its glory days when Hordes of Jihadists Advanced on Spain and other parts of Europe, something happening again even at this moment. For Over 1400 years of Jihadist violence, of murder and enslavement, forced conversions, and abuse Of women and children ...and yet still In this modern day and age Islam remains more a retro-sixth century ideology of bloody conquest than anything resembling a religion of peace and harmony.
The world can't wait for this backward cult of Muhammad to somehow 'reform' itself.
Not when nuclear and chemical weapons of Jihad very soon will be within the reach Of religious psychopaths and end-of-days fanatics who yearn for martyrdom.
When a beehive is burnt the surviving bees are disoriented
And dispersed. Certainly there are many angry bees initially but then they lose their ability to sting and just Disappear and scatter into the countryside and soon die.
There's a lesson in this. The hive is in Mecca. It's called the
Kaaba. Or we can continue getting stung for the rest of history!

29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
As it is not the practice of America to exterminate formerly hostile civilians after combat has ended it is not likely to be something we would adopt as a policy. While abuses have undoubtedly happened, from the very rare distribution of disease bearing blankets to Indians in the 19th century to my father seeing his Colonel order edible or salvageable trash be burnt in front of starving Italians in the 20th century, genocide is not part of our culture. We are capable as individuals of doing anything. We are capable as a collective of doing anything when we feel threatened, that is during combat. We are not capable of doing anything when we do not perceive ourselves as threatened. - Blast From the Past

Let's use an analogy her for illustration purposes:

Assume for example, you live in an American town in the late 1800's, near or within Indian territory. Your town is near a hostile group of American native Indians. They have for the past 50 years been raiding farms, killing civilians as their first target, penetrating your defenses, and turning your little township into a fort for mere self-preservation. You and your fellow citizens have become prisoners in your own lands.

Now, however, the Indians are at the gates. You have sought peace, and they've killed your emissaries time after time. They pledge your total annihilation, to killl your men, enslave or kill your children, and make your women their sex slaves. What's more, they are making good on their threats. Your intelligence has seen the camps of the Indians, where the women torture and kill captured citizens, where they compel their children to torture and kill, and all dance and have a jolly good time at the inhuman suffering of human beings, merely because you are not of their tribe.

THAT is analogous to the Muslims of the world today.

- SHOW me that great movement where 60%, 75%, or 90% condemn ISIS and IRAN and the other "radical Islamist", for their evil.

-- SHOW me the army of Muslims girded for righteousness against the onslaught of ISIS.

- SHOW ME the Islamic Army standing in the gap to defend the minority Christians, Jews, and other non-Muslims.

THOSE MUSLIMS DO NOT EXIST, because their are no righteous Muslims, in the definition of the term generally accepted by a Christian-Judea western mores. Islam is a death cult. Muslims are not like any other people you might be familiar with. Muslims are universally in admiration and support of radical Islam, and are dissembling when they say they are not. You cannot seek peace with them, because you cannot trust them. Islam is the equivalent of Star Trek's "BORG". You don't compromise with them or play by Marquess of Queensberry rules.

What is a "formerly hostile civilian"? An ISIS soldier who has dropped his weapons and changed clothing, only to appear at your rear, or your home in your city, to kill YOUR civilians.

Let me make one thing clear. ISIS AND RADICAL ISLAM ARE NOTHING NEW. They are a continuation of the "norm" begun 1400 years ago by a bent camel trader who liked to f**k young boys and girls, to conquer rival tribes, steal their wealth, enslave their woman, and claim the mandate of heaven for his actions under some fictional book called the QURAN.

You kill the genocidal ISIS Army and their supporters to the last man, woman, and child. If you make an example of them, and for another 100 years, there may be "peaceful Islam". THAT's how you avoid having to commit genocide of ALL Muslims, who will be back at it again, killing for Allah, at some point in the future. If you do not, they will win, you will die, and everything and everyone you care about will suffer.
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29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
We should have up armed the Iraqi Kurds long ago. By that I mean they should be equipped to handle anything in the air or on land or sea. We haven't because a) Turkey would be offended and they are soooo precious to us and b) Kerry demands that the Kurds return to the country of Iraq, wherever, whatever that may be. The US government seems hell bent on making implacable enemies of the Kurds through betrayal, and may be about there.

As some may uncomfortably recall, after sounding, "Charge", Bush I turned his back on them until Saddam had killed enough Kurds to feel at ease. We have, in the interim, made promises of security we obviously have no intention of keeping. The Kurds should get the message loud and clear: the US is no ally and may well be the enemy. For example, Kerry and Company were able to hurriedly get a Texas judge to forbid the sale of Kurdish petroleum in the US, leaving $100,000,000 worth of product bobbing at sea.

It's a puzzlement!
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
We don't support the Kurds for the same reason we didn't initially support the former Soviet republics who wished to separate from the USSR: ''stability''. Don't change a thing.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
Ok wait ...time out. ISIS now known as IS was fka "Syrian Rebels" correct? Are we now bombing "folks" we where arming a year ago? I know this admin wants to get rid of weapons but this sure is a convoluted way in which to go about it. Fast and Furious II.
Smart Power is R2P folks from our own weapons.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
The Kurds and the Yehzidi to Barak Obama: “You ignorant ass, you killed us.”
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
So ISIS is doing for the Iran orbit what Obamacare is doing for the Dems. That's what happens when you cheat the interlock.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
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