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The PJ Tatler

by
Bridget Johnson

Bio

August 7, 2014 - 10:00 am

The Obama administration is reportedly considering air drops of supplies — and potential military assistance — to help tens of thousands of minority Yazidis surrounded by ISIS on Mount Sinjar.

White House press secretary Josh Earnest said Washington “strongly condemns” the ISIS siege of Mount Sinjar, adding it is “nearing a humanitarian catastrophe.”

Earnest wouldn’t go into specifics, however, about what kind of action is being considered.

The Yazidis, targeted by dozens of genocides over their history for following their ancient religion, in Nineveh Province fled Saturday to the mountain as the Islamic State fighters closed in on the town of Sinjar. Since then, the death toll on the arid mountain, particularly of the elderly and children, has been “rising by the minute,” according to Kurdish media. People have reportedly been eating leaves off trees in a desperate attempt to survive.

The Peshmerga have been trying to save the Yazidis and carve out a corridor to save them, but ISIS has been pushing hard against the lines of the fierce Kurdish fighters.

Turkey took the lead on humanitarian assistance to the Yazidis, according to Hurriyet Daily News:

The Turkish government airdropped humanitarian aid to thousands of members of the Yazidi community on Aug. 7, Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu said, adding that Turkey was the sole country conducting humanitarian operations for displaced Iraqis fleeing from ISIL violence.

“Humanitarian aid [provided by Turkey’s disaster agency, AFAD] was delivered by Iraq’s helicopters for members of the Yazidi community trapped in the mountains of the Sinjar region,” Davutoğlu told private broadcaster NTV Aug. 7.

Davutoğlu’s statement came right after he chaired a security meeting with the participation of Land Forces Commander Gen. Hulusi Akar, Gendarmerie Forces Commander Gen. Servet Yörük and National Intelligence Organization (MİT) chief Hakan Fidan. The meeting focused on the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant’s (ISIL) advance into northern Iraq, which presents a security risk for Turkey amid growing concern about an influx of Iraqi minority groups fleeing violence into Turkey.

Until this afternoon, the only member of the Obama administration to publicly talk about the plight of the Yazidis — though not mentioning the ethno-religious minority by name — in recent days has been UN Ambassador Samantha Power, who said in a statement that she condemned “in the strongest possible terms the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant’s (ISIL) recent attacks on Sinjar and Tal Afar in Ninewa province that have reportedly led to the displacement of tens of thousands of people, many from vulnerable minority communities, deepening Iraq’s already acute humanitarian crisis.”

“ISIL’s reported abuse, kidnapping, torture and executions of Iraq’s religious and ethnic minorities and its systematic destruction of religious and cultural sites are appalling,” Power said.

“The United States supports the Iraqi Security Forces and Peshmerga Forces working to defend these areas against ISIL. We urge all parties to the conflict to allow safe access to the United Nations and its partners so they can deliver lifesaving humanitarian assistance, including to those Iraqi families reportedly encircled by ISIL on Mount Sinjar. The United States is committed to helping the people of Iraq as they confront the security and humanitarian challenges in their fight against ISIL. Iraq’s leaders must move swiftly to form a new, fully inclusive government that takes into account the rights, aspirations and legitimate concerns of all of Iraq’s communities. All Iraqis must come together to ensure that Iraq gets back on the path to a peaceful future and to prevent ISIL from obliterating Iraq’s vibrant diversity.”

Related: ISIS Seizes Mosul Dam, Threatens Genocide Against the Yazidis

Bridget Johnson is a veteran journalist whose news articles and opinion columns have run in dozens of news outlets across the globe. Bridget first came to Washington to be online editor at The Hill, where she wrote The World from The Hill column on foreign policy. Previously she was an opinion writer and editorial board member at the Rocky Mountain News and nation/world news columnist at the Los Angeles Daily News. She is an NPR contributor and has contributed to USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, National Review Online, Politico and more, and has myriad television and radio credits as a commentator. Bridget is Washington Editor for PJ Media.

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Top Rated Comments   
So . . . nothing about that "responsibility to protect" then.
16 weeks ago
16 weeks ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (19)
All Comments   (19)
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The mother of all Middle East cluster farks.
15 weeks ago
15 weeks ago Link To Comment
Wow! The U.S. "condemns in the strongest possible terms." I bet ISIS is just shaking in its boots. La-de-bleeping-da. One more example of the excellence of leading from behind....with the bare behind exposed to the wind.

So riddle me this, Joker: If you condemn ISIL so forcefully, why aren't you flying plane loads of arms and ammunition into Erbil and Sulimaniya right now???? Oh, yeah right, we haven't decided what to do yet or which side to support. After all, our "friends" in the Muslim Brotherhood support ISIL and oppose the Kurds. Hummmm.....conundrum time.
15 weeks ago
15 weeks ago Link To Comment
If this is correct then IS is threatening Turkey from within:

Turkey wakes up to Islamic State threat http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2014/08/cengiz-isis-mosul-iraq-syria-consul-general-kidnappings-akp.html
15 weeks ago
15 weeks ago Link To Comment
Coming home to roost?
15 weeks ago
15 weeks ago Link To Comment
I feel bad for folks under attack from the warriors of Sin. I highly recommend attacking under a three quarter moon, killing the enemy, taking their weapons and moving to high ground. If the conditions are right, start a large fire to burn the enemy. Start a rock slide...

Whatever you do, don't give up.
15 weeks ago
15 weeks ago Link To Comment
Thanks! So few know that the 'moon goddess' part, symbolized by the crescent, is Hub'al, a version of Sin, the city goddess of Babylon.

("Follow not the ways of Sin" and "Dwell thou not in the house of Sin" weren't cautions about immoral acts, but a plea- "Don't convert!"
Many of the Ten Tribes, betrayed by Judah, were making their way as best they could in Babylon.)

Warriors of Sin- I'd like to start using that, too!
15 weeks ago
15 weeks ago Link To Comment
It's kind of catchy. Right?

Peace
15 weeks ago
15 weeks ago Link To Comment
PS- what we call Islam is way older than that semi-fictional composite, "the Mohammed".
15 weeks ago
15 weeks ago Link To Comment
The 90% fiction called Quran wasn't finalized until 333 AH (After Hajjira), when it was written by Uvalve.

Somebody google the first Hajj so I can get a Gregorian date, please? About 950 AD, or so, yes? After the Abbasid and Ummayid mercenary states hired by Persia and Byzantium settled their turf battle and merged their archetypes, the Meccan bandit and the renegade (anti-Catholic) Syrian bishop.
15 weeks ago
15 weeks ago Link To Comment
15 weeks ago
15 weeks ago Link To Comment
"Obama administration is reportedly considering air drops of supplies"

Art of the Dither

These people are in the front lines of the fight against Islam, and we are thinking about helping with only supplies. We should be in the fight with planes and military might.

15 weeks ago
15 weeks ago Link To Comment
Maybe Putin will help and supply the Peshmerga, who seem to be running out of ammo. Putin says he's a Christian and probably is. Obama also says he's a Christian, but who would believe that?
15 weeks ago
15 weeks ago Link To Comment
"The Peshmerga have been trying to save the Yazidis and carve out a corridor to save them, but ISIS has been pushing hard against the lines of the fierce Kurdish fighters."

ISIS likely has the advantage as they have been furnished with far more American supplied weapons than the Peshmerga.
16 weeks ago
16 weeks ago Link To Comment
So . . . nothing about that "responsibility to protect" then.
16 weeks ago
16 weeks ago Link To Comment
Ouch!
15 weeks ago
15 weeks ago Link To Comment
As long as their not Christians.
16 weeks ago
16 weeks ago Link To Comment
"...they're..."
15 weeks ago
15 weeks ago Link To Comment
It is my understanding that in some respects Turkey has been supporting ISIS.
16 weeks ago
16 weeks ago Link To Comment
Old hands in the art of double dealing, probably forcing the Kurds into terms...SOP in the Mideast.
15 weeks ago
15 weeks ago Link To Comment
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