Via the New York Times:
The United States is prepared to deploy attack helicopters and additional advisers to help Iraqi forces in their long-running battle to retake the city of Ramadi from the Islamic State, Defense Secretary Ashton B. Carter said on Wednesday.
For several months now, the Iraqi security forces have been preparing to take back the city by cordoning it off and surrounding it. It has been a slog, Pentagon officials say, because of dug-in Islamic State positions.
But as the forces prepare to move in to retake the city, which will probably entail urban warfare, defense officials say they are considering adding American attack helicopters to the fight. Such a move would deepen American involvement in the war and could bring helicopter pilots under increased risk from ground fire, but is viewed by the Pentagon as necessary.
“The United States is prepared to assist the Iraqi Army with additional unique capabilities to help them finish the job, including attack helicopters and accompanying advisers, if circumstances dictate and if requested by Prime Minister Abadi,” Mr. Carter told a hearing of the Senate Armed Services Committee, referring to Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi.
So we’re not really fighting a war, see?
Just putting pilots’ lives in danger. Also, the increased flow of advisers is the same pattern that led to another famous “not really a war” engagement in Vietnam.
There seems to be some kind of comfort taken by the current administration in repeating the mantra, “No boots on the ground,” as if it’s a mommy’s kiss that makes everything all better.
Obviously, the reason that President Obama doesn’t want to ramp up the ISIS engagement too quickly is that every little escalation is proof that his monumentally stupid withdrawal strategy was the unmitigated disaster that everyone in America not drunk on the Hope and Change Kool-Aid knew it would be. The more he parses out the return, the longer his none-too-quick supporters and his media lap dogs can play make-believe.
No, this doesn’t mean I’m advocating for all-out war. I am merely commenting on the president’s approach.
As politely as I can.