How to Shorten the War Against ISIS

Send a Million Troops From All Over the World Pouring Into Raqqa

Preface: This is admittedly a hair-brained idea, and is partly tongue-in-cheek. But then again, who’s got a better idea for stopping the spread of ISIS terrorism … while avoiding WWIII between Russia, the U.S. and NATO?

American military and intelligence types claim that the war against ISIS will last for 30 years. And see this.

On the other hand, anti-war activist David Swanson argues that war always results in bad outcomes, so war against ISIS is a bad idea.

After all, ISIS’ “capital” city – Raqqa – has many civilians, universities and hospitals. Bombing too heavily would kill a lot of innocent people as well as ISIS terrorists.

Russia, Iran and China argue that war against ISIS is necessary to prevent further terrorism … but Syria’s leader Assad must be supported as best able to fight ISIS on-the-ground. They also argue that the Turks, Saudis and other Gulf tyrannies, and the U.S. and its allies are the main supporters of ISIS.

The U.S. and its allies argue that war against ISIS is necessary … but that Assad has to be taken out in the process.

Who’s right? What should be done?

Initially, it’s obvious that ISIS’ support should be cut off.  Since Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Kuwait – all close U.S. allies – have been supporting ISIS, we have to tell them to knock it off.

But I’m also not opposed to sending in a million troops into Raqqa to quickly finish off ISIS once and for all.  Only shoot at people who shoot first.  Arrest people who are with ISIS (ask the locals … they’ll know).

If an international coalition – including both states which want Assad gone and states which want to support Assad – form a coalition for the sole purpose of wiping out ISIS, we could get the job done very quickly.

The U.N. Security Council – made up of the U.S., UK, China, France, and Russian Federation, as well as various non-permanent members – could oversee the effort.

The U.S. couldn’t dictate Russian policy or demand that Assad leave … likewise, Russia couldn’t dictate U.S. policy or demand that Assad stay.  We’d leave all of that for another day.

But everyone – the West, the Arab countries, China, everyone – sends in troops for the focused, limited purpose of eradicating ISIS.

Anyone who doesn’t send troops will be declaring that they’re with ISIS.  U.S. won’t send in troops because the Russians won’t commit to ousting Assad? Then the U.S. is supporting ISIS.

Russians won’t send in troops because the U.S. won’t commit to letting Assad stay? Then Russia is supporting ISIS.

This is bigger than Assad … or other geopolitics. ISIS is dangerous, and launching terrorism worldwide.

A million troops could quickly sweep into Raqqa and restore an ISIS-free city.

What do you think?

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  • sveltesvengali

    My reposted riposte (which includes some sources that I have found through Washington’s Blog):

    Irrespective of whether or not the Islamic State is genuinely dangerous to most western citizens (or whether there are other justifications for defeating them), emotional media hyperbole tends to obfuscate the fact that direct military intervention may not be the most efficacious means of curbing the rise of IS. Indeed, direct military intervention against IS would be largely unprecedented as a productive force in the hypothetical event that it was efficacious, especially within the framework of a “War on Terror” (for example, see this research monograph by the U.S. Department of Defense’s top think-tank consultant, the RAND Corporation: ).

    Other more effective strategies for curbing the activities of IS, if the geopolitical powers-that-be are actually so inclined, include the broader utilization of intelligence methods, the disruption of IS sources of finance and the application of frozen assets, the mounting of a concerted cyber-response (and the encouragement of other non-state and individual entities such as Anonymous in simultaneously doing so), the creation of compelling counternarratives for those who might be potentially attracted to IS recruitment or support, the maintenance of informal diplomatic and defection channels for those pragmatists or moderates that may arise within the vanguard and ranks of IS (as invariably tends to happen within any organization over time), the empowerment of effective regional opponents of IS such as the Kurds through consistent solidarity, and (perhaps most importantly) the end of arms, funds and most forms of support for the Syrian rebels in the Syrian Civil War, which has directly and/or indirectly had a prominent role in contributing to the rise of IS. For more information, see former Congressman Dennis Kucinich on his opposition to another AUMF ( ) and whistleblower Chelsea Manning on counterstrategies to defeat IS ( ).

    Empty face-saving gestures like having François Hollande (or Vladimir Putin or Barack Obama) ‘lead a war which will be pitiless’ do not square with the empirical evidence as to their utility and effectiveness. ‘Do something, anything!™’ simply for the sake of doing something is politically popular, but untenable without a well-delineated strategy that considers the available evidence. ‘Bomb the sh*t out of the Islamic State!™’ falls into the category of ‘Do something, anything!™’ without meeting the necessary criteria for success in degrading IS’ operational capacities and their control over the polity that they presently preside over.

    Why bother repeatedly kicking IS in the shins through combat operations if one can cut the feeding tube that sustains them (e.g. by denying them sources of finance and armaments)? My own suspicions are that certain vested interests would like the feeding tube to remain for their own reasons (see this thoroughgoing analysis: ), but that is irrelevant to the point that cutting the feeding tube would be more effective if the hypothetical will existed.

    • sveltesvengali

      Plus, I just feel inherently uncomfortable with anything reinforcing the contrived narrative that “Ahther yer wyth uhs, er yer with the tear-a-wrists!”

  • Tom Welsh

    After two years of fake Western “war on ISIS”, the Russians stepped in to deal with the terrorists in Syria. They did it the right way, legally, morally and militarily. First they obtained permission from the Syrian government and arranged close coordination between their forces and the Syrian forces. Then they got stuck in. In two months they have accomplished far more than the US-led “coalition” did in two years – probably because the coalition’s real mission was to make sure ISIS wasn’t wiped out. Take a good long look at Afghanistan, Iraq, Somalia, Libya, Yemen and Ukraine today: that is the condition the US government wished to bring about in Syria.

    The answer to your question is simply. Let everyone except the Syrians, the Russians, and anyone else the Syrians wish to involve (like Iran and Hezbollah), go home and leave Syria alone. The Syrians and the Russians will have the terrorists dealt with in a few months. Then the Syrian people can hold elections and have whatever government they like.

  • Silverado

    Hey that’s a great idea!! So when are we rounding up the criminal neocons and their bankster enablers and getting them over there to start and fight the battle?? You need volunteers and I’m volunteering them!!

  • artguerrilla

    that is all…

  • thepresident

    If you want to stop isis, stop funding the cia.

  • basho

    “This is admittedly a (hare) hair-brained idea, and is partly tongue-in-cheek”

    you’re right.

    “What do you think?”
    I think statements like this “… but that Assad has to be taken out in the process.” show a lack of understanding about state sovereignty and a short memory about what the history of regime change has wrought over the past 10 years ie, Iraq, Afghan, UE, Libya etc., etc. and I wonder what the clowns that propose this as a condition would be saying if it applied to their own country.

  • Dec 9, 2015 The Paris Attacks Are Just The Beginning

  • ne0

    Unfortunately this is the type of “thinking not thinking” anyone can come up with. Outlandish and desperate fumbling for solutions accompanied by the claim: “this is bigger than… geopolitics” suggests a sophomoric idealism which is the result of being overwhelmed with disparate information.
    On the bright side: don’t be discouraged, I can relate.

  • May 27, 2015 To beat ISIS, kick out US-led coalition

    US Defense Secretary Ash Carter struck a low blow on Sunday in a CNN interview: “What apparently happened was that the Iraqi forces just showed no will to fight. They vastly outnumbered the opposing force. That says to me… that we have an issue with the will of the Iraqis to fight and defend themselves.”