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Command Post What is this?
Posted on May 7, 2015
Maj Jeremy R.
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MSG Brad Sand
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Maj Jeremy R.

Sir, you are correct but that does not mean you will not be opposed by those wanting to rewrite history. Islamic terrorism has been around since the rise of Islam. It has only been a problem for the United States since we became a Nation. The only periods they have not been a problem was when the World was able to isolate them or distract them by allowing, or fan, internal fighting.

The connections go way beyond 229 years. They go back to founding of the religion. FYI. the Crusades were not a Western attack of Islam in a vacuum...it is like blaming the child who was bullied for years for finally fighting back for starting a fight. Muslims had lead an assault for four years and today, you have people believing Western barbarians, out of the blue, deciding to attack civilized Muslims in a vain attempt to grab land...or other revisionist reasons.
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MSG Brad Sand
MSG Brad Sand
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Damned Sir? All of a sudden I am feeling like a bit of weak kneed school girl?

MAJ Matthew Arnold while I do think we will only gain peace in the region by a true show of strength and resolve (which I also do not think we currently have as a Nation) I think I would balk before nuking them back to the stone age.
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SPC Safety Technician
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At least from this gentleman, It's a well thought out and decisive, if somewhat maniacal, solution. As opposed to the normal small-minded response I hear a lot: "We should just turn it all into one big crater/sheet of glass. 'Merica!"

I don't like it, and I doubt I have the juevos to push the button myself, but the world would likely be better off if the middle-east was wiped off the map.
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MSG Brad Sand
MSG Brad Sand
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One problem with that train of thought is that there are plenty of people out there that have just as much disdain for the United States of America! I think MAJ Arnold and You are pretty good guys and don't want either you vaporized...me, well that might be a bit more justified?
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SSG Gerhard S.
SSG Gerhard S.
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Unfortunately turning the Middle East into a sheet of glass does not solve the problem. The problem, as correctly identified in this Command post is one of ideology. Therefore, the problem does not lie in the land, or in the people's DNA in the Middle east, it lies in the ideology of the radical Muslims, which are scattered all about the globe. I agree, resolve, and meeting force with greater and decisive force is the only tool we possess. Diplomacy has proved to be meaningless to the Radicals, as they see not need to deal honestly with "infidels".
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SPC David Stephenson
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That was the original intentions of the CIA way back in the 1940's and 50's. Kermit “Kim” Roosevelt was the first head of CIA covert action in the region. His cousin, Archie Roosevelt, was also the chief of the Beirut station. These two along with Miles Copeland held the belief that Arabs and Muslims should be engaged with respect and empathy. However as a modern rematch of the “Great Game” for control over central Asia began as well as the creation and alignment with Israel the new dynamics yielded more covert operations to change the local ideology. Despite their initial good intentions, these “Arabists” propped up authoritarian regimes, attempted secretly to sway public opinion in America against support for the new state of Israel, and staged coups that irrevocably destabilized the nations with which they empathized. Their efforts, and ultimate failure, would shape the future course of U.S. policy in the Middle East. China on the other hand seems to be engaging the region on more economic terms than just consuming oil in developing the regions capabilities. I think the straw that broke the camels back was the 1953 coup in Iran - this was all due to Iran nationalizing its oil. The funny thing is in first half of the twentieth century, American had a super good image in Iran. as the only Americans there were doctors and school teachers and people who really were selflessly devoting themselves to Iranians. It was Britain, Russia and France that were subjugating the region with their Imperial ideologies. However as the British influence faded we filled the void in competing for the region with Russia. Thus our benevolent ways digressed into ulterior motive and forever changed the region. Before the oil discoveries in the early part of the century the middle east was just an exotic sandy landscape afterwards however it became a region filled with corruption and brutal regimes. It does not surprise me that the region is in such a mess. If you beat a region down with indifference for almost 100 years don't expect anything otherwise when you hand them the stick. Unfortunately because of all our meddling I think its going to take another country with a more benign approach to stabilize the region. Our foreign policy for the middle east is like a crazed babysitter slapping a crying baby to get it to quite down. That approach offers little comfort to either parties, plus it makes us look bad in the process. Good intentions but horribly wrong approach.
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1SG Claims Assistant
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Anyone who has read a lot of my posts knows that I always come back to one question: why?
And the answer is most commonly found in one area: follow the money.
It has been my observation that when people behave badly, it is nearly always due to one of four motivations:
1. Lust for money.
2. Lust for power.
3. Lust for prestige.
4. Wanting revenge.

Of these, far and away the most common for a *person*, not to be confused with an organization, is money.
Radical Islam does not like that it is broken down into petty kingdoms (emirates) that squable over who will control how much market share of oil. They tried to remedy that with OPEC, but their own greed and the disparate amounts each state could produce doomed that to failure.

My analysis in extreme brief:
There are three big movements within the muslim world, all with the same objective - unifying Islam into a superpower. They only differ on who should be in charge.
1. "Politicalist Islam" led by Saudi Arabia and joined by the gulf states, Jordan, and Egypt, seek unity of purpose through the League of Arab States and the UN to affect their will on the world.
2. Salafist Islam led by Islamic State and Al Queda, themselves locked in a duel for supremacy in this area, strive to impose their will through terror and incremental attacks on adversary positions, specifically Israel and the USA.
3. Shia Islam led by Iran seek hegemony by open subversion of states with significant Shia populations, Iraq, Lebenon, Yemen, and Bahrain specifically. They look to be attempting to reinstate the Persian Empire.

Why fight over all this useless desert? Because under that sand is enough oil to do whatever you want.

Then you have to motivate the masses. Some are persuaded by appealing to religious zealotry. This is effective in oppressed minorities. In order to establish bona fides in this population, you have to attack the Infidel and attempt to control certain holy sites. This is going on right now.
Some will be motivated by glory (aka prestige). A lot of these are professional jihadis that move from conflict area to conflict area seeking plunder and power. That is why there were Chechnyans in Afghanistan, Syrians in Iraq, and Iraqis in Libya. It is all they know. It is like a jobs program for killers.
Some are motivated by getting even. Plenty of Arabs would love to take a bite out of the Kurds. Or the Americans. Or the Israelis. Or some other tribe that jobbed them some kind of way in the past. This sort of crap was the bane of my existence in Iraq and Afghanistan; jousting over apologies and scores to settle, many in cases over a century old.
As for the rest, good old fashioned murder and intimidation will keep them in line.
And there you have it. The Islamic State.

So you beat them by splintering disparately motivated enemies into factions. We have had some success with this in Syria, and conveniently the Iranians are busy fighting ISIS in Iraq. Of course, everyone is doing this for their own benefit, but we can take advantage nevertheless. Boots on the ground that are USA GI will only unite these guys to fight the Great Satan.

Bottom line: let them kill each other. Guide the fight with enough application of force to attain a desireable (or at least reasonable) winner. Deal with the winner, and assist them with stabilizing and returning to normalcy.
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1SG Claims Assistant
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No, SPC (Join to see), the general policy in Iraq was try all sorts of things because we had unlimited resources. All sorts of social experiments were tried because we could, without regard to whether or not they made measurable progress or conflicted with each other.
I could launch into a lengthy diatribe about where Iraq went wrong. But my basic point about balances of power and enemies fighting enemies has been a pillar of US policy for decades. My experience at the tactical face-to-face level informs my take on motives and biases driving actions and policies
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MAJ Matthew Arnold
MAJ Matthew Arnold
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This is an over simplification but, the British Empire controlled the middle East by keeping them fighting with each other. It seems cold and calculated. It was. It worked. Then we come along, new kids in the world power game, and try to spread peace and love diplomacy to people living in the 10th century, who only understand one thing, power. A sure formula for failure.
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CPT Jack Durish
CPT Jack Durish
6 y
Actually, when most people behave badly, they are being led badly. "Most" people don't enjoy the spoils of wars. That's the prerogative of the leaders. Most people simply allow themselves to be used for their leaders' purposes (which may be, as you state, for money, et al). Leaders then throw a bone to the masses. Most people are weak-brained dupes who allow themselves to be led because they don't want to take responsibility for the consequences of decisions. They prefer to allow others to make decisions for them and thus avoid responsibility.
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SSG Ray Strenkowski
SSG Ray Strenkowski
6 y
I would disagree with allowing a winner. Let them argue and fight forever - if one consolidates power I believe we'd have a larger issue.
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