Stories like this make me want to scream.
The New York Times reports, “Arms Windfall for Insurgents as Iraq City Falls.”
The insurgent fighters who routed the Iraqi army out of Mosul on Tuesday did not just capture much of Iraq’s second-largest city. They also gained a windfall of arms, munitions and equipment abandoned by the soldiers as they fled — arms that were supplied by the United States and intended to give the troops an edge over the insurgents.
The problem is not a new one, but it looms larger now that the United States is shifting its counterterrorism strategy away from using American armed forces directly, and toward relying on allied or indigenous troops and security forces supplied and trained by the United States. President Obama proposed last week that a $5 billion fund be set up to finance such efforts.
But those proxy forces do not always prove equal to the task, and when they buckle, the United States finds itself having unwittingly armed its enemies — a problem the Obama administration has been trying to avoid in Syria by carefully limiting its aid to the opposition there. The militants who swept into control of Mosul on Tuesday are believed to be connected to the main Islamist militant group fighting in Syria.
Behold the result of consummately foolish foreign policy! Both Iraq and Afghanistan are descending into chaos—in large measure thanks to short-sighted intervention by the United States. Now, we’ve armed the worst of the worst with our weapons. Nice.
When will we ever learn? The dominant religion of the Middle East demands dictators to prevent warring factions from slaughtering each other. Yes, life was no picnic under Saddam Hussein, but for many Iraqis it was light-years better than what we have left them with.
If our goal is “nation building” we’re certainly doing it to typical government standards, with success favorably comparable to the wonders of VA hospital administration, the food stamp program, and the bankruptcy of the Post Office.
However, my deep fear is that the true purpose is not the one talked about in public. If the real goal is destabilization–to keep other nations from being a “problem” for us—then those who design and support such plans deserve to burn in Hell forever.
If the price of American prosperity is death and suffering elsewhere, no thank you.