No, of course not. We are assured that our Commander-in-Chief and his team “are not contemplating ground troops.” The insurgents who have divided Iraq will not be fought by American soldiers unless they are launching an assault safely from the air. Or so we are told.
But the actual quotation from the President in the Wall Street Journal story doesn’t rule ground troops out:
“What we have seen over the last couple of days indicates the degree to which Iraq is going to need more help—more help from us and more help from the international community,” President Barack Obama said from the Oval Office following a meeting with Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott.
“My team is working around the clock to identify how we can provide the most effective assistance to them,” Mr. Obama said. “I don’t rule out anything.”
With that kind of unequivocal statement, I’m not sure how much confidence we can get that the Administration is “not contemplating” sending ground troops ever. That kind of statement is not the same as a promise to not send ground troops. (And even if it were; it would merely be a promise from a President who breaks his pledges and lies about his intentions all the time.)
In fact, the President has made statements that could easily be used to justify another invasion (or “help”). “I don’t rule out anything because we do have a stake in making sure that these jihadists are not getting a permanent foothold in either Iraq or Syria, for that matter.” The idea is that, if we give them a “home base,” they will be free to attack us in the U.S. Thus, it becomes a legitimate national interest to send the army back into Iraq.
Why isn’t Obama ever worried about the foothold that Jihadists have gained in Libya?
The fact is U.S. intervention hasn’t done anything to shrink the terrorist influence. The Taliban in Afghanistan and Jihadists in Libya, Syria, and—yes—Iraq all testify that we leave things as bad or worse. It is true that we suffered a horrible attack in 2001. But it is also true that the event was an unlucky fluke. Nothing in the subsequent events, as we invaded other nations and overthrew governments either directly or by proxy, has shown that we can make the world safer than it was in the year 2000. What has that blood and treasure accomplished? Our own government assures us that we are in more danger than ever before (lest we think we might reduce any part of the expanding national security state).
So get ready to write your Congressman: “We have enough problems at home. Stay out of Iraq!”