The 101st Airborne Division will serve an integral role in preparing Iraqi ground troops to expel the Islamic State group from Mosul, Defense Secretary Ash Carter told the division’s soldiers Wednesday during a visit to Fort Campbell, Kentucky.Why does that sound familiar? Oh, yeah...
Some 1,800 soldiers from the 101st’s Headquarters and its 2nd Brigade Combat Team will deploy soon on regular rotations to Baghdad...
The 101st in April 2003 captured and took responsibility for Mosul, Iraq’s second largest city, during America’s initial invasion at the beginning of Operation Iraqi Freedom. The division’s upcoming deployment will be its first return to Iraq since it completed its second rotation there at the end of 2006...Isn't that the definition of insanity - doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.
... Removing the Islamic State group from its “power bases” in Mosul and Raqqa, Syria, will greatly aid in eliminating the terror organization from other parts of the world, including North Africa and Afghanistan, where it has gained influence in the last year.But, but ... I thought obama said that ISIS was contained. I guess he meant that they were contained in key cities and much of the Iraqi countryside - along with broad swaths of Afghanistan, Libya, Syria, East Africa, and parts of Europe.
Outside of its stronghold in Iraq and Syria, the Islamic State group is “continually evolving, changing focus and shifting location,” Carter said, and he vowed the United States would do more to increase the fight in places such as Afghanistan and Libya, where the organization has grown.
Not to mention Paris and San Bernardino...
Meanwhile, Carter acknowledged for the first time on Wednesday that previously announced special operation forces were in place in Iraq and Syria.That would be a lot easier to believe if it wasn't the first time we've heard it.
The new Expeditionary Targeting Force of special operators tasked with working with Iraqi forces to conduct raids on key Islamic State figures, which Carter announced early last month, is also in place, he said.
The addition of the special operation forces along with the uptick in airstrikes, Carter said, is straining the Islamic State organization in Iraq and Syria.
It has “become apparent that the additional military steps that President [Barack] Obama approved in the fall are generating significant momentum across the battlefield in Iraq and Syria,” Carter said. “Moreover, we can see that our actions to accelerate the campaign are having an effect, and creating opportunities to do even more.
“We are taking ground back from the enemy and gaining openings to take more.”
On a serious note, the human costs of what has become known as The Forever War are staggering. The dead and wounded are bad enough, but those who return physically whole, and those left behind at home, also pay a price. Please consider giving them a helping hand if you can.