Allen B. West

House resolution to fund Syrian rebels: pure unadulterated madness

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The Obama administration and indeed now Congress are apparently dead set on “arming” Syrian rebels to fight against ISIS. These are the same folks to which the president referred to as doctors, farmers, and pharmacists and said any endeavor to arm them was a “fantasy.” Well, looks like that fantasy is about to come true.

As reported by USA Today, “The U.S. House is preparing a resolution to authorize President Obama’s plan to arm and train Syrian rebels to fight the rise of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. The language, drafted by the House Armed Services Committee and unveiled Monday evening, is on track for a Wednesday vote to add it to a stop-gap funding bill to keep the government open until early December. While the amendment is likely to draw opposition from both GOP and Democratic corners, it is likely to ultimately pass with bipartisan support.”

If you’re wondering how I would vote on the resolution in committee and on the House floor — it would be a resounding nay! And I would be as vocal in speaking out against this resolution as I am right now.

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Imagine the disrespect to our men and women in uniform who have recently received “pink slips” essentially firing them from service to our country — some of them are in combat zones receiving this notification.

So now we’re going to expend resources to hire — outsource — individuals without a thorough vetting to fight the enemy of America, ISIS? If we cannot afford to pay our own, why should we be paying and using taxpayer funds for these shadow figures?

Members of Congress are about to sign off on $500 million of American taxpayer dollars while we refuse to take care of our own military — that ladies and gents makes no doggone sense.

Now, I understand the Special Forces mission of Foreign Internal Defense (FID) and fully support that — as we did working with the Northern Alliance in Afghanistan. However, the U.S. history of arming one group of jihadis to fight is not that great.

We did so in Afghanistan supporting the Mujahideen against the Soviets and that gave way to what became the Taliban and ultimately al-Qaida. We should never forget that it was Osama bin Laden who fought with the Mujahids.

If you want recent history, just look at Libya where we armed and supported Islamists forces to overthrow Qaddafy — and what has been the result? We had an American Special Mission Compound (SMC) attacked, four dead Americans (to include an Ambassador), and the evacuation of our embassy.

We hear the U.S. will monitor the Syrian rebels to ensure our weapons don’t fall into the wrong hands — we did a crappy job of that in Libya. Furthermore, there have been instances of these Syrian rebels teaming up with al-Qaida offshoots, like Jabhat al-Nusra who attacked UN peacekeepers.

USA Today says “the House resolution makes clear that it does not authorize sending U.S. ground troops to fight the Islamic State, also known as ISIS or ISIL. It puts requirements on the Pentagon to report back to Congress 15 days before the mission begins. Those restraints are necessary for winning congressional support from lawmakers wary of continued U.S. involvement in the Middle East.”

So here we now have our U.S. House of Representatives, the House Armed Services Committee, drafting a resolution stating how we’re not going to fight a combat operation? This is pure unadulterated madness and why I have absolutely no confidence in this decision to fund Syrian rebels.

We are looking at arming “moderates” who are fighting against a dictator to fight against “extremists” while we sit back at 30,000 ft and just hope? Why aren’t we allowing the U.S. military to plan an operation that advances the defeat of ISIS — not about holding terrain, just killing the enemy? We look completely dysfunctional as a nation.

Even more disconcerting is that the action on the amendment and the underlying funding bill are likely to be the last major acts of Congress before they adjourn for the final stretch ahead of the midterm elections. So our elected representatives will pass some mess and then run home and ask for your vote?

I will not support any Member of the U.S. House who supports this resolution. This is a horrible response and if this is the future of U.S. national security, let’s just dissolve our U.S. military and outsource our security – that’s what Rome ended up doing as it glided towards its demise. We have an enemy, ISIS, who has declared war against us and beheaded our citizens and we want to trust someone else to fight for us.

At a time of global crisis this is the answer? Pass a terrible resolution and go home? Can this actually be the best that America can do? Obama didn’t present a viable strategy — this is just a matter of kicking the can down the road — but hey, here’s your blank check for $500 million.

This is a sad day for our Republic and demonstrates how completely we are being neutered. Yes, we do need to commit our American ground combat troops and give them a strategy and a plan for victory. Politics has no place in guiding our national security, but that’s what is happening. To hear anyone say there is no military solution to fight a savage and barbaric enemy is the verbiage of surrender.

We are about to send our U.S. military to fight against Ebola, but we can’t put troops on the ground to fight a declared enemy? USA Today reports that “President Obama is launching an expanded, $763 million military-led plan to help West Africa nations fight the spread of the Ebola virus and prevent it from reaching the United States, officials said Tuesday. Some 3,000 U.S. military personnel will be deployed to West Africa to lead the project, officials said, and Obama issued the order to the Pentagon on Tuesday. The project calls for more doctors and health care professionals; more portable hospitals, laboratories, and other medical facilities; and increased training for first responders and other medical officials throughout West Africa. “Responding to the Ebola outbreak is a top national security priority,” said White House spokesman Josh Earnest.”

Silly me, I thought ISIS was a top national security priority, not a virus. We are so upside down.

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