The recent U.S. strikes in Syria in response to reported use of chemical weapons by the Assad regime has been met with relatively broad support among U.S. government officials and others. UTT has a few questions for readers to consider in the event the United States considers the use military force in this “global war on terror” again.
- Since 9/11, the United States government has failed to identify the enemy in the global war in which we are engaged. U.S. warfighting doctrine states the professional way to assess/analyze a threat is to begin with who the enemy says he is and why he is fighting. Since 9/11, this has not been done. It is why we lost the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan despite the fact the U.S. military crushed the enemy on the battlefield. Why are we conducting ANY military operations before we identify the threat and understand the players on the battlefield?
- Prior to and since 9/11, the leadership in the U.S. Intelligence Community, and others, catastrophically failed to perform their duties. Examples: (1) Prior to 9/11 the U.S. intelligence was unable to identify nor thwart the attacks despite significant information available to leaders and analysts. (2) After the U.S. lost the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, no U.S. military or civilian leader made an accurate assessment of WHY we lost. This dooms the U.S. to making similar mistakes going forward. (3) Many of the military generals who lost the wars for America in Iraq and Afghanistan – because they failed to identify the threat – are now the very men President Trump has fighting the current war. Why should Americans have faith the leaders of the U.S. Intelligence Community or U.S. military are getting it right this time? Author’s Note: In the fall of 2010, the Strategic Engagement Group (SEG) [John Guandolo’s previous organization] briefed Members of Congress about the coming Muslim Brotherhood led revolution in the Middle East, to include how it would happen, the nations involved, and why the Movement would get bogged down in Syria. In January 2011, it came to pass, and continues to unfold as briefed. In open testimony to Congress, Director of Central Intelligence Leon Panetta stated he had “no visibility” on this revolution prior to it occurring. Knowing the enemy matters.
- Since the United States government has still not (1) identified the enemy in this war, and (2) not created a coherent strategy for victory, it is not possible to win the war. As stated above, U.S. warfighting doctrine requires us to analyze a threat based on who THE ENEMY says he is. Our Islamic enemy – sunni and shia – clearly and unanimously states they are muslims waging jihad to establish an Islamic State (caliphate) under sharia (Islamic law). We must deal with the threat with that as the starting point. Can you defeat an enemy you refuse to identify?
- Over the past 16 years, the U.S. government has killed (Libya and Iraq) or removed from power (Egypt) leaders who kept the Muslim Brotherhood under heel. Libya’s leader Qaddafi killed more Al Qaeda fighters than anyone else. Eliminating these leaders was exactly what the Muslim Brotherhood wanted, and they got the U.S. government to do it for them in all 3 cases. The is what the MB calls “Civilization Jihad by OUR hands.” Is it reasonable to be concerned the United States is being guided in a similar way to take out Assad when, in fact, he and his father have a long history of crushing the Muslim Brotherhood efforts in Syria?
- Finally, all sides in the war in Syria are enemies of the United States. While they fight each other they have one thing in common – their universal hatred of the U.S. and a clear objective of establishing an Islamic State under sharia (Islamic law) in the world. Should the United States take any action that benefits either side in this war among Islamic armies?
Decisions to use the U.S. military are supposed to be based on the national security interests of the United States. The questions raised here are professional questions that demand answers if America’s leaders want to send our soldiers, sailors, airmen, and Marines into harms way again.