In a recent vote by Congress, both the House and then the Senate, President Obama gained the necessary votes to go forward with his plan to deal with ISIS or as he calls them, ISIL. In response to this vote of confidence, On The Record host, Greta Van Susteren put forth an interesting question on her Facebook page.
“Everyone (except ISIS) believes ISIS is EVIL and must be DESTROYED. Even our Russian guest last night-the Russian Ambassador to the UN- said ISIS is horrible. And everyone agrees the only way to kill ISIS is boots on the ground. No one thinks ISIS can be destroyed from the air. BUT? No nation wants to put boots on the ground and our President has expressly said no boots. At best? USA says it will train Iraqis and it will take 6 months to train 5,000 Iraqis. But here is a problem – it is estimated that in 6 months, the time we take to train 5,000, ISIS grows by 15,000 fighters, So…do the math.”
Clearly, the point Van Susteren was making is that by the time the President’s plan has had time to be implemented, the problem it was originally designed to deal with will have grown by another 15,000 terrorist. Which means, it will fall short of the necessary “boots on the ground” needed to deal effectively with the growing threat.
President Obama has lamented his reluctance to commit more US Troops to the fight in another ground war. He insists that a coalition of Muslim and non-Muslim members will commit the necessary forces to fight ISIS/IL. As of the date of this writing, not one Muslim or non-Muslim nation has committed to sending troops into Iraq or Syria to fight ISIS.
The President has also reassured Americans that our vital interest are at stake and in that respect he will use the air power of the US Military at his disposal, to deal with ISIS/IL. His intent is to bomb them into submission and defeat. Only those military members necessary for training and precision bombings will be put in “harm’s way”. We can look at the historical accounts of air campaigns to see their effectiveness in dealing with an entrenched and determined foe.
There are several historical accounts of successful bombing campaigns. World War II is filled with numerous examples of the effective use of bombing against the enemy. Ironically, World War II is also filled with examples of the failure of bombing campaigns. (See Germany & the Battle of Britain) Another air campaign that bombed was the colossal failure in Vietnam. One thing is certain when it comes to bombing campaigns, there has never been a successful victory without the use of ground forces and overwhelming ground forces at that, save one possible example.
If we take a look at the bombing campaign that ended World War II in Asia, we all know that it was the most dramatic bombing ever in the history of mankind. The United States dropped two atomic bombs on first Hiroshima and then Nagasaki. Within a few hours the Japanese, who were famously known never to surrender, capitulated and spared the allies from an impending invasion of the islands. So, perhaps if President Obama is serious about an effective bombing campaign without ground troops, he should consider the “N” word…and I do mean nuclear.
One well-placed nuclear bomb in the heart of ISIS/IL command center, would send a clear and terrifying message to not only ISIS/IL but also their tacit supporters. It would also signal to the members of neighboring states that the days of America asking for their help and being rebuffed are over. Either you vow to stop these terrorist organizations or stand the risk of waking up to the sight of a mushroom cloud rising in the distance of one of your neighboring countries.
Environmentalist from the EPA would be loudest in their opposition to such measures but the sound of Americans decrying the beheading of one of our citizens should drowned out their voices. The United States can ill afford another expensive military campaign built on how to do the least stupid thing, regardless of how much it cost us in blood or treasure. Sending a Hiroshima style message–via a nuke–would end the attacks on America for a generation and re-establish our position in the world as a nation not to be trifled with now or ever.