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Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Thomas Friedman, "#You Ain’t No American, Bro": You Can't Always Get What You Want ... or Even Need



I agree with Thomas Friedman in his latest New York Times op-ed, "#You Ain’t No American, Bro," that "Trump, by alienating the Muslim world with his call for a ban on Muslims entering America, is acting as the Islamic State’s secret agent." But from there, Friedman's opinion piece is all downhill.

Friedman proceeds to inform us:

"We need moderate Sunni Muslim forces to go house to house against ISIS in Iraq. We need Sunni spiritual leaders to go heart to heart and delegitimize the ISIS message everywhere. And we need Iran to make clear it supports an equitable power-sharing agreement in Iraq between Sunnis and Shiites, so moderate Sunni Arabs will fight ISIS rather than seeing it as their shield against Iran."

"Moderate" Sunni Muslim forces? Apart from the Kurds, tell me where to find them.

"We need Sunni spiritual leaders to go heart to heart and delegitimize the ISIS message everywhere"? I suggest Friedman take a tour of Saudi mosques on any given Friday. This is an instance where you can't always get what you want ... or even "need" for that matter.

"[W]e need Iran to make clear it supports an equitable power-sharing agreement in Iraq between Sunnis and Shiites"? Heck, Tom, Iranian meddling in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Yemen, Egypt, Bahrain and Gaza is all about a play for Shiite hegemony throughout the Middle East following Saddam Hussein's disappearance from the scene. There is simply no way in hell that Iran is going to support an equitable power-sharing agreement in Iraq.

A solution to the quandary posed by ISIS? Needless to say, Tom Terrific has the answer:

"Apply more pressure on our Sunni allies to join the anti-ISIS fight with troops on the ground; call on the Saudis and other Sunnis to loudly delegitimize ISIS; deploy more U.S. and NATO Special Forces; make clear to Iran that we might have to put the nuclear deal on hold if Iran is not a more constructive partner in Iraq and Syria."

Pressure America's Sunni allies? Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait and Turkey are busy playing both sides of the fence.

"[M]ake clear to Iran that we might have to put the nuclear deal on hold if Iran is not a more constructive partner in Iraq and Syria"? Hey, Tom, Iran doesn't care. Three weeks ago, Iran test-launched its Ghadr-110 medium range ballistic missile, which can carry a nuclear warhead, in violation of Obama's unsigned nuclear deal with Supreme Leader Khamenei. Meanwhile, the UN Security Council still can't decide how to respond to a prior Iranian ballistic missile test in October.

Heaven help us if Trump wins the Republican nomination. And if Obama heeds Friedman, we're also in deep sh*t.

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