Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Here's the ISIS Juggernaut on a map


ISIS controls the Sunni desert interior of Syria and Iraq.  Compare this to a map of religious coverage in Iraq. Essentially ISIS controls a portion of the Sunni heartland and a big swathe of empty desert.

Look at a similar map for Syria. You'll note that the "unstoppable" ISIS "steamroller" controls less than half of the Sunni Majority territory - and it's the emptiest half.

ISIS has made no headway taking areas not dominated by their home boys. None. Any time they've stuck their nose into another sectarian bailiwick they've gotten it bloodied. Indeed it was their steady drubbing by the Alawite, Druze and Shiite dominated Syrian Army that sent them pelting after an easier target in an Iraq abandoned by Barack Obama.  In fact, had BHO not gutted the small US support force aka "key to Sunni Iraq stability" (with the help of a Shiite central government itching to loot them), it is inconceivable that the "Allah Ordained" Caliphate would have risked invasion - it certainly wouldn't have gotten nearly as far.  ISIS only succeeded because the Iraqi Sunni rump, abandoned by a President whose motto is "don't do stupid shit" (meaning dont do shit the faculty club would disapprove of) needed someone else, no matter how unsavory (remember these were the 'cats who formed Saddam's loyal remnant) to protect them against the dominant and vengeful Shiites.

Its inability to thrive outside of "Sunni-land" is the best justification for Barack Obama's passivity towards ISIS: they truly are a JayVee who can't win anywhere where the populace opposes them. In that they behave like every other authentically Arab force to go to war in the Middle East since about 1300AD. And unless ISIS can somehow take and hold hundreds of thousands of square miles of the empty, shelterless desert that lies between them and central Saudi Arabia, they stand no chance of expanding. And even if they did take Riyadh, they still wouldn't control much worth a damn because with the exception of Kuwait, the upper Gulf's oil is in districts heavily populated by Shiites who will fight to the oil field flaming death before they give in to ISIS butchery. And even then without control of the Persian Gulf they won't be able to sell a drop of what they conquer.

Indeed the fact that ISIS has so heinously and publicly murdered so many different minority groups is the best evidence that they never seriously intended to recreate the Caliphate in the first place. Anyone truly seeking to recreate a pan-Arab nation would take great pains to conciliate the various Islamic Sects and ethnicities that they need to control - at least until they cemented their power.  Instead these guys are doing the highly visible and violent things guaranteed to get them hated and feared locally and admired by muslim butchers elsewhere. Which is great if your goal is to run a global extortion and terror network. Because that's what they're building.

The Caliphate is a molding rump ruling a largely empty desert with no real economic output or sophisticated population center to base an empire on. They aren't going anywhere.  That it falls to me a - redneck conservative from Oklahoma - to make the President's case shows just how shallow and clueless he and his Ivy league 'brain' trust are.  They don't understand the Middle East and aside from reflexively assuming that the US is the bad guy, don't really care.  Which is how ISIS got it going in the first place.

The real threat to peace and stability in the region and indeed the world is the rise of Iran as a nuclear power and Shiite champion. If Arab Sunnis perceive that Iran is getting the bomb while America continues to sink into Obamite cluelessness then they will act in their rational self interest and get their own nuclear deterrent. And since ISIS (and al Qaeda) are Arab Sunni powers, a Sunni Arab bomb could easily end up in their hands.

So given how much is at stake, is it too much to ask that in the future both parties nominate candidates that 1. Believe in the United States as a responsible and active force for good in the world, 2. Have some grasp of geopolitics so that they won't be stampeded by panicky legislators and pundits every time another medieval reenactment of Saladin comes along? And 3. Has the discernment and stones to stand up to the real threats to global peace and prosperity rather than wah, wah, wahing climate and gender flapdoodle?


Fucking amateurs.

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