Tags: Barack Obama | George W. Bush | Iraq | ISIS/Islamic State | Steve Malzberg Show | James Woolsey | United States

James Woolsey: US on Verge of Losing Fight Against ISIS

By    |   Thursday, 21 May 2015 08:18 PM

The United States is on the verge of losing the fight against the Islamic State (ISIS), which is moving closer to dominating the Middle East, James Woolsey, former director of the CIA, told Newsmax TV on Thursday.

"We're certainly not doing enough and if we're not losing, we're coming so close to losing that we've got to change what we do. This is just unacceptable," Woolsey said in an interview on "The Steve Malzberg Show."

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"We're going to find ISIS or the Iranians or some combination of the two of them dominating the Middle East and that would be an extremely dangerous situation."

Last weekend, the key Iraqi city of Ramadi was captured by ISIS, which said on Thursday that it has now taken the ancient city of Palmyra.

Still, President Barack Obama, said in an interview published in The Atlantic on Thursday, that "I don't think we're losing" to ISIS.

Asked if the United States seems to be conceding that Iraq will become a caliphate under ISIS rule, Woolsey, chairman of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, said:

"I certainly hope not. President [George W.] Bush was also faced in '06 with a terrible situation in which the opposition, the Shiite groups and others, were taking Anbar and winning.

"He disregarded the advice of most of his advisers and went with the advice of Gen. Jack Keen and one or two others, implemented the surge, and quite successfully pulled that off and left President Obama after '08 with a really solid situation."

Woolsey also said he agreed with a Defense Intelligence Agency that concluded the deadly September 2012 attack against the U.S. consulate in Benghazi was planned in advance, not an impromptu protest against an anti-Islamic video posted on YouTube.

The DIA's report dismissed former acting CIA Director Michael Morell's belief that the attack was not planned and may have been inspired by the video.

"I agree with the DIA document and Gen. Mike Flynn, who was head of DIA for several years … did an excellent job throughout all of this, superior in many ways to the other intelligence agencies," he said.

"They were standing by themselves and calling it straight and got a lot of criticism inside the government for calling it straight and sticking to their guns. I know what that's like and I take my hat off to Gen. Flynn and to the other people in DIA who put these assessments together."

Woolsey also said the Chinese navy's warning to a U.S. spy plane to stop flying over Beijing's man-made islands in the disputed South China Sea is alarming.

"China is getting very aggressive in the South China Sea, and not only with respect to the islands or tiny islands that they reasonably could say is within their control, but others that are more likely under any reasonable interpretation of international law to be under the control of others," Woolsey said.

"The Chinese are building artificial islands … with air strips and so forth on them in an effort to claim those areas. I imagine what was at the root of this a while back was oil and they're wanting to have as much control over as much of the South China Sea as possible."

Woolsey's foundation is a nonprofit, nonpartisan policy institute focusing on foreign policy and national security.

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The United States is on the verge of losing the fight against the Islamic State (ISIS), which is moving closer to dominating the Middle East, James Woolsey, former director of the CIA, told Newsmax TV on Thursday.
James Woolsey, United States, ISIS, Islamic State, Benghazi
Thursday, 21 May 2015 08:18 PM
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