Tags: ISIS | Lowry | Carter

Rich Lowry: Obama's ISIS Fight 'Too Passive' for Carter

Rich Lowry: Obama's ISIS Fight 'Too Passive' for Carter
(Adam Hunger/Reuters/Landov)

By    |   Thursday, 09 October 2014 02:07 PM

Politics does indeed make for strange bedfellows, especially when the discussion is over an unpopular president unwillingly fighting, sort of, an unpopular war.

The National Review's editor Rich Lowry, known for taking a conservative slant on things political, has sided with former Democratic President Jimmy Carter in lambasting President Barack Obama's minimalist, halfway war against the Islamic State.

In an article in Politico titled, "A War For Show," Lowry cited Carter's recent criticism of Obama's anti-Islamic State (ISIS, or ISIL) efforts for their weakness in sticking to a bombing campaign and refusing to put American troops on the ground to decisively defeat the terrorists.

"When you are too passive for Jimmy Carter, it’s time for some soul-searching in the Situation Room," Lowry wrote on Politico.

"The war against ISIL happens to be just enough to placate the public’s hawkish mood, without getting too far out in front or taking actions that will fully commit the president.

"The Powell Doctrine is to use maximum military power to achieve a clear objective; the Obama Doctrine, judging from this latest episode, is to use minimal military power to create a vague impression. Message: I care about defeating ISIL, for now," Lowry wrote.

Carter recently told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, "First of all, we waited too long. We let the Islamic state build up its money, capability and strength and weapons while it was still in Syria.

"If we keep on working in Iraq and have some ground troops to follow up when we do our bombing, there is a possibility of success," Carter said. "You have to have somebody on the ground to direct our missiles and to be sure you have the right target.

"Then, you have to have somebody to move in and be willing to fight ISIS after the strikes."

Even top military advisers like Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, have indicated ground troops may be necessary, yet Obama has ruled out using American troops in combat, CNN reported.

Calling Obama's efforts against the Islamic State "desultory and occasional," and "a campaign of underwhelming force," Lowry argued that it is more a public relations effort than a serious assault to destroy the terrorists.

"In reaction to a spectacular media event, the horrific ISIL beheadings, the president staged his own media event, an inconsequential bombing campaign accompanied by a tough-sounding, prime-time speech."

This, he said, suggests that "Obama is a hawk precisely to the extent he feels the politics don’t allow him to wiggle out of it.

"The war against ISIL happens to be just enough to placate the public’s hawkish mood, without getting too far out in front or taking actions that will fully commit the president.

"It caused a minor furor when Obama said a few weeks ago that he didn’t have a strategy against ISIL yet. The scandal is that, with American planes dropping bombs in two countries, he still doesn’t."


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Politics does indeed make for strange bedfellows, especially when the discussion is over an unpopular president unwillingly fighting, sort of, an unpopular war.
ISIS, Lowry, Carter
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2014-07-09
Thursday, 09 October 2014 02:07 PM
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