President Obama is sending an additional 600 U.S. troops to Iraq to assist in the upcoming battle to drive the Islamic State from the city of Mosul. This brings the “official” number of U.S. troops to 5,000. But the Pentagon has repeatedly admitted to having over 6,000 troops in Iraq before this announcement. The Pentagon states that open-end deployments are not part of the official count.
The troops will be stationed close to the fight at Qayyarah West airfield. They will train, advise and assist teams for Iraqi Security Forces and Kurdish Peshmerga fighters. Army Lt. Gen. Stephen Townsend, commander of the task force, already has authority to place U.S. advisers with the attacking force at the battalion level, in other words, involved in direct combat.
The Pentagon also expects ISIS fighters to use chemical weapons to defend Mosul. Once again our military men and women will be put in harm’s way for a war that has no military solution. So why is military force our continued response? Again, there is no plan on what happens after Mosul is reclaimed. Who will govern and rebuild Mosul? How will the real grievances of the Iraqi people be addressed? Why do we keep repeating the same mistakes in Iraq?
We need to stop this endless cycle of military intervention. All U.S. troops should be withdrawn from Iraq and Afghanistan. Our government should commit its money, time and efforts in support of dedicated diplomacy creating a solid foundation for a more stable Middle East.
Please add your name to UFPJ’s appeal to the President and demand that he immediately withdraw all U.S. troops from Afghanistan and commit to regional diplomacy that begins to build a solid foundation for a nuclear and weapons-of-mass-destruction free Middle East.