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  • Sanem
    Rank 5 Registered User
    • Oct 2010
    • 592

    where is Western air power over Iraq?

    a video showing the "battle" for Ramadi
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gt43Le51pTw

    they describe how they were surrounded by mobile units, and attacked with explosive-filled bulldozers
    now I can't help but wonder where the coalition air power was at this point
    a single MQ-9 Reaper for example with a few Hellfires would have smashed this attack no trouble, pushing back ISIS and killing its forces at the same time
  • swerve
    Rank 5 Registered User
    • Jun 2005
    • 13610

    #2
    More to the point, where was the Iraqi army? It should be able to overwhelm IS with ease. It has vastly greater numbers of troops, overwhelming firepower, & even without outside assistance, complete control of the air. Why is it losing?

    Explosive-filled bulldozers should be easy meat for anti-tank weapons, or artillery in direct fire. A bulldozer blade is very thin & easily penetrated compared to the armour of a tank, & being packed with explosives, suicide bulldozers should be very easy indeed to destroy, causing massive damage to the forces deploying them if hit early. Why didn't this happen? Why were they not blown up as soon as they appeared?

    A few men on the front line with the right weapons & the will to use them should have smashed this attack. Where were the weapons to do this with? The Iraqi army has enough of them. Why were they not used?

    Where were Iraq's Mi-35s, Mi-28s & Su-25s?

    These question, & others, could be repeated over & over again. How has this situation arisen? IS is weak, in terms of men & weapons. It is fighting a conventional war for control of territory. Why has it not been crushed? The balance of forces is entirely against it. What is wrong with the Iraqi army?

    Fix that, & IS would quickly be reduced to a few guerrillas & terrorists. Make commanders stay with their units - & severely punish (shooting might be appropriate) those who abandon their men. Govern in a way that shows the state is for all Iraqis, not only Shias. Find all the officers who had 'ghost' soldiers under their command, & give them the choice of punishment for treason, or fighting at the front. And so on . . .
    Juris praecepta sunt haec: honeste vivere, alterum non laedere, suum cuique tribuere.
    Justinian

    Comment

    • JSR
      JSR
      Rank 5 Registered User
      • Aug 2011
      • 4978

      #3
      Where were Iraq's Mi-35s, Mi-28s & Su-25s?
      those are in limited number relative to scale of problem and you cant expect them to proficient in there use in less than a year.
      they need giantt AWACS for survellence round the clock that can see even inside Turkish and Syrian borders.

      Pluse Iraqi army is full of turn coats. It need to be completely dismantled and new army created from ground up with Russian weopons, planning and training with maximum secrecy for surprize.

      http://rudaw.net/english/middleeast/...keyword=russia
      According to spokesman Nassir Nour the deal was struck during Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi visit to Moscow earlier last week. He said the timetable for arrival was withheld for security reasons

      Comment

      • sheytanelkebir
        Rank 5 Registered User
        • Feb 2013
        • 783

        #4
        Originally posted by swerve View Post
        More to the point, where was the Iraqi army? It should be able to overwhelm IS with ease. It has vastly greater numbers of troops, overwhelming firepower, & even without outside assistance, complete control of the air. Why is it losing?
        1- The "inclusiveness" that was imposed on the Iraqi military resulted in a force riddled with 5th columnists (from the top to the bottom) who sell out their own troops to ISIS.
        2- Iraq's military has only 30 Abrams tanks operational (100 in depot, about 16 destroyed)... that is spread over a spaghetti front several thousand kilometers in length and tens of thousands of kilometers square. They have another 200 MBTs from older generations too... but once again, far too few to matter.
        3- Iraqi HUMVEES and M113s are LESS RELIABLE and LESS WELL ARMED than the ISIS technicals.
        4- They have 3 Cessna Caravans and 5 SU-25s as an "air force" ... they do have a few dozen hellos spread over 2000km front... Meaning that the airpower element is pretty irrelevant in 99% of engagements since its simply unavailable.


        Explosive-filled bulldozers should be easy meat for anti-tank weapons, or artillery in direct fire. A bulldozer blade is very thin & easily penetrated compared to the armour of a tank, & being packed with explosives, suicide bulldozers should be very easy indeed to destroy, causing massive damage to the forces deploying them if hit early. Why didn't this happen? Why were they not blown up as soon as they appeared?
        Only one Iraqi unit actually has anti tank weapons. The 5th mechanised division in Diyala. Its been fighting against ISIS attacks from Baiji, Hawija etc... with them.

        Units of the PMU have destroyed dozens of "incoming" VBIEDs and the videos are on liveleak or youtube should you wish to see some...

        A few men on the front line with the right weapons & the will to use them should have smashed this attack. Where were the weapons to do this with? The Iraqi army has enough of them. Why were they not used?
        What happened is that the US and Sunni Tribes asked the Iraqis to withdraw the "popular mobilisation" from Ramadi, promising that local sunni tribes and US airpower will effectively replace them. Once the PMU withdrew, Ramadi fell within a week.

        Where were Iraq's Mi-35s, Mi-28s & Su-25s?
        I do believe on those particular days there were sandstorms... so they were on the ground or fighting only in the hamrin hills and Baiji areas.

        These question, & others, could be repeated over & over again.
        Only because the quality of reporting and understanding of the conflict is horrendously weak .

        How has this situation arisen?
        The "international community" attempting to maintain a single Iraqi state against the wishes of the people who live there?

        IS is weak, in terms of men & weapons.
        They have "popular support" in the areas they control. When you think of Iraq, think of three "zones" Shia, Sunni, Kurd. See where ISIS can "easily take over" and where they can't seem to take over for love or money. Still the "same" Iraqis defending each area... why the different outcomes?

        So ISIS is certainly not weak. It has money, popular support and more importantly it has effectively infiltrated the Iraqi military through the "inclusiveness" policies of bringing in and "reintegrating" unrepentant terrorists and baathists in Iraq's military.

        It is fighting a conventional war for control of territory.
        and it has only succeeded where it has popular support.

        Why has it not been crushed?
        Because the "international community" doesn't accept "sectarian shia militias and indiscriminate and unrepresentative" Iraqi armed forces to do that.

        The balance of forces is entirely against it.
        It has the popular support of Pan-Arab TV stations and populations at the least. It has open access to trade via Turkey and Kurdistan Region. It has both local soldiers as well as tens of thousands of foreign volunteers, it has access to weapons it buys, captures from syria and Iraq, weapoins it "captures" from "moderate" rebels etc... and it operates a high temp battle using reliable civilian vehicles to make rapid attacks.

        What is wrong with the Iraqi army?
        I've gone over this. read above.

        Fix that,
        "international community" won't allow the Iraqi army to kick out its illiterate "chief of staff" because he's a kurd. They won't allow Iraq to replace its "air force commander" who hasn't bought any fighters or trained any pilots and crews in the last 10 years because he's a kurd, It won't allow the Iraqis to summarily execute all the treacherous commanders because it would be "sectarian"... for example the US has forced the Iraqis to replace the Salahuddin Force Commander (who maintained Baiji refinery and organised the rout of daesh in Tikrit and the rest of Salahudin) because he was a southern "shia" ... and replaced him with a Local man from Tikrit... all fine, right. The BROTHER of the new commander is the "finance minister" of ISIS! And there are many many such "howlers"

        & IS would quickly be reduced to a few guerrillas & terrorists.
        nonsense. you could kill abu bakr al baghdadi tomorrow and it wouldn't change one thing.

        Make commanders stay with their units - & severely punish (shooting might be appropriate) those who abandon their men.
        I already mentioned this. You can't do that. Its sectarian.

        Govern in a way that shows the state is for all Iraqis, not only Shias.
        You seem to think that the state was governed in such a way. Quite simply Kurds don't consider themselves Iraqis despite having about double the average Iraqi income now funded by the "shias" .. and Sunni arabs made up a dispropotionate percentage of ministers, military commanders and judges even under Maliki... The real issue is that the Sunni Arab community in Iraq simply REJECTS any Iraq that is different to the "glorious past". And no number of positions of power or economic opportunities will change that. Its ALL or NOTHING.

        Find all the officers who had 'ghost' soldiers under their command, & give them the choice of punishment for treason, or fighting at the front. And so on . . .
        No. Once again, you're making the mistake here. Can't do that. It would seem to be a sectarian move to purge Sunnis.

        Comment

        • Sanem
          Rank 5 Registered User
          • Oct 2010
          • 592

          #5
          this article questions the "10,000 killed" report
          http://www.thedailybeast.com/article...ody-count.html

          it is my impression that the West doesn't want to attack ISIS. which is logical, because it's an ally

          ISIS is fighting all of the West's enemies:
          - Assad
          - Iran
          - Hezbollah
          - a pro-Iran Iraqi government that kicked out American troops

          General Wesley Clark reported years ago that the Pentagon planned to take out 7 countries back in 2001
          "Iraq, and then Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and, finishing off, Iran"
          since then war has come to most of these countries. some by direction Western invasion, others via rebel/local armies with Western SF/air power support

          most of them also ended up being US friendly after the conflict
          with the exception of Syria, where Western governments did not find the support for air attacks (possibly because of Russian resistance) and in Iraq, where the government turned pro-Iranian

          if this "7 country" plan exists, then ISIS is being a suspiciously convenient mercenary army for the US's goals
          it has broken Assad's grip on the country, besieging him in the capital, as happened in Lybia
          and then it invaded Iraq, conquering many oil fields from an Iranian-friendly government, just as oil saw its biggest drop in prices since 2008, greatly reducing Iraq's (and Iran's) income from two directions

          just as a rebel uprising pulls Ukraine out of Russia's sphere of influence. that's opening a second front, distracting Putin from what's going on in the Middle East

          the Pentagon says it has trouble targetting ISIS because they can't identify them. which is absurd, the USAF is the world leader in tracking and identifying insurgents, they've had 14 years of practice in Afghanistan
          if you fly a UAV or a jet with a SNIPER pod over an ISIS controlled area, and you see a group of heavily armed men and their vehicles, you can be pretty damn sure those are bad guys. never mind a long column of heavily armed vehicles moving between ISIS controlled area's
          this becomes even more obvious in area's where there is fighting going on, if you see units attacking known Iraqi positions, it's pretty obvious who's the bad guy

          Comment

          • djcross
            Rank 5 Registered User
            • Jan 2000
            • 5456

            #6
            The difference between now and OIF/OEF is the lack of JTACs. With ISIS controlling one city block and friendlies the next, you cannot simply target anyone in possession of a weapon. To do so would result in many friendly fire deaths.

            Comment

            • Sanem
              Rank 5 Registered User
              • Oct 2010
              • 592

              #7










              I'm sure those tanks moving from ISIS controlled irea's towards friendly controlled area's could be confused for friendlies
              I mean, who doesn't have a tank or 2 in their garage? then again, waving that ISIS flag when you're not actually ISIS is asking for it

              notice the ISIS symbols added onto the hoods and front windows. very confusing for sure

              Comment

              • ijozic
                Rank 5 Registered User
                • May 2014
                • 613

                #8
                Originally posted by Sanem View Post
                General Wesley Clark reported years ago that the Pentagon planned to take out 7 countries back in 2001
                "Iraq, and then Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and, finishing off, Iran"
                since then war has come to most of these countries. some by direction Western invasion, others via rebel/local armies with Western SF/air power support

                most of them also ended up being US friendly after the conflict
                with the exception of Syria, where Western governments did not find the support for air attacks (possibly because of Russian resistance) and in Iraq, where the government turned pro-Iranian
                Please, not this conspiracy garbage. FYI, ISIS formed after the US invasion and they have already proclaimed their caliphate in Iraq in 2006, but they were kicked out when the US forces started paying local Sunni tribes for their support. Then the US forces packed up and left so there was no-one to organize and pay the local Sunni tribes not to fight the central (naturally Shia dominated) government, while ISIS reorganized in Syria only to triumphantly return later on to the Sunni areas with the help of the Baathist underground organizations. Reading these conspiracy theories, one gets the impression that Iraq, Syria and Libya were functioning and united countries, rather than ethnically and religiously divided countries held together by oppressive regimes (doesn't help that they were minority dominated) which only shows a fundamental lack of history knowledge in people subscribing to these.

                I wouldn't trust everything this controversial ex-general Wesley Clark says in want of public attention (and thus money or fame or whatever). Even if the NeoCon parts of the Bush Jr. administration had such simple and straightforward secret "plans" (which according to Clark conveniently fill a single page A4 paper and are shown to passer by's like him) to "fix" the Middle East by invading and replacing those regimes with democratically elected governments, such a plan would have obviously grossly failed at stage one in Iraq because of the gross mismanagement due to idealism and lack of knowledge of the local situation. Just think how many people are involved in day-to-day operations of these scales - it would be impossible to keep such secret "plans" secret. I don't even want to comment these ISIS allies allegations. I thought this was a serious forum.
                Last edited by ijozic; 6th June 2015, 14:37.

                Comment

                • swerve
                  Rank 5 Registered User
                  • Jun 2005
                  • 13610

                  #9
                  Originally posted by Sanem View Post
                  this article questions the "10,000 killed" report
                  http://www.thedailybeast.com/article...ody-count.html

                  it is my impression that the West doesn't want to attack ISIS. which is logical, because it's an ally...
                  Are you mad? IS an ally of the west?

                  You've just put yourself into the "not worth reading another word written by" category.
                  Juris praecepta sunt haec: honeste vivere, alterum non laedere, suum cuique tribuere.
                  Justinian

                  Comment

                  • swerve
                    Rank 5 Registered User
                    • Jun 2005
                    • 13610

                    #10
                    Originally posted by sheytanelkebir View Post
                    ...
                    Only one Iraqi unit actually has anti tank weapons. The 5th mechanised division in Diyala. Its been fighting against ISIS attacks from Baiji, Hawija etc... with them.....
                    If true, that's completely insane. Every unit should have anti-tank weapons. Not just every division, but every company. RPGs or the like (which would be perfectly good enough) should be standard issue to every platoon. It's not difficult. For the cost of one fighter jet, enough could be bought for an initial issue. Supply is no problem: there are more countries than I can be bothered to count that make them. You don't need huge numbers of weapons which can defeat M1s, just basic RPGs or similar all round, plus a relatively small number of guided weapons with more effective warheads.

                    Where are they? Why hasn't Iran passed on a few tens of thousands? It has plenty to spare, & can replace them from its own factories.
                    Juris praecepta sunt haec: honeste vivere, alterum non laedere, suum cuique tribuere.
                    Justinian

                    Comment

                    • obligatory
                      Senior Member
                      • Oct 2008
                      • 7043

                      #11
                      World | Sat Jun 6, 2015 2:07am BST
                      Related: World
                      U.S., allies target Islamic State with 19 air strikes - task force
                      WASHINGTON

                      The United States and its allies have conducted 15 air strikes targeting Islamic State militants in Iraq since early on Thursday and an additional four targeting them in Syria
                      http://uk.reuters.com/article/2015/0...0OM01N20150606

                      ...So: 19 airstrikes over the last 3 days, somebody's been too busy reading Koran lately to smell the coffee

                      Comment

                      • ijozic
                        Rank 5 Registered User
                        • May 2014
                        • 613

                        #12
                        Originally posted by swerve View Post
                        If true, that's completely insane. Every unit should have anti-tank weapons. Not just every division, but every company. RPGs or the like (which would be perfectly good enough) should be standard issue to every platoon. It's not difficult. For the cost of one fighter jet, enough could be bought for an initial issue. Supply is no problem: there are more countries than I can be bothered to count that make them. You don't need huge numbers of weapons which can defeat M1s, just basic RPGs or similar all round, plus a relatively small number of guided weapons with more effective warheads.
                        There's an interesting book available with the interviews with former Saddam's generals - they indicate a complete organizational blunder during the invasion of Iran in 1980. The generals were not appointed according to merit back done and things could be even worse now despite all the US efforts spent on training the army.

                        Comment

                        • FalconDude
                          Rank 5 Registered User
                          • Sep 2010
                          • 1172

                          #13
                          I think anyone who refuses to acknowledge that IS is a creation and is supported by the west (big scandal in Turkey with found out heavy supplies to IS, Turkey being the west's hand in the middle east) are only fooling themselves.

                          They will be used to take out governments like Asad and when the time comes that they will have outlived their usefulness they will be "taken care of"

                          The only problem with this logic is that the west never put Al Qaeda under control, why will they manage to put IS?

                          The west created IS, the west is funding and supplying IS and is directly responsible for the thousands that are dying horrifically at their hands.

                          Comment

                          • lukos
                            Senior Member
                            • Aug 2013
                            • 1762

                            #14
                            Originally posted by FalconDude View Post
                            I think anyone who refuses to acknowledge that IS is a creation and is supported by the west (big scandal in Turkey with found out heavy supplies to IS, Turkey being the west's hand in the middle east) are only fooling themselves.

                            They will be used to take out governments like Asad and when the time comes that they will have outlived their usefulness they will be "taken care of"

                            The only problem with this logic is that the west never put Al Qaeda under control, why will they manage to put IS?

                            The west created IS, the west is funding and supplying IS and is directly responsible for the thousands that are dying horrifically at their hands.
                            Hate to agree with that but it seems likely. Between Iran, Iraq and Syria there was growing Shia power in the region following the ousting of Saddam and neither Saudi Arabia nor Israel was happy and so suddenly IS appears and begins destabilising Shia regimes funded from out of nowhere and extremely sophisticated. Al-Quaeda then realises this and denounces IS.

                            Comment

                            • FalconDude
                              Rank 5 Registered User
                              • Sep 2010
                              • 1172

                              #15
                              Well the story is there. If you track down the steps up to this point it becomes apparent. This day and age, it is hard to hide everything from everyone.

                              Comment

                              • ijozic
                                Rank 5 Registered User
                                • May 2014
                                • 613

                                #16
                                Originally posted by lukos View Post
                                Hate to agree with that but it seems likely. Between Iran, Iraq and Syria there was growing Shia power in the region following the ousting of Saddam and neither Saudi Arabia nor Israel was happy and so suddenly IS appears and begins destabilising Shia regimes funded from out of nowhere and extremely sophisticated. Al-Quaeda then realises this and denounces IS.
                                Just because they were given little media spotlight before, doesn't mean they suddenly appeared out of nowhere. ISIS started as an Al-Qaeda local subsidiary (Al-Qaeda in Iraq) after the US invasion which in time became taken over by locals linked with ex-Baathists who had a somewhat different agenda from the main organization (e.g. fighting non-Sunni population, proclaiming an Islamic Caliphate in 2006., etc.). They proclaimed the Islamic Caliphate already in Iraq in 2006. against the wishes of its former main organization, only to be kicked out by the US forces by then much better organized (combined e.g. with paying off the Sunni tribes to switch support, Al-Sistani Shia militia, etc.). They then had years to reorganize themselves in Syria since the Syrian regime was too weak to control large parts of its territory and once the US packed up and left, there was no-one to organize and (more importantly) pay Sunni tribes to resist the revival of the insurgency not the least the army units which while badly trained and organized and not even regularly paid, were also comprised of mostly of Sunnis and Kurds in those attacked areas which had little motivation to fight for the central (Shia dominated) government. I'd presume that the rural areas of Syria and Iraq are still first and foremost tribal organized and those tribes shift their support to the strongest power at any given time to survive.

                                A simple google search can provide you various articles such as e.g. this one:

                                https://firstlook.org/theintercept/2...dam-loyalists/

                                But, of course, the story is rather complicated as is the history of the countries involved which is why it's much easier to subscribe to a conspiracy theory which explains everything in a few sentences including only monolithic agents such as "US", "Turkey", "Iran", "Iraq", "ISIS", "Sunni", "Shia", etc. This saves you from a lot of reading and even more mental effort to comprehend how multi-faceted and chaotic it all is.
                                Last edited by ijozic; 6th June 2015, 17:22.

                                Comment

                                • Sanem
                                  Rank 5 Registered User
                                  • Oct 2010
                                  • 592

                                  #17
                                  Originally posted by ijozic View Post
                                  Please, not this conspiracy garbage
                                  what conspiracy garbage would you prefere then?
                                  the one where the US trains and supports psychopatic terrorist groups and/or dictators who rape, murder and enslave their own people, from South America to the Middle East?
                                  the one where the West supports the "rebel uprising" in Lybia and Syria, which later turn out to be mercenaries and Western special forces (the UK denied SAS troops were present in Lybia until after the conflict)

                                  or the one where US generals propose to the US president for the CIA to execute terrorist attacks on US civilian targets as an excuse to invade another country
                                  and before you tell me I'm crazy, you might want to read up on your Congress-declassified secret documents, you might learn a thing or two
                                  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Northwoods

                                  it is an established fact that the US has used proxies to fight its wars for it, including "terrorist" organisations (Taliban during the 1980's, anyone?)
                                  it is an established fact that the US will publicly lie about its operations ("yes, we're 100% sure Iraq has WMDs and wants to give them to Al-Qaeda")

                                  ISIS was considered an "ally" of sorts until they invaded Iraq. even today they're still exclusively fighting the US's enemies
                                  odd for an organisation that focusses most of its PR on showing how much they hate the West, that doesn't make sense. if they hadn't done that, the West might not have found the support to attack them with air raids in the first place
                                  and then the West executes a huge air campaign, yet somehow this seems to have no effect on ISIS's war capabilities

                                  at the end of the day ISIS is completing the US's goals, namely overthrowing Assad (or at least taking his country out of the global equation) and fighting Iran and its Iraqi allies
                                  even if US isn't controlling ISIS, strategically speaking it has no interest in stopping it

                                  Comment

                                  • lukos
                                    Senior Member
                                    • Aug 2013
                                    • 1762

                                    #18
                                    Originally posted by ijozic View Post
                                    Just because they were given little media spotlight before, doesn't mean they suddenly appeared out of nowhere. ISIS started as an Al-Qaeda local subsidiary (Al-Qaeda in Iraq) after the US invasion which in time became taken over by locals linked with ex-Baathists who had a somewhat different agenda from the main organization (e.g. fighting non-Sunni population, proclaiming an Islamic Caliphate in 2006., etc.).

                                    A simple google search can provide you various articles such as these:

                                    https://firstlook.org/theintercept/2...dam-loyalists/

                                    But, of course, the story is rather complicated as is the history of the countries involved which is why it's much easier to assume a conspiracy theory which can explain everything in a few simple sentences. It saves you from a lot of reading and exercising some mental effort.
                                    Or one could look at the fact that nobody knew about them until recently and ask how they suddenly became so big and who is funding them.

                                    Originally posted by Sanem View Post
                                    at the end of the day ISIS is completing the US's goals, namely overthrowing Assad (or at least taking his country out of the global equation) and fighting Iran and its Iraqi allies
                                    even if US isn't controlling ISIS, strategically speaking it has no interest in stopping it
                                    It's very much the old, "an enemy of an enemy is a friend," philosophy... until they aren't and start taking out buildings in the West. Al-Quaeda itself was created as an opposition to Soviet communist expansion.
                                    Last edited by lukos; 6th June 2015, 16:51.

                                    Comment

                                    • Fedaykin
                                      Fueled by Tea
                                      • Dec 2005
                                      • 5295

                                      #19
                                      I think another pertinent question is: Where are the GCC states in all of this?

                                      Oh yes I remember! Bombing Shia Houthi rebels in Yemen who want such evil dastardly things as: government accountability, the end to corruption, regular utilities, fair fuel prices, job opportunities for ordinary Yemenis and the end of Western influence!

                                      OK the Houthi rebels are widely supported amongst the Yemeni population and desire to set up a representative democratic Republic and have stated they don't want to set up a cleric led Iranian style government and are already running peoples councils in Sana'a. Of course we can't have that kind of thing breaking out can we so of course the GCC need to prioritise bombing Yemen over taking on ISIS...
                                      Because sometimes in life we need a bit of fun

                                      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TXNAp3mKepc

                                      Comment

                                      • ijozic
                                        Rank 5 Registered User
                                        • May 2014
                                        • 613

                                        #20
                                        Originally posted by Sanem View Post
                                        the one where the West supports the "rebel uprising" in Lybia and Syria, which later turn out to be mercenaries and Western special forces (the UK denied SAS troops were present in Lybia until after the conflict)
                                        The uprisings were legit and were not the first in the history of these ethnically divided countries. That the outside elements seized the opportunity and became involved is quite normal.

                                        Originally posted by Sanem View Post
                                        or the one where US generals propose to the US president for the CIA to execute terrorist attacks on US civilian targets as an excuse to invade another country
                                        and before you tell me I'm crazy, you might want to read up on your Congress-declassified secret documents, you might learn a thing or two
                                        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Northwoods
                                        This is all well known. You can mention other scandals like the CIA sponsored invasion of Guatemala or more relevant assistance to the British coup in Iran in 1956. etc. but I don't see how it is a proof of anything in case of Iraq and Syria.

                                        it is an established fact that the US has used proxies to fight its wars for it, including "terrorist" organisations (Taliban during the 1980's, anyone?)
                                        This is your own misinformation. US had nothing to do with the Taliban which were a product of Saudi sponsored religious schools in Pakistan training refugees and organized by the Pakistan ISI secret service.

                                        it is an established fact that the US will publicly lie about its operations ("yes, we're 100% sure Iraq has WMDs and wants to give them to Al-Qaeda")
                                        These reports were based on statements by some Iraqi dissidents and were selected among the sea of reports saying differently by the leading members of the then US administration who had an agenda to invade Iraq and bring down Saddam's regime. Again, it doesn't prove anything here. Every country powerful enough to exert influence has its own strategic interests, agendas, etc. and resorts to various means of achieving them.

                                        ISIS was considered an "ally" of sorts until they invaded Iraq. even today they're still exclusively fighting the US's enemies
                                        Yeah, right. They were fighting US forces in Iraq before they withdrew to Syria where they were fighting (however insignificant) US supported rebel groups in Syria, not to mention the Kurd forces which the US try to give air support to.

                                        odd for an organisation that focusses most of its PR on showing how much they hate the West, that doesn't make sense. if they hadn't done that, the West might not have found the support to attack them with air raids in the first place
                                        Of course it makes sense. They are fighting their primary threat which are the local alternatives to their rule. Once defeated, the US and others would have no allied forces on the ground and would probably be forced to give up.

                                        and then the West executes a huge air campaign, yet somehow this seems to have no effect on ISIS's war capabilities
                                        Huge? Huge was the air campaign in Vietnam and yet it had only a delaying impact on the final outcome. You need combined efforts with "the boots on the ground" to achieve anything.

                                        at the end of the day ISIS is completing the US's goals, namely overthrowing Assad (or at least taking his country out of the global equation) and fighting Iran and its Iraqi allies even if US isn't controlling ISIS, strategically speaking it has no interest in stopping it
                                        The US administration would like to see Assad gone (who wouldn't apart from perhaps IRGC which need a supply link to their Lebanese proxy), but certainly not replaced by ISIS. The relationship between Iran and US is complex and they're probably not happy about it expanding their influence, but it's ludicrous to suggest that the US would like to see ISIS rollover Iraq just because they have relations with Iran. In fact, exactly because of ISIS crushing down the Iraqi army is Iraq falling more and more under Iran's control because they are becoming dependent on their support (like Syrian regime is) so what you're suggesting makes even less sense in that regard. And what would the US gain from ISIS turning back the clock for a few centuries and possibly igniting the rest of the Middle East? The global oil price would skyrocket and this is exactly what they don't want to happen and why they got involved in the first place.
                                        Last edited by ijozic; 6th June 2015, 21:57.

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