Finally - Ground Troops Fighting Daesh
11 December 2015
By Salman Aldosary
After years of hesitation, US President Barack Obama's administration has
acknowledged that there is no way to defeat terrorist organisations that are
wreaking havoc in Iraq and Syria except by sending in ground troops, instead
of being content with air strikes which are not producing any real change on
the ground since the beginning of the international coalition's operations in
September last year.
The American Secretary of Defence Ashton Carter admitted indirectly that the
decision to send 50 soldiers to fight Daesh is illogical and announced that
he will deploy U.S. Special Forces to Iraq to carry out operations against
Daesh including the launch of raids on Daesh centres in Syria. As for the
American Secretary of State John Kerry, he stressed that the deployment of
Syrian or Arab ground troops was a must in order to defeat Daesh.
Putting aside Mr Obama's statements that sending more troops to fight Daesh
in Iraq ''does not mean that he will go down the same route as American
intervention in 2003'', Obama is aware that his administration's slogan ''the
absence of a military solution to anything'' has proved his complete failure.
The United States has finally realised that it needs real military force to
defeat Daesh and if it does not fight it today in Syria and Iraq, then it
will fight it tomorrow in Texas and New York.
It can be said that in the presence of a huge air force there is no need for
an enormous number of ground troops to defeat Daesh, and the United States
does not need to repeat its attempt to invade Iraq where the number of troops
operating on the ground is between 100,000 to 150,000. These troops need not
be solely American, for France is willing to participate, and Britain has
hinted that it will send ground troops to complete this common force made up
of western, Arab and Islamic countries. Without these ground troops, fighting
Daesh timidly as is being done now will not be beneficial especially in light
of Daesh's gains from Iranian Russian intervention supporting its bases in
Syria and Iraq.
Salman Aldosary is the
editor-in-chief of Asharq Al-Awsat newspaper.