Best Defense

Iraq: No way out

A friend who is a retired Army officer makes this point: “We (the U.S.) have maneuvered ourselves into a position where tactical/operational victory in Iraq (neutralize ISIS) translates into strategic defeat — Iraq firmly under the influence of the Iranians.”

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A friend who is a retired Army officer makes this point: “We (the U.S.) have maneuvered ourselves into a position where tactical/operational victory in Iraq (neutralize ISIS) translates into strategic defeat — Iraq firmly under the influence of the Iranians.”

It is a simple but important point. The more we help the Baghdad government, the more we help Iran consolidate its control over Iraq. But if we back off, we do the same for ISIS in parts of Iraq.

If this is the case, and I think it is, I don’t know what our policy should be.

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Thomas E. Ricks covered the U.S. military from 1991 to 2008 for the Wall Street Journal and then the Washington Post. He can be reached at ricksblogcomment@gmail.com. @tomricks1
Tags: Iraq, ISIS

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