RUSH: This morning on CBS This Morning. Holly Williams is the foreign correspondent for CBS News, and she was reporting about the war against ISIS in Syria and the impact of US air strikes there.
WILLIAMS: The fighters in Mahmoodin village told us that the US-led air strikes against ISIS in Syria have so far had very little impact on the ground. Like many people, in this part of the world, they would like to see more of them.
RUSH: What? What? What? Whoa, whoa! Wait, wait, wait. That’s not right. Last week John Kerry said that they were on the run. John Kerry, who served in Vietnam, by the way. He said they were on the run! ISIS was on the run. We had ’em on the run. And here is Holly Williams at CBS just today: “US-led air strikes against ISIS at Syria have so far had very little impact on the ground.” In fact, this is Kerry last week on Wednesday on CNN.
KERRY: What we’ve done is we’ve stopped the onslaught. That was what we were able to achieve with air power.
KERRY: They were moving towards Erbil!
KERRY: They were moving towards Baghdad!
RUSH: That’s right.
KERRY: Baghdad could well have fallen.
RUSH: But it didn’t.
KERRY: Erbil could have fallen.
RUSH: But it didn’t.
KERRY: They could have control of all of the oil fields.
RUSH: Well, they don’t.
KERRY: We re-secured the Mosul Dam. We broke the siege at Sinjar Mountain. So air power has been effective.
RUSH: That was last Wednesday. Just this morning we had Holly Williams of CBS report, “US-led air strikes against ISIS in Syria have so far had very little impact on the ground. Like many people, in this part of the world, they would like to see more of them.” It’s gonna be tough to get the truth from this bunch on all this, folks.
RUSH: If you look at this, I guess it’s nothing new. But is there anything, folks, in Obama’s campaign or in the first term of the presidency that didn’t turn out to be untrue? What were his major claims? “Well, we’ve got Al-Qaeda on the run. We got bin Laden. Al-Qaeda’s on the run! ISIS? They’re the JV team. Come on, don’t waste my time! I’ve got better things than worry about than a bunch of ragtag leftovers.”
“You can keep your insurance.” Remember that?
“If you like your insurance policy, you get to keep it! If you like your doctor, you get to keep your doctor! If you like your plan and your coverage, you get to keep it all!” Now he says, “The economy’s improving. No question about it. You just don’t know it.” Of course all of it’s smoke and mirrors. Look at this. This is a story from Reuters: “US-led air strikes hit grain silos and other targets in ISIS-controlled territory in northern and eastern Syria overnight, killing civilians and wounding militants…”
Killing? Wait a minute, “killing civilians and wounding militants”? So we’re bombing food-storage sites and we’re bombing food workers, and here even later in the piece it says “gas plants that provide electricity” probably for hospitals and who knows what else. This is called “collateral damage,” and that’s not what we’re supposed to be doing here. We’re supposed to be pin-pricking things.
We’re supposed to be surgically striking things out there. “US-led air strikes hit…”? You know if… I know it’s easy to say, but it needs to be pointed out: If George W. Bush were president and we’re hitting grain silos and we are “killing civilians” and only “wounding” the bad guys, do you think that would be the lead item? It’s important to point these things out. You can’t just assume. I’ve learned this.
You can’t assume people are gonna figure this out themselves. It has to be pointed out. So who’s keeping count of the civilians killed so far? Certainly somebody in the Drive-Bys is going to give us a body count of how many civilians killed here in our surgically striking areas. “The aircraft may have mistaken the mills and grain storage areas in the northern Syrian town of Manbij for an Islamic State base, said the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. There was no immediate comment from Washington.”
Yeah, there will be, and they will blame faulty intel for it. “The strikes in Manbij appeared to have killed only civilians, not fighters, said Rami Abdulrahman, who runs the Observatory which gathers information from sources in Syria. ‘These were the workers at the silos. They provide food for the people,’ he said. He could not give a number of casualties and it was not immediately possible to verify the information.”
So we’re bombing food and food workers.
Where is the outrage?
RUSH: You know, back during the Israeli war with Hamas and Hezbollah, it seems like every day there were condemnations of the Israelis for killing civilians, for targeting schools and targeting hospitals, and, oh, those mean Israelis, those heartless, cruel, bloodthirsty Israelis. And Obama would join the fray, and Obama would condemn Netanyahu and demand that Israel clean up its act. I wonder, since we’re bombing food and grain silos in Syria with reports that we’re killing innocent civilians, I wonder if Netanyahu will admonish Obama to stop this and suggest the United States needs to clean up its act, don’t target innocent civilians like that. I know he won’t. I’m making a point in and of itself.
To the phones we go. We’re gonna start in Atlanta. This is Frank. Great to have you on the program, Frank. Greetings and hello, sir.
CALLER: Yeah, hello, Rush. Besides the fiction with the Khorasan group, the other one that Obama is running is this idea about boots on the ground. He doesn’t want to put soldiers in there, troops in there, but he knows he’s gonna have to. So he’s got the defense secretary and the generals claiming that we’re gonna probably need ’em, we’re gonna need ’em. This will give him a fig leaf of cover. And also, if there are casualties, he’ll blame it on the military because they said they wanted boots on the ground.
RUSH: Wait a minute. How does Hagel, Martin Dempsey, other military people saying, “Hey, we’re not gonna be able to do this without boots on the ground,” how does that give Obama cover when he eventually puts boots on the ground?
CALLER: Because he figures he’ll get a drumbeat from Republicans in Congress, plus many military people, and some people in the press, and he’ll say, “I reluctantly have had to put military in on the ground.” And he’ll try to blame the military for any casualties that way. Any decisions on the military, just like the bad decisions on —
RUSH: Wait, hang on just a second. The military from the get-go has been publicly saying that this is a waste of time without boots on the ground. They’re not being silent about that. They’ve been very up front about it. If Obama eventually has to put boots on the ground, according to your theory, how in the world does the military take the hit for that when it’s something they’ve been suggesting — in other words, why won’t Obama take the hit for not having done it in the first place?
CALLER: He’ll claim that it was the military’s decision and it was their bad decisions that caused this, and any casualties are their responsibility.
RUSH: It was the military’s decision not to put boots on the ground?
CALLER: No, the military is saying we’re probably gonna need boots. Obama has been saying all along that he doesn’t want to put military in, ground troops.
RUSH: Right. Right. So when he puts boots on the ground, the military’s been right about it from the get-go. How can they then get blamed for it?
CALLER: They’ve been right about it, but they’ll be blamed for any casualties and Obama will be the reluctant warrior. “I didn’t want to put ’em in, but I was forced by the military.”
RUSH: Right. Well, okay. Now, I can see a version of that, but I have to tell you, Frank, if Obama tries that, that’s gonna make him look pretty weak. “Well, you know, I didn’t want to put these boots on the ground over there.” This is after the first set of casualties come. First casualty reports, we’re in the future, we’re speaking hypothetically here, folks, according to Frank’s theory. So Obama finally caves, puts boots on the ground ’cause he finally figures we can’t win without doing that, and then casualties come in and Frank’s theory is that Obama’s gonna say, “Well, yeah, this is why I didn’t want to do it ’cause I knew this was gonna happen. The military made me do it. The military forced me to put these boots on the ground so the military is to blame for the casualties.”
But he’s the commander-in-chief. He either makes himself look weak by acquiescing to them — I don’t doubt that he’ll try to find somebody else to blame, Frank. Don’t misunderstand. But I’m not so sure that it’s gonna be automatically reported in a way that Obama would like. It’s not as though the military has been silent on this. Again, all of this, however, just once again illustrates the practically purely political nature of all this.