In the collapse of Mosul, we lost a lot of weapons, we lost 2,300 Humvees in Mosul alone. Iraq’s Prime Minister, Haider al-Abbadi.
“Iraqi forces left hundreds of U.S.-supplied vehicles behind when they “drove” out of Ramadi, but were not “driven out,” in the words of Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Gen. Martin Dempsey. And now most of them are melted hunks of metal. On Friday, U.S. Central Command announced that airstrikes near Ramadi destroyed “five ISIL armored vehicles, two ISIL tanks, two ISIL vehicles, an ISIL armored personnel carrier…five abandoned tanks, two abandoned armored personnel carriers and two abandoned armored vehicles.” Quite a haul, and note the emphasis on the word “abandoned.” Juan Cole at Informed Comment.
I don’t want to sound too cynical about this, but I can’t remember when we have been on the winning side of a Civil War. I guess we can say that we fought North Korea/China to a draw, but we were the clear losers in Vietnam and Nicaragua. Yemen is turning into a clusterfuck and now the Iraqi army we have been training for ten years isn’t ready to go out and die.
Every time we lose, all the players talk about how this time it was a special case. If only we hadn’t backed that catholic, Ngô Đình Diệm, to be president, or Hasan al-Malikii for Prime Minister, if only we had done this or hadn’t done that. There is always a special reason and the pattern gets lost in the ground clutter.
The people fighting in a Civil War have their reasons too, they aren’t just running around at random. Yeh, sure, we usually like one side better than the other, maybe it is closer to our version of morality like the Northern Alliance educating girls in Afghanistan, maybe it is more stable – short-term, at least – like the generals in Egypt and we think that because we like it, it is better, and, if it is better, the side we like will win. We are blind going in, we only know what people with a vested interest tell us, thinking we know what is happening is delusional.
Put it like this: If you was in the first grade and you bit somebody every week, they’d start to think of you as a biter. Chief Deputy U.S. Marshal Art Mullen