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INSIGHTS 260: Lost in the Wilderness

Sub Rosa Front Cover 


The Iraqi Army is attacking the ISIS stronghold of Fallujah that is also the place al Qaeda Iraq was born. The struggle in Iraq was so much simpler when the U.S. Marines recaptured Fallujah. Much blood and treasure was spent in the heroic Marine push into Fallujah. A decade later more blood, including some more American blood, will be spent in another abortive attempt to ignore facts on the ground and restore a Shiite Iraqi government to power.

It has been apparent for many years that Iraq is not now and never was a cohesive nation. Harsh Sunni dictators kept the lines on the maps that were labelled Iraq in place. The other two elements in Iraq, the Shiites and the Kurds, did not share in the governing process or in the distribution of wealth. The Sunni Army, police and Intelligence forces kept them in place until the forces of the United States destroyed the Iraqi Sunni Army and governing infrastructure in order to install a Western type parliamentary government. In the process we destroyed the balance of power between Iran and Iraq. We know how to fight and win battles. We do not know how to do the nation building required to force fit a western democracy type rule in a part of the world that has no history of democracy or foundation of Western values. Both Presidents Bush and Obama share the blame for the rise of ISIS in Iraq.

Back to Fallujah and facts on the ground. Iraq today is totally a Shiite nation. The ISIS movement is overwhelmingly Sunni and the Kurds are fighting to establish a Kurdistan nation. They will fight to resist any Iraqi Government that tries to subject Kurds to rule from Shiite Baghdad or a Sunni rule in any form, ISIS or not ISIS.

The real threat in the area is Shiite Iran who intends to end up incorporating all of Shiite Iraq and the Iraqi oil reserves. What forces are surrounding Fallujah in the current struggle? Yes! Iranian militias, another name for Iranian government trained and equipped troops, who intend to destroy all Sunni armed groups in the region that could threaten their takeover of Shiite Iraq including Baghdad and south to the Gulf. An Iraqi victory in Fallujah will be a victory for Iran.

US airpower and advisors will be fighting on the side of Shiite Iran against the wishes of our traditional Sunni allies and Israel who want ISIS destroyed but not at the emergence of a more powerful Iran. That is fine with our leadership. The President and his Administration are firmly in the Iranian group. Can there be any doubt after some of the details of the Iranian Nuclear Treaty which is not a treaty have leaked?

Some things cannot be put back in the box and this is one of them.


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Advisor's vault doorThe President and the Advisor were seated at the polished cherry conference table in the Advisor’s underground suite. Both were enjoying a rare moment of small talk. The President poured himself another cup of steaming dark Columbian and said, “I wish I could relax in the Oval Office as well as I do in your cave.”

The Advisor replied, “When people are in the Oval Office they want something from you and they all have their own agendas. Down here everything you say stays here. There is no need for you to perform and I have no agenda other than to help you in small ways to run the country.”

“Will you be here for my successor?”

“Mr. President, I’m not even sure I will last the rest of your term. Down here the aging process seems to accelerate. A new Advisor will be here for the next president. Our history of the Advisor activity shows nearly all presidents do not come down here in the first year or so of their term. This place is lonely enough even when you come down here three or four times a month. Without your visits, I don’t think I would have lasted this long.”

“It is very possible that my former Secretary of State will be elected. What did you think of her performance when she testified in front of the Benghazi Committee?”

“Congressional hearings are seldom successful. The format seriously handicaps disciplined, effective questioning. All the members are up for election every two years and, therefore, are constantly campaigning. Face time in front of the nation is too important an opportunity to focus on pure investigative examining of the witness. The partisan membership of the committee and the alternating rotation of examiners nearly ensures nothing definitive will result. Everyone going into the hearing knew the long history of the witness and her willingness to avoid the truth.”

“She and I have both been shaped by the teaching of Saul Alinsky. She had a long-term personal relationship with America’s most influential revolutionary. I never had the opportunity to meet this great thinker. But I’m still uncomfortable with her replacing me in the White House. While down here, I will admit to lying to the people on many occasions, I avoid the truth only when it harms my efforts to transform America into a socialist state with no more military or economic power than many other nations. I do not lie to benefit my personal wealth. My former Secretary of State and her husband never take their eyes off the money. From the beginning of their political careers it has been about the money.

“I’m sure you have noticed how she avoided spreading the Benghazi lie about the infamous video and instead recommended my longtime friend, Susan Rice, go out to sell the video lie to the nation on national TV. She knew much more about Benghazi than I even did. She undoubtedly knew security there was inadequate and knew requests for more security from the ambassador had been turned down. For my part it was less than 60 days before the national election. I probably wouldn’t have won if the nation knew the truth about Benghazi. My policies in the Middle East would have been discredited.

“Here, I followed my revolutionary mentor, Mr. Alinsky, that the issue is never the issue and the end justifies the means. Telling the truth that we sacrificed the people at Benghazi and never even tried to rescue or support them would have given the Republicans enough momentum to have defeated me and the process of transforming America. The creation of a new nation of wealth sharing, equal opportunity, and the replacement of capitalism with socialism would have suffered a very serious setback. Benghazi is a ‘bump in the road’ on the path to socialism. History is full of similar choices by leaders. I had no real choice.”

“I agree, your former Secretary of State does not share your ideological purity. It is more personal with her. I do not feel I could serve as her advisor. I also don’t think she will be able to carry on your transformation program. She doesn’t have the touch.”

“Right now, that problem bothers me more than all the other challenges I still face. I must go now, but will be back sometime next week.”

This is an account written by a fictional advisor who doesn’t exist but should.

Check out the latest Jack Brandon mystery suspense novel at your local bookstore. Follow the author on Twitter @factsfictions80.

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Advisor's vault doorThe Advisor put down the receiver after Chris, his Secret Service contact, told him the President wouldn’t be down today or for the rest of the week.

He had mixed feelings. The President was the only person he saw face to face. Over the years in his underground office, the Advisor had become dependent on the President’s visits. The isolation and loneliness were really affecting him. He really doubted he could function through the year remaining in the President’s term. He found himself losing track of some of his thoughts when he was writing in his journal. No question, he was really slowing down. Each day was a bit harder. His exercise schedule was a thing of the past. Without an appetite, he seldom did any meal preparation. He wasn’t sure whether it was his mental state or if age was catching up. To force himself to function, he decided to prepare a journal entry of the problems he had with the President’s actions and policies.

The Advisor thought, Even if the President is my only face-to-face contact, when he leaves I feel like I have been in the presence of a very dangerous man and I can’t do anything about it. In fact, my mission is to support him even though I know he is intent on destroying the America I fought for and loved. He is true to his ideology and background. Our President is a dedicated socialist and like so many guilt-ridden liberals, blames America for the world’s current and past problems. He is determined to be known in history as the president who weakened capitalism, imperialism, and the emphasis upon freedom of the individual. By weakening American economical and military power, he will force America to take a very diminished role in world affairs. The nation will be dependent on international organizations to define and protect the rights and privileges of all people. America will no longer be a unique nation and the hope of people everywhere.

There is no other way to understand his actions or his announced policies. He knows the withdrawal of America from the world will result in totalitarian forces like Russia, China, Iran, and the Muslim Caliphate filling the vacuum left by the retreat of the United States. To him that is a good thing. An accomplishment he is proud of. His primary foreign affairs goal is to transform not only America, but the world order as well. If anyone had described the President in these terms when he was first elected, I would have rejected them as the ravings of mad men.

When Vladimir Putin looks at the President, he sees a weak man who hasn’t the will or strength to stop him from annexing as much of the Ukraine as wants or to contest his power move into the Middle East which while very soon put Russia military into the Mediterranean with naval power and missile batteries installed in Syria. Putin doesn’t care one bit about Assad. His goal is to expand Russian power into the oil-producing regions of the Middle East and establish warm water ports for the Russian fleet. Neither Putin, the America progressive party, or Congressional Republicans understand the President is not acting out of weakness, though I believe he lacks physical courage, but he acts out of conviction. How else can anyone explain his foreign actions or job killing regulations by his administration?

The Advisor printed his journal entry and began to enter it into his journal with his slightly unsteady hand. The next time the President comes down, the Advisor thought, I just might tell him what his actions look like to America and its enemies. I’d like to discuss gun control with him. I know it isn’t the loss of life that is his point in his anti-gun crusade. If it was, he would be focused on places like Chicago and help the police and city  government to enforce existing gun laws. And it isn’t just using the issue to attack the opposition party. The President knows no socialist/communist government has ever taken control of an armed population. Slave holders always have guns. Slaves never do. Doesn’t that tell us everything we need to know?

This is an account written by a fictional advisor who doesn’t exist but should.

Check out the latest Jack Brandon mystery suspense novel at your local bookstore. Follow the author on Twitter @factsfictions80.




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Advisor's vault door“Mr. President, I want to read something you said last week when I asked, ‘Are you using the leading from behind strategy in the Middle East and primarily in Syria?’ And you answered, ‘Of course. My objective is to change or transform the world order. How could I do that if I was openly leading the action? I’m leading from behind. Iran, ISIS, and Russia are doing exactly what I want. If Russia ends up being a power in the Middle East with warm water ports for their warships and control of oil from the region won’t that end the strife and lead to a world society where the people will be much better off and the world’s wealth and resources will be more equitably distributed?

“‘Russia will have what they have always wanted. They have no desire to occupy Europe. The balance of world power will be forever changed for the better. The need for vast military expenditures will be gone. Colonialism, capitalism, and imperialism will be history. Those are the real evil “isms” of our world. Progressivism is the natural ideology for a world of equals.’”

“Given the very aggressive move by Putin into Syria in the last two weeks with his demand that U.S. aircraft no longer fly over Syria, will you need to change your approach?”

“Putin is following a long developed strategy followed by all the czars. He is the first to succeed in actually establishing a growing military presence in the Middle East. The Russian fleet will now have an all-weather sea port for their warships. He will be popular at home for a short time. Then the people will find out what it costs them to sponsor another client state. Control of Iraqi oil fields may provide some funds for Putin’s military build up and support for a bankrupt Syria but that will not be enough.

“He will soon have another Afghanistan on his hands. Remember how they moved into Afghanistan unopposed in President’s Carter’s one term? He was surprised. I am not. This a perfect response from Putin who is unknowingly assisting me in changing the current world order. Whether he stays for a decade or more in Syria, the Middle East will never be the same. The Christian, imperialistic, capitalistic western power will be balanced by the growing power of the Islamic nations who actually live in the Middle East. Those people will be governing themselves and using their wealth and intellectual resources for the good of a previously oppressed people.

“My concern is keeping the right wing ideologues from convincing my successor to oppose the Russian push into Syria. No matter what Putin does, I will not respond with American power. In a few more years American power both military and economically will be gone for good.”

“What about all the death and misery being inflicted on the people of Syria and Iraq?”

“It will pass in less than a decade. People always suffer when the tide of historical power shifts against existing rulers. Spreading Muslim people throughout the Christian world through chaotic refugee flows is not a bad thing. The shift in population demographics will actually act as a catalyst for a more rapid transformation in the Western world. I couldn’t be happier. Progress never takes place without chaos. The more chaos, the more rapid the pace of transformation can be.”

“Does anyone in your administration share your view of the world?”

“Really only one and she is constantly encouraging me to move more quickly.  A few others think they know but they don’t. Their thinking is still mired down in the Western approach of looking at governing as the constant solving of issues. As long as they stay out of the way, they do no harm in playing with transient problems that have no solution without transformation.”

“Mr. President, I think I’m safe in saying no other president has ever shared your view of America and the world.”

“I agree. See you next week. You are the only person I can truthfully talk to besides my co-partner in transformation. Good night.”


This is an account written by a fictional advisor who doesn’t exist but should.

Check out the latest Jack Brandon mystery suspense novel at your local bookstore. Follow the author on Twitter @factsfictions80.






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The thunder over Syria is a victory for President Obama’s diplomacy. Maybe he has more insights into Muslim politics than other foreign policy areas.



No matter what or how, this is one of those rare win-win events.  America gets very welcome cover for air attacks against Muslim targets. Muslim nations flying combat missions with our planes also will give Putin pause before he does something rash to protect President Assad in Syria. Putin may be happy to maintain and defend his naval base in Syria and leave the air war uncontested by Russian threats. Iran also may not be willing to militarily confront a powerful Sunni military and political coalition. I’m sure one of the prices we paid for Saudi, U.A.E., Jordanian, Qatar and Bahrain’s support is our agreement to defend them against external attacks.

In any agreement, it’s always instructive to understand the strategic and tactical goals of your allies. Our allies in the air war against ISIS have clear goals. They do not want a powerful Sunni radical nation on their borders. Many of the  Muslims butchered by ISIS were Sunnis. Some of the ISIS military units were once funded by members of our new Muslim air war allies. King Saud and the U.A.E. have been funding and equipping a proxy war against President Assad’s Syrian Shiite  regime for a few years. They have fighters on the ground. Now they have the freedom to provide air support for their fighters. The same Muslim air sorties can also punish any units that have double-crossed them and joined ISIS. It seems the U.A.E. has command and control to direct the Muslim air war. They have better intelligence on the ground where their fighting units are engaged with Assad then we do. It is still a win-win but getting rid of Assad’s Alawite (Shiite) Regime may rank higher with our Muslim air coalition than defeating ISIS in Iraq.

Bringing Saudi Arabia into the air war against ISIS is a very big deal. President Obama must have upgraded his foreign policy team. Openly talking about bringing Iran into the war against ISIS was a brilliant move. Nothing would make the Saudis move faster than the possibility of an American/Iran alliance in their front yard. We don’t have boots-on-the-ground but the military and diplomatic war against ISIS has moved several squares forward.

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It will soon be six years since Barack Obama was elected president of the United States. The traditional way of evaluating a president is to judge how he has done as a leader to solve problems concerning the economy, national security, and foreign policy. We could do that here, but that wouldn’t be addressing what President Obama has been doing. To be fair, he should be scored on what he has been working to accomplish. To do that, we have to use the tasks relevant to progressive goals, for those are what is important to President Obama and his legacy.

President Obama’s overall goal is the transformation of America. That term means very little unless you examine the steps that are required in the process of transformation. The first step is to marginalize his opposition, the Republican Party, by a skillful manipulation of issues. Remember, the progressive mantra is “the issue is never the issue.”  In short, that means you don’t try to solve problems or issues, you simply use every issue to instead attack the opposition. Changing sides on issues or lying about what you said previously about the issue doesn’t matter and happens often.

In Part 1 of this blog I scored Obama on redistribution of wealth and weakening America on a worldwide scale. Read that blog here.

All socialist ideologies require the move of the means of production from the private sector to governmental control. Beginning with Obamacare and moving to micro-managing regulations on manufacturing, coal mining, nuclear power, oil exploration and drilling, and energy use, the president has made an auspicious start but he still has a long way to go. His grade here for advancing progressive programs only rates a “C” minus.

To create a one-party political system run by a progressive elite, Obama needs to destroy the Republican Party and absorb the legislative power of Congress into the executive branch by using executive orders and department regulations. He has made the executive branch more powerful than the office he was elected to fill, but the stubborn resistance from the tea parties and other conservatives has slowed the process and the progressives will probably (hopefully) lose control of the Senate in November 2014. The president gets only another “C” minus here.

To prepare the way to move America into the control of an international organization, he needs to withdraw from foreign bases and weaken the U.S. military forces, which are still the best in the world. The president has announced his intent to cut the manpower of the Armed Forces to pre-WWII levels. The Defense Department, under timid civilian and military leadership, has rolled over and begun implementing manpower cutbacks by informing several hundred captains and majors they will no longer be needed. I’m sure notices to sergeants and others will follow. Majors, captains, and sergeants are the backbone of any military organization. It will take 15 years or more to replace the expertise being wasted. As long as the Pentagon is so gutless, Obama will succeed in diminishing both manpower and weaponry. He gets a “B” plus here.

Unless conservatives, independents, and moderate Democrats wake up, President Obama will eventually get higher grades as a progressive than he ever got during his academic training.

Do you like and understand what you’re reading? Share it with your friends and leave me comments here or on Amazon. I read them! You can also visit my Facebook page or follow me on Twitter. This content and more is available in my latest book, “INSIGHTS: Transforming America.” 

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Image: U.S. President Obama walks to speak about the Affordable Care Act at the White House in Washington

President Obama read the polls and decided he should address the nation on the ISIS threat. But he didn’t say a word Wednesday night about how his past policies have made it necessary for America to go to war again in Iraq.

He claimed to have a small coalition of nine NATO nations and Australia who have not committed ground troops. That’s a bit smaller than the last time we went into Iraq, when we were supported by 29 nations who committed ground troops. President Obama did as well as he could from the foundations of his foreign policy over the last nearly six years. Let’s not poke anymore holes into his speech about ISIS.

As commander-in-chief, he needs to be clear on a few critical points. The first is call the threat what it is. It is radical Islam. Within those circles which include most of the Islamic world, it is a good thing to kill infidels/nonbelievers. Where are the moderate Muslims? The Saudis have funded radical madrases/schools all over the near, middle and far east for at least two decades. Money from Saudi Arabia, the Gulf States, Kuwait, and Pakistan have poured resources into the Taliban and other radical Islamic organizations for years. Nearly all the World Trade Center bombers were Saudis. In Egypt the more moderate military is nearly fully occupied dealing with the Muslim Brotherhood that Obama backed against Mubarak. Libya doesn’t seem too moderate, nor does our old ally, Turkey. Pakistan is not a moderate Islamic nation. Good luck, Mr. President, in finding moderate Islamic states to join your coalition with real help and commitment. They may not continue to support ISIS but I doubt they will stand up with a Christian nation against ISIS. Their only interest is keeping ISIS away from their territory.

The second point is that competent boots on the ground are necessary to win any military campaign. Obama’s examples of his strategic success in fighting terrorism in Yemen and Somalia are not even relevant. The relevant bit of recent history is the Bush Administration defeating the Taliban in Afghanistan with approximately 500 American boots on the ground, all military or civilian special forces warriors and, of course, thousands of tribal fighters from the Northern Alliance. Enough fighters to push the Taliban into massing to defend against attack so the U.S. Air Force, flying no holds barred missions, including B-52s, destroyed the defense positions of the Taliban down the length of  Afghanistan. The air strikes were guided to the kill zones by American civilian and uniformed Special Forces. That is a proven tactic. The problem is that skilled fighters like those of the Northern Alliance have yet to be identified.

With a clear broad view of the strategic battlefield, victory is possible without large U.S. combat units, but small units on the ground will be needed. First the Kurds will fight and can fight as soon as the Obama Administration recognizes the Kurds will fight for their own homeland. We need to accept and welcome Kurdistan into the alliance. As of last week they reported that had not received any arms shipments from the U.S. Our in the box thinkers had to send all aid to the Kurds through Baghdad which is the same as not sending any. Shiites don’t send weapons to Kurds.

The next tactic to hurt the heads of our people struggling to put Iraq back together again is to rekindle our Special Forces relationship with the Sunni tribes. They will not go back into a Shiite-dominated government so recognize that, and tell the humpty-dumpty bureaucrats trying to patch together a phony country to cease and desist. The Sunni tribes, if promised their own land and given weapons, will fight and take care of the ISIS forces in Iraq. The next step is easy. Let the Shiites retreat south of Baghdad until they decide they will stop and fight for their own land, Shiiteville. All we have to do then is separate the not so bad guys from the really bad guys in Syria and work with them to get rid of the Assad tyranny. All this can be done in less than a year with very few American WIA or KIA. What was Iraq is now nearly the same as it was before arrogant western diplomats drew unreal lines on a map and created the nightmare of Iraq. None of this can be done unless the president gets out of the way and lets the Pentagon and CIA run the war on terror and radical Islam.

Written by the author of “INSIGHTS: Transforming America — Is This What We Fought For?” available in hardcover, paperback, and ebook formats from Amazon and Barnes and Noble. You are encouraged to share this message and follow the author on Twitter @factsfictions80.


Filed under Afghanistan, Barry Kelly, Conservative views, Eight Decades of Insights, foreign policy, Intelligence & Politics, Kurds, Obama, Shiite, Sunni, Terrorism