General Dempsey, the commander of CENTCOM and the Supreme Commander of NATO forces have all openly criticized the policies of the Obama administration in various respects. Along with generalized military unhappiness with the budgetary effects of sequestration, there is something close to a military insurrection going on, very uncommon in U.S. history, and not because of leaks, as with General McChrystal in Afghanistan. More akin to Gen. McArthur’s defiance of the Truman administration, which got him fired (and invited to address a joint session of Congress–so much for Obama’s reaction to the invitation to Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu).
As to General Dempsey’s specific points in the testimony referred-to, they amount to a plea to stop overlooking the fact that nuclear weapons or no nuclear weapons, Iran is in the active process of spreading its political/military hegemony throughout the northern tier of the Middle East, from the Afghan and Pakistani borders to the Mediterranean. Iranian troops are actively participating in the offensive to retake Tikrit and will undoubtedly continue to participate with, AND COMMAND, further offensives against Islamic State, in cooperation with Shiite militias, the Shiite-dominated Iraqi army, Assad and Hezbollah. The Tikrit offensive is commanded by Quds Force commander Gen. Qassam Suleimani, the second-most powerful person in the Iranian hierarchy, after Supreme Leader Khamenei.
This is not in fact ignored by the Obama administration. It is actually in favor of Iran’s activities, since it is a cornerstone of what passes for a Mideast strategy, to work with Iran in turning it into the guarantor of stability in the region, a grotesque parody of the Kissinger strategy with reference to the Shah’s Iran.
(Copyright 2015 Asia Times Holdings Limited, a duly registered Hong Kong company. All rights reserved. Please contact us about sales, syndication and republishing.)