September 23, 2014
The Abbott Government continues to say that its intervention in the 3rd Iraq War is for humanitarian reasons. It is, the ministers say, a limited intervention to assist the Yazidi minority group in Iraq earlier this year after Isis attacked them. Now we have an estimated 100,000 Syrian Kurds fleeing Islamic State (Isis) advances across north-east Syria. Recall that the US armed IS to fight the Assad Syrian regime.
Does Australia step into help the Iraqi Kurds? Australia was only meant to be involved in Iraq not Syria, according to the Abbott Govt at the invitation of the Iraq Government. On the other hand, Abbott has said that Australia was committed to containing and degrading and destroying Isis to combat the threat posed by the IS terrorists. Does that mean there will be military action in Syria without the Syrian Government's cooperation? You don't send in the SAS to run humanitarian missions.
There is little acknowledgment by the Liberal party that the 2nd Iraq war had been "wrong", that Australia went to war under false pretences in Iraq, and that the destruction of Iraq has resulted in the emergence of IS, homegrown terrorism and Australians participating in terrorist activities in Iraq. For the Liberal party there are no lessons to be learned from the errors of the past, because there were no errors and there were no disastrous consequences of the previous military interventions.
Australia must stand tough and muscular with respect to its duties and obligations on the international stage. Cue Abbot striking his Churchillian pose of the grave demeanor and resolute tone to show that he is purposeful, unyielding, and courageously ready for the fight.
The United States and allies have launched airstrikes against Sunni militants in Syria , unleashing a cruise missiles and precision-guided bombs from the air and sea on the militants’ de facto capital of Raqqa, Syria, and along the porous Iraq border. The strikes represent a major turning point in the war against the Islamic State and opens up a risky new stage of the American military campaign.
It looks like the 3rd Iraqi war is going to be an open-ended conflict and obsequiousness will be Canberra’s response. So we have the Abbott government’s rapid escalation of our new involvement in Iraq going from a purely humanitarian mission to one where we appear to be joining the US in an open-ended civil war in the context of the West bearing significant responsibility for the catastrophic rise of ISIS from the occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan.
That history suggests that Western intervention will only make things worse rather than resolve the hideous aftermath of the last ones.