Enter the US Generals shaping public opinion with their statements. This is nothing new, US Generals have a proud tradition of seemingly annoying their civilian lords and masters by taking a position on sensitive issues.
It helps keep the debate fuelled, lessens the chance that the public might dip back into apathy, and it gives the international community fodder for continuing to believe that the USA is divided, and weak.
Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey has said that he hasn’t yet encountered a situation that would lead him to favour the sending of ground troops to fight ISIS. It is likely that this intended to calm the more skittish individuals who see the US moving rapidly towards war, something they think (erroneously) would be a repeat of the last Iraq invasion. This situation is wildly different, but Obama is likely to continue to be cautious. That is his nature, and it is not ridiculous to suggest that he was hurt by comparisons to former President George W. Bush, for his rhetoric at the UN.
Interestingly the group news.antiwar.com seem to have taken the exact opposite from Dempsey. They are claiming that the Joint Chiefs are signalling a need for greater involvement and the eventual committment of troops, while the President is of the other view. It seems we are being lost in the fog of war, but as long as we remember that there are many people in Iraq worth fighting for, we can guide ourselves to clearer waters.
Internationally this does not send much of a signal at all, and it must add to the frustration of the Kurds in northern Iraq who have been fighting ISIS for months. But international coalitions take time to assemble, and it would be nonsense to think that Obama will move until he is sure it is stable. This conflict, win or lose, will be his legacy. He won the Nobel Peace Prize five years ago — now he must earn it.
U.S. Doesn’t Yet Need Ground Troops Against ISIS, General Says – http://huff.to/1sCBi8p