Deal With ISIS Killers Now … Or Later

Displaced Iraqis from the Yazidi community settle under a bridge in Dahuk, 260 miles (430 kilometers) northwest of Baghdad Aug. 14 in the wake of the onslaught by Islamic militants who have overrun much of the country's north and west. AP PHOTO/ KHALID MOHAMMED

Displaced Iraqis from the Yazidi community settle under a bridge in Dahuk, 260 miles (430 kilometers) northwest of Baghdad Aug. 14 in the wake of the onslaught by Islamic militants who have overrun much of the country’s north and west. AP PHOTO/ KHALID MOHAMMED

You can call me a warmonger, but if ever there was an enemy to fight with all our Captain America might, it would be the deadly, fanatical jihadi group that is sweeping Iraq, north to south.

ISIS, ISIL or IS (all names used) so far has gone mostly unhindered in quenching its blood-thirst in major towns and cities of Northern Iraq — Fallujah and Mosul — threatening Kurdish regions and marching to Baghdad. Beheading Christian and Yazidi (minority enthnoreligious group) children in front of their parents is good sport for these terrorists, the slower the better. And Christian crucifixions entertain the troops.

These are the barbarians we’ve seen in movies. They slaughter, kidnap, enslave and torture. They’re the sociopaths depicted on CSI and Forensic Files, and justify sick crime only on a big scale. They’re the depraved Nazi SS on steroids. Even al-Qaida, arbiters of the incineration of 3,000 innocent people on 9-11, thinks ISIS goes too far. (ISIS used to be al-Qaida in Iraq, but split from al-Qaida in February).

The only negotiation they deserve is written on a 500-pound bomb.

Iraq, like Vietnam, has political angst written all over it. Bush vs. Obama, left vs. right. Should we have gone in or not? Blame Bush. Get out and never look back. His war, not mine. Lies over WMDs. Lies over who lied. Congressional votes to invade Iraq undeniably on record. Surge and withdrawal. Elections looming, play to the political base. No troops back in Iraq. Al-Maliki is to blame. Equivocation and too little too late. No clear Middle East strategy. Polls shaping foreign policy.

I’ve seen this “movie” and rate it 4 rotten tomatoes. Political expediency kills people. So does war without a strategy for winning peace and stability. I lived the Vietnam tragedy. Americans got tired of a protracted war played to a tie by politicians afraid for their careers. We took our POWs and went home vowing future support. But while we were happily back home in ’75 singing Love will Keep Us Together along with The Captain and Tenille, the North Vietnamese Communists, clutching their peace treaty signed in vanishing ink, voraciously slurped up the South like a bowl of pho. Congress just turned up our radios louder, drowning out a desperate SOS from our allies.

If only Gen. David Petraeus had a say now — he who got it right in Iraq with the surge. He would likely lay out bold strategy to destroy ISIS and leave Iraq in relatively stable condition, as in ’08 and ’09. But it would include the now off-the-table “boots on the ground.” If crucifixions, beheadings, torturing Christians and genocide don’t warrant boots, whatever will?

So how does a commander in chief shed political intransigence and become nimble — a fluid leader armed with a myriad of well-crafted contingency plans to act decisively and swiftly in urgent situations in the best moral interest of humanity? How does he convince a wary and war-weary citizenry of the obligation to see our commitments through to their logical and moral conclusions, ergo a safer and saner world?

First, he quits fearing opinion polls and media needling, says to heck with his own personal popularity, looks squarely into the camera and says, “Fellow Americans, now is the time to lead the world against a deadly, evil, well-armed and determined force that destroys innocent lives, threatens democratic governments, destabilizes the world at large and vows to raise the ISIS flag over the White House.” In other words, he leads from the front because it’s right.

Pope Francis has cried out to stop ISIS. U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Intelligence Committee chairwoman, recommended a stepped-up confrontation. “It takes an army to defeat an army, and I believe that we either confront (IS) now or we will be forced to deal with an even stronger enemy in the future. Inaction is no longer an option,” she said.

Mr. President, you said in January about ISIS, “If a JV team puts on Lakers uniforms, that doesn’t make them Kobe Bryant.” Well, thousands of “Kobes” have just put up a score of 1,000 to zero on soil where our Marines, soldiers, sailors and airmen shed blood for Iraqi freedom. Please even that score.