Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Another DAESH atrocity - Genocide in Sinjar

It's quite some achievement when the outfit claiming responsibility for a barbarous mass murder like the attack in Paris on Friday has evidence surface on the same day of another atrocity for which they are responsible and that additional atrocity is even worse.

But the mass graves found in Iraq this week following the recapture of Sinjar from DAESH - the so-called "Islamic State" - are evidence of a crime which is even worse and has rightly been described as genocide.

When Kurdish forces liberated Sinjar from DAESH militants, along with 28 other villages with some help from US and British air strikes, they discovered two mass graves. One, which is ten miles West of Sinjar, is rigged with explosives and deliberately difficult to access: it is believed to contain men, women and children.

Beside the second, nearer to Sinjar, lie a walking stick and a few other scattered possessions of the people who were thrown into it after being murdered. It was pointed out to Kurdish forces by young Yazidi women who had managed to escape the clutches of the DAESH kidnappers. They led their liberators to ditches containing the bodies of their mothers and grandmothers. This second mass grave contains the bodies of eighty older women.

We already know that when DAESH killers overran Yazidi territory in August 2014 there was an orgy of killing and rape. We knew that hundreds of men and boys were slaughtered; many killed by point-blank shots to the head or pushed off cliffs.

We already knew that younger women and girls were raped and taken as slaves.

Now we find out what happened to women who were not young and pretty enough for the DAESH fighters to want them as sex slaves. They were shot dead on the spot.

All too often people compare a group or party they don't like to Nazis and their policies to genocide on quite inadequate grounds, usually because they are searching for the strongest available insult. This cheapens the memory of the Holocaust, and it also means that when the truly evil crimes of an enemy who actually deserve to be compared to Hitler, and their actions to the Holocaust, it is harder to find words which do justice to that evil.

But DAESH really are comparable to Hitler at his worst. The only reason the count of their victims does not yet approach his is that they have not yet been in power for as long or controlled as large an area - so far their "caliphate" covers a thinly populated area of desert about the size of Belgium.

It's time to take stronger and carefully targeted action against the genocidal killers of DAESH. And that action should be taken on both sides of the border between Iraq and Syria - a border which Abu Bakr al Baghdadi himself does not recognise.

I understand and respect those who urge caution after the mess which has been made when the West intervened in Iraq before, but those who think that means we should never respond at all against people who are attacking us have learned the wrong lesson.

I believe that a strategy which meets all the reasonable concerns about Western intervention against the so-called "Islamic State" in Syria as well as Iraq can be put together, and should be, and when such a strategy is presented to the House of Commons all responsible MPs should support it.

We need to have cast iron and clear advice that action against DAESH is legal. That should not be difficult. After Paris there is a strong case under Article 51 of the UN charter that such action would be self-defence - and if we need further authorisation, how hard would it be to get the UN Security Council to approve it when four of the five permanent members (Britain, France, Russia and the USA) have had their civilians murdered by DAESH?

We need to make sure that there are no incidents between Western military units and Russian ones: an agreement between the NATO countries and President Putin to make sure of this would not necessarily have been impossible even before a couple of hundred innocent Russian civilians were blown out of the sky by a DAESH bomb, and I'm very sure we can reach such an agreement now.

We need to give our service personnel a clear, specific and attainable military objective in support of a clear, specific and attainable political objective. The West does not have the military capability to impose a solution to the civil war in Syria and should not attempt do so though we can and should continue diplomatic efforts. I believe the West does have the capability to weaken DAESH sufficiently in both Iraq and Syria to reduce their capability to exert power in those countries and elsewhere and to enable our allies in Iraq - the elected government and the Kurdish Peshmerga - to liberate the territory DAESH holds in Iraq.

The sort of strategy which I could support, and IMHO the country would support, would combine giving more aid to the Iraqi army and Peshmerga fighters while using airstrikes against DAESH military and strategic targets to degrade their combat power and prevent them using their territory in Syria as a base to support DAESH military operations in Iraq. This should also reduce their ability to resource, plan and train people for terrorist attacks in the West.

There is no easy way of dealing with this situation, but sitting back and waiting for the next DAESH atrocity is not a good solution.


Jim said...

If you want to beat a thief or a terrorist you have to face a familiar enemy, that enemy is yourself.

this is quite an uncomfortable feeling at times, but its really one the best strategies there is. You see in your mind you have to put yourself in the position of the "enemy" and ask yourself "knowing what I know (always assume they do) so knowing what I know, How would I do it?"

This will usually open up several flaws in the security plan, and you can bet your bottom dollar if i was inclined I would plant spies in refugee groups. Its daft for me not to in order to achieve my goal, you are damned right I would.

That is just it, good Jim must stop evil Jim from carrying out his plan. Because evil Jim definitely has the knowledge, the enemy only might have it.

Jim said...

Good Jim needs and loves Evil Jim, Evil Jim comes up with the plan, which Good Jim can help prevent.

The second you let your guard down, anywhere and for what ever reason, well that is where "Evil Jim" will strike, every time, some times he may wait he will grind you down with endless disruption, security checks, all the rest of it. but the second you lapse he will strike again. keeping disruption to a max at all times.

Evil Jim lives for that, but that's what evil Jim would do. Good job that there is good Jim to stop the plan of evil Jim.

but that's how you have to think to win, you must have Good Chris and Evil Chris.