By Sal Bommarito
ISIS beheaded Peter Kassig today, an American. Kassig was a former Army Ranger who returned to Syria after his tenure in the military to do humanitarian work.
The New York Times published a story about Yazidi girls in Iraq who have been kidnapped. ISIS seized upwards of 7,000 young women who were forced to convert to Islam, sold off like animals and used by ISIS fighters for sexual purposes. ISIS kidnapped the women after raids on their towns in Iraq. Some have been sent to Syria as compensation to rebel fighters.
Where is the outrage for these horrendous acts? When is the world, and in particular the U.S., going to take more appropriate and deadly action against these despicable terrorists? How long can America look the other way?
There is little doubt that the issue at hand is the deployment of ground forces, which we have been told will come from Iraqi and Syria. It is absurd to think that 80,000 soldiers from these countries will be trained and ready for action in the near future. General Martin Dempsey, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, made this forecast.
The execution of Kassig is yet another slap in the face intended to insult and denigrate America. The savages perpetrating these deeds defy the U.S. and challenge it to increase its military presence. What is so unnerving is that the people being executed are in the region trying to assist those who have been hurt by the war.
ISIS “has openly acknowledged its slavery industry.” In an article in Dabiq, the group’s online English-language magazine, ISIS indicated it has begun to use a “custom justified under Shariah.” This custom suggests “one-fifth of the slaves [should be] transferred to the Islamic State’s authority to be divided as Kitums.” Kitums are a tax on the spoils of war.
Human Rights Watch said, “The systematic abduction, abuse and killing of Yazidis might amount to crimes against humanity.” There is no doubt that the actions warrant severe retribution.
Western nations should not become embroiled in social activities of sovereign nations unless individual acts are deemed to be capital crimes and/or crimes against humanity. Considering that ISIS is not a legal entity and is committing egregious crimes, the coalition would be justified if it utilized greater military force. This action would not only be justified, it is the right thing to do. How long is the U.S. going to continue a benign bombing campaign that cannot alone bring victory? It would be immoral to ignore the barbarians by allowing them to continue to behead their enemies, kidnap women and slaughter innocent civilians. It is unconscionable to wait some uncertain amount of time until ground forces from Iraq and Syria are ready to set out after ISIS fighters, especially if there is any doubt that the soldiers will be ready and able to complete their missions.
The bombing campaign is insufficient; the situation is screaming for greater force. It is time for the president to revisit his ground forces policy. Thousand, and perhaps millions of people, are depending upon America to save them.
I sincerely regret making a case that will endanger our young and brave soldiers. However, it is likely that the U.S. will have to send ground troops to end this war, or at worse to stop ISIS from overrunning other Arab nations.