With the United States today dropping a fourth round of airstrikes on Iraq's Islamic State militants, the pope expressing outrage over the humanitarian situation, and Iraq claiming that militants had slaughtered some 500 Yadizis, naturally our elected lawmakers felt compelled to offer up their two cents on the situation there. Highlights, as per Politico:
- Sen. Dick Durbin: "The bottom line is this: There is so much we can do to help the Iraqis help themselves. Because only Iraq can save Iraq. When it comes to Kurds, they have been the grownups in this neighborhood." And further: "I can tell you this: Escalating it is not in the cards."
- Rep. Peter King: The Islamic State is "more powerful now than al-Qaeda was on 9/11." It's "a direct threat to the United States of America, and what Dick Durbin just said and what President Obama has said, is really a shameful abdication of American leadership."
- Sen. Lindsey Graham: "If he does not go on the offensive against ISIS, ISIL, whatever you guys want to call it, they are coming here. This is just not about Baghdad. This is just not about Syria. And if we do get attacked, then (Obama) will have committed a blunder for the ages."
- Sen. Ben Cardin: "I don't think we can take out ISIS from a military point of view from the use of our airstrikes. That's not going to solve the problem. The fundamental problem is whether the Iraqis believe they have a representative government so that Sunnis feel comfortable with the government in Baghdad. There is not a US military solution to this issue. We're not going to use our military to take care of what the Iraqis should be taking care of."
- Former National Security Adviser James Jones: "The Kurds are our best friends in the region, and we can't let Kurdistan fall," he said, adding that it's "ludicrous" that the Kurdistan Regional Government is classified as a terrorist group.