— The Erimtan Angle —

As Obama is now continuing the Bush Administration’s T.W.A.T. in earnest (even having renamed the patently unwinnable military campaign against global terrorism the Overseas Contingency Operations or OCO), the financial affairs of the United States are still very much under the influence of the Military-Industrial Complex (aka Mic).[1]  And in spite of his Nobel Peace Prize, Obama is all but a true War President, paying heed to the demands of warmongers and Mic alike. The White House has thus resolved that the “Administration will submit an updated FY 2015 OCO request to Congress for the Department of Defense (DOD), the Intelligence Community (IC), and the Department of State and Other International Programs (State/OIP). These amendments request $5.6 billion for OCO activities to degrade and ultimately defeat ISIL. These OCO amendments would provide resources for DOD and State/OIP for operations and activities that were not anticipated when the Administration submitted its June 2014 OCO budget request”.[2]  The document’s preamble outlines the following talking points: “ISIL [as the Obama Administration has decided to call the Islamic State] poses an immediate threat to Iraq, Syria, and American allies and partners throughout the region as it seeks to overthrow governments, control territory, terrorize local populations, and implement an oppressive and intolerant interpretation of sharia law. If left unchecked, ISIL could pose a growing threat to the United States and others beyond the region.  Thousands of foreign fighters – including Europeans and some Americans – have joined ISIL in Syria and Iraq.  We are concerned that these trained and battle-hardened fighters will try to return to their home countries and carry out deadly attacks.  At the same time, ISIL is attempting to assert itself as the leader of the global jihad.  ISIL remains well-resourced and has demonstrated an ability to recruit and radicalize through social media”.[3]

These amendments request were posted on 7 November 2014 and read like this:

Operation Inherent Resolve (OIR)

“In support of OIR, the OCO amendments include $5.0 billion for DOD to conduct a range of military operations against ISIL in the Middle East region, which includes the $1.6 billion Iraq Train and Equip Fund. These operations directly support the components of the Administration’s strategy that aim to deny ISIL a safe-haven and expand intelligence collection against ISIL. Funds include items such as:

  • sustaining personnel forward deployed to the Middle East to provide training, advice, and assistance to partner security forces engaged in the fight against ISIL;
  • providing forces with enablers to support operations, especially the intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) platforms and support that are essential to conduct comprehensive counterterrorism operations;
  • replenishing or replacing munitions expended while conducting airstrikes against ISIL, including from Air Force and Navy platforms; and
  • financing operations and maintenance costs for air, ground, and naval operations, including: flying hours; ship steaming days; and fuel, supplies, and repair parts”.

“The proposed OCO funding is in addition to the $58.6 billion DOD OCO request sent to the Congress in June 2014, which included the costs of operations in Afghanistan, DOD’s forward military presence in the broader Middle East region, and other critical missions.  The costs of military operations against ISIL in the Middle East region were not included in the June 2014 request, and DOD requires additional funding in order to avoid diverting funding from other key priorities within its budget”.[4]

The document goes down into the nitty-gritty of the expenditure:

Building Partner Capacity

“DOD’s request supports the President’s strategy in terms of building partner capacity with the $1.6 billion Iraq Train and Equip Fund (ITEF). ITEF will provide the resources to help reconstitute and develop security forces. The funding will allow for training at multiple sites throughout Iraq for approximately twelve Iraqi brigades. Coalition members will also play a critical role in the training of these forces. DoD will provide training, supplies, and equipment for Iraqi forces. ITEF will complement other efforts to enable partners to counter terrorism, such as the Counterterrorism Partnerships Fund (CTPF) requested as part of the Administration’s June 2014 OCO request”.

Funding for State/OIP

“The amendments include $520 million in funding for State/OIP, which is in addition to the $7.3 billion total OCO request for State/OIP in the FY 2015 Budget and June OCO amendment including CTPF.  The existing request provides funding for diplomacy, governance, and security programs and activities to respond to the situation in Syria and other ongoing global crises.  This amendment includes additional resources to counter ISIL in Iraq, Syria, and the rest of the region – directly linked to denying ISIL Safe Haven, Building Partner Capacity, Exposing ISIL’s True Nature and Humanitarian Support lines of effort.

The funds will support the following activities:

  • Bolstering regional partners and their efforts to address extremist threats along their borders;
  • Expanding ongoing assistance to the moderate Syrian opposition to develop their capacity to provide local security for communities;
  • Providing assistance to meet emergency humanitarian needs in Iraq; and
  • Exposing ISIL’s bankrupt ideology and narrative by amplifying positive messaging through international media and public diplomacy programs”.[5]

[1] Cfr. ‘Military Industrial Complex (Snarkipedia #1)’ in “Snarkipedia: No Cure for That” A Pseudo-Ottoman Blog (22 January 2011). https://sitanbul.wordpress.com/2011/01/22/snarkipedia-no-cure-for-that/.

[2] “FACT SHEET: The Administration’s Strategy to Counter the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) and the Updated FY 2015 Overseas Contingency Operations Request” The White House (07 November 2014). http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2014/11/07/fact-sheet-administration-s-strategy-counter-islamic-state-iraq-and-leva.

[3] “FACT SHEET: The Administration’s Strategy to Counter the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL)”.

[4] “FACT SHEET: The Administration’s Strategy to Counter the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL)”.

[5] “FACT SHEET: The Administration’s Strategy to Counter the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).”

Comments on: "The White House Strategy against the Islamic State: Overseas Contingency Operations Update" (1)

  1. […] Source: The White House Strategy against the Islamic State: Overseas Contingency Operations Update […]

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