US officials are trying to downplay the threat of ISIS, with General Martin Dempsey incredibly claiming the city of Ramadi, the capital of Iraq’s largest province and on a highway directly to the capital of Baghdad, is of no real value and that an ISIS takeover wouldn’t be a major blow.
Iraqi PM Hayder Abadi clearly sees it differently, and warns the latest ISIS push against Ramadi, a city which has been contested since January of 2014, proves the group is a growing threat.
Abadi warned ISIS is recruiting young people “not only in Iraq but across the world,” and is both a transnational nation and one that is capable of establishing a serious presence on the ground.
“If Daesh has developed this capability, no uniformed army can stop them,” warned Abadi. The comments come as he is trying to get more military aid from the US for the war against ISIS.
At the same time, Abadi expressed hope that the recovery of Tikrit would be a model for defeating ISIS. It doesn’t seem a great model, as a battle that was supposed to be days took a whole month, parts of Tikrit remain in ISIS hands, and the parts Iraq “liberated” have been awash in lootings and lynchings by Iraqi forces.