Digging a moat around Fallujah: Mark on the radio

Seriously…the Iraqi army is digging a moat around the city of Fallujah, taken back from ISIS a month ago. All that’s missing is the water. I discussed this a few minutes ago with host Bob Bartolomeo on KQV Radio in Pittsburgh.

The battle for Fallujah was one of the cruelest in the whole decade, dating back to 2004. First ISIS massacred opponents, including civilians, and then the conquering forces–spearheaded by Iran-backed Shiite militias, massacred more people and drove civilians out of the city.

The Iraqi government forces came across cages like these, where ISIS militants held their opponents, probably before killing them.

fallujah cages

The level of barbarity in Iraq, more than a decade after American-led forces invaded and toppled dictator Saddam Hussein, is almost unfathomable to a Western mind. Getting involved in such a conflict cannot turn out to anyone’s benefit, least of all the US.

There is one area where the West can help. It’s estimated that 85,000 civilians fled Fallujah during the fighting. The Iraqi authorities are pre4paring electronic ID cards for everyone there, a step to keep the militants from returning–but in the meantime, they’re stranded in tents in desert refugee camps. The Red Cross says it needs $17 million to keep them alive.

Just as a contrast, and we discuss this on the radio, the US has spent $1.6 BILLION to “train” the Iraqi army. Look what a bargain it would be to help civilians instead, and build some good will.


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