by Jack Kelly
April 13, 2017

Across the Arab world, reports the London Telegraph, people have found a new hero.  They call him Abu Ivanka Al-Amriki.

Israelis too are hailing him as their new hero.  They call him President Donald Trump.  Abu Ivanka Al-Amriki, you see, is Arabic for “The Father of Ivanka The American.”

“Maybe you in the West hate Trump, but he has already done far more for us than Obama,” said Najim Hassan, who lives in the Syrian city of Idlib that Assad nerve-gassed, to a Telegraph reporter. “We love him because he does more than he says, he’s a man of action and at least he gives us something to hope for.”

Which brings us to this question:

Ever hear of the Islamic Military Alliance Against Terror?  IMAAT was formed in December 2015, the brainchild of Saudi Arabia’s Defense Minister, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, with 34 Moslem countries joining.

Last December in response to Trump’s election, Oman – a holdout due to IMAAT targeting the terrorist mullahs of Iran with which it has good relations – joined.

You may not have heard of that either, since all of this is being ignored by the American news media.  That’s their mistake. Before I explain why, ponder these facts:

*The only country Obama treated as an enemy was Israel.

*The only countries Zero treated as allies were Iran and Russia.

*President Trump last week sent a message to Syria, Russia and Iran that the use of chemical weapons will not be tolerated, reclaiming for the United States moral leadership in the world.

Did he also “kill a chicken to scare monkeys?”  It seems so.  The link is a good read explaining why.

And Mr. Trump blew up the leftist narrative he’s Vladimir Putin’s prison wife. Not bad for a few hour’s work.

The cruise missile strike was ineffective, say Obamunists and Alt-Rightists.

We destroyed 20 percent of Syria’s operational aircraft, said SecDef James Mattis. But why believe him when you have Field Marshals Nigel Farage and Ann Coulter saying otherwise?

It’s suspicious the Russians were warned an hour ahead of the strike to get out of Dodge, say leftie moonbats and Alt-Rightists.

I thought it was only John McCain and his faithful sidekick Tonto Graham who want to start World War III.

The bombing was illegal, said many moonbats, and some conservatives.

An ICBM can travel from Russia to the United States in half an hour. The president must be able to take military action without having to get permission from Congress first.

Had Mr. Trump sought Congressional approval before striking Syria, the urgency of the message he sent would have been diluted, the element of surprise lost. That’s militarily insane.

Only Congress has the power to declare war. But the president retains power to employ military force short of war. When Congress passed the War Powers Act after Vietnam, it made a reasonable accommodation. A continuing military action must receive Congressional approval within 60 days.

The Tomahawk missile attack was intended to be a one off. The president and his national security team have made clear they don’t plan to become combatants in the Syrian civil war.

Leftist pundits and #NeverTrump conservatives claim there is a disconnect between what Secretary of State Tillerson is saying, and what UN Ambassador Nikki Haley is saying.

Not so. T-Rex spelled out clearly Job One is to destroy ISIS. Then Assad must go. The U.S. hopes to remove him through a political process, but hasn’t ruled out the use of additional force.

Now here’s the key point:  Destroying ISIS and opposing Assad are now pretty much the same.

Oil and Gas Sales to the Syrian Regime Are Now ISIS’s Largest Source of Funds reports Fortune magazine, based on research by the Wall Street Journal: Islamic State Steps Up Oil and Gas Sales to Assad Regime.

“Virtually every national security woe the Western world has faced since leaving Iraq in 2011 is a direct result, not of the invasion in 2003, but President Bashar al Assad’s very deliberate leadership decisions,” observes Geoffrey Ingersoll, a Marine veteran of the Iraq war. His entire article in the Daily Caller on Monday (4/10) really is a must-read.

As is appropriate for someone whose job is to rally world opinion against Assad, Ambassador Haley stresses the regime’s evil, that further military action hasn’t been ruled out.

As is appropriate for someone whose job is to persuade Russia to back away from Assad, Secretary T-Rex is more sotto voce. But both read from the same script. Trump policy toward Syria is remarkably nuanced.

Okay, back to Oman.

Oman has been friendlier to Iran than the other Gulf states. Oman brings to 41 – all Sunni Muslim states – to join the Islamic Military Alliance Against Terror.

IMAAT was formed in response to Obama’s “red line” fiasco in Syria.

“Nothing so wonderfully concentrates the mind as the prospect of being hanged,” said Samuel Johnson.

For both Israel and IMAAT, Obama’s dalliance with Iran was an existential crisis. Did they bury the hatchet to join forces against a common enemy?

Thomas Wictor thinks so. Unlike Alt-Right bloggers who spout Iranian propaganda verbatim, he does research, and has evidence.

The Gulf states funded development of new Israeli military technologies, with which IMAAT commandos fighting both ISIS and Assad are equipped.

IMAAT commandos may not be on a par with U.S. Army Special Forces, the British SAS, or the Israeli Sayeret Matkal – but they’re close.  They’re good.  They’re doubtless better than the typical Assad draftee, Hezbollah militiaman, ISIS butcher, or conventional Russian soldier.

Assad may have launched his nerve gas attack because he’s losing again. The morale of Syrian draftees is said to be very low.

IMAAT commandos have been in Syria and Iraq since October 2015, Wictor says. They’re the reason Assad is losing.

We have about 1,000 troops in Syria. They’ve been killing lots of bad guys. (If you didn’t know about this before, don’t hyperventilate now. It’s not a prelude to a big buildup.)

The next step will be to form “safe zones,” as we did in Iraq for the Kurds after the first Gulf War (the price of not finishing off Saddam then.) We’ll be involved, but nearly all troops to police them will come from IMAAT.

Meanwhile, T-Rex will try to persuade the Russians to back away from Assad. Putin’s feelings are hurt – Ralph Peters explains why our cruise missile attack was so humiliating for him in Trump Calls Putin’s Bluff.

But supporting Assad is getting expensive, Russia’s relations with Iran are souring.

John McCain will be disappointed, but President Trump will not reprise the Afghanistan and Iraq wars in Syria.  “We’re not going into Syria” with ground troops he announced yesterday.  He knows he doesn’t have to.  He knows he just needs to support IMAAT and the Israelis.

“Abu Ivanka” will work with our allies to kill off ISIS, depose Assad, then deal with the mullahs. And IMAAT will do the heavy lifting that we don’t have to. It already is.

Maybe someday, while there’s no hope for leftie moonbats, the alt-rightists will come to their senses and understand why President Al-Amriki is a hero to both Arabs and Israelis.


— Jack Kelly is a former Marine and Green Beret, and was the Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Air Force during the Reagan Administration.  Until his retirement in January 2017, he was the national security writer for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Abu Ivanka Al-Amriki – The New Hero to Arabs and Israelis originally appeared at To The Point News.