Before today, I had only seen French Christians, which I was surprised to find actually exist, speaking about the events in Mosul. Assyro-Chaldean to be exact, Iraqi, Syrian, and Turkish Christians around Paris.
Today the French President François Hollande issued a statement regarding his conversation with Mr. Massoud Barzani, President of the Kurdistan Regional Government on the continuing aggression and brutality of the Islamic State of Iraq (ISIS). The tone of the French statement was clear and firm, certainly something one is not accustomed to hearing from the French. Sometimes it’s nice to be surprised.
Persecution by the terrorist group of religious minorities, including Christians and Yazidis, is a crime of the utmost gravity.
What stop this writer in his tracks was this part of the statement issued:
Le chef de l’Etat a confirmé la disponibilité de la France à apporter un soutien aux forces engagées dans ce combat.
Which in English means, “The Head of State has confirmed the availability of France to provide support to forces engaged in this fight.”
Very shortly after the French issued their statement, the Kurdish governments own statement surfaced. Painting a grim picture of what ISIS has already accomplished and their increased capabilities gained when taking Mosul. Also, forcing Christians, Yazidis, and other minorities out of their homes, displacing some 200,000 people. Barzani is asking for immediate intervention, humanitarian aide, and air support. ISIS’s attacks are unprovoked and vicious, these don’t seem like the sit-down-and-talk-it-out type of guys.
These developments are still breaking and we’ve yet to hear from the White House. One would think, however, after all the Kurds have been through for supporting the US, it wouldn’t be a hard decision for the POTUS to make, in this case. American air support could be there in hours. Only time will tell, and we’re on the a White House’s time.
As one former intelligence analyst put it in the days after ISIS crossed into Iraq from Syria, “The Kurds must hold fast.”
Let’s hope they get what they need to hold fast, this fragile line. And from this westerner’s perspective, the only hand that is reaching to help right now, is a Frenchman’s hand.
The White House has committed to humanitarian air operations on behalf of the stranded and displaced Iraqis. They did not comment on wether or not any military action would be taken. In all practicality, no one will care if the planes dropping food and water, drop ISIS an ordnance payload on their return flight. No one will loose any sleep over it.
The US did send strategic air support and have been asked by the Kurds for more, according to CBS.
Some here have lost their homes and their loved ones. Others are fearful they could be next. Nearly everyone wants more American airstrikes to protect them from ISIS.