Russ White MUG

On Oct. 26, U.S. Army Delta Force carried out a successful raid that ended the life of one of the world’s truly bad actors, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. Not since the Navy SEALs took out Osama bin Laden has the hard work by the patriots in the deep state of the U.S. intelligence community (you know, the ones this president has marginalized and vilified for more than three years) paid off in such spectacular fashion. And, for the first time in his misbegotten presidency, the commander-in-chaos didn’t manage to screw it up.

Of course, he tried. His ill-conceived decision to remove American forces from northern Syria and throw our Kurdish allies under the bus forced the intelligence professionals, and the military they were coordinating with, to move up their actions and rush the preparation for the mission. Fortunately, they were up to the task.

Then, in post-raid announcements, the president had his intelligence and military advisers cringing as he divulged details of the raid they would have much preferred to remain secret. And, of course, he took credit for the success. And, thank God for that.

We can only wonder whom he would have blamed had the mission failed. Certainly not himself. While he deserves credit for being smart enough to give the OK for the raid, that is as far as his involvement really goes.

So, now, the caliphate of the IS organization lies in ruin, and it has been decapitated. Those are both excellent outcomes this president likes to claim for himself. As always, his claims are untrue.

The foundation for the destruction of the caliphate was put in place by President Barack Obama, who created an equilibrium among the competing forces (Syria, Russia, Iraq, Iran and the USA) that this president was able to build on. That’s another thing he didn’t manage to screw up.

He likes to take credit for the destruction of the caliphate, but it was the Kurds, and their 11,000 KIAs, who did the fighting and deserve the credit. The manner in which this commander-in-chaos stabbed them in the back will forever be a blot on this country’s honor and a detriment to the building of future alliances.

So, the caliphate is gone and Baghdadi is dead. In exchange, Syria has been ceded to President Bashar Hafez al-Assad, the Russians, the Turks and Iran. The Kurds are being ethnically cleansed, and IS has been reinvigorated.

Great job, Mr. President.

— White, a retired fire services chief in South Florida, lives in Orange City. Send email to