I hate Islamists, terrorists, mass murderers, imperialist wannabes, and a whole mess of things about the mid-East.
The bloody execution of anyone is a horrendous thing, and the recent beheadings of two American journalists as a form of taunting warfare is horrific. But I fail to see how the deaths of American journalists who risked their lives by going into a war zone provide reason enough to re-ignite and escalate an ill-conceived war of alleged conquest halfway around the world.
Americans who travel to other countries do so at their own risk. The world is not American. We cannot expect justice to roll evenly everywhere . . . especially when we cannot get it here.
On the other hand, it would be wonderful to take ISIS down.
Were I in charge, my policy would encourage those nearer to it to take care of the problem . . . and if the situation escalates in horror and homicidal and repressive power, then strike back against the evil madmen in a big way.
I think I know how this could be done.
The plan looks nothing like Obama’s.
Or the witless Republicans. . . .
But wait. I am not in charge. “Being-in-charge” fantasies probably should not be encouraged.
What should be encouraged? Careful thought. Maybe we should begin by asking and answering some tough questions.
Here’s one. Many people think warfare and attacks and bombing and “boots on the ground” and the like are all about toughness, about asserting control.
But if you let your policy — the policy of a whole country — be determined by upstarts and insurrectionists (we call them, incorrectly, “terrorists”) in foreign lands, who is in control?
Surely not you.
Surely it is your enemy who is in control.
In light of this, maybe the control freaks in this Great Shaitan of ours might want to rethink their quick-to-the-draw preference for retaliation and war. Or at least the diplomatic context within which they would engage in the most extreme acts humanity has devised.
(Yes, I’m suggesting that anyone in favor of warfare is extremist. By definition.)