Martin Dempsey’s statement yesterday before a congressional committee that U.S. ground forces might be used in the campaign against ISIS means one of two things: either the General let a skunk loose in the barn, or he’s a deputized trial balloonist, floating a dragon kite for a President who is too politically astute to do […]
The President’s speech was good as oratory, but the lack of understanding of what is really going on in the Middle East means that the strategy the White House seems bent on pursuing is unlikely to succeed.
Whenever the U.S. Government has a choice between doing nothing and sending in the cavalry to sort out a non-vital national security contingency, it is a sure sign of an antecedent failure of imagination and planning.
Just a day or two ago came the news that the Libyan government, such as it is, has lost control of its own capital—Tripoli—not long after losing control of its airport there. The rump government is holed up in Tobruk now while Misuratan and Islamist rebels (Ansar al-Sharia and others) roam the capital’s desultory urban […]
The United Arab Emirates and Egypt bombed Libya without consulting with the United States. Mahmoud Abbas is set to unveil an initiative for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the content of which the United States will not see beforehand. Leading from behind, indeed.
Syria, Libya, Iraq, Egypt…why have Arab states had such a hard time of it lately? And would Palestine, if it were to become the newest Arab state, fare any better?
John Kerry’s ceasefire proposal for Gaza has probably destroyed what remained of the United States’ influence in the Middle East, at least for the duration of this administration’s tenure.
Though there are some important differences this time around, the solution to this recurring nightmare remains the same—and remains unlikely.
What has happened today is certainly a tragedy in human terms, but we need not, and should not, allow emotions to misguide us into making it into a political tragedy as well.
The ISIS offensive has so far played to Iran’s advantage, but poses a strategic nightmare for it in the long run as Iraq continues to dissolve.