Something to Consider Going Forward
A simple point needs to be remembered as we go forward in the aftermath of the Paris attacks: there would be no ISIS (or, if you prefer, IS, ISL, or Daesh), if there had not been a massive mistaken military action by the United States after the 9/11 attacks. We can draw a rather direct line from the Iraq war to the rise of ISIS.
This strikes me as something to keep in mind as we consider the next policy steps.
I point this out not to lay blame but to point out that there are always consequences for military action, and what seems like a straightforward solution to a problem is rather likely to spin off serious unintended and unanticipated consequences.
Let’s just remember that the consequences of military actions are not as easy to control or predict as many are going to pretend is the case in the coming days, weeks, and months.
The connections between the dismantlement of the Iraqi state by the US and its poor job of helping build a new one is worth remembering as well when there are simplistic statements made by politicians about how ISIS could have been dealt with in recent years.
And the policies in Libya and the dismantlement of that regime have to be taken into account as well.
(It seemed worth saying, for what it is worth).