Military Intervention Is the Problem, Not the Solution: ISIS Is the Result
November 22, 2015 Peter Certo / AntiWar.com & Al Jazeera America
The Islamic State's latest atrocities are a calculated effort to bring the war in Syria home to the countries participating in it. After 911, few pundits for peaceful diplomacy were given air-time. Instead, the media outlets were packed with generals -- then as now. "Viable leadership" always meant a call to war, violence, and aggression. But those who see the world primarily through the frame of attack-and-response are unequipped to seek solutions outside this insidious box.
Military Intervention Is the Problem, Not the Solution Peter Certo / AntiWar.com
(November 21, 2015) -- The Islamic State's latest atrocities are a calculated effort to bring the war in Syria home to the countries participating in it.
"Hillary Clinton declared that ISIS "must be destroyed" with "all of the tools at our disposal." Ted Cruz called for "overwhelming air power" and condemned the Obama administration for having insufficient "tolerance for civilian casualties." Ben Carson called for "boots on the ground," while Donald Trump swore he'd "bomb the s -- out of" ISIS-controlled oil fields and hand them over to ExxonMobil."
What's propped up as viable leadership is always a call to war, violence, and aggression.
Gandhi wisely reminded that the call of vengeance in the form of "an eye for an eye" would only succeed in making the world blind.
This is accurate: "When your government answers every problem in the world with military force, war begets war. And eventually there's nowhere left to hide from it."
Dictionaries are alive as organic extensions of changes in language. For instance, when a new phrase becomes adopted, it will typically find itself in a modern dictionary.
I think it's time for some new definitions.
For instance, the paradigm that holds the warrior responsible for "national security" must be revisited. What -- at essence -- is National Security? If it's which nation has the biggest bombs, then clearly the definition is flawed.
Another word that needs to be reassessed is the idea of leadership. For if leaders ONLY traffic in war fervor (and fever), how could the peace that most citizens want be attained?
After 911, few to no pundits for peaceful diplomacy were given any air-time. Instead, the media outlets were packed with generals. . . . then as now.
But those who see the world primarily through the frame of attack and response, are not equipped to envision any solutions outside of this insidious box. It is the box of HIS-tory, the sins of the FATHERS visited upon the sons as so much in the way of life is presented as battle, as the need mostly for males to prove their manhood through a show of arms.
It's no accident that very few governing boards and bodies have more than a token woman or two, if that. And the few let in are on-board with the militarists. . . or else they would not be there.
Deconstructing the paradigm that Mars rules built comes from not seeing the world through simplistic bifurcated frames, or lending one's name -- and thus consent -- to unending calamitous inanities like war.
Another word to revisit is Terrorist. After all, if those enacting wars of aggression are not fitted with that title, and rather it's reserved for those who respond -- on their own home turf -- to brutal invasions, then how accurate can such a terminology be?
Peter Certo is the acting editor of Foreign Policy In Focus. Reprinted from Foreign Policy in Focus. This commentary is a joint publication of Foreign Policy In Focus and OtherWords.
Enemy of Enemies: The Rise of ISIL
Al Jazeera explores the origins and evolution of the world's most feared and powerful insurgent group
(October 26, 2015) -- The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) has been truly devastating to those it comes in contact with and bloody to those under its control.
Its sudden rise and expansion in 2014 has perplexed many. It has humiliated its enemies, including those in Damascus, Baghdad, Tehran and Washington. Armed with extensive weaponry, boasting an international fighting force and adept in the art of digital media propaganda, the so-called Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant has become the de facto authority across an area the size of Jordan.
This two-part series peels back the rhetoric to examine how a volunteer organisation managed to rise up from the ashes of post-invasion Iraq and defeat standing armies many times its size and capacity.
How did it begin? How did it grow so astonishingly quickly? And how is it being used by global and regional powers to change the geopolitical map of the Middle East?
WATCH PART TWO:
With critical testimony from informed insiders and experts from across three continents, as well as original footage from Syria and Iraq, this series mixes documentary and discussion to unravel the interweaving nexus of events and alliances, at once aligned and conflicting, that have given rise to the world's most notorious, and powerful, insurgent group.
Al Jazeera's former Middle East correspondent, Sue Turton, narrates the documentary and also moderates a studio discussion between Iraq's former national security adviser, Mowaffak al Rubaie; Ali Khedery, special adviser to the Coalition Provisional Authority in Iraq; and Australian journalist and Middle East correspondent, Martin Chulov.
The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) has been a devastating force against those it battles as well as those it purportedly governs. Its sudden rise and expansion in 2014 has perplexed many.
It has humiliated its enemies, including those in Damascus, Baghdad, Tehran and Washington. Armed with extensive weaponry, boasting an international fighting force and adept in the art of digital media propaganda, ISIL has become the de facto authority across an area the size of Jordan.
Posted in accordance with Title 17, Section 107, US Code, for noncommercial, educational purposes.