More on who can or will fight ISIS

I weighed in this week on the need to have a truly broad coalition to fight ISIS in Politico.

The problem ahead is to build that coalition – and it won’t be quick or easy.

If we are going to war — and it seems we are, and I think we should — then building the right coalition is a major strategic prerequisite.  It may take time to win over recalcitrant countries, or convince them to see this is in their own interests.

And you can expect both Saudi Arabia and Iran to refuse to work on the same side of anything, and for everyone to accuse everyone else publicly of terrible things.

But in private, the danger should concentrate the minds of leaders in the middle East.  ISIS has now grown into an army of tens of thousands of fighters controlling millions of people.  This is a worse nightmare of regimes seeking to avoid Islamic extremist terrorists — including Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and Iran — than they could have imagined just six months ago.

So take some time President Obama, and work on convincing nations in the region to join against the common threat.  Racing to do something — bombing, arming Syrian forces — before you have in place a coalition to support what you do may risk defeat.  And that WOULD be worse than doing nothing at all




About jackgoldstone

Hazel Professor of Public Policy at George Mason University
This entry was posted in The Middle East Revolts, U.S. Politics and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

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