Turkey, Jordan, and Saudi Arabia all border Iraq and Syria. They are all Islamic nations. Turkey and Saudi Arabia  and Jordan have powerful military muscle. Jordan and Saudi Arabia have nearly unlimited treasure.

ISIS is having its way with Iraq and Syria. When they gain control of those countries, will they turn their attention on Turkey, Jordan, or Saudi Arabia? Why would they stop with Syria and Iraq?

ISIS is a danger to the neighboring countries and the neighboring countries should be providing the “boots on the ground” in the fight with ISIS. Iraqi soldiers have been trained and armed by the USA and they put down their weapons and equipment and gave it to ISIS and then they dug their own graves.  Why on earth would we fight their fight on the ground when they gave up without a fight? I call them either stupid or cowards. Either way, I don’t believe Americans should be put in harm’s way when the Iraqi people refuse to fight for themselves.

At the very least the Saudis and Jordanians ought to pay for all the equipment that the US provides to the rebels in Syria and pay us for those weapons and equipment dropped by the Iraqis.

Iran is also a bordering country and should help to stop ISIS. Iran has both a strong military and treasure to overcome ISIS.

I don’t think America should be the lead or even close to the lead on fighting ISIS. These countries are capable of defending themselves and should be made aware that we will not bail them out.

These  are my opinions and I welcome yours. Below is a link to a map of the middle east.

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kesmarnKalimaEXFANOFARIANAfunksandsNirek Recent comment authors
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Hello Nirek.

Groups like ISIS can only survive in countries that are politically unstable, like Iraq, Syria, Mali, Somalia, Afghanistan, Yemen and a few African countries where Al Qaeda spinoffs like Boko Haram and al-Shabaab cause chaos with kidnappings and suicide bomb attacks.

Turkey doesn’t join in because they would like nothing better than to see the Kurds and the PKK rebels destroyed, in fact they bombed Kurdish rebels near the Iraqi border yesterday. The Kurds have been fighting for autonomy for the last 30 years, Turkey won’t hear of it so helping the Kurds on the ground with troops is not an option for them.

How ordinary citizens can try to fight and protect themselves from both the Assad forces and the terrorists is beyond me. After three years of murders, no weapons, ammunition or military training, do we expect helpless civilians with families to fight back with just their bare hands?

Most of the people who could afford to leave Syria did so in the first few months of fighting. Many others are now in overcrowded refugee camps, and those that stayed behind are too poor to leave or too sick and weary to defend themselves and their families.

Yes the Iraqi army is in shambles, but blame it’s leaders and not it’s people.

Other Muslim countries should be helping but as they dilly dally, hundreds more ordinary, unarmed civilians die each day. The ME has a history of “every man, woman and child for themselves” that doesn’t mean that we should sit back and allow it to happen as we stare at our shoes.

As I wrote in your last post, no ground troops from any Western nation, but absolutely as much support that we can give to stop the massacre of the innocents.

However, as of yesterday, Turkey has agreed to this.


Turkey ‘allows Syria rebel training’

Turkey agrees to allow the training of moderate Syrian rebels on its soil, the US says, as part of efforts to combat Islamic State.


Kalima, I hope you guys are doing ok. Sorry but despite I abhor the Assad regime, how well did we do taking out dictators? Iraq? Libya? Some countries are not and will never be ready to join a democratic world because they focus their extremism on – oh my oh my – effing religions and cults.My two cent today. Short because I am FUMING at both my husband and step-son…I was reading a great article linking extreme religious people and the immediate link to ample stages of psychosis, paranoia schizophrenia.Sayonara. BE SAFE…


We are fine, thanks.

This is not to do with regime change, it’s helping people unable to help themselves from being butchered, or do you think that every Syrian or Iraqi is a terrorist or extremist? If we demonise a people, is it then easier to ignore their plight and suffering by looking the other way?

I look at this being as much of a humanitarian effort as sending food or helping the sick and wounded. If this slows down and contains the ISIS advance into new territory, then I’m for it. We have to stop painting innocent people with the same brush, it’s lazy and mostly unjust. They are people like you and me, working to support their families and now after three years of brutal fighting, are left with very little of their former lives to cling to. It’s easy to flip them off when we will never know how it feels to walk in their shoes in this chaos. What would we be doing in their situation?

Too much is being made of the religious agenda of these murderous groups, what they want more than anything is money, power and control. This is not what Islam is about as most Muslims would tell you. The religion only becomes important to these leaders when they are recruiting young people to fight and die for them. Al Qaeda was the same, they were all hypocrites at the top using religion as an excuse to control people.


Kalima, it’s good to read that moderate Syrian rebels will be allowed to train in Turkey. These poor people have been through hell for the last two years.

Thanks so much for your balanced and well-thought-out assessment of a very, very complex situation.

So many people in the Middle East are just trying to do the best they can to keep themselves and their families alive for another day. It’s very difficult to generalize and say “They’re all like this,” or “They’re all like that…” There are regional, cultural and religious differences that make each country and situation quite unique.

I think the President has done a remarkable job of displaying sensitivity and restraint regarding the ME the whole time he’s been in office. I’m ardently hoping he has a successor who’s on the same page.


Thanks kes, that is exactly who most of the remaining Syrians are, just ordinary people trying to survive from day to day in the most brutal existence imaginable, and we sitting on the sidelines have no right to judge them. Nail on the head, every country’s culture is different and you can’t use a broad brush to dismiss them or lump them all in one group. Most of us wouldn’t last a day there.

Assad’s father came into power in 1970′ and there has been no real power grab before March 2011 when many grew tired of his son Bashar al-Assad’s authoritarian governing since succeeding his father in 2000. Like Saddam Hussein, Assad and his cronies belong to the Baath Party, and that is why so many from Hussein’s regime easily fled to Syria to escape the U.S. forces as they approached Baghdad. To say that “these” people are always fighting is simply not true. Syria was calm and doing well economically but anyone who spoke out against Assad was imprisoned and often never heard of again. For anyone who saw the gruesome photos on MB months ago, you know what happened and still happens to prisoners under Assad’s rule.

I agree that the President has shown a lot of restraint, and like you, hope the next person in the WH, is another Democrat with intelligence and patience while all around him are screaming for blood. Not their own or that of their children of course, just everyone else’s.

Here is a story from a 14 year old girl fleeing Kobani. I’m certain that no one would want their 14 year old daughter to have to go through this.


The Story of a Teenage Girl from Kobani


Nirek, heard on BBC this afternoon that ISIS is being held away from new “conquests” and lost some new territories acquired on the past few days!!!! Cheers, another hit!


Nirek, good question. I don’t think that ISIS can move too far beyond the areas they are attacking now for a few reasons.

1) They are a Sunni group. They are fighting in Syria where Sunnis are the majority religion, but politically have no power. In a destroyed country, a group like this can get a toehold and wield tremendous authority.

2) In Iraq they are fighting a government where the Sunnis are the minority, but have little political power beyond local offices. This too is taking place in destabilized and destroyed country where an organized, armed group like ISIS has tremendous authority.

They won’t invade Saudi Arabia, because that is where most of their money is coming from, and rabid Sunnis are already in charge of the country

Kuwait – same

Jordan – not rabid sunnis, but same story. Sunnis have all the political power. With 2 million Syrian and 1 millions Iraqi refugees living in the country, they could be destabilized though.

Yemen – Sunnis in charge

Turkey – Sunnis in charge

Egypt – Sunnis in charge

Lebanon is really the only serious worry. As it is about a quarter Sunni, a quarter Shiite, 40% Christian and is big melting pot of a bunch of different religions. They are also swamped by Syrian refugees and could be an attractive target for ISIS. If ISIS attacked there, then Isreal would have to get involved and things would get really really messy very quickly.

Much of the political turmoil in the Middle East is a proxy war between Saudi Arabia and Iran. They are the bitterest of enemies. Iraq was a buffer state between the two for a long time.

Iran supports and supplies Assad, the Saudis support and supply Isis in Syria
Iran supports and supplies the Iraqi government, the Saudis support and supply ISIS and other insurgency groups in Iraq.

We had a big meeting with a whole bunch of Middle Eastern countries to discuss what to do about ISIS, some of these countries are actively supporting them. We didn’t even invite Iran, who is the biggest enemy of ISIS in Syria and Iraq.

There are many political things we should be doing to solve this problem. We aren’t doing any of them. Until we do, not 1 bullet. Not 1 bomb, not 1 boot. Pumping more weapons into an already completely destabilized situation is madness and will not help 1 bit.


HI Nirek very fine article as presented. ISIS is really a religious following and is very hard to stop. It will Renew itself or the ISIS people will just claim they are not part of it when/if they lose.

For one item NOBODY knows who is on anyone’s side.

I agree the USA should pull out almost completely. Let the world police this one. We will be at war for yrs as things stand now. The cost will go into the trillions.

Item two, this will only work if the surrounding countries do a block of all things coming in or out of the area. Again i agree that the boots on the ground should be from them.

Yes they should pay for the cost of the military stuff to the USA.

Third item is that almost know one has a winning plan.

This is cruel. to really end this thing they need to take out/ destroy all the oil refineries pipelines and electrical power in Iraq and Syria. IN the end to many innocents will die this way. IS it the really solution? It is debatable

It will leave them with no fuel and electricity and the other nations surrounding them should cut off food supplies.

” IN the sands of time, time flows over and over again. It
Slides in back currents and the falling sands hide the future of the conflicts that occur to change history. ”

A synthesizer can create any instrument made and others that have not been created yet.