Baghdad is 900 miles from Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; 500 miles from Amman, Jordan; 300 miles from Kuwait, and 1000 miles from Ankara, Turkey, countries that are allies of the United States, and armed to the teeth with American weapons. With over 700,000 soldiers, 6000 tanks, 2000 warplanes, and some 5000 conventional and rocket launched artillery pieces between them they vastly outnumber and outgun the forces of the so-called Independent State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) that is determined to set up a medieval brutal Caliphate in parts of Syria and Iraq.
If these heavily armed American allies that are minutes away from the killing fields of Iraq choose not to step in and rectify the rapidly unfolding chaos in their midst, why should the United States, some 7000 miles from Iraq spill its blood and treasure in another futile quest to remake the Middle East for them? A futile quest that has over the last decade chewed up the minds and bodies of 56,000 brave American soldiers, including some 4,700 killed.
Over a trillion dollars have been spent over the last 12 years in the disastrous 2003 American invasion of Iraq and its attempt to remake the Middle East. Estimates are that a similar amount will be required over the next two decades to care for the American soldiers who have thankfully survived the war in Iraq and returned to their anguished families.
Shouldn’t the old adage about forcing Israelis and Palestinians to make peace — we cannot want peace between them more than they can — also apply to the Middle East? Of course it should. America cannot want a stable Middle East more than the people that live there, most of whom are awash with petrodollars and can easily afford to spend the billions that will be required to straighten out the mess in their backyard, if they cared enough to do it.
Then there are the consequences of America spending its political and material capital in distant lands under the ever more ephemeral mantle of global leadership. Consequences that directly and negatively impact Americans. For instance, The Financial Times, on April 28, 2014, reported that that the United States will have to spend $3.6 trillion by 2020 to bring America’s crumbling infrastructure to where it should be today. That is almost twice the amount spent on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan combined.
Via : The Financial Times
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