The establishment and expansion of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (IS) represents a step-change in the threat to American homeland security and national security generally. This is the first time that an al Qaeda-affiliated group has made the leap from stateless terrorist organization to a quasi-state with a combat-effective army.
Afghanistan's presidential election must be decided according to Afghan law by the established electoral bodies and without more mobilization of street pressures. Any other outcome will hurt all of the Afghan people and seriously damage U.S. and international interests in South Asia.
It would be irresponsible to embrace a premature fatalism with respect to Iraq. And it would be damaging and counterproductive to accept a transformation of our alliances and relationships in the Middle East to the benefit of the regime in Tehran.
We face a simple choice: We can either rejoin our demoralized Iraqi partners in the fight against ISIS or we can watch as this Al Qaeda franchise solidifies its control over several million Iraqis and Syrians, completes its plundering of military bases and continues to build up, train and equip an honest-to-goodness military.
Any deal comes with the risk of miscalculation and betrayal...We are all focused on that risk. But a deal would also come with another risk-the risk that the US would persuade itself that solving one problem solves all. In this case, on the contrary, solving one problem may very well make others a lot worse.
Kharkov. Dnepropetrovsk. Odessa. Mariupol. Sites of great armor battles seven decades ago, these cities are once again the front line of war. Tanks are massed but remain idle. Protesters, separatists, and “little green men” are the foot soldiers in the conflict between Russia and Ukraine. Is this quasi-war the ultimate proof of the irrelevance of conventional forces today?
This event will coincide with the release of a new report by AEI’s Mary Habeck, which analyzes why current national security policy is failing to stop the advancement of al Qaeda and its affiliates and what the US can do to develop a successful strategy to defeat this enemy.