By all means wish Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and other Isis leaders dead — it’s an understandable retribution that many of us might share — certainly the present writer — but proclaiming it from the housetops every day is beginning to sound like hysteria.
It’s the underlying causes that really need to be attended to. The big one is that millions of Middle East people, as another 5 billion around the world, are deeply aware of the yawning gap between their standard of living and ours. This will become increasingly obvious to them as smartphones become cheaper in the coming years. Lying above that, more visibly, is that many religious mullahs and fanatics, are desperate that they might lose their power if their Muslim flocks become Westernized.
Oppressive governments have in history lasted for long periods but only when they have access to superior weapons that their people don’t posssess. If Obama, Cameron and Hollande were to put their thinking hats on they would give enough superior weapons to those troops which are actually fighting Isis on the ground — Assad’s government troops, the Kurds, those amateur Shia forces led by senior Iranian commanders.
One wonders whether the allies are using the war in Syria and Iraq more keenly as test pads for the further development of laser weapons and drones. It is quite astonishing that the oil pipelines and trucks by which Isis funds itself were not attacked until a few days ago when the Russians came on the scene. Do the Western allies really want the war to end?