Fight extremism, not just ISIS

Spect_Sunni-Vs-Shia_cover
The mayhem in the Middle East is not about sectarianism, but sectarian divides and prejudices do play a major role.

Ready, Aim, Fire. Not Fire, Ready, Aim. – NYTimes.com.

The current drive by the Obama administration to unite Sunni and Shia powers in the region against ISIS, the group that everyone supposedly hate in equal terms, will not succeed, because by ignoring the atrocities that Assad and Hezbollah have been perpetrating in Syria before ISIS showed up on the scene, and because both are pillars of the Shia axis in the region, the administration, with its suborn refusal to act against Assad coupled with its current single-minded focus on ISIS, will be perceived as supporting the Shia Axis. The ongoing negotiations with Iran and the reconciliatory tone that many administration officials have assumed in her regard will strengthen that impression.

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What ISIS is really thinking!

Steven Joel Sotloff
Steven Joel Sotloff (RIP)

What is ISIS thinking? Five possible explanations for why the group is beheading Americans.

Personally, I think that mass atrocities and beheadings is ISIS’ way of negotiating with the Americans over the issue of recognition of their de facto state. Because without recognition, even if unofficial, the state that ISIS is creating means little. With unofficial recognition, ISIS can make billions rather than millions of dollars from the sales of oil under their control, even if they have to sell it on the down-and-low. Recognition also allows ISIS the time it needs to consolidate its hold on the territories currently under its control, and to govern.

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Of Sectarianism

Thousands of Lebanese on Sunday rallied in Beirut calling for an end to the system of power-sharing along religious lines. (11/04/2011, NOW Lebanon)
Thousands of Lebanese on Sunday rallied in Beirut calling for an end to the system of power-sharing along religious lines. (11/04/2011, NOW Lebanon)

The fact that there are forces using sectarian sentiments in our societies to fuel a proxy war meant to serve certain interests of theirs does not mean that sectarianism is an external invention. In fact, insisting that sectarianism is a foreign invention will prevent us from dealing with it effectively, and will only serve to perpetrate it, thus, giving external dabblers powers a permanent tool which they can use to their advantage in times of crisis.

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