- ISIS is the product of years of American military intervention in Iraq, Libya, and Syria. ISIS is the creature of an imperial enterprise--a global effort to bring down the Syrian state using jihadi proxies that included the U.S and its allies--Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Jordan, Turkey, and Israel, at least--that could only have proceeded, "at the bidding of," and managed by, the imperial center. It was by surfing the American-directed "cataract" of weaponry and funds directed against Syria that ISIS became an international jihadi movement surpassing Al-Qaeda itself. Without that American intervention, there would be no ISIS.
- In this regard, ISIS is only the latest in a series of worst-ever takfiri groups that has been cooked up in the stew of jihadi proxy fighters the U.S. and its allies have been serving up since the its holy war in Afghanistan in 1979--the one where Zbigniew Brzezinski told Bin Laden's jihadis, "God is on your side." As Gilbert Mercier quipped, "Just like al-Qaeda, ISIS is the secret love child of United States imperialism and the kings and sheiks of the Gulf states."
- An American ("coalition") military attack on Syria will not destroy ISIS, and will not have the primary purpose of destroying ISIS; it will target and degrade the Syrian military, and its primary purpose will be to destroy the Syrian state's capacity to resist the onslaught of jihadi rebels, including ISIS--a "rebellion" which hasn't been going so well recently. The Obama administration knows, and says, that an American military attack will not defeat ISIS. It also knows, and says (sometimes explicitly, sometimes implicitly, depending on the audience), that its main objective will be to help the jihadi onslaught succeed. "Assad must go" is still the prime directive; the jihadis are still the most effective instrument for that. ISIS changes nothing, except to help sell military intervention to the Western publics. In a number of ways, ISIS has intervened to save the jihadi rebellion from defeat. It's the reverse of the Vietnam rule: We have to bomb the jihadis in order to save them.
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