However well intentioned the West is in its goal of removing dictatorships and helping the humanitarian crisis in Syria, its refusal to send troops and aggressively engage militarily can only mean that Russia will continue to have an ally in Syria and will be at the forefront of the war against ISIS.
MOSCOW -- Will Syria become a second Afghanistan for Russia? Is it wise for Russia to intervene in that conflict? Rumors are circulating that Moscow is planning a face-saving maneuver whereby it gradually "hands over" the Donbass in fulfillment of the Minsk agreement while aiding the U.S.-led anti-Islamic State coalition in Syria to get back on good terms with the West. The plan sounds good in theory, but it looks unfeasible in practice.
I believe two of the litmus tests by which we can judge any society are to investigate both the ways in which societies treat their children, and the ways in which they treat animals. In some countries around the world, we have clear evidence of the poaching of animals for their body parts, such as tusks and as trophies.
ISIS cannot be beaten from the air while the iron lung pumping oxygen into it -- the Assad regime -- is left to do its worst. Legitimate governance -- not war -- is the ultimate cure for a Syrian illness rapidly becoming a regional and global contagion. Yet without an effective, surgical intervention of a kinetic variety, the patient has no hope of surviving.
The Republican Party doesn't seem to understand the fact that threats to the United States originate from the actions of human beings. These human beings resort to violence when they are marginalized by society to the point where they believe that the only way to better their country is to work around the democratic system through violence.
The Turkish President's self-serving fake war against terrorism could have the tragic consequence of escalating the violence throughout Turkey and neighboring countries. If Ankara is truly interested in countering the Jihadists, it should have done that long ago, instead of arming and abetting ISIS and other terror groups.