The savagery of the Islamic State taunted the world once again this week, striking out at both geopolitically toothless Japan and the tribal kingdom of Jordan. Islamic State fighters beheaded the journalist Kenji Goto and revealed that, in an act of unfathomable cruelty, they had burned alive a captured Jordanian pilot. Last week Japan's former defense chief Yuriko Koike wrote from Tokyo that Japan's constitutional restrictions on using force have prevented it from taking action against ISIS, and argues that that must change. Writing from Beirut, Jordanian analyst Rami Khouri has political misgivings about official support across the Arab world for the anti-ISIS coalition when the public is not consulted. From Amman, WorldPost Middle East Correspondent Sophia Jones reports both on the massive protests against ISIS and on the undercurrent of opposition in Jordan that believes the fight against ISIS "is not our war." (continued)
As much as both pundits on the right and left would like us to believe that this is a conflict of 'radical Islam' vs. the rest of us, it's much more complex and nuanced than that childish line of reasoning.
There is value in recognizing that, far from wanting to sustain the U.S. in its global policing role, we would do better to welcome the emergence of a new multipolar world, to recognize our limits within that emerging multipolar world, and to begin to live within those limits.
Jordan's boundless generosity has provided a safe haven for the human tide of refugees that have been thrust upon it from war-ravaged Syria and Iraq.
In both American Sniper and that other controversial recent release The Interview, Americans are the heroes and foreigners are the targets. And not just foreigners but furriners: an undifferentiated group of people so alien in their ways that they are practically subhuman.
What is important here is that Mr. Williams made a swift, contrite and very public apology. It takes courage to go before several million people, and say without excuse or blame, "I was wrong. I am sorry."
In his celebrated recent book of short stories, Redeployment, Phil Klay takes the imbroglio that was the Iraq War and turns it into the pulsing sum of very individual experiences.
I do not believe in war, but neither do I believe we are done with it. What I know for certain is that no future conflict should be started by leaders who do not have the courage to be honest about why it is necessary and to engage the entire nation in the effort.
Perhaps with international efforts, ISIS can be contained, weakened and driven back to its stronghold in Syria. But it isn't expected to die an easy death. Even so, its crimes against humanity demand all efforts. The Khmer Rouge, left to their own devices, murdered nearly a quarter of its own population.
With the murder of Moaz al-Kasasbeh, the Islamic State knew that the resulting public outrage in Jordan would push Jordan toward accepting a larger role in the fight against ISIS. And it also knows that, in assuming this role, the Jordanian King would be even further aligning himself with the United States and, indirectly, with a competing Shi'a alliance involving Iran, Iraq, Syria and Hezbollah. Rather than serving as a tipping point for mobilizing public sentiment in the Sunni Arab world against ISIS, it seems that a case can be made that the actions of ISIS are geared toward achieving the exact opposite reaction -- the mobilization of angry, disenfranchised Sunni Arab youth inside Jordan against the actions of their King, creating the kinds of social rifts ISIS thrives upon. All told, Jordan should proceed cautiously.
The most important element of comedy is timing -- and in Israel, comedy and timing can be friends or they can be foes. No matter how funny the election campaign videos are, we live in a serious, disastrous neighborhood, and sometimes the reality calls for seriousness.
he president likes to talk a good game. He continues to propose these new plans that he claims will strengthen the American economy, reduce our debt and give the middle class a boost. But what he fails to do is consider the fiscal consequences these plans carry.
The solution to end this insane violence is not to circulate gruesome imagery of beheadings and violence. We must return to the human element that all these brave journalists so passionately tried to shed light on.
Both IFJ and UNESCO have been quite active in promoting the topic and have published guidebooks on how journalists can protect themselves in various scenarios that spell trouble. It's the belief that "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure."
Japan is determined to be a force for peace and stability in the war-torn Middle East, yet until and unless its constitution is changed to permit the country to project its power in a meaningful manner militarily, its ability to influence events in other regions of the world will remain limited.
The Road to Iraq is a work of tremendous intellectual diligence and moral seriousness.