To save lives and protect human rights, the genocidal fundamentalists of ISIS must be stopped. But not by the West and not for the reasons often advanced by David Cameron and Barack Obama... The truth is that if the US and UK are serious about fighting ISIS they should start by aiding the people on the ground who know the region best, have local roots and who are already leading the fight against the jihadist menace - the peshmerga army of the Kurdish regional government in Iraq and guerrillas from the Kurdistan Workers Party and allied movements in Syria.
Already the western-backed Syrian rebels are howling that they have been discredited by America's attacks in Syria.
The United States needs to articulate a clear foreign policy agenda towards the political and security instability in Syria and Iraq. Otherwise, the underlying reasons for the emergence of such extremist groups will remain intact.
While American politicians snipe at each other to try to find partisan advantages to use in the upcoming midterm elections, the hard questions are going unasked.
The Islamic State is a hideous organisation. That is well known to all but the most blinkered and casual of observers. The Syrian and Iraqi peoples have suffered under the heel of its potentates and acolytes for months, even years.
With the Jewish New Year of Rosh Hashanah beginning tonight, it would be a sweet idea to hope for fresh beginnings and unity. However, in the wake of the current escalating crisis in the Middle East, we seem to be thinking about anything but the feasibility of peace.
The US military, by pursuing an ambiguously defined and premature intervention in Syria is ironically playing right into the hands of both ISIS and Assad to the detriment of America's national security.
It wasn't a speech. It wasn't even an address. It was a book report. Speaking Tuesday on the White House lawn as Marine 1 spooled up it's engines behind him, President Obama tripped-up the media.
We all know how the 2003 Iraq War turned out. Today's Iraq syndrome could save us from a repeat of that debilitating war. In doing so, it might also compel policymakers to find a better way to combat terrorism.
It still needs to be seen whether the American-led coalition has a political strategy for the day after. Weeks ago, Obama said there was not such strategy, but now there is a military intervention, and military intervention has to be accompanied by a political plan. Time to have one. It may be late, but hopefully not too late.
If 150,000 U.S. troops could not stabilize Iraq in the absence of an inclusive and competent government, the limited measures on offer now simply will not suffice. And we should know by now that any Western military intervention with overtly political, rather than clearly humanitarian, objectives runs a real risk of inflaming sectarian sentiment.
As I left the border near Kobane, I reflected on the heart-wrenching human impact but also on the generosity of the Turkish people who have accepted the great burden of over a million refugees.
Jordanian leaders at the highest levels are alarmed. Jordanian political analysts are taking the ISIS threat very seriously. According to Middle Eastern security officials, defences have been reinforced at the borders of Iraq. The Jordanian air force has been on high alert for several days.
Meet 20-year-old Hamza al-Britani who left Birmingham for Syria in June last year. The British Pakistani told me via Skype how he caught a plane to Turkey and simply "jogged" over the border to "the land of jihad." A family friend of Hamza had arranged this interview so he could clear up misconceptions about jihad and ISIS...
Behind the façade of a united front against the Islamic State the United States and its Gulf allies blame each other for the spectacular rise of the jihadist group that has overrun a swathe of Syria and Iraq.