Imagine parents endlessly praising their son as "the smartest, handsomest, most athletically gifted boy since God created Adam." We'd conclude that they were thoroughly obnoxious, if not a bit unhinged. Yet the military remains just this sort of favored son, the country's golden child. And to the golden child go the spoils.
Right now, there are only two competing stories out there about the devolving situation in the Middle East. The Obama administration suggests that we have to "defend" America by gradually ratcheting up our efforts, while Republican candidates for president urge us to "defend" ourselves by bombing IS to smithereens.
Anyone who offers a plan for dealing with ISIS and cannot offer a detailed blueprint for managing the territories now controlled by the organization is leading us down a path that we have been down far too often in recent decades. They should at least be willing to tell us why they were so wrong in the past but can be trusted to be right now.