Although I frequently disagree with Pat Lang’s prescriptions since I respect his opinion so deeply I always take his analysis of situations in the Middle East seriously. Here’s Col. Lang’s prescription for Iraq:
An insurgent force that can; wage propaganda war, has lots of money, a coherent ideology and the ability to organize and operate armored kampfgruppen (battle groups) is a very dangerous opponent. IMO that force potentially threatens the state system throughout the Sunni Middle East and is a menace that must be halted.
To build an effective local coalition of forces against IS (a concert of the Middle East?) one must stop trying to unseat the existing governments. They are the only possible basis for such a coalition; Iran, Turkey, whatever government exists in Iraq, Jordan, Syria (Bashar), Egypt, Kuwait (for the basing), Saudi Arabia (for the money and basing), Qatar (for the basing). Unfortunately, to bring these forces together, Obama’s government would have to acknowledge the folly of its college bull session foreign policy over the last six years.