Saturday, August 09, 2014

Pottery Barn Rule 

Reading today's news about Iraq -- Obama warns of long-term strikes -- I conclude that the United States is now caught by the Pottery Barn rule -- you broke it, you bought it.
President Barack Obama justified the U.S. military’s return to fighting in Iraq Saturday by saying America must act now to prevent genocide, protect its diplomats and provide humanitarian aid to refugees trapped by Islamic State militants on a mountain ridge near the Syrian border.
“This is going to be a long-term project” that won’t end and can’t succeed unless Iraqis form an inclusive government in Baghdad capable of keeping the country from breaking apart, Obama said at the White House.
As much as they will want to, the United States basically can't just leave Iraq alone anymore -- this artificial construct of a nation with its corrupt central government and divergent, turbulent regions will never be able to withstand attacks from groups like the Islamic State -- and in the unlikely event that they ever do form an inclusive government in Baghdad, then there are still the Kurds and the Iranians and the Syrians and the Saudis all around who will be wanting to pick the bones clean.
I think they're stuck.

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