Wednesday, June 03, 2015


Good overview by Vox's Zach Beauchamp on how George W. Bush, more than anyone, created ISIS, but this is a bit incomplete --

The outcome of Iraq's civil war left just enough ISIS operatives in position to move into Syria during the early stages of the Syrian civil war in 2012. ISIS's move into Syria was a disaster: it radicalized the Syrian civil war, strengthening jihadis at the expense of more moderate rebel factions, while also providing ISIS with the experience and resources necessary to take territory and move back into Iraq in a big way.

Missing there is the conscious decision of Bashar al-Assad to concentrate his military on the most moderate elements of the opposition and let the extreme groups including ISIS flourish in de facto safe havens. And from the overall perspective of the Syrian opposition, it was telling that the first US intervention was not against Assad, but against a rebel group.

No comments: