For John, BLUF: President Obama has the wrong strategy. Ms Clinton has not suggested a better one. Nor, for that matter, has Mr Trump. Nothing to see here; just move along.
For the United States and its coalition partners, it is the sound of progress – the dull roar of engines as Iraqi Humvees kick up dust and dirt on the outskirts of Fallujah. In the distance, smoke rises as Iraqi forces push on with a slow but steady advance.This idea of a "Death Spiral for Daesh is supported by Mr Daveed Gartenstein-Ross, a senior fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies who has been closely following IS’s fortunes.
The scene, shared in a video handout by the Iraqi Ministry of Defense, makes the battle for the key city look more methodical than it is. Closer in, Iraqi forces are meeting with what coalition officials have described as “stiff resistance” from Islamic State (IS) fighters.
But for many, the trend appears clear: The terror group’s self-declared caliphate is starting to crumble.
“This is the first time ISIL is experiencing pressure from a number of places,” said a U.S. official who spoke to VOA on condition of anonymity, using an acronym for the group.
“We’ve never seen them have to react to this sort of pressure,” the official added. “We’re looking closely.”
We could be looking at a death spiral that will destroy the organization.On the other other hand, there is this more pessimistic, and realistic, view:
It's actually irrelevant. Everyone seems to be focused on the organisation and not the idea. IS is but one of the many Hydra heads from Al Tawheed Wal Jihad. IS will die, but the phenomenon will remain. Only until nation states cease waging politically correct wars will they learn to harness a combined military, civil and law enforcement exercise that not only targets the leadership but the "teachers" of the phenomenon, the IT support and the financiers. This hasn't been done yet. That is why this threat will metastasize. Also, we tend to forget AQ. But...this isn't the worse threat. Criminal organizations and politically aligned militias are learning and emulating this phenomenon. The world is heading into very chaotic times.And there it is. This is not about Daesh or al Qaeda or the Muslim Brotherhood, but about a kernel idea that says Sharia is the supreme law over all other law and that certain things are wrong under Sharia and deserve death. What percentage of Muslims believe this? Probably a very small percentage, but they exist and they fuel the multiplication of groups like Daesh.
And then, there are those who believe Islam has been oppressed by the West for the last 500 years and maybe the last 700 years. Remember that 1492 may be the year the people in Cambridge believe represents the infliction of Western values on the Western Hemisphere, but for Muslims it means the year they were thrown out of Iberia. Daesh and others of an Islamic historic orientation want to go back into Spain. Would that be good for the West, and the rest?
Regards — Cliff