“We’re Playing Into ISIS’ Hands”

A good friend of mine passed this article along, and it was one of the few pieces I’ve read lately where I don’t dispute much of what the author says. Sally Kohn pretty much hits the nail on the head (in my opinion) regarding our reactionary policy to ISIS. Here’s a quote from the article:

It’s called “terrorism” for a reason. The goal is to cause terror, to scare people into acting — or overreacting. The most recent ISIS propaganda video was produced in English for a reason. It seems they want the West to react and take the bait. And we are obliging.

While she doesn’t advocate one solution over another, Kohn’s assessment of ISIS’ agenda and its effectiveness make sense. The same drama has played out multiple times in the past 6 months alone: a heinous murder followed by viral propaganda:

Months ago, a war-weary United States was suddenly whipped back into a pro-military-action frenzy. Why? Writing in Mother Jones, Kevin Drum, explained: “All it took was a carefully stagecrafted beheading video and the usual gang of conservative jingoists to exploit it…ISIS then beheaded a British journalist, so the British stepped up its military support in the campaign against ISIS. Then ISIS goaded Jordan with a video of the hideous immolation of a Jordanian pilot. Jordan responded with bombs. Now ISIS has just goaded Egypt with a mass execution…and Egypt has, predictably, responded. Anyone who doesn’t see a pattern here isn’t looking.

The absolute worst part of this crisis is the massive loss of innocent life and property; the impact of this war between ISIS and the world falls mostly on the shoulders of innocent Iraqis and Syrians.

Sally is right about Western reactionary policy. As much as I think non-intervention is the best (and most moral) route, I won’t hold my breath.

Read the full article here.


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