September 3, 2014

Time Is On Al-Baghdadi’s Side

The best way to strike a crushing blow to the Islamic State of Syria and the Levant is to crush the head of the snake: ISIL’s leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. Whether we hunt him down with drones, Seal Team Six or place a bounty on his head so some disenfranchised ISIL fighter has some incentive to assassinate Bluto, time is not on the West’s side. Graeme Wood writes in the New Republic, “Giving Baghdadi more time as caliph might only make him more plausible in the role and allow him to draw more fighters to his state. If that is true, one concerned Western scholar told me, we would be wise to kill him fast. Right now only an infinitesimal number of Muslims have sworn fealty to him. The biggest danger is letting that number grow. Once he becomes a popular figure instead of a divisive one, his death will have spillover effects. ‘Killing the religious leader of even a small minority of Muslims is not good propaganda,’ says Cole Bunzel.” More…

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