In his Sept. 10 address, President Obama said that ISIL is not Islam (“ We will destroy ISIL, Obama says,” Sept. 11 news story). Although this may be true for most Muslims, it is far from true for the ISIL fighters, mostly young men who passionately believe that their cause is not only just but the will of God.
The sectarian conflict between Shia and Sunni all over the Middle East is reminiscent of the battles raged between various Christian factions over the course of centuries. Nothing energizes people more than the belief that they are warriors for the truth. We seem not to have learned this lesson from our misguided interference in Iraq and Afghanistan. Now we are determined to move our myopic crusade into Syria.
There are, however, targets that I believe the United States should bomb: the arms factories that churn out the weapons on which ISIL and other warring groups depend. Unfortunately, that will not happen. It would drastically affect the supply of campaign funding on which both American political parties depend.
William F. Powers, Chapel Hill