US must finish what it started

A press report points out the US and its Nato allies have shifted their focus from Afghanistan to the so-called Islamic State. Nato ministers recently met in Brussels to discuss their strategy for 2015, ignoring Afghanistan altogether. And in his request for congressional authorisation for the use of military force against IS, Obama exhibited no enthusiasm to finish what his country started 13 years ago, saying the US had ended its combat mission in Afghanistan and now planned to maintain “a dramatically smaller force” there. This “smaller force” too is to leave by the end of 2016, when Obama completes his term in office allowing him to claim credit before the war-weary American people for finishing the country’s longest war. By that time, however, the US would be more deeply involved in a different kind of war – resulting from US’ own 2003 invasion and occupation of Iraq. As Obama averred, “we are leading over 60 partners in a global campaign to degrade and ultimately defeat the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) in Iraq and Syria.”