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Trump can see the forest in the Mideast; everyone else is focused on the trees

Posted by John T. Reed on

Not being able to see the forest for the trees is an old description of a common diagnostic problem. It applies to the Middle East.
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Donald Trump CAN see the forest and not be distracted by the trees. I keep trying to get readers to do the same. Forget ISIS and Assad and Putin and the Ayatollahs and all that. Just look at the general situation there since, say, about 1750.
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Islam divided into multiple sects that hate each other is the basic permanent underlying theme. Oil was overlaid on that in the 1970s. Peak political power of oil, not peak existence of oil, came when Secretary of State James Baker said we had to be there militarily to optimize the number of jobs in America.
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Because of fracking, Mideast oil no longer has power over the US.
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We also have 9/11. We overreacted to that. 3,000 were killed in the WTC. We have now lost 7,000 KIA in the Mideast avenging 9/11.
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I heard a lecture at a Harvard reunion by the author of What Terrorists Want? The answer was the three Rs: revenge, recognition, and reaction. Actually, OVERreaction is what they want. We gave them all three in our response. We should have gone after KSM and Bin Laden, which we did, but not Iraq and Afghanistan.
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We have now gotten ourselves into a trap of endless war in the Mideast where we forgot why. The endless wars there stem from sectarian Islamic hatred and tribal rivalries and Hatfield-McCoy feuds. Not our problem. Nor can we solve it.
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Oil came and went as a reason for us to be there.
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9/11 was a mass shooting by a small group. An international police issue. The hijackers all killed themselves. And we got the two kingpins behind it. Forget about avenging it further.
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ISIS and Assad and all that are merely current trees distracting us, but not Trump, from the big picture. Insignificant trivia. The Mideast "forest" is a dangerous place with no redeeming social value. Putin and Xi are too dumb to see it. So are most US elected officials. But Trump sees it and has the guts to act on what he sees.
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Trump himself is another forest/trees situation. Too many US leaders cannot see the Trump insight for the tweets. He is a mixed bag, but part of the mix is a combination of excellent insight and gut instinct and towering self-confidence. He deserves much criticism for many things, but also much praise for other things.
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Give credit where it is due. Stop and reconsider whether the US really still needs to be there. Remember why we went there and admit that those reasons are either gone or were wrong to begin with.

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