Before I dive into the subject of this essay I must make two observations and a confession. First, when it comes to political foreign policy I am certainly operating outside of my wheelhouse (not that I even have a wheelhouse of any kind). Other than being a casual observer all of my life, I have no special training or intense education that in any way qualifies me as a knowledgeable expert in this field. However, I have never let ignorance of a subject keep me from commenting, so I will press on.
A second, and equally important observation, is that I do not have an answer to the problem I am about to pose. You would think it is a good idea to have at least a few good suggestions before writing about a serious issue, but I confess, I don’t have anything that I would consider as being a helpful approach.
Finally, my confession: my first reaction when I heard the news over the weekend about the terrorist attacks in Paris was that we need to gather up all our military might and go exterminate them. There is no reason that powerful western countries should have to tolerate an occasional senseless massacre at the hands of a small group of extremists. It is time to put a stop to this nonsense. Continue reading