Islamic State of Iraq and Syria — ISIS — is presently among many cancers that currently plagues the Middle East.
Syria has been burning for years now, since the uprising against the cruel and oppressive Assad regime began in 2011.
Iraq and Afghanistan have been occupied by U.S. forces since the War on Terror began during the George W. Bush administration, leaving hundreds of thousands of Afghan and Iraqi civilians dead.
Palestine still faces a brutal military occupation – in the Summer of 2014, Israel carried out Operation Protective Edge in the Gaza strip, killing 2,205 Palestinian civilians, according to United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.
The violence seems to be never-ending, and now that President Obama is proposing that U.S. troops fight ISIS, I can’t help but wonder how that could possibly be a useful response.
Looking at patterns of Western intervention in the Middle East, I see nothing good coming of it at all.
There is no disputing that ISIS is an absolutely repulsive group spreading throughout the region, but the U.S. never seems particularly interested in helping anyone in the Middle East unless a Western presence is somehow financially or politically beneficial.
The U.S. gives Israel billions of dollars in aid ever year – in fact, Israel receives more aid than the entire continent of Africa, and not only are they never held accountable for constant war crimes, apartheid and the continuation of illegal settlements on Palestinian land, they are actively funded and supported by the U.S.
Why should anyone in the Middle East welcome more troops, considering the fact that Syrians have faced unspeakable acts of violence for the past four years with no help from the world?
I have seen images from Syria of starved dead bodies and children who have been tortured to death. I have read accounts of torture survivors who witnessed such terrifying and inhumane acts of violence that they will forever live with incredibly severe trauma for the rest of their lives – and still, the world is silent.
The Middle East has been bleeding for a long time, and ISIS is only making matters worse, but I think U.S. military involvement would be a catastrophe.
This cycle of violence has been tragic and exhausting, but Western forces will only add fuel to the fire – U.S. troops are not saviors, they will not solve this problem, and the United States government is not interested in good deeds and acts of humanity.
The solution to what is happening is revolution, struggle and self determination, and I have every hope in the people of the Middle East to keep fighting against oppression in all of its ugly forms – whether it is white settler colonialism and occupation, drone strikes that kill entire families, oppressive regimes or bloodthirsty militias like ISIS.
If there is one thing worth listening to, it is the voices of the people who are suffering and the perspectives of those who are being oppressed — and we must never forget that.