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Do you think countries such as the U.S., Russia, France, Britain and others should continue air strikes and drone attacks against Islamic State targets in Syria and northern Iraq?

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Russia yes: they were invited by the legitimate government of Syria and they have been very effective.

US and friends, no: they have so far only pretended to go after IS, while destroying Syrian infrastructure and "accidentally" dropping supplies and weapons to IS.

-4 ( +14 / -18 )

It is time to let the Middle East fend for themselves, but at the same time support Israel.

-12 ( +7 / -19 )

No. Muslims view the bombing of fellow Muslims by the infidel as unacceptable, (as many politically correct, liberal and anti-Western commentators have been telling us over the years) Of course that means, Muslims in general DO identify with ISIS and terrorists despite the latest contradicting narrative the apologists are now rolling out.

So pull out of the ME, leave the region to its own misery, intolerance and Bronze Age beliefs, and move on.

2 ( +7 / -5 )

It would be interesting to have had this question two weeks ago and today.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

No. They've been already bombing Syria for 6 months, and THEN Paris happened. So the airstrikes are meaningless if the goal is to stop terrorism. They are the means for recruitment. Airstrikes in the middle east has never solved anything. And that's still the case.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

Yes. They got Jihadi John. If everone is afraid to put troops on the ground, what other options are available?

Muslims view the bombing of fellow Muslims by the infidel as unacceptable

I find it unacceptable when muslims go into a mosque and blow themselves up while also killing other "muslims."

6 ( +9 / -3 )

No, the west should withdraw from the Middle East altogether. Being there gives the angry, disaffected, and nefarious a target for their anger and hatred. It allows the speakers of hate to direct that hate at the west. The west killing innocents through indiscriminate bomb strikes causes more hatred from the families of the innocents.

Meddling in the Middle East has never had the positive result the west has hoped for, and has in turn resulted in the deaths of millions.

Leave the Middle East to themselves. Let them deal with their crap.

5 ( +11 / -6 )

MarkG: It would be interesting to have had this question two weeks ago and today.

Time magazine's cover page received Thursday was about 'Forgiveness', re the Charleston shootings.

I wonder if they'll try to justify it next week.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Here is a good video of President Putin's take on this.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gwLufaTK29s

Why bomb IS, just stop paying and arming them. And stop buying oil from IS, or start sanctioning those who are buying it...

9 ( +12 / -3 )

Why bomb IS, just stop paying and arming them. And stop buying oil from IS, or start sanctioning those who are buying it...

Bingo. Killing them just makes martyrs. Take away their money, and their ability to fight, and you really screw with them.

11 ( +12 / -1 )

No. Western intervention is just a recruitment drive attracting the most unpleasant types who've already had their brains stultified by dangerous Bronze Age nonsense.

Intervention has clearly failed but that doesn't seem to cut any ice with some people. This current crop of religious crackpots isn't the first and won't be the last.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Either go all in, or go all out

Russia yes: they were invited by the legitimate government of Syria and they have been very effective.

Russia has been effective in western Syria where 9 of 10 of their attacks are. Seems their first priority is keeping a western enclave for Assad so they can keep their Mediterranean navy port there. They haven't really been attacking much where ISIS is based on central and eastern Syria yet. They haven't even yet launched an offensive to retake Palmyra, the crossroads between Assad and ISIS capitals.

US and friends, no: they have so far only pretended to go after IS

They do go after ISIS........... in Iraq, where they are invited by the Iraqi government. Perhaps ya guys missed this major news:

http://www.japantoday.com/category/world/view/kurdish-forces-recapture-militant-held-towns-in-iraq-syria

0 ( +4 / -4 )

These countries have zero to do with the Mid East apart for oil. Get out of there and go away. Let these people sort out their own problems. Otherwise u will be a target. Thats sux.

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

For those 20% that voted NO... So the world stops bombing... OK..You don't think YOUR way of life WILL be affected... Or are you the type of people that say or believe Nothing will happen to me.. We as the world need to end this... OR ALL of lives might be affected in one way or another..

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

@Brian Sutton

They've been bombing Syria for months PRIOR to the Paris attack. THEREFORE bombing does nothing. Bombing the Middle East is just an exercise in control and has little to do with reducing racism and disenfranchisement in Paris. That didn't come up, did it? Since the mastermind was Belgium and many of the attackers were French, are they going to now bomb themselves and Paris into peace? Of course not. Syria is merely a ploy. A wonderful foil, a pawn to sacrifice for those who are easily manipulated to ensure that more recruits come in who are tired of the bombs.

Meanwhile, requiring oil from despotic regimes keeps them in power, and undermines security in the world. The faster we can transition to a green economy the less the Western world will need the Middle East to function. Only when the rule of the gun is replaced by the rule of freedom can things change. US bases doesn't mean real freedom either.

Asking for more bombing is like asking Israelis and Palestinians to bomb themselves into peace. Obviously it just doesn't work, no matter how many times they try. But they try again whenever the mood turns to hate or disenfranchisement. Remove that, focus on that, not bombs, and the motivation by others like ISIS to take advantage of them goes with it.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

Russia yes: they were invited by the legitimate government of Syria and they have been very effective.

Are there unicorns in your fantasy world, or did you just misunderstand the question? Russia was invited by the Assad regime to attack the rebels in his country and save his job. THAT's who the Russians are concentrating their attacks on, not ISIS.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

Fadamor,

Did you already forget all the reports about how the majority of the "moderate" terrorists were foreigners. These terrorists are basically foreign funded and foreign armed mercenaries. Russia has every right to accept the invitation from Syria to protect it from this brutal foreign attack. If I recall, Obama did not get any permission from Syria, the UN, or his own congress to bomb Syria.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Tough call, this one is! If the west stops bombing the heck out of them it will only result in more refugees, which are creating a whole other list of problems. If they keep bombing they will undoubtedly invoke more international terrorist attacks. Which is worse? The threat of ongoing terror attacks or the ever increasing numbers of Muslim refugees and immigrants?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

at the same time support Israel

with regime change and blue berets, please.

Giving back the West Bank will do more harm to the jihadist cause than a million bombs could.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

How long have we been actively involved in the Middle East? Having effectively given rise to IS by allowing the power vacuum in Iraq following the toppling of Sadam Hussein, having dropped millions of bombs on Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and now Syria, having killed thousands and having had plenty of our own military personel killed, ask youself this very simple question. What has been gained?

I have no idea what the answer is but I sure as hell know what the answer isn't. NO.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Giving back the West Bank will do more harm to the jihadist cause than a million bombs could.

Honest question: why/how? I don't know enough about this to get the reference.

What has been gained?

Nothing. Nothing at all. Well, maybe some revenge.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Honest question

Hawks like Netanyahu are the greatest recruiting sergeants that jihadists could ever dream for. Israelis don't need that, nor do Palestinians.

Returning the West Bank (as part of a greater reconciliation) would smash Daesh et al's victim paradigm to smithereens.

A very bitter pill to swallow for many, but the alternative is laying out a welcome mat for the Rapture ambitions of extremists in all three Abrahamic faiths.

The Middle East - including all the wonderful people in Israel - deserves nothing less.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Thanks for the breakdown. Makes sense. Ready to hear some Netanyahoo fan's counter argument.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Yes, I believe that Japan, the USA, France, England and Russia should bomb Daesh Targets.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Russians haven't really been attacking much where ISIS is based on central and eastern Syria yet. They haven't even yet launched an offensive to retake Palmyra, the crossroads between Assad and ISIS capitals."

And exactly what offensives had NATO launched ? They just watched Palmyra taken and the World Heritage sites blown up to bits as they did elsewhere. Why criticize Russia for" not launching an offensive yet"? They have done much more damage to jihadists ( "moderate" ones and otherwise ) in a month than NATO did in a year.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

I'd like to see Saudi Arabia, Qatar, UAE and all the other neighbouring countries step up to the plate and deal with what's going on in their own back yard. They've got five million men under arms between them - why do they never need to lift a finger?

3 ( +4 / -1 )

I'd like to see Saudi Arabia, Qatar, UAE and all the other neighbouring countries step up to the plate and deal with what's going on in their own back yard. They've got five million men under arms between them - why do they never need to lift a finger?

Because the west butts in does it. Why would they bother?

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

@Warwick I'd like to see Saudi Arabia, Qatar, UAE and all the other neighbouring countries step up to the plate and deal with what's going on in their own back yard.

They're currently fighting against Shia forces in Yemen.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/08/19/us-yemen-security-idUSKCN0QO1JQ20150819

http://www.iar-gwu.org/content/part-three-uae-foreign-policy-iraq-syria

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Russians haven't really been attacking much where ISIS is based on central and eastern Syria yet. They haven't even yet launched an offensive to retake Palmyra, the crossroads between Assad and ISIS capitals."

And exactly what offensives had NATO launched ? They just watched Palmyra taken and the World Heritage sites blown up to bits as they did elsewhere. Why criticize Russia for" not launching an offensive yet"? They have done much more damage to jihadists ( "moderate" ones and otherwise ) in a month than NATO did in a year.

I'm not criticizing Russia for not launching an offensive yet on central and eastern Syria where ISIS is based. I don't blame them for trying to protect their Mediterranean navy port in Syria - if that's their priority, then that's their priority.

I'm criticizing the wrongly-held belief that Russia is significantly attacking ISIS, which they are not. Just because Russia is attacking the western rebels to keep for Assad a western enclave for their navy port doesn't mean they're significantly attacking ISIS.

It's one thing to realize Russia's priority, and another thing to realize that they're not launching much attacks on central and eastern Syria.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Yes, they should. but they won't. they don't want the wound to be healed. I don't know why, the benefit must be greater than having millions of refugees storming at your doorstep.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I agree with many of the points made above. Western powers need to stay within international law as far as possible, with a shadow of UN support, but they need to allow local ME powers first response. Otherwise, butt out.

The legitimate government in Iraq has asked for help. With the Kurds in Iraq the situation is similar. Perhaps they have become too used to relying on the US etc. When the US steps back, however, Iran steps in, much to the fury of certain ME players.

In Syria, however, things are even more confused. Where Daesh have taken over, there is no 'legitimate' government and Assad seems powerless to push them back. Is it a real vacuum? In the north, however, the Kurds are clear that they want their rightful lands back, and they seem to be the only force willing to confront Daesh on the ground. Requests from them should probably be addressed to the ME regional powers first, although certainly Turkey and probably Iran would never help them.

The question for me is too loaded for a simple yes/no answer. In theory no, but what is happening there is not theory.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Anything that can keep a uniformed human being from standing on the SAND that has been fought over for centuries is the correct decision.President Obama was elected to keep people home. In addition, why is the USA bombing the oil wells? Bomb delivery system-the port where ships arrive an load oil for distribution to other countries, maybe China? George 1 couldn't stop the well fires because Saddam set them on fire. Good ol' W bombed the water supply and who knows what else when it was far easier to use Cruise, etc. weapons to take out strategic targets. "Carpet bombing" was used in WW II in Germany because targets were not as easily targeted. 1940 strategy is inappropriate for the 21st cenury.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

No, they should not be using drones for airstrikes. Obviously this technique is not effective as the IS is expanding and infecting more of the world. Like a cancer it must be treated immediatley and aggressively. But Obama is so afraid of sending troops back to the middle east that he would rather see the entire region collapse.

Drone strikes are not and have not been effective. And if the IS is to be defeated, it will have to be fought conventionally.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Airstrikes, especially drone strikes are cowardly. Worse, they are errant. Both points only serve to create more terrorists and militants. Its hard to put solid reason on why America keeps doing it, but we must all be conscious of how badly the U.S. government keeps all the relevant data a secret.

I have to wonder what is the worst thing that could happen if ISIS got their caliphate in place of a chunk of that broken Iraq and in place of Assad's dictatorship in Syria. Would it be as bad as Iraq in the early years of Saddam or as bad as Saudi Arabia today?

Basically, I just don't understand why I am supposed to be so down on ISIS versus all the other scumbaggery in the region. And I am mindful that most of what Russian and France have to show for bombing ISIS is a downed airliner and a large terror attack in Paris.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Just as general information regarding your question asking if the mentioned countries should "continue air strikes" — the UK is not participating in this action.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I agree with Doo-Bop

3 ( +3 / -0 )

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