The only terrorist organization to be mistaken for a fictional spy agency, ISIS, was accidentally created by the United States and western countries.
The group has beheaded two journalists with promises to kill more. Unfortunately, with the European Union in constant turmoil since 2011 and the United States still in a slow recovery from a recession in 2008, western countries aren’t equipped to deal with the group of rag-tag anti-government fighters that we used to root for.
In April 2011, a Tunisian man set himself on fire to protest his government’s oppression. That initial action set off protests in Egypt, Libya, Tunisia and eventually Syria.
The United States was directly involved in the uprisings in Egypt and Libya, providing air strikes against Muammar Gaddafi.
The ruthless dictator, responsible for the deaths of thousands of his people, was brutally executed by rebels who dragged his body through the streets of Libya and beaten with his own gold-plated gun.
In Egypt, we sent diplomatic support for their first democratic election.
But Syria was altogether ignored by the international community. By the time the Syria uprising got going, the United States forces were exhausted trying to help the Middle Eastern push for democracy. When adding the problem of Russian support for president-dictator Bashar al-Assad, the United States couldn’t care.
The Syrian rebels started protesting against their government in March 2011. By December 2011, 5,000 people were dead.
The United Nations estimates the death toll in Syria to currently be 191,000.
The United Nations, in August 2012, accused al-Assad of war crimes, but suspended missions into Syria because of Russian vetoes on the Security Council.
After the Friends of Syria Council and the United Nations failed to come up with solutions, the Syrian rebels had one last option: al-Qaida.
Once al-Assad dropped biological weapons on his own people, Western countries made efforts to support the anti-government fighters in Syria. Unfortunately, that meant the United States was now supporting al-Qaida groups.
Basically, the United States’ inaction for 14 months of Syrian conflict was enough to create the Syrian arm of ISIS. Political instability in Iraq and tension with the United States provided an opening for ISIS.
A pattern of crisis fatigue from the United States has generated more problems than it has solved. The apathetic response from the international community is responsible for the deaths of nearly 200,000 people, the formation of ISIS and the targeting of Western journalists by the group.
The American people can’t care about everything, but genocide in a country that is ignored because of Cold War politics cannot be accepted.
On Tuesday, journalist Steven Sotloff was beheaded. Not guillotined. Gruesomely and forcefully, Sotloff’s head was hacked off his body using a knife no bigger than a steak knife.
We have chosen every other conflict in the world since March 2011 instead of Syria. ISIS has taken the role of an angry child, wanting to be a world priority.
ISIS has to become our priority.