Liberté. Égalité. Fraternité.
However, when we Americans see refugees on a mountain, multiple beheadings et al, we tend to want to kill the perpetrators.
ISIS seems to be a particularly nasty group and if we can undermine them, maybe--a big MAYBE here--the next gang will be less brutal.
As you say, not a lot of good choices.
No matter how cynical I become toward politicians, it's never enough.
After the invasion of Iran, costing upwards of half a million Iraqis and the chemical genocide of the Kurds to the tune of 200k, the UN and the Western world began sanctions against Saddam. After the invasion of Kuwait, will you claim the West did not respond? After the genocide of the Marsh Arabs (50k), did the West not respond? The no-fly zones were in place to prevent further genocide, Saddam fired on them. When Saddam institutionalized rape, the West responded with additional sanctions. Food-for-oil was an attempt to see revenue go to the people of Iraq, it failed; Saddam sold 400k dead children worth of food.
17 unscr violations later, there was nothing for the West to do but nation build; unfortunately, it was so late; Saddam had annihilated Iraq's social capital.
i don't believe that it can be fixed via eternal military force. it has to be rejected by the region. and i see no evidence that continued involvement in the region will lead to a reduction in the militancy of new groups. history indicates the opposite.
I was more liberal back then than I am now. I supported invading Afganistan, but not Iraq. It seemed like an unnecessary war. After we invaded and found no WMD, it seemed even more unnecessary. The incompetence of the Maliki government and the Isis invasion of Iraq makes Bush's decision look even worse in retrospect. Hussein would have been a buffer against Isis in the west and Iran in the east. Now it looks like we spent blood and money just to make Iraq even worse then it already was.