By "end of the world" I mean a fully regional open civil war along sectarian lines in all the major countries of the middle east that have populations consisting of more than one homogeneous religious or ethnic group.
What's more, quite likely we (the US) will do nothing to stop it.
I've come to this concussion when I heard that Hezbollah is now in Syria. This has always been a sectarian three way cluster fuck between the Sunni's, the Shiites and the Alloites, with the Kurds and I'm sure a couple more religious and ethnic distinctions thrown in for good measure. Moreover it was always contained in the borders of Syria.
Hezbollah, an Islamic militant group that was formed to basically destroy Isreal is now off in Syria killing other Muslims. Think about that for one second... Remember that the Sunni's have been backing the rebels and have their own militia's as well.
Right now the operative word is plausible deniability. The Iranians are funding the Syrian regime and Hezbollah and the Saudi's are funding the rebels and their own militias. However as this conflict continues to spiral out of control and now with Hezbollah firing rockets from Lebanon... With Iraq now sending in fighters. With sectarian violence again on the rise in Iraq. Jordan collapsing under the onslaught of refugees. Libya is a lawless no mans land. Egypt is still a huge mess. Mali, Sudan, Somalia, if not failed states, right on the verge.
See where I'm going with this? Very quickly we might be looking at all out civil wars in many of these countries. As it is right now in many of these countries car bombs and kidnappings are just a way of life.
As the rest of the world watches the middle east and a large swath of northern Africa tear itself apart, the big question is... What do we do?
We can't occupy every country, and we all know that our track record for picking sides in middle eastern conflicts has almost never worked out. Bombing the living shit out of Libya managed to accomplish what? Exactly.
One viable option as crazy as it sounds... is to do nothing. Let this conflict spiral out of control. Let these dogs tear out each others throats.
There are pros and cons to this.
- They'll be so busy killing each other they'll stop targeting us (I'd hope)
- This will be a roach motel for Islamic extremists. Nutcases go in, they don't come out.
- Quite likely many of these groups will be completely obliterated.
- OPEC would likely be done for.
- Humanitarian, environmental and Human rights disaster
- This conflict will generate more extremists then those killed.
- What groups are left standing will be fanatical, heavily armed and experienced
- Any governments left standing will be so weak they'll be easy prey to these groups
- Disruption of global economy and fuel supply.
- Western governments will be seen as ineffectual.
Obviously doing nothing is bad... but getting involved is just is bad. These people are complete nutcases, on both sides. As time goes on the people in the middle who'll actually want to sit at the table and talk and now be out slaughtering their neighbors is going to become razor thin, then what?