The present preoccupation with having US military forces intervene on behalf of Syrian civilian war victims, those of the past, present and possible future, has an air of wishful thinking about it.

Imagine that Saudi Arabia had reached a zenith in terms of military and economic power back in the dark days of World War 2. It had become the most powerful nation on earth at a time when the holocaust was becoming fully operational in Germany, chiefly because other European nations could then bring very little influence to bear on the conduct of the Nazi regime.

Saudi Arabia had been shocked to learn of such appalling deeds and was quite willing to bomb or even invade the fatherland in order that such crimes against humanity might be stopped and those responsible punished.

And the European reaction to such an offer would have been what?

Joy unconfined?

An immediate, continent-wide crash course in Arabic in tandem with the rapid embracing of all things Middle Eastern?

Wholesale conversion to Islam as so obviously being the one true faith?

Somehow I don’t see it going quite that way. In fact, I suspect there would be strong opposition to the move and a distinct unwillingness to support any such intervention.

And why?

Because it would have been massively resented, a confirmation of European helplessness in facing up to its own home-grown tyrants and being forever beholden to a people far removed from the Eurocentric universe.

For certain problems to be handled well, they must be approached from the inside-out; the outside-in can provide a motivating factor but it should be used very sparingly and only as backup for the main event.

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