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One of the surprising aspects of following U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East from within the United States, as I have done for several months now on an extended visit, is the peculiar gap between ordinary citizens' sentiments and the fact that the United States is actively militarily engaged in several countries in the region.So candidate Obama who pledged to end American wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and indeed moved vigorously to keep that pledge, now finds he must reverse himself and expand or extend American military involvement in the region. If the American people do not weigh in with their views and openly discuss the deployment and impact of American capabilities, the danger is that American presidents – the wise and the wild ones alike – will continue to use America's technological, logistical and manpower capabilities to wage wars that create more havoc in distant lands and generate new dangers that did not exist previously.Now that the U.S. and other countries are actively fighting ISIS, the terrifying new danger is that more and more people across the region – especially Sunni Arabs – will see their option as supporting ISIS or submitting to the proven failed legacy of American-supported Arab dictatorships.
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