The only US alternative to a piecemeal approach in the war theaters of the Middle East is an articulation of a policy of Zero Tolerance supplemented by an intentional withdrawal of all active military intervention in that part of the world. This would be seen as isolationism and is therefore unacceptable, But it needs to be re-parsed. Our dismal record of counter-intelligence, mercenary reliance, strewing weaponry about and now paying for trillions in military folly, must be closed. I advocated after 9/11 a Sherlock Holmes stance, using brains and investigation to deal with surgically difficult situations, all the while keeping up a stream of informative patter about what we were actually doing. Our military apparatus and our hapless intelligence empire is the overgrown, obese child of the dream of the Dulles Brothers, which set the binary course following WW2. That gave us the charade of the Cold War and its transition into the absurdly-run War on Terror. The withdrawal from military involvement in the Middle East is essentially a willingness to confront Big Oil and say that American interests are not worth protecting in a world where the tail has the power to wag the dog. We need to recreate a world that cannot operate that way. And that will take an entire revolution in how we do things in the US. It will be a post oil world that functions beyond the unrealistic policies which assumes you can bring order to a madhouse. All we do by functioning as we do abroad is increase the probability that our mindless ways will take further root here. Zero Tolerance is saying we are serious about our values, that we are serious enough to believe that the world’s peoples will rise up to affirm them if they really sense that they can do so without becoming caught in the wars we are still waging., Zero Tolerance says the US begins and ends on our shores and that our values should obtain universally. We cannot force that development. But we can get out of the way. And we have enough trouble getting them to work here to be taskmasters anywhere else.