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Islamic State forces issue: Sovereign identity vs religious ideology

A CNN commentator used Egypt as an instance where citizens chose “sovereign identity over religious ideology.” Governments that are aligned with democratic freedom and individual liberty cannot accept religious ideology driving them. In fact, freedom of belief in the pluralistic free world means freedom of religion and freedom from it. Religions that promote discrimination on any basis violate the U.S. Constitutional rights and principles, for instance.

ISIS fighters

Through due process that is assured by the American political system, and over a period of 226 years, citizens of all kinds including women and minorities, gays and lesbians and just about everyone else have made their cases and won in the Court of Law. It took too long to interpret to define and assess equality, but it has happened, eventually.

Enforcing it is another matter that requires continuous vigilance and attention.

President Obama is off in Cardiff, Wales meeting with other world leaders to address the Ukraine and Russia situation. Therein, freedom is once again at stake as is international law that ensures and protects national sovereignty. Russia has violated national sovereignty and free world leaders must determine how penalize them and prevent them from doing more harm.

In the instances of the Middle East, there are a host of governments that are based on religious ideology and that foundation is direct conflict with the free world. The contradictions have become most apparent when citizens in the region seek greater freedom and alignment with the free world.

Aside from Egypt, there are no governments in the Middle East that are unencumbered by the legacy of Islam that imposes intolerance and rules that undermine equality. These governments are harsh in levying Islamic laws that are incompatible with the free world.

In addressing the threat from Islamic State terrorists Middle East nations must now choose to confront extremism. Thye must moderate their beliefs to become more aligned with the free world, or to succumb to envelopment into a hostile caliphate that will surely receive the wrath of war in response to its incompatible aggression.

The scope and scale of change needed in the Middle East are enormous, and yet the tipping point is breached. Governments are falling, and the free world must be ready to support citizens who want to get on with their living.

“The prospect of a failed state torn apart by a sectarian civil war along its border, another one in Syria and an al-Qaeda “state” rising up from the ashes of these two civil wars must be a disconcerting one for Saudi Arabia. While both Iraq and Syria have publicly blamed the carnage in their countries on the Saudis for what they maintain is Saudi support of “terrorists,” including ISIS, the al-Qaeda affiliate itself has vowed to “conquer” Saudi Arabia after it has “vanquished” the regimes in Damascus and Baghdad. More than any of its neighbors, Saudi Arabia has the most to lose from the conflict in Iraq spiraling out of control. There are several reasons.

Saudi Arabia values stability more than anything. Its penchant for reactionary politics is most apparent in its unconditional support of President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi’s new government in Egypt, which has reinstituted many of the policies of former President Hosni Mubarak, arguably the Saudis’ most stalwart ally for over 30 years. And while the Saudis have supported the rebels’ bid in Syria to topple President Bashar al-Assad’s regime, this willingness to change the status quo is a function of the role Iran is playing in the conflict and because Saudi Arabia views itself as the leader of the Sunni Muslim world, and therefore has a moral obligation to help the beleaguered Sunni majority.”

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