- ISIL is dangerous because it wants to destabilize a region and kill "apostates (Westerners, Shia Muslims, and other non-Sunni Muslims)."
- Bombing is a way of fighting ISIL so we have to keep bombing, even in the absence of realistic objectives or any indication that bombing will achieve them.
- The war against ISIL can only end with a peace agreement in Syria and the deployment of ground troops.
If the only way this war is going to end is to deploy ground troops and negotiate peace agreements, then surely our six fighter jets weren't helping much anyways. On the other hand, if the threat is so dire as Simpson claims, and bombing COULD do something about it, then surely our six fighter jets were a paltry, pathetic, and insignificant contribution anyways, in which case, withdrawing them don't hurt much either (a point which he acknowledges, in passing).
The most hilarious part, though, is his casually sweeping conclusion that eventually we'll have to negotiate a peace agreement and in the meantime we should just keep bombing. Okay. A peace agreement with who?
Is Simpson proposing that we sign a peace agreement with ISIL? How? When? On what terms would this be acceptable to him, given that he has just finished explaining what an existential threat ISIL poses to him?
Or if not, what about just a peace agreement with everyone currently at war with ISIL? Does that mean a peace agreement with Al-Qaeda and Hezbollah? Because they're at war with ISIL. Is Simpson proposing we sign a peace treaty with Al-Qaeda?
Is Simpson saying that the people who have deployed ground troops should be the ones who lead the drive for "peace"? Because the groups that have deployed those troops so far are Hezbollah and Iran.
Or perhaps Simpson is saying that the way forward is to sign agreements with the militia groups who are opposed to ISIL. In that case, it would certainly be a damned good idea to focus on improving our relationships with those groups. One ideal way to do that would be to send them special forces trainers and equipment, but in this article, Simpson says that's a meaningless and unimportant adjunct to the real war, which is in the air.
And if Simpson really does think the way forward is more anti-government militias, then I have to question his sanity, just like I have to question the sanity of everyone else taking that approach. Let's say that the government of Canada collapsed for some reason. Does anyone seriously think that the best way to stitch Confederation back together would be to have foreign powers start shipping arms directly to separatist groups in Alberta and Quebec and whatever radical First Nations groups might be persuaded to start stocking an arsenal?