In the long run, the so-called ISIS Caliphate is destined to become a walled-in training facility where the major military powers test their new weapons on live combatants. Wars sometimes have expiration dates, but training is forever. Expect the Caliphate to be a permanent war zone, by design.
Along those lines, see Putin’s comment about Russia’s escalation in Syria. He said, “It’s hard to imagine a better exercise (for Russian forces). So we can train there for a long time without any serious harm to our budget.”
Thus, we remove any doubt that Putin is a Master Persuader. He literally referred to ISIS as target practice. That is exactly the way a Master Persuader would approach it.
Expect Trump to do the same if elected. The two wizards would combine to frame the conflict as target practice, and not a war of religion. ISIS’ enduring contribution to world peace will be Russia and the United States on the same side, practicing.
I can easily imagine a teen signing up for ISIS and the chance to change the world. But does anyone sign up to be the replacement targets at the all-robot firing range?
We will find out.
If you want to kill an idea, you have to go after it directly. That’s what Putin is doing with his comments about using Syria for military training. Compare that to the discussions on this topic in the United States; our debates go like this:
Person 1: We should ban Muslim immigration because some of them might be terrorists.
Person 2: How can you imply that all Muslims are terrorists???!!!
Person 1: I did not imply that. I said some might be. And you haven’t even disagreed with me.
Person 2: Go to hell, racist.
So, we should at least consider the Putin approach. It changes the frame.
Once we get the Caliphate walled-up, we can dump the Guantanamo Bay leftovers there too. Compare that to Plan A, in which we release them and they kill us.
Walls: Is there anything they can’t do?
Update: Commenter Zeke suggests that the new name for ISIS should be TP, for target practice. But that has a double meaning in the United States to mean toilet paper. I think we have a winner. ISIS = TP.