Both the U. S. and our enemy Shiite Iran are on the same side in Iraq — supporting Shiite al-Maliki against Sunni Al Qaeda.
To a large extent, our frenemy Maliki brought his Anbar province troubles on himself by mistreating the Sunnis there and creating an opening for Al Qaeda. Now he’s struggling to get the Sunni tribal leaders to turn against Al Qaeda and turn back to him, hoping they hate his guts a little less.
The violence spreading out from Syria shows that the Mideast right now is just fighting the Sunni-Shiite battle that’s been going on since the seventh century. At this moment, it’s led by Saudi Arabia and Iran fanning proxy wars, just as the U. S. and Russia had their client states during the Cold War. The Sunni Saudis are trying to fight both the Shiites and Al Qaeda, a monster they helped create. Good luck with that.
We have to fight Al Qaeda and its affiliates, and we have to stop Iran from getting nuclear weapons, which would lead to Saudi Arabia’s getting nuclear weapons. Resolving the Sunni-Shiite thing? Fuhgeddaboudit.