The U.S. military has returned to Iraq. Last night, President Obama authorized airstrikes to stop ISIS (which now calls itself the Islamic State) from advancing on Erbil, the hub city of Kurdistan, and protect 40,000 refugees trapped on a mountain. War-weary critics say Obama’s intervention will lead to all-out American military engagement. Hawks protest that he has no vision and that his limited intervention won’t defeat ISIS. Both sides complain that he has no end game.

They’re wrong. Military intervention doesn’t have to fit into a strategy for military victory. It can make sense on more modest terms, as part of a larger political process that is moving in the right direction and is driven by other players. When miscreants such as ISIS endanger that process, a timely use of force can contain the damage and preserve the momentum. We don’t have to wage a larger war in Iraq. Here are 10 reasons why we won’t. [Read more] – Michael’s Blog