That's one way of looking at it all, fersure, and persuasive as far as it goes. As a literary subject, however, it's not quite up to the Elizabethan dramaturgy in that piece on North Korea linked earlier today: http://t.co/SiTldr6Pw8

Merry Xmas, Don Miguel.

Link to his post: http://krebscycle.tumblr.com/post/70017656188/americas-middle-east-policy-collapses-and-not-a

To me what's "magical" in this discussion is the opinion, that you and maybe even the Commander seem to share along with Nichols and Schindler, that any recitation of historical events or any speculation regarding the rise, fall, back, and forth of foreign powers will make a politically meaningful impression on anyone at all. It seems rather obvious that there is hardly any constituency at all for (excuse the expression) a forward-leaning militarized foreign policy, but rather strong and determinative reluctance that preceded and goes well beyond the Obama Administration. It's not that I think if Nichols and Schindler and the Commander and you could somehow explain how Russian or Iranian success in the ME would impact the average citizen's life, it would change anything very substantially in the short term. But you might at least set down some markers or conceivably even have some greater effect on the margins. Or as root_e puts it:

When we read that “we must oppose Y’s influence in X” the question to ask is: why? What do we get out of it? What danger are we averting by, e.g. hastening the collapse of Russia’s ally in Syria and its replacement by Quatari funded fanatics? In some cases, the US definitely has an interest in stepping in - I don’t deny that. Neither do I suppose that Putin has good intentions or that lambs will lie down with lions and not get eaten. But if our experts on foreign policy are going to command some of the respect they think they deserve, they need to make a case that goes beyond reflexive great power gamesmanship.

That's what I agree with in his post. Until that case has been made, all the rest is just one damn thing after another except when it's not even that.

Have pity on the poor souls who may not understand what you're replying to or trying to reply to or what I think you're trying to reply to, though, then again, I'm not sure what you're getting at even though I think I do know what you're referring to.