by Thomas Reese, S.J., NCR
The news around the world is tragic and depressing.
The fanatical fighters of the Islamic State are gobbling up land and murdering those who believe differently than they do. They are now armed with the American weapons left behind by the Iraqi army, which turned tail when Islamic State fighters arrived in Mosul. So much for years of American training and advice.
The government of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki in Baghdad appears incapable of making the compromises that could forge a government of national unity. And will the Iranians make matters worse by intervening to protect their allies and co-religious?
Russian President Vladimir Putin appears poised to invade eastern Ukraine. Neither the downing of MH17 nor Western sanctions have slowed him down. This will not be the walk in the park like his takeover of Crimea, but he does not seem to care if thousands die.
Israel and Hamas have worn each other down with fighting that has caused thousands of deaths and injuries but did not move the region any closer toward sustainable peace….