Look: If you accept their premises – that we need to be even more deeply involved in the Middle East, by joining one side in a hugely explosive religious schism – their argument makes sense. But I do not accept the premise. I think engaging in the Middle East to back one sect’s interpretation of Islam over another’s is a mug’s game – as I also think is true of the entire paradigm of unchallenged US hegemony in a uni-polar world. That hubristic, over-bearing posture all but guarantees over-reach and disaster. It has already done a huge amount to destroy this country’s reputation, and thereby soft power. It has led us to alienate almost everyone in the world, including most of our allies. At some point, we ought to question the logic of such a cycle of self-defeat.