The news coming out of Iraq is both disturbing but strangely very predictable. The catastrophic decision to invade Iraq in 2003 and the failure to plan properly or at all for the post-Saddam era is still reverberating around the world to this day.
The former Prime Minister, Maliki must shoulder a great deal of responsibility and blame for the rise of ISIS and the establishment of their fledgling caliphate.
Maliki has overseen blood letting and score settling since the withdrawal of the last US forces in 2011. Elements of the Sunni minority have responded with predictable brutality to their loss of power following the overthrow of Saddam Hussein.
So why should the UK get involved in Iraq again? Have we not learnt from our Iraq 2003 mistake and our well-intentioned but ultimately erroneous intervention in Libya? Of course we have, we decided against intervention in Syria didn’t we. Well not quite on this one it would seem.
Even though Parliament is in recess, voices are starting to be heard loudly and heads are starting to appear again above the parapet for fresh military intervention in Iraq. They want to stem the march of ISIS and provide humanitarian cover for the minorities, including many Christians, fleeing this force and their thirst for violence and death. This is despite the protestations of the British Prime Minister that there will be no boots on the ground in Iraq, unless we mean 150 British Special Forces of course.
Well, in the absence of the Arab and Gulf States ever getting their act together and sorting out peace and security amongst themselves, it falls to the United States and the UK to provide the humanitarian assistance and the military power to halt the ISIS advance.
We must intervene on a humanitarian level. It is the right thing to do and because of our folly in 2003 many precious UK and US service personnel, plus countless others, died for a better and free Iraq. Quite simply, we cannot allow Iraq to fall into the hands of Islamic extremists.
It’s clear that Iraq is going to need to reach a political solution. Once and for all the Arab and Gulf States (and many other Muslim nations around the world) must learn to get along together and provide their own people with peace, security and prosperity.
They must learn to stop playing the victim card, blaming the West for their problems and then relying on the West to solve the many problems they bring about on themselves. I know that day may be somewhere in the distant future so until then we must be prepared at times to intervene.
The current crisis in Iraq is one of those times.
It needs our action and leadership to stop the slaughter of innocence on a massive scale and to defeat a menace that won't stop until it is totally destroyed.
As events unfold, I will be watching with interest how Britain reacts. The problem I foresee for David Cameron is that while he has invested heavily in our capability to deliver humanitarian aid in the last five years, he has overseen a decimation of Britain's military capability to intervene in a meaningful way. This is certainly a new phase in British military responses.