GCC should go after Daesh with boots on the ground

The Arab states are also in need of proactive diplomacy.

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Published: Fri 31 Jul 2015, 12:00 AM

Last updated: Fri 31 Jul 2015, 10:26 AM

Kuwait's pre-emptive move that helped it unearth a sleeper cell of terrorists is a major success in the war against terrorism. Reports say the authorities have detained a number of nationals who have confessed they received courses on the doctrine of the terrorist organisation, Daesh, in addition to advanced training on using arms. The Daesh-affiliates also said that they had participated in combat in Syria and Iraq. These revelations have come just days after Saudi Arabia rounded up suspects belonging to the dreaded militant group and carried out a purge against extremist elements in the society. Such efforts should be intensified across the GCC region, in order to ensure that Daesh is exterminated in the shortest possible timeframe.
The six-member GCC has a multi-pronged challenge to face in the form of dealing with Iran - and at the same time fighting a virtual enemy, i.e, Daesh and the like. They are interlinked in one way or the other, as their intention is to destabilise the region to achieve their nefarious objectives. Tehran has political ambitions to serve, so funds its proxies in the region, namely the Houthis, Hezbollah and Hamas.
Daesh, however, wants to redraw the boundaries of the Middle East in blood, and is thus on a killing spree in the region. The fact that Daesh controls large swathes of territory in Syria and Iraq, and is eyeing Turkey to extend its reach is no less than a nightmare for the GCC States. The war in Yemen is also a direct security challenge to Saudi Arabia, as any fall of Yemen to the Houthis would tantamount to geographic expansion of Iran's writ at the expense of Arab states. So what is needed is an well-defined policy to deal with Iran and Deash at different levels so that the security and sovereignty of the region is not compromised.
The GCC States should tap the understanding that P5+1 has reached with Iran, wherein it was a stated principle that Tehran will act as a willing partner in fighting the Daesh in Iraq and Syria, and at the same time work closely with the Arab countries to stabilise the region. This is where Iran can be neutralised with the express agreement that it will cease its support to its proxies in the larger interest of peace and security. As far as confronting the Daesh is concerned, there are no two opinions but to go after them with boots on the ground.
Riyadh has already taken the first step, mulling an international consensus against Daesh by hosting military officials from 26 nations. All it needs to do is to follow it up and choke the avenues from where the militants get oxygen to breathe. Cutting off their funding sources and taking them on the ground in a combat offensive is the way to go. The Middle East is in need of proactive diplomacy supplemented with a robust military gear to crush all those forces that are out to play havoc with its territorial integrity.

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