By Chris Mellides
Foreign policy expert Larry P. Goodson told a crowd of more than two dozen at Oheka Castle in Huntington Wednesday that the United States is engaged in a “Great War for the Soul” in the Middle East due to its longtime military presence in the region that will lead to a decline in the America’s dominance internationally.
Goodson, director and associate professor of Middle East Studies in the Department of National Security and Strategy at the U.S. Army College in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, said the U.S. is in the midst of what he called the “Great War for the Soul.”
According to Goodson, this discord stems from a shrinking Western Europe and an increasingly overpopulated Middle East, along with conflicts between ethno-linguistic and religious groups, outside foreign interests and Iran’s internal struggle between Sunni and Shia.
“Wars between groups fought in part because of their identity are hard to stop,” Goodson said. “Because after a while, if I were to do something terrible to you, after a while I’d behead you and you’d behead me. That’s what we’re seeing in the Middle East.”
In a question-and-answer session, Goodson was asked about his thoughts on America’s Iran nuclear deal. He said that while the deal is not perfect, it gives the U.S. and its allies around the globe the best opportunity to delay Iran’s nuclear weapons capabilities.
While Goodson’s conversation today admittedly “dark and gloomy,” Americans need to understand the threat that militant Islam poses.