2. “American forces are needed to impose stability/counter Iranian aggression in the region.” Since 2001, the U.S. has been playing a game of Whack-a-Mole with the Taliban in Afghanistan. We’ve overthrown the government of Iraq, empowering Iran by eliminating its strongest regional rival and sparking an insurgency and civil war that gave birth to the Islamic State. We’ve encouraged the so-called “Arab Spring,” which ultimately precipitated the Syrian Civil War, over half a million deaths, and a refugee crisis that has helped fuel a surge of right-wing populism across Europe. We’ve toppled the government of Libya, which spread chaos and provoked another refugee crisis across North Africa. We’ve intervened in Yemen, producing a humanitarian crisis and immense human suffering. And we first struck and then deliberately scuttled a nuclear deal with Iran.

The indisputable fact is that the United States has been the primary source of regional instability in the Greater Middle East for nearly two decades now. As for Iran, it’s hard to see how a country 6,000 miles from the U.S. homeland with an economy a tiny fraction of ours should be viewed as a serious threat to our vital interests. Israel faces a very different situation, but it is heavily armed and receives a large sum of American aid every year. It is quite capable of defending itself.