American foreign policy makes it and its allies less safe in the world. Spending trillions in the most failtastic region (although, the West had a hand in ruining that region since at least the early 20th century—after WWI) of the world in order to bomb brown people, because America must ensure its defense industries’ profit margins. And it’s also a low-risk, high-reward endeavor when attacking an enemy without an air force.
When dealing with insane religious fanatics, you do what Reagan did after the 1983 Beirut barracks bombing—cut and run! Run as fast and as far as you can. If these people want to live in the 9th century, why should the West say no? People have the right to determine their own destiny; they should be able to do so without fears of having other countries
mettle in their affairs for their own gain. Unfortunately, the West is run mostly by corporate interests, and there’s oil and other natural resources in that region, so anyone with a brain can figure out what that means. The only way the west is getting out of the Middle East is if all the natural resources in that area extracted. These activities also compliment the enormous military-industrial complex, since war makes money for all these defense concerns. War is a profitable “industry”, and wars are being fought increasingly by mercenaries They make up the majority of American forces in Afghanistan. PMCs are largely becoming the largest players for prosecuting wars. It’s almost like warfare during the Renaissance where wars were almost exclusively fought by mercenaries, rather than regulars or feudal levies.
The West’s actions over there have consequences over here, when Islamic radicals, either foreign or homegrown terrorists (homegrown terrorism is actually a greater concern in America than from foreign forces).
Dealing with terrorism is more of a job for law enforcement, not a broad and massive military campaign, but where is the money in that. To put forward a better, yet controversial approach, is to do what Israel did after the Munich massacre in 1972: Operation Wrath of God—an operation carried out by Mossad to hunt down and kill those suspected of having taken part in the massacre. I’m not entirely convinced that this is a good idea, but it is miles better than a large and expensive military operation. Also, assassination need not be the primary objective but the hostile extraction of suspected terrorists.
In the end, with the status quo, it’s regular people who pay the price in taxes and in life in order to support an empire in decline. There’s no negotiating with people who think that they are a part of some epic struggle against some great evil power. The best thing to do is to ignore the countries and governments of that part of the world until they join the rest of the world in the 21st century.