Speed Reads

The Daily Showdown

Jon Stewart doesn't like the 'Crusade-y vibe' of Obama's coalition against ISIS

America has two choices when it comes to ISIS, said Jon Stewart on Thursday night's Daily Show: President Obama's traditionally "nuanced vision of a non-omnipotent America projecting power selectively," or "some sort of weird, all-powerful Tarantino America that cleanses the world of sin through slow-motion bloodbaths," the vision promoted by Republicans. In Wednesday night's speech, Stewart said, Obama "went full 'America, f--k yeah!'"

If Stewart was underwhelmed by Obama's hawkish strategy, he was less impressed with the international coalition the president has (so far) put together to fight the Islamist terrorists. The core group of European nations and Australia "looks awful Christian-y," he said. "It's got a little bit of a Crusade-y vibe." Without a Muslim ally, "we're just the group of grown men at the One Direction concert without any kids," he added.

A couple of Muslim nations in the region are sort of on board, Stewart noted, but that's not enough. Until the Middle East nations "decide that it irks them that the belief system they hold sacred is being misrepresented to justify a perpetual violence machine," and get past their sectarian differences, he said, "the United States can't fix this. Because it can't be fixed by waving a magic bomb." Defense contractors probably disagree. --Peter Weber