Utah: Discussion on ISIS and Islam: America should take a ‘time-out’ from the Middle East; ‘the Arab-Israeli conflict is the key to stability in the entire region’

Michael Stathis (left), a professor of Political Science at SUU, speaks on the history of ISIS while Ingela Rundquist (center) and Madelyn Crookston look on at the lecture at SUU, Cedar City, Utah, Oct. 28, 2014 | Photo by Devan Chavez, St. George News

CEDAR CITY — Southern Utah University students and community members gathered in the Sterling R. Church Auditorium Tuesday night for a discussion titled “ISIS and the Media’s Portrayal of the Islamic Religion” hosted by the Southern Utah Democrats.

Two speakers were featured at the event: Michael Stathis, a professor of political science at SUU, and Madelyn Crookston, a Muslim-American convert from Parowan.

Stathis kicked off the discussion by speaking on the history of ISIS, also known as the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant and Islamic State, and how the group differs from others in the past…

…The United States has caused so much upheaval and discontent in the area that it is difficult for us to really do much that can be seen by others as positive, Stathis said.

“Given the track record, the United States might be better off being given a temporary time-out in the Middle East,” Stathis said. “That might be better for everyone concerned”…

“The Arab-Israeli conflict is the key to stability in the entire region,” Stathis said. “Until it is solved — beginning with the creation of an independent Palestine — we are going to see crisis time-after-time”…

It is simply beyond belief that this so-called expert can blame Islamic State on the Arab-Israeli conflict.