And some are starting to conclude there is no military response possible.
Sure there is. We've been doing it for millennia. Circle the place with a wall and with troops, prevent all incoming and outgoing traffic, bomb the water and power, salt the crops and let disease and starvation 'correct' the problem. Now, if you are not evil, then you get into the tricky point of most people in the city are not combatants. Look at how they are fighting in Mosul as an example.
The is a meme floating around that we live in the time in the history books labeled "factors leading up towards..." before the maps get all dotted lines and arrow-y. The sort of good point about being out here in Dumbfuckistan is that nothing happens here and nobody really gives a shit about the Ohio Valley. Hunter S. Thompson himself said that when the world ends he hopes to be in Kentucky because everything happens 20 years later here.
As a guy who wants the county and its ideals to succeed, and as a guy that wants the place to be better when he turns into worm food, however, I can say here that I have minimal hope for good things in the next decade or so. I'm more frustrated than depressed about that.