Tuesday, August 27, 2013
The war drums are beating again on Syria. British Prime Minister David Cameron is mouthing off about being ready to commit the downsized, miniscule Royal Navy and what's left of the RAF to an effort to punish Syria's Basher Assad, France's Socialist President Hollande is making aggressive noises and our own John Kerry says that as far as he's concerned, he's one hundred per cent cross-my-heart-and-hope-to-die certain that the recent poison gas attacks at Ghouta, a suburb of Damascus that killed a couple of hundred people are the work of Syrian dictator Basher Assad and 'a moral obscenity' that of course demands a military response - even though there's no actual proof who launched the attack.
It was not so long ago that Kerry, who used to be on the Senate Foreign Relations committee was one of Assad's chief backers and shills. He was always saying how we needed to 'engage' with Assad, give him aid, and show him how friendly we were by pressuring Israel to give him back the Golan Heights, the better to kill Jews with.
During the entire time when Senator Kerry was pimping for Basher Assad, Assad was a sponsor of genocidal terrorists like Hezbollah and Hamas. He gave the orders for the assassinations of numerous Lebanese politicians including Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, not to mention a lot of journalists, business people and others who simply got in the way in Lebanon, Syria and occasionally in Europe. Assad's regime deliberately impeded UN investigative tribunals convened to investigate some of these crimes. Not only that,but after the 2006 Lebanon War, Syria, along with its ally Iran cheerfully violated UN Resolution 1701 to rearm Hezbollah and then turned Lebanon into a colony.
And of course, during the Iraq war, Syria was an open enabler of jihadis headed over the border to fight our warriors there, even providing them with havens as well as open borders to dodge back over if they needed it.
None of these particular 'moral obscenities' mattered one whit to Kerry back then. And they certainly never bothered France or the Brits.
That fact ought to raise certain suspicions in your mind when it comes to the current push to 'punish' Syria.
Actually, the more I find out about this gas attack, the more something smells.
On Aug. 21, the Syrian opposition announced that there had been a massive chemical attack in Ghouta which allegedly inflicted about 1,300 fatalities including hundreds of children. As in previous chemical attacks blamed on the Assad administration, the attackers claimed the attacks used Sarin nerve gas, and they flooded YouTube with videos, especially ones featuring children.But there was no conclusive evidence about the attack or the perpetrators.
Then, there were those conflicting claims at first from the insurgents about how the gas attack had been delivered. First, the gas was supposedly delivered via missiles. When EU politicians and our own local critters like John McCain started yapping about enforcing a no fly zone, all of a sudden the rebels started claiming the gas come via an aerial bombardment - except there was no evidence of shrapnel wounds that normally come with both artillery or airborne attacks of this kind. It's also worth remembering that when news of the attacks first went public, the UN delegation and foreign diplomats were denied access to the attack site for a few days by the Syrian opposition because it 'wasn't safe' for them.
We also don't know who fired shots at the UN delegation when they were finally allowed to enter the attack site by the Assad regime. It could very well have been Assad's men...but it could also just as easily been the insurgents.
And according to one of my Lil' Birdies, there's something else interesting about this attack. Ghouta was the site of a failed attack by the jihadist Syrian Free Army, who along with the other insurgents have steadily been losing ground to Assad's forces. This was a failed attempt to secure the area south of Damascus for the presumptive no fly zone the Obama Administration has been trying to arrange.
That attack resulted in a number of former opposition leaders publicly switching sides to Assad and even going public on Syrian TV about it. While I haven't seen the TV clips, it makes sense that after a failed attack, some of the local players would go public in switching sides to the Assad regime as it becomes seen as the strong horse.
If that's the case, it makes no sense that Assad would gas people who just came out backing him, especially with UN inspectors already in the country.On the other hand, if the rebels had captured some of Assad's gas weapons and decided to punish defectors in a way that would also give them a propaganda coup....and apparently the rebels do have Sarin gas themselves:
The point is there's no way to know for sure. In fact, this ought to remind us of another occasion where the West was manipulated into intervening just 18 years ago.
During the war in Bosnia, it was obvious that it was a brutal war with atrocities on both sides, and the West was leery about getting involved in what was a long standing sectarian war. Until August 28th, 1995, when a mortar shell hit a market in Sarajevo, killing 38 people and wounding another 90 people, many of them children. The pictures were horrendous, another chapter in the propaganda battle that the Muslims were far better at fighting than the Serbs..or maybe that's just the way the media wanted it.
The carnage at the the Markale market place was the spark that brought NATO in, just as President Clinton had been promising Bosnian Muslim leader Alija Izetbegovic. Even though a team led by Russian Colonel Andrei Demurenko, then the commander of UN Forces in Sarajevo rushed to the areas where the Bosnian Serb mortar teams were stationed and reported that there was no way the Serbs could have been responsible, it wasn't enough. NATO, led by the U.S. and President Clinton began bombing the Serbs, a long time American ally - including civilian targets. That decided the outcome of the war in favor of the Muslims, led to widespread ethnic cleansing of Christian Serbs in Kossovo and established a Muslim state there in defiance of the norms of international law.
As it turned out, there's a very good possibility that the strike on the Markale market place was friendly fire, initiated by the Bosnian Muslims to bring in NATO on their side. Almost certainly an earlier attack on the same location on February 5th, 1994 was. The London Times, writing about an earlier attack ["UN tracks source of fatal shell," (London) The Times, 2/19/94]admitted that there was a UN report that was later buried showing conclusively the the Bosnian Muslims had fired on their own people. And General General Michael Rose, the British head of UNPROFOR, revealed in his memoirs that the shells fired in the February attack came from the Muslim positions.
Ghouta could easily be Markale, the sequel.
For that matter, we don't even have to go back to Bosnia to see how this works. Remember the Houla massacre that was supposed to have been perpetrated by Assad's troops and had the usual suspects screaming for us to make a 'humanitarian intervention'? It turned out that atrocity was performed by the rebels as a false flag operation. With Ghouta, the insurgents could very well be upping the ante to bring us in.
All that aside ( because Muslim violence is pretty much an equal opportunity sport) let's take a look at what could happen if we intervene in Syria. If we destroy Assad's forces and remove him from power, it will just lead to a bloodbath for Alawites, Shi'ites and what's left of Syria's Christians..the al-Qaeda and Muslim Brotherhood rebels have provided ample proof they're just as bloodthirsty and insane as Assad if not more so.
Not only that, but given the factional fighting, it's going to be tremendously hard to tell who's who. As the clueless Senator John McCain proved, it's going to be pretty difficult if not impossible to 'tell who the good guys are.'
Another thing to consider is that to take out Assad we'd have to send in ground troops...who'd be fighting against Hezbollah and the Iranian Revolutionary Guard. And it would be the same deal it was in Iraq, our forces being victims of covert terrorism from both sides while the American taxpayer pays to rebuild Syria and fund and train yet another anti-American Muslim Army. Seen our debt figures lately?
And remember, in Syria, there's no oil to help pay the tab.
If we just bomb them, the first thing Assad and Hezbollah will likely do is is 'play the Jew card' and hit Israel. And Iran will get into it too as they did in Iraq. While I realize that President Obama and Secretary Kerry aren't all that concerned about dead Jews, the Israeli retaliation has the capacity to turn a localized sectarian war into a regional bloodbath. With U.S. forces caught in the middle, and Barack Obama as commander in chief.
I'd advise interested readers to look at what I wrote the last time the war drums were beating on Syria, after the Houla massacre. I stand by everything I wrote then, including what we're likely to face once we intervene in this viper's pit.
Nor do we need to provide the fascist Muslim Brotherhood with a reichlet courtesy of American blood and treasure. Recent polls show that American are overwhelmingly opposed to getting involved in Syria. They're smart to feel that way. If President Obama gets us into an illegal war in Syria just to provide a diversion from the swamp of scandal his administration is mired in and we allow it, we'll regret the consequences.
There's nothing remotely beneficial to American interest in our getting involved here.