August 23, 2013

Syrian Gas and Mirrors

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What is the issue?

“If reports are credible that the Assad regime has used chemical weapons resulting in the estimated deaths of hundreds of civilians, then clearly a red line has been crossed again,” Engel said.

That’s right, clearly it would mean a red line has been crossed again…but, in which direction and since it didn’t matter the first time does that mean it doubly doesn’t matter this time?

Eleven years ago we got the Weapons of Mass Destruction scare. As a result, we invaded Iraq, needlessly, and thousands of Americans died fighting a war that no one but they and their families had to pay for on a daily basis. Taxes went down, not up. No one had to pay anything. The worst part is that it was all built on scare tactics that Republicans and Democrats alike went right along with. Now I see we’re replaying that film.

Well, Representative Eliot Engel, ranking Democrat on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, thinks this really really matters. He thinks that this time, if the Syrian government used nerve gas on the al-Qa’ida freedom loving rebel soldiers then we ought to do something. This is why idiots should shut their mouths. We’re already arming the rebels in Syria and have been for two years both covertly and openly. What else would this fool have us do? Invade? Well, yes, maybe but President Obama doesn’t see it that way. See, he’s still massively regretting having ever said anything at all about “red lines” back when he was trying to look tough. Back then he said evidence of a gas attack would mean a “red line” had been crossed, whatever that means. Now he’s backing down.

This is classic bullshit. Take note.

OBAMA: Well, we are right now gathering information about this particular event, but I can say that unlike some of the evidence that we were trying to get earlier that led to a U.N. investigator going into Syria, what we’ve seen indicates that this is clearly a big event of grave concern. And, you know, we are already in communications with the entire international community. We’re moving through the U.N. to try to prompt better action from them. And we’ve called on the Syrian government to allow an investigation of the site, because U.N. inspectors are on the ground right now.

We don’t expect cooperation, given their past history, and, you know, what I do believe is that — although the situation in Syria is very difficult and the notion that the U.S. can somehow solve what is a sectarian, complex problem inside of Syria sometimes is overstated…

CUOMO: But delay can be deadly, right, Mr. President?

OBAMA: … there is — there is no doubt that when you start seeing chemical weapons used on a large scale — and, again, we’re still gathering information about this particular event, but it is very troublesome…

CUOMO: There’s strong proof they used them already, though, in the past.

*Slow clap*

Good stuff, Mr. Obama and you as well Mr. Cuomo. I especially like the tone of urgency in Mr. Cuomo’s phrasing. It’s so melodramatic. Of course there isn’t any strong proof that Syria has used chemical weapons in the past. That’s just something U.S. Intelligence is claiming, no one else is claiming that except the rebels who also can’t show it ever happened. There’s also no evidence that they’re using them now and it wouldn’t even make any sense because *gasp* the Syrian government is winning. Even Israel thinks so. So, why in the hell would Assad use chemical weapons now when he’s winning and why would he escalate their use of these weapons now when that would only hurt him?

The answer is that he wouldn’t because he’s not a maniacal heart eating idiot. He knows that UN inspectors are already in Syria and he’s already winning the war. Gas is a tool of last resort, not a tool for a coup de grace. The only reason this is coming up now is because Obama doesn’t want American boots on the ground. He wants a UN resolution. He wants UN boots on the ground or at least a no fly zone. He can’t sell US unilateral invasion. He could sell a UN resolution. It would be so un-Bush, such proof that he’s a responsible leader. This would accomplish seeming legitimacy for US military action which is so sorely wanting when it’s actually a complete manipulation of events. It would undermine Assad or topple him which does three things that are very important to President Obama.

  • It isolates Hezbollah and protects Israel.
  • It isolates Iran even further and sends a message. “You’re next.”
  • It erodes Russia’s sphere of influence further. Yep, the government still cares about Russia.

This is a terrible plan. Russia and China will never go along with it so why does Obama keep pushing? Two words, “red line.” He’s already said it. He can’t un-say it and it makes one wonder if this was all a set up and it makes one wonder just whether or not the entire gas attack was self inflicted by the rebels in Syria. Seems unthinkable, right? Forget that, it’s absolutely thinkable. According to which news source you believe, roughly half of the rebel forces are made up of jihadists. Those people will do any damn thing and there’s circa 50,000 of them in the fight. Whats more, they’re losing. If there is any time for them to fake a gas attack it is now. Oh, and here’s the video proof of a gas attack.

Hear that dull thumping like concrete sort of exploding? Those are mortars. The thing that looks like a rocket at the end? That’s a rocket and there’s absolutely no way to tell who’s firing them or who they’re firing them at. There’s also this “evidence” of a gas attack which shows absolutely no evidence of any gas attack nor even any of the discoloration that accompanies a nerve gas attack. Don’t get me wrong, people are absolutely dying but it doesn’t make sense for Assad to use gas when he can just do this:

…which is infinitely more effective for both killing your enemy and denying them a tactical safe haven.

Understand one thing, this is not a battle between good and evil. It’s a battle between jihadists and a Shi’ite dictatorship. This fight has already made Iraq increasingly unstable thereby undoing some of what the US did so poorly in Iraq and threatens to create a wider conflict between interested parties, the US, Russia, China, Israel, Iran, that apparently our President has given very little thought to. Conn Hallinan from Portside states it perfectly:

It is hard to tell if the administration’s policies around Syria are Machiavellian or just stunningly inept. Take President Obama’s famous “red line” speech warning the Assad regime that the use of chemical weapons would trigger U.S. military intervention. Didn’t the president realize that his comment was a roadmap for the insurgency: show that chemical weapons were used and in come the Marines? As if on cue, the insurgents began claiming poison gas was used on them, a charge the Damascus regime has denied.

And they’ll continue to deny it because it isn’t happening. You are being lied to and, if you’ve read this far, then understand that back in 2003 I fell for this the first time and spent the next ten years involved in that con. Don’t fall for it. Please. TC mark

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