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Monday, February 25, 2019

War and rumors of war

The Times of Israel is reporting on an Israeli government minister's statement about how the US President and the Israeli Prime Minister are going to divide Jerusalem in the latest iteration of a Middle East "Peace Plan":
Education Minister Naftali Bennett said Sunday that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and US President Donald Trump were planning to establish a Palestinian state in the West Bank and divide Jerusalem.

Speaking before a cabinet meeting in Jerusalem, Bennett, who now heads the New Right party, warned the shift in Netanyahu’s declared position would come “a day or two after election day” on April 9.

Shortly after the cabinet meeting, Netanyahu responded to Bennett’s claim with a terse denial.

“It’s natural for him to be anxious, and to get a little confused,” Netanyahu said of Bennett. “It goes without saying that elections can do funny things to small parties.”

In a statement, Netanyahu’s Likud party called Bennett’s warning “utter piffle with no connection to reality. After the elections, Netanyahu will establish a right-wing government under his leadership.”

In his initial comments to the press, Bennett said that the Trump administration had completed its plan for peace between Israelis and Palestinians.

“Netanyahu and President Trump have agreed to come out with the plan to establish a Palestinian state on 90 percent [of the West Bank]. They’ve agreed not to present the plan before election day so that it doesn’t hurt Netanyahu, but a day or two after election day the plan will be presented, and will include the division of Jerusalem.”
In the meanwhile, the US has gone back on the promises it made to the Turkish government in order to prevent Turkey from invading northern Syria.
The so called Manbij Roadmap was signed in June, 2018, a full 6 months before Trump’s withdrawal announcement. The deal requires the US to work with Turkey to remove all terrorist groups from Manbij– which is a Syrian city east of the Euphrates– and to assist with security during the transition period. This was the deal the US made with Erdogan during a period of heightened tensions between the two NATO allies. The agreement was made to placate Erdogan and to forestall the imminent invasion by Turkish troops massed on the Syrian border. Readers need to understand that Turkey is not behaving irrationally or precipitously. The Trump team made the deal, and Turkey expects them to keep that deal, that is the long and short of it.

The media has also mischaracterized Trump’s December 19th announcement to withdraw all 2,000 US troops from Syria bringing an end to the failed 8 year-long military campaign. The announcement was not the decision of an unstable and impulsive autocrat who had no real grasp of the situation. (as the media would like you to believe) What the media failed to report is that Trump had discussed the issue with a frustrated Erdogan just days earlier, and he decided to withdraw to avoid an acrimonious split with a NATO ally who was threatening to invade at any minute. Check out this article at the Guardian dated December 12, 2018, just 7 days before Trump’s announcement.

“The Turkish president, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, has said that Turkey will launch a military operation against the Kurds in northern Syria within days, in a decision that could signal a shift in Turkish-US relations and have far-reaching consequences for Syria’s future.

Long frustrated by US support for Kurdish militias that Turkey views as terrorists, Erdoğan has threatened to push deeper into north-eastern Syria since sending Turkish forces into the Kurdish enclave of Afrin in February.

The president said during a televised speech in Ankara on Wednesday that the operation was imminent. “We will begin our operation to free the east of the Euphrates [river] from the separatist organisation within a few days,” he told MPs. “Our target is not the American soldiers – it is the terror organisations that are active in the region.”

Erdoğan also expressed disappointment that US-backed Kurdish fighters in Syria had not left the town of Manbij, as agreed in a US-Turkish deal brokered this year. “The Americans are not being honest; they are still not removing terrorists [from Manbij],” he said. “Therefore, we will do it.” (Turkey primed to start offensive against US-backed Kurds in Syria, The Guardian)

There was no mention of Erdogan’s threats in any of the mainstream news publications. The focus was almost entirely on Trump who was blasted as impetuous and ignorant, a foreign policy dilettante. In fact, Trump was merely pursuing the rational option, which was to give ground on Turkey’s legitimate national security needs while concealing his real motives for the policy-change. Naturally, he couldn’t say the US was withdrawing because of Turkey’s sabre rattling, but that, in fact, is what happened. And that’s why Trump announced a ‘complete withdrawal of US troops’; it was a clumsy effort to hide the fact that Washington was backing down on their plan to control the area up to the Turkish border. The Trump team tried to make it look like the president was just keeping a campaign promise, but–as you can see– there’s more to it than meets the eye.

Now, of course, the administration has abandoned its withdrawal plan and decided to keep 400 troops in Syria indefinitely. Unfortunately, the new policy only further exacerbates the tension between the US and Turkey. The reduction in troops does not in any way alleviate Turkey’s security concerns, in fact, it worsens them because it indicates that Washington is more resolved than ever to preserve the status quo. If the US and their multinational allies stay, the YPG will continue to occupy Manbij and other territory along the Turkish border, the de facto independent Kurdish state in East Syria will be preserved, and Turkey will be prevented from resettling the more than 3 million Syrian refugees it has housed for the last 8 years. So, how exactly does Turkey benefit from this troop-reduction plan?

It doesn’t. Turkey doesn’t get anything out of the deal. Nor does the new arrangement fulfill the basic requirements of the Manbij Roadmap. There won’t be any joint Turkish-US patrols because Washington is now committed to keeping Turkey out of Syria altogether in order to “protect the Kurds”, which is a misleading sobriquet that is used to hide the real motive, which is to occupy east Syria and protect Washington’s terrorist-linked militia.

So, will Trump’s modified plan work? Will Erdogan see the withdrawal of some US troops as an honest attempt at peace and security?

No, of course not, because nothing has changed. The only choice Erdogan has is to ratchet up the pressure by delivering more threats to invade. And that is precisely the course that Erdogan has decided to pursue. 
So, not only will Turkey likely invade, but it now knows what the Russians have learned, which is that there is no point in even trying to reach an agreement with the United States, because the USA does not keep its word. And while the US military gets entangled everywhere from Afghanistan to Venezuela, Russia and China continue to bide their time and quietly improve their carrier-killing capabilities.

It's really rather remarkable how every US president since Nixon seems utterly determined to throw themselves on the sword of their own Mid-East "Peace Plan". I know literally nothing about the latest one, but I do know this: it won't work.

Labels:

82 Comments:

Blogger Giraffe February 25, 2019 12:20 PM  

At least now we can send our women off to war to come home in body bags too.

Blogger Azure Amaranthine February 25, 2019 12:22 PM  

And I just finished out my IRR a few days ago. Sorry girls, you're on your own.

Blogger Balkan Yankee February 25, 2019 12:26 PM  

If Erdogan wants to bleed the Turkish Army in Syria, let him.

Blogger Long Live The West February 25, 2019 12:39 PM  

"there is no point in even trying to reach an agreement with the United States, because the USA does not keep its word."

This is something a lot of people on the right won't let themselves believe. Our government is full of liars, and they lie to everyone. Conservatives make excuse after excuse about how we're different because we're fighting for the 'right reasons'.

Keeping the peace by occupying the world? They can see the stupidity of it when anyone but America says it.

Blogger Rick February 25, 2019 12:43 PM  

I have to say, I fell so deeply in love with “America First” I just can’t look at any other offers. Couldn’t care less what’s goin on anywhere else. Bring ‘em home.

Blogger HMS Defiant February 25, 2019 12:46 PM  

Did they really think they could get Trump to treat Kurds as terrorists? What made the Turks, our NATO ally who repeatedly refused Article 5 of the NATO treaty when we invoked it think we give a crap about Turkey and their ethnic hatred for Kurds. We should pull out now, shut down our operations in Incerlink and just be done with the new caliphate.

Blogger Lazarus February 25, 2019 12:57 PM  

Apparently already underway:

Jan 15:

Former Likud MK Moshe Feiglin accused Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu Monday of re-dividing Jerusalem by placing barriers between the Armon Hanatziv and Jabal Mukaber neighborhoods.

Jerusalem was divided for 19 years until its reunification under Israeli sovereignty in the 1967 Six Day War.

"Without identity, the only tool in the government's tool box is more walls and more (decorative) cement barriers in the heart of Jerusalem," wrote Feiglin, whose new movement is named Zehut – Hebrew for "identity."

"Netanyahu has handed over the Temple Mount and is now rebuilding the wall that divided the city before its liberation," he accused.

Blogger pyrrhus February 25, 2019 12:58 PM  

@3 The Turkish Army will make short work of the Peshmurga and any terrorist opposition...They aren't handcuffed like US forces...

Blogger Son of Blob February 25, 2019 12:59 PM  

It's almost as if they are trying to usher in end times prophecy.

Blogger PJW Gent February 25, 2019 12:59 PM  

Not entirely off-topic: You should peruse this article as it is informative about the roots of the current problem in Europe and America visavi who/what is the cause - <a href="https://redice.tv/news/richard-von-coudenhove-kalergi-and-the-genocide-of-the-european-peoples'>Richard von Coudenhove-Kalergi and the Genocide of the European Peoples</a>.

Blogger Skyler the Weird February 25, 2019 1:00 PM  

South Vietnam and Lebanon should have told them the U.S. does not keep it's word.

Blogger PJW Gent February 25, 2019 1:02 PM  

I really wish there were an edit feature, even if time limited to a few minutes after posting. Link should be Richard von Coudenhove-Kalergi and the Genocide of the European Peoples

Blogger Nate73 February 25, 2019 1:02 PM  

I'm really confused, the US signed an agreement to remove terrorists from East Syria - but those terrorists are US allies so they won't?

Blogger Pathfinderlight February 25, 2019 1:11 PM  

Turkey is a nation of more than 75 million people who havent seen a devestating war in almost a century. Compare this to Syria who is still divided, has been in civil war for years, and whose primary supporter doesn't have a land route to either country.

Blogger 🐻Drew🐻 February 25, 2019 1:11 PM  

Great piece. Curious if turkey invades will the US respond with force against turkey? And if that happens will this be the new regime change?

Blogger IGnatius T Foobar February 25, 2019 1:16 PM  

Here there be dragons. The only way the conflict between the Jews and the Philistines will come to an end, is for one party to be completely annihilated. Everyone has an opinion about which side should be annihilated, but until it happens, the conflict will continue on. Period.

Blogger Doktor Jeep February 25, 2019 1:17 PM  

American natives have the best argument and the most evidence regarding how well the federal government adheres to its own treaties.

Blogger CM February 25, 2019 1:23 PM  

It's really rather remarkable how every US president since Nixon seems utterly determined to throw themselves on the sword of their own Mid-East "Peace Plan".

It's the new "invade Russia in winter" accomplishment.

Blogger DraveckysHumerus February 25, 2019 1:25 PM  

If Christian sites are placed under hostile Muslim administration will the Evangelical Churchians still worship the chosen ones? You can book it, Danno.

Blogger Ominous Cowherd February 25, 2019 1:37 PM  

The only way the conflict between the Jews and the Philistines will come to an end, is for one party to be completely annihilated.

Exterminating both might work even better. Half measures are never a good idea.

Blogger Crush Limbraw February 25, 2019 1:37 PM  

https://russia-insider.com/en/israeli-lobby-deep-state/ri26271
Israeli Lobby = Deep State

Blogger Balkan Yankee February 25, 2019 1:41 PM  

@8: Really? If the Turkish military is all that, then why is the PKK still in the fight? Since 1984, no less.

Blogger Balkan Yankee February 25, 2019 1:52 PM  

@8: This is how the Kurds bleed Turks in Syria: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oeLn0CvBYMw

Description: Turkish AH-1W Super Cobra helicopter shot down by Kurdish fighters with a Russian/Soviet 9k38 Igla man-portable infrared homing surface-to-air missile.

Not bad footage, IMHO.

Blogger Meanoldbasterd February 25, 2019 1:59 PM  

I found out that my old CO, 2008-2012 in the reserves works in the same building as I do. He's still in, I'm not. After I explained why, he STILL tried to get me to rejoin...
Not while teh wimminz are the real priority rather than killing people and breaking things.

Blogger swiftfoxmark2 February 25, 2019 2:00 PM  

I agree that the US has had a very stupid and short-sighted foreign policy for a long time now.

But I have no problem with interfering with Venezuela right now. I'd rather that those migrants not head to the US border.

Blogger John Best. February 25, 2019 2:32 PM  

Neo-cons driving American further down the rabbit hole of its over extension and destruction. As for the middle east peace plan, why do western states think they can make peace in the middle east, when they are trying to kill their own nations. Only way for peace in the Holy land is total Israeli victory and the Palestinians moving somewhere else. The constant western interference is stopping this from happening.

It doesn't matter if the Kurds with the support of Assad, Russia and Iran 'bleed' the Turks. What matters is the British, France and Americans shouldn't be in the middle of it when it happens.

Blogger maniacprovost February 25, 2019 2:36 PM  

I don't understand why no one has floated the idea of a Kurdish state.

Is it a good idea? I don't know. But it is a logical solution to problem in Syria and Iraq. And we love us some nation-building.

Maybe it just never occurred to the neocons to build an ACTUAL nation-state.

Blogger Chris Mallory February 25, 2019 2:44 PM  

maniacprovost wrote:I don't understand why no one has floated the idea of a Kurdish state.

No better way to force the Turks, Syrians, Iraqis, and Iranians into an alliance. That ship sailed back at the end of WWI.

Blogger Balkan Yankee February 25, 2019 2:46 PM  

@27: "I don't understand why no one has floated the idea of a Kurdish state."

Because all of the regional countries with sizable Kurdish populations - Syria, Turkey, Iraq, and Iran - don't want it. And in the end, the United States always screws the Kurds. Sad, but true.

Blogger DJT February 25, 2019 2:46 PM  

If Christian sites are placed under hostile Muslim administration will the Evangelical Churchians still worship the chosen ones? You can book it, Danno.

The Christian holy sites have been under Muslim oversight for most of the last 1000 years. The keepers of the key to the Holy Sepulchre have been the same Muslim family for many generations.

It wasn't a great situation, but it was stable. Arab Muslims and Arab Christians can get along generally. The Jewish presence in Palestine has upset the equilibrium and caused radicalism to become widespread.

Blogger Blaidd February 25, 2019 2:47 PM  

Now, of course, the administration has abandoned its withdrawal plan and decided to keep 400 troops in Syria indefinitely.

What purpose does it serve to keep 400 men there? They aren't going to be able to affect anything with such a paltry force and they're surrounded by people who want them dead.

Blogger braq February 25, 2019 2:47 PM  

#25
>But I have no problem with interfering with Venezuela right now. I'd rather that those migrants not head to the US border.

The US State Department wants to incentivize Venezuelan "refugees" to emigrate to Florida. If Sideshow Bob gives the thumbs-up we'll get a couple of million Venezuelan doctors and rocket scientists either way.

Blogger Matthew Baker February 25, 2019 2:59 PM  

“War and rumors of war”

https://youtu.be/mzyjTjeUk6c

Blogger KPKinSunnyPhiladelphia February 25, 2019 3:02 PM  

Blaidd wrote:Now, of course, the administration has abandoned its withdrawal plan and decided to keep 400 troops in Syria indefinitely.

What purpose does it serve to keep 400 men there? They aren't going to be able to affect anything with such a paltry force and they're surrounded by people who want them dead.


Not if they're fire support guys, who can bring serious munitions to bear. You can make a lot of noise with a satellite link and some really good maps.

Blogger KPKinSunnyPhiladelphia February 25, 2019 3:21 PM  

VD wrote:

So, not only will Turkey likely invade,

Really? When? They're taking their good sweet time about it...or maybe Turkey is all bluster and no luster. Meanwhile, Erdogan is a pig. Who gives a shit how he feels and whether we renege on our deals? He deserves to be double crossed.

He wants to be a Sultan, an Emir, a Caliph, or some such nonsense. Apparently he didn't get the memo that the Ottoman emprie is over.

Oh, and don't you forget he'd like to do to the Kurds what his forebears did to the Armenians. And isn't it special how they own up to that little slaughtering episode?

Oh, that's right...they don't.

Kurds are marxist idiots, but they do have the virtue of being really good at killing Islamic extremists, some of whom want to emigrate to the West and do some partying.

VD also wrote:

...but it now knows what the Russians have learned, which is that there is no point in even trying to reach an agreement with the United States, because the USA does not keep its word. And while the US military gets entangled everywhere from Afghanistan to Venezuela, Russia and China continue to bide their time and quietly improve their carrier-killing capabilities.

Entanglement? 400 troops? That's a pretty flexible definition of entanglement.

And Russia? It couldn't project power past Vlad's nose, and I am sure it's been a wonderful little escapde he and his mercenaries have got themselves into in Syria -- now THAT'S an entanglement.

As for China, don't you think it's curious they want to BUILD aircraft carriers? Something that appears to not make ANY sense if it's so damn easy to sink one?

Blogger Balkan Yankee February 25, 2019 3:33 PM  

@35: "Really? When? They're taking their good sweet time about it...or maybe Turkey is all bluster and no luster."

Erdogan faces must win municipal elections on March 31.


"As for China, don't you think it's curious they want to BUILD aircraft carriers? Something that appears to not make ANY sense if it's so damn easy to sink one?"

Carriers are useful tools for projecting power, for intimidating small and medium-sized countries that possess limited means of striking back. Think Southeast Asia. And especially Africa.

Blogger My 1 millionth internet profile February 25, 2019 3:35 PM  

And we love us some nation-building.

Even if "we" do love such a notion, we're utterly crap at it.


he'd like to do to the Kurds what his forebears did to the Armenians

Wherefore does no one ever mention the Pontic Greeks?

Blogger Francis Parker Yockey February 25, 2019 3:52 PM  

@25
But I have no problem with interfering with Venezuela right now. I'd rather that those migrants not head to the US border

That's not how "Invade the world; invite the world" works, though.

Our intervention will mean that we're "obligated" to accept Venezuelan "refugees." See any leftist argument for accepting Syrians/ Iraquis/ etc. as refugees. They're already talking about TPS status for Venezuelans. Though once they get the neocon puppet in place, they'll drop the sanctions, so things should improve economically = fewer people leaving Venezuela, I suppose.

Blogger Primus Pilus February 25, 2019 3:52 PM  

"But I have no problem with interfering with Venezuela right now. I'd rather that those migrants not head to the US border."

Our interference guarantees millions of Venezuelans (which will include everyone from Mexico on down, just like "Syrian refugees" were everyone from the ME and Africa) will be permanently resettled in the US.

Blogger PJW Gent February 25, 2019 4:03 PM  

Francis Parker Yockey wrote:@25

But I have no problem with interfering with Venezuela right now. I'd rather that those migrants not head to the US border

That's not how "Invade the world; invite the world" works, though.

Our intervention will mean that we're "obligated" to accept Venezuelan "refugees." See any leftist argument for accepting Syrians/ Iraquis/ etc. as refugees. They're already talking about TPS status for Venezuelans. Though once they get the neocon puppet in place, they'll drop the sanctions, so things should improve economically = fewer people leaving Venezuela, I suppose.

But the oil, the oil...

Blogger ZhukovG February 25, 2019 4:03 PM  

Global geopolitics is easier to understand once you realize that most of this maneuvering is just the various powers positioning themselves for the collapse of the United States.

Blogger VFM Bear February 25, 2019 4:05 PM  

"Our interference guarantees millions of Venezuelans (which will include everyone from Mexico on down, just like "Syrian refugees" were everyone from the ME and Africa) will be permanently resettled in the US."

Is that a consequence of the interference, or a reason for it? Or a little bit of both?

Blogger Noah B. February 25, 2019 4:28 PM  

It's almost as if they are trying to usher in end times prophecy.

Dead humpback whales are mysteriously being found in the middle of the jungle. Can a Vogon Destructor Fleet be far behind?

Blogger VD February 25, 2019 4:33 PM  

And Russia? It couldn't project power past Vlad's nose, and I am sure it's been a wonderful little escapde he and his mercenaries have got themselves into in Syria -- now THAT'S an entanglement.

Russia, Iran, and Hezbollah defeated US-Israeli objectives in Syria.

As for China, don't you think it's curious they want to BUILD aircraft carriers? Something that appears to not make ANY sense if it's so damn easy to sink one?

They want to be able to project regional power in Asia and Africa. Which they will be able to do once they are able to prevent the USN from engaging with their own navy for fear of losing its carriers to hypersonic missiles.

Blogger OneWingedShark February 25, 2019 4:52 PM  

VD wrote:It's really rather remarkable how every US president since Nixon seems utterly determined to throw themselves on the sword of their own Mid-East "Peace Plan". I know literally nothing about the latest one, but I do know this: it won't work.
My mid-east peace plan: Just leave it alone, we have more than enough to deal with here.

ZhukovG wrote:Global geopolitics is easier to understand once you realize that most of this maneuvering is just the various powers positioning themselves for the collapse of the United States.
I thought this was pretty obvious. There are a LOT of globalists in our government who, quite obviously, have that as their loyalty rather than the US. Moreover, that global-dream of theirs requires the eradication of nations, if not absolutely then at least reducing them to the equivalent of sports-teams.

Blogger JimR February 25, 2019 5:10 PM  

"Russia, Iran, and Hezbollah defeated US-Israeli objectives in Syria."

what were the objectives again? I didn't get the memo on what we were supposed to be doing there.

Blogger John Regan February 25, 2019 5:24 PM  

Meanwhile, Venezuela is something of a mess. Don't know how we concentrate on the middle east when we have so many problems so close to home.

A little background here.

Blogger JohnofAustria February 25, 2019 5:33 PM  

The purpose of US troops in that region as to allow the Kurds to set up a semi autonomous state and prevent anyone not aligned with Israel from seizing Eastern Syria.

And the troops there don't actually be able to resist a serious invasion the whole point of having them there is that Turkey of does not have Freedom of action against hostile forces there or the ability to return refugees and restore the traditional mosaic make up of the region.

A small force of so called advisers and forward observers means that the US can continue to aid military groups opposed to both Syria and Turkey at will and prevent either party from doing anything about it as our troops will essentially be a bubble of area denial. Any strike that cause them any harm or even could be claims to endanger them will give the US leverage to do more than rattle our saber towards them.

Blogger JimR February 25, 2019 5:34 PM  

"The purpose of US troops in that region as to allow the Kurds to set up a semi autonomous state and prevent anyone not aligned with Israel from seizing Eastern Syria."

I don't recall that ever being stated in the supposed reasons for our involvement there.

Blogger HMS Defiant February 25, 2019 5:35 PM  

Or, you know, you simply accept the fact that dealing with hardline islamists is a self licking ice cream cone and you tell them whatever you want to get them off your back and you don't care what they might do next because, they are still hardline islamists and they lie. They always lie. And, guess what about russian leaders? Go on, guess? Yes!!!!! They also lie about everything and lie about it when they're caught lying about it just as they did with the Intermediate Range Nuclear Treaty they utterly gave up when they shot those Kalibre missiles into Syria from the Caspian Sea. Duh......

How to deal with Enemies.

1. Treat them always as lying conniving bitch enemies.

2. Don't ever think you've negotiated a "peace in your time" with them because they are in fact lying scumbags and your enemy.

3. See 1 and 2 above.

Blogger JohnofAustria February 25, 2019 5:36 PM  

And if you're wondering why the US and Israel would be opposed to Syria regaining the East the answer is that I would provide Iran with a potential pipeline As well as land routes to allies in the mediterranean.

And the special people very much want to do anything they can that will be harmful to Syria

Blogger JohnofAustria February 25, 2019 5:38 PM  

Do you believe the clearly stated reasons of China or Russia for any of their actions?

Or do you analyze them based on the political and strategic histories and goals of those States and the people who lead and influence them?

Blogger JimR February 25, 2019 5:48 PM  

"Do you believe the clearly stated reasons of China or Russia for any of their actions?"

neither, I look for cui bono and evaluate accordingly. Looks to me like 'our' Syria adventures were to enrich the witch and her cohorts

Blogger JohnofAustria February 25, 2019 5:59 PM  

I would encourage you to look at the amount of money spent, by whom, and for what. And to look into the geographic needs and desires of various states and non-state groups. It's more helpful than money alone as a tool for analysis.

Blogger Francis Parker Yockey February 25, 2019 6:03 PM  

But the oil, the oil.

And muh Greatest Ally.

https://infogalactic.com/info/Venezuela_-_Iran_relations

vs.

https://sputniknews.com/world/201901271071865203-israel-president-venezuela-guaido/

https://m.jpost.com/Breaking-News/Guaido-thanks-Netanyahu-for-support-and-recognition-578897

Blogger Balkan Yankee February 25, 2019 6:03 PM  

@51: "And if you're wondering why the US and Israel would be opposed to Syria regaining the East the answer is that I would provide Iran with a potential pipeline As well as land routes to allies in the mediterranean."

200 U.S. troops will maintain an indefinite presence at Tanf, Syria. Tanf is on the Syrian-Iraqi border. It straddles the Baghdad-Damascus highway. Giving up Tanf would make it too easy for the IRGC to resupply its forces in Syria and Lebanon.

The problem for Trump is that his desire to withdraw troops from Syria cuts against his policy of intensifying pressure on Iran, not to mention mollifying Israel's security concerns in Syria. And he knows it.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Al-Tanf_(U.S._military_base)

https://www.crisisgroup.org/trigger-list/iran-us-trigger-list/flashpoints/al-tanf-syria

Blogger Latigo3 February 25, 2019 6:09 PM  

Unfortunately, it should come as no surprise that we don't keep our word. Look what we do to our friends? "Pinapple face" comes to mind, along with the fact that we sided with Saddam in his war with Iran, while Iran fought them with our old F-4 Phantoms.
Globalism, what a piece of crap philosophy. It makes crap out of everything it touches.

Blogger Primus Pilus February 25, 2019 6:26 PM  

"what were the objectives again? I didn't get the memo on what we were supposed to be doing there."

At some point during Obama's second term, the US launched a new media narrative that Assad was the newest Hitler(tm) and so we had to overthrow him too, because Holocaust.

Blogger eclecticme February 25, 2019 6:30 PM  

@54. JohnofAustria February 25, 2019 5:59 PM

I would encourage you to look at the amount of money spent, by whom, and for what. And to look into the geographic needs and desires of various states and non-state groups. It's more helpful than money alone as a tool for analysis.

Yes. X billions of USD are spent on NATO and US military. Candidate Trump says he will get along with Russia and may withdraw from NATO. Those billions went to real people with power. Look what happened next...

Blogger eclecticme February 25, 2019 6:34 PM  

@57. Latigo3 February 25, 2019 6:09 PM

Unfortunately, it should come as no surprise that we don't keep our word. Look what we do to our friends?


Gaddafi gave up his WMDs, paid reparations, and played nice with the US. We destroyed his country, killed him, and put his head on a pike. Lesson learned by the rest of the world.

Blogger English Tom February 25, 2019 6:35 PM  

@ManiacProvost

Israel has been eager to create a,Kurdistan for a long time. See: the Oded Yinon plan from early 1980's.

Blogger English Tom February 25, 2019 6:41 PM  

@Francis

Re: fewer people leaving Venezuela

If/when Venezuela goes hot, there will be huge numbers of refugees. Think Iraq/Libya/Syria etc. Venezuela will end up a hellhole like the countries just mentioned. Who will want to stay there then?

Blogger English Tom February 25, 2019 6:47 PM  

@JimR

What were the objectives in Syria

To overthrow the regime and then fragment the country into little ethnic statelets (see:Iraq) then enhance the impetus to the creation of a new Kurdish state which would be an amalgam of land from Iraq, Syria, Turkey and Iran.

The Syrian state still exists, therefore Vox is correct in his assertion.

Blogger English Tom February 25, 2019 6:51 PM  

@JimR

Re Syria

Of course, official policy on intervention was based on the whipped up media message of assadmanbadgaskids but it has always been about geopolitics and controlling the Chinese BRI route into Europe.

Blogger English Tom February 25, 2019 6:53 PM  

The BRI route will have to transit Kurdistan, so this makes that area major strategic real estate.

Blogger JimR February 25, 2019 6:55 PM  

I wasn't questioning the SDL, I literally had no idea what the supposed objective was.

Blogger Francis Parker Yockey February 25, 2019 7:13 PM  

@61
See: the Oded Yinon plan from early 1980's.

See also "A Clean Break: A New Strategy for Securing the Realm" from 1996 -- as well as the roles that several of its dual-citizen authors played in the W administration...

@62
Yeah, I know. I'm trying to look at the bright side here -- if they pull off a relatively clean coup. At least the alternative here isn't warring groups of Salafist crazies fighting over the remains of a failed state, as in Libya.

But the intervention will still become a "moral" justification for importing a bunch of mestizos from Venezuela...

The neocons are really pushing hard on this one. Rubio must have gotten the word from Paul Singer or something, because he's been on an all-out regime-change binge in Twitter lately. Hasn't tweeted about anything else for days. Even tweeted a couple of pics of Qaddafi -- one from when he was in power, the other a screenshot from the video of his lynching. Subtle. Yeah, bringing "democracy" to Libya was such a big success and all...

@66
Note also that the media started heavily promoting the "ISIS" narrative shortly after Obama punted the proposal for large-scale US intervention against Assad to Congress -- where it got shot down. Fortunately, a new enemy appeared...

Blogger Arthur Isaac February 25, 2019 8:02 PM  

Trump is working hard for that Cyrus commemorative coin.

Blogger Brett baker February 25, 2019 8:05 PM  

Because everyone else in the Middle East hates the idea.

Blogger The Depolrable Podunk Ken Ramsey February 25, 2019 8:58 PM  

eclecticme wrote:Gaddafi gave up his WMDs, paid reparations, and played nice with the US. We destroyed his country, killed him, and put his head on a pike. Lesson learned by the rest of the world.

At some point he was anal raped with a broom, too. It's shocking!

The USA is a very dubious friend, and this has been true since at least the Vietnam War. During that episode stretching from Dwight Eisenhower to Richard Nixon, John F. Kennedy was supposedly the enlightened, evolved one. He's the one that killed Diem. He's the one that announced to the South Vietnamese that this war was going to be fought on Washington's terms or not at all.

And, 10 years later, the USA just said "See ya!"

It's really shameful, and for exactly the opposite reason that the Boomers think. The real scandal isn't that we got involved, but rather how deeply we betrayed.

But then again, Boomers are notoriously fuzzy on that point.

Blogger JaimeInTexas February 25, 2019 9:48 PM  

I thought you've been a-drinking.
Oh, well. I will sip some more Cognac.

Blogger Johnny February 25, 2019 9:52 PM  

To invent a reason for why it might work this time, maybe Saudi Arabia wants it?

Otherwise they don't seem like people who can settle things, ever. And who knows, maybe the peace process is only for political consumption here in the US. And as long as it doesn't damage us, why not. Or if it does damage us, how?

Blogger JaimeInTexas February 25, 2019 9:52 PM  

I am all for these uSA breaking all the damn agreements involving us in the hunt for foreign monsters that, at best, all they can cause these uSA is the equivalent to a paper cut.

Blogger Lazarus February 25, 2019 11:20 PM  

Johnny wrote:To invent a reason for why it might work this time, maybe Saudi Arabia wants it?

Otherwise they don't seem like people who can settle things, ever. And who knows, maybe the peace process is only for political consumption here in the US. And as long as it doesn't damage us, why not. Or if it does damage us, how?




Is this the time?

Jerusalem will be Attacked

1An oracle of the word of the LORD concerning Israel.

Thus declares the LORD, who stretches out the heavens and lays the foundation of the earth, who forms the spirit of man within him:

2“Behold, I will make Jerusalem a cup of drunkenness to all the surrounding peoples. Judah will be besieged, as well as Jerusalem.

3On that day, when all the nations of the earth gather against her, I will make Jerusalem a heavy stone for all the peoples; all who would heave it away will be severely injured.

4On that day,” declares the LORD, “I will strike every horse with panic, and every rider with madness. I will keep a watchful eye on the house of Judah, but I will strike all the horses of the nations with blindness.

5Then the leaders of Judah will say in their hearts: ‘The people of Jerusalem are my strength, for the LORD of Hosts is their God.’

6On that day I will make the clans of Judah like a firepot in a woodpile, like a flaming torch among the sheaves; they will consume all the peoples around them on the right and on the left, while the residents of Jerusalem remain secure in Jerusalem.

7The LORD will save the tents of Judah(Judea and Samaria) first, so that the glory of the house of David and of the residents of Jerusalem may not be greater than that of Judah. 8On that day the LORD will defend the residents of Jerusalem, so that the weakest among them will be like David, and the house of David will be like God, like the Angel of the LORD going before them.

9So on that day I will set out to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem.


Blogger Fozzy Bear February 25, 2019 11:24 PM  

The US will be cleaning up Hillary’s mess for decades, if we still have decades. The State Department plan to support a salafist (ISIS) uprising in southern Syria, to allow an oil pipeline from Iran through Syria and through Cyprus (the Alexander Downer connection) to Europe, and a weapons pipeline from Eastern Europe (the John McCain connection), through Libya, to Syria and Iran, was always a “pipe dream”, guaranteed to explode.

Blogger nswhorse February 25, 2019 11:32 PM  

Fozzy Bear wrote:The US will be cleaning up Hillary’s mess for decades, if we still have decades. The State Department plan to support a salafist (ISIS) uprising in southern Syria, to allow an oil pipeline from Iran through Syria and through Cyprus (the Alexander Downer connection) to Europe, and a weapons pipeline from Eastern Europe (the John McCain connection), through Libya, to Syria and Iran, was always a “pipe dream”, guaranteed to explode.

How on earth did Alexander Downer manage to get his name attached to an oil pipeline in the Middle East?

Blogger Unknown February 26, 2019 2:54 AM  

KPKinSunnyPhiladelphia

>muh mercenaries
Gotta love how you losers always try to self-medicate with this lie in the face of the total failure of muh regime change in Syria. Surely you would have something more than one nondescript video of one artillery piece being destroyed, especially if alleged "mercenaries" were a higly mobile unit on cars? Lol, of course not.

>muh 400 patsies will "bring in serious bombs"
In your dreams maybe. Ever stop and ask yourself why since actual functional(as in russian-made) AD zone was put up all combined West could do in Syria is a stand-off bomb throw and runaway? Well, here is your answer to muh big bombs right here.

Blogger Daniel February 26, 2019 6:27 AM  

Yeah because us interference always fixes things

Blogger Fozzy Bear February 26, 2019 7:58 AM  

@nswhorse through his role as UN Special Envoy to Cyprus, negotiating oil rights between the Greek and Turkish sides and the attempted pipeline deal. Haven’t you noticed there’s always oil and corruption wherever he turns up? The Iraq food-for-oil scam, Timor L’este, Cyprus.

Blogger JohnofAustria February 26, 2019 1:01 PM  

I'm sure Ivan could, but the Turks likely won't have a full fielding enough to do that, nor would the Syrians.

But the main point of the US keeping troops there is to give us an excuse to attack anyone who attacks the terrorists we're allowing to operate. We will blame them for aggression towards our illegal invasion of a sovereign nation ;)

Blogger JohnofAustria February 26, 2019 1:02 PM  

Uh, Salafists were funded to oppose the Iranian pipeline, not help it.

Blogger Clay February 28, 2019 6:30 PM  

Syria is a turd, They have nothing of worth, except sand.

I wouldn't have one soldier there. Let Iran and Russia have them,

Good damn luck.

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