Syria poised for major conflagration

Developing Just Leadership

Ayesha Alam

Rabi' al-Thani 29, 1435 2014-03-01

News & Analysis

by Ayesha Alam (News & Analysis, Crescent International Vol. 43, No. 1, Rabi' al-Thani, 1435)

The talks in Geneva were designed to fail so that the US-led Western alliance and its Arabian client regimes can intensify the war in Syria by pumping more weapons into the hands of the mercenaries.

The fires are burning yet again in Syria. At the end of Geneva II, a peace conference in which the United States and its assorted partners made it clear that the last thing they were interested in was peace, the conflict gained the needed time to jump-start and flare anew.

The Geneva conference, convened on January 22, 2014, was purportedly intended to reach an agreement between the government of Bashar al-Asad of Syria and the NATO-backed “rebels” — that is to say, a forum for al-Asad to give up power to the rebels under the sanctioned authority of a United Nations fronting for NATO. Al-Asad’s answer was known beforehand — the man who held through the firestorm that consumed Libya would not walk away from his country on a “please and thank you”. The fact that Iran, one of the major stakeholders in the conflict, was excluded de-facto underscores that the goal was not a peaceful resolution. It was a strategy to gain time.

As reported by Russia Today, the US State Department accepted Ban Ki-moon’s invitation of Iran on the condition it expresses “explicit and public support for the full implementation of the Geneva communiqué including the establishment of a transitional governing body by mutual consent with full executive authorities.” “If Iran does not fully and publicly accept the Geneva communiqué [of June 2012], the invitation must be rescinded,” State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said. She also dealt out a few slurs regarding Iran’s “contributions to the Asad regime’s brutal campaign against its own people,” ignoring the havoc wreaked by the takfiri militias being supported by the State Department and the Saudi regime.

As many analysts have noted, humanitarian aid is part and parcel of warcraft. US President Barack Obama previously characterized Iraq as a “dumb war” — regime change through the brute deployment of military force that eroded US cultural influence in the Muslim East and baldly exposed its Islamophobia and pro-Zionist realpolitik before a global audience. The Libya and Egypt playbook has proven far more effective: that is, to wage war in such fashion to make it look as if the regime change has occurred as an organic urge from within the people. Syria, however, has proved to be a far more difficult game, and all the chips are on the table to influence the outcome toward the desired end for the US, Saudi Arabia, and Israel.

Accordingly, the UN Security Council is poised to vote (after Crescent press time) on a resolution to boost “humanitarian aid” to needy people across the Syrian border. While 9.3 million Syrians are in dire need of help, the phrasing of the resolution is suggestive more of the transportation logistics of financing and arming the Syrian rebels than getting help to starving, suffering Syrians. Russia and China are expected to resist the resolution. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on February 17 that Moscow would block the adoption of a resolution that allowed aid convoys to enter Syria without the consent of the Damascus government.

The savagery of the foreign-backed rebels spookily outfitted with various Islamic names, is reminiscent of the worst scenes of carnage in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan. On February 21, a car bomb exploded in a Syrian camp on the Turkish border, killing more than a dozen people and wounding numerous others. The sophistication of the gadgetry speaks to state funding (and perhaps, oil wealth, referencing Saudi Arabia’s long hand in region-wide regime change). The car bomb was a taxi parked in a row of buses near the refugee camp — the heat of the explosion melted 20 tents. The camp houses approximately 20,000 people.

Eyewitnesses blamed the attack on militants from the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS), noting that the militia had fired several rockets near the camp over the past few days where members of the rival Islamic Front rebel group are based. One of the eyewitnesses agreed that ISIS was likely behind the blast at the camp, which he said was home to approximately 20,000 people. “Last night, ISIS was firing tank shells near the camp. After the explosion, there were clashes nearby, between ISIS and the Islamic Front,” the eyewitness said. Syria not only has to contend with the rebels fighting against the government, but the violence unleashed by them fighting each other.

Recent reports suggest that intelligence officials have discovered a new means for Obama to increase US involvement in Syria “that wouldn’t require congressional authorization [and] could minimize a public backlash.” This involves using the rising presence of the Saudi-armed and funded terrorists tagged as “al-Qaeda” and fear-monger their populations that these groups will eventually stage an attack against the United States or Europe. A British defense study conducted by IHS Jane’s in September 2013 said that about 100,000 militants, fragmented into 1,000 groups are currently waging war against the Asad government in Syria.

As reported by Yahoo News, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper compared areas of Syria held by groups the United States considers terrorists to remote areas of Pakistan that are thought to harbor al-Qaeda. Those groups have “aspirations for attacks” on the United States, he told the Senate Intelligence Committee. “We’re seeing now the appearance of training complexes in Syria to train people to go back to their countries and, of course, conduct more terrorist acts. So this is a huge concern to all of us,” Clapper said. This paints the scenario of US citizens going to Syria “to receive training” and commit terrorist acts in the US. The statement not only urges the US to “get directly involved,” that is use direct means to fund, arm, and organize the militia groups, where it had previously used indirect means. It also underscores the need for more surveillance and monitoring of Muslims in the United States.

The second round of the war is set to be even bloodier, and even more costly than the first. As Syrians scatter across the region looking for shelter, the US, Saudi and Israeli gameplan for the region is aimed at destroying Iran and Hizbullah at all costs — even if those costs include genocide.

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