by Mark Ulyseas
The recent attack by Israeli Druze on an IDF ambulance transporting Syrian war injured killing one person was praised by Assad’s media. Strange. Perhaps it is time that one moves back and takes a dispassionate view of the incestuous violence of the region.
The air is thick with accusations of violence against civilians by not only Assad’s regime but also by the Syrian rebels and the murderous offshoot, ISIS. Barrel bombs, rape, summary executions and the viciousness of sectarianism appears to be the rule rather than the exception.
The military and rebel groups, including Islamic State, have imposed sieges to “devastating effect” on a total of 420,000 Syrians, depriving them of food and medicine and leading to malnutrition and starvation, they said. Civilians continue to lose their lives, homes and livelihoods in a conflict in which there little if any attempt to adhere to international law,” Paulo Pinheiro, chairman of the U.N. commission of inquiry, told a news conference. More than 220,000 people have been killed in the four-year conflict that has driven 4 million refugees abroad. LINK
So how did we get here? And who are the real protagonists?
USA and Russia.
Russian supports its ally, Assad, and in return it gets a vital naval base, Tartus. The Russians are here to stay along with their weapons of mass destruction, permanently.
The USA sees this naval base as inconvenient and for decades has tried to dislodge the Russians without success.
So the USA funds the opposition, trains ‘Syrian’ rebels in Jordan (many of the recruits become ISIS commanders) and arms them in an attempt to dislodge Assad. Many of these ‘Syrian’ rebels are not Syrian but from other countries, including Afghanistan, Pakistan, Egyptian, Moroccan, Saudis, Qataris, Turks, Iranian Sunnis and Iraqi. It is believed that certain elements in the Israeli Army (American-Israeli citizens) had been the instructors. Curiously, the Christians are a protected community under Assad, unlike what is happening to them under the so called rebels who are watered and fed by western powers.
Russia continues to stand strongly behind Assad despite recent sanctions by the EU/USA imposed on Damascus /Moscow and the deliberate support by western powers to right wing anti-Semitic Ukrainian government.
Everything that could go wrong has gone wrong: Many trained Syrian rebels are now part of ISIS: Massive proliferation of weapons across the region: Fragmentation of social structures revealing deep sectarian schisms: Persecution of Christians and Muslims: Unlikely allies – Iranian Revolutionary guards fighting alongside their Sunnis/Shia counterparts in Iraq against ISIS: Add to this the ‘escape’ of the faithful from other countries to join the ranks of ISIS in its jihad to create a Caliphate: The permutations and combinations have reached levels of absurdity.
Perhaps the ‘experiment’ in Libya didn’t work…the thousands of refugees landing on the shores of Europe being the result.
Many Americans are pushing the US Administration to take in Syrian refugees.
All this doesn’t make sense.
And while the region battles with its age old sectarianism, the brave Kurds, many women, fight ISIS and are thrashing them. Of course, with a little help from allied bombing of ISIS.
If Assad goes the USA will be face to face with Russia in Syria. Not a palatable option, at least not in the present scenario when muscles are being flexed on both sides of the border – EU/Russia.
Why not make peace with Assad and work with his government to agree to disagree but maintain a status quo…to bring about an initial ‘controlled’ stability. It will take fearless steps by all parties concerned to extend the hand of peace. And this will be far better than indiscriminately throwing weapons into the arena and perpetuating mass murder. The other three protagonists, Saudi Arabia, Iran and Qatar can be reined in by USA and Russia if there is a willingness to make peace. As for Israel, it will follow where the USA leads as long as its security is not compromised.
In the words of the Israeli General Moshe Dayan, “If you want to make peace, you don’t talk to your friends. You talk to your enemies.”
© Mark Ulyseas