Syria: What Next?

This report shows ominous developments.

As recently as Tuesday, officials had said there was as yet no evidence that the process of mixing the “precursor” chemicals had begun. But Wednesday, they said their worst fears had been confirmed: The nerve agents were locked and loaded inside the bombs.

If a chem attack inside Syria occurs, what will Our President (PBUH) do? What will Israel do? And Turkey? What will be the ripple effects across the Mid East? Which actors will be emboldened, and which restrained?

We might not be interested in another war in the Arab world, but sadly war in the Arab world is interested in us.

 

Comments

  1. VMI Warrior says:

    A possible scenario for how this plays out in the end (predictions are near impossible in the mid-east): Assad falls/flees and the country falls into a civil war the mid-east has never seen the likes of; think Lebanon of the '80s x 50. Alawi fighting Sunni fighting orthodox Shia fighting Druze fighting Christian fighting Kurds. Eventually, a resurgent Turkey enters Syria "to restore order", sets up camp and re-occupies the former Ottoman province. (This wouldn't be all bad, as a Turkish-occupied Syria would certainly make life more difficult for Hezbollah in Lebanon).

  2. Slater says:

    Let Syria fight with the gloves off, us doing something there with anything is a waste of money. The fact that we've bankrolled some of the opposition is freakin' retarded. Having Syria as anything but stable does not represent the grand strategic interests of this nation. Maybe some of these deciders should have gone to VMI in the late 2000s so they could have taken BG Browers Grand Strategy and Foreign policy courses.

  3. Maj W says:

    Lack of backbone on the part of this adminstration has gotten us to this point – Asad will gas'em and hussain obama will "have" to do something to not look like an idiot. Had this administration quietly closed the door in a back-room with asad and his minions and exercised some leadership, I gaurantee you they would have been less enthusiatic to "make ready" with a chem load.

  4. tricycle says:

    Question to the troops: what if these newly squired chemical weapons were simply a premise for US involvement in the war? We've asked the question before, why not now? Most readers here have felt the consequence of war (directly or indirectly)…why concern ourselves with this? Despite our optomistiic feelings- sooner or later Syria WILL turn against us…so why shed blood there? Certainly there are better ways to kill our friends, sons, and classmates… ask: what will we benefit from supporting "x"???

    • DaveO says:

      tricycle,

      Good point and question. Long term, we get a very friendly partner in Israel when it begins to cash in on its oil reserves – enough to wreck OPEC and GazProm, Russia's oil conglomerate. PRC and Europe are controlled by access to non-OPEC, non-Russian oil, and America makes lots of friends – enough to buy back lots of its debt.

      Second, we want Turkey to get into a hot war with Iran. Turkey is not our proxy, but still serves our purposes by taking down Iranian proxies in the Balkans and the Near East. The danger is that Iran will buy nukes from Pakistan (at least on credit), which is why we will keep roughly a division equivalent in Afghanistan to prevent a ground smuggling of nuke missiles. 5th Fleet will keep the seas clean as well, so long as the PLAN plays nice. The excuse Erdogin needs in order to get Turkey fully engaged is the threat of those WMD + promise of NATO support.

      We benefit by keeping Iran too busy fighting a war to suppress its internal opposition

      We benefit by keeping Russia engaged in arming one side of the fight, instead of building itself up. They recently fired a very competent (by Western standards) defense chief. Flood them with war cash and watch the Red Army crumble under corruption again.

      We want the WMD used up, or captured. Al Queda and its affiliates are very adept at securing arms. In the chaos of the Near East, several millions of US dollars from Saudi princes buys lots of nasty bugs and gas. AQ will still succeed in getting its WMD, but will be induced to using it against what it considers weak non-Muslim governments (Spain, Portugal, Colombia, Mexico), and those Muslim governments that have been less than fervent, like Morocco and Algeria. Controlling Spain and Algeria isolates Israel and keeps the Saudis in the dollars.

      We benefit by turning Europe against the Islamists through post-attack support to Spain and others. We benefit across North Africa for the same reason – Islamists are mad dogs to be put down on sight.

      There are benefits. I expect Obama to behave in his usual manner and ignite the whole thing.

  5. TrueBlue says:

    Them using chemical weapons on their own people doesn't affect us in the slightest. They haven't made any move to use them on outside targets (yet), so going in there would only be provocation to do so. It'd also probably align the locals with the government against any Western forces. On the flip side, Assad HAS made it clear that if the West goes in he WILL use chemical weapons.

    I don't think he actually wants to use them on his own people, if for no other reason than the cleanup time. He's more likely to flee than actually use them unless an outside aggressor presents itself. IMO of course.

  6. Slater says:

    The hard reality that people don't want to face after calling Assad the bad guy, it would be in the grand strategic interests of the West to back him in this fight. That way we could keep Syria a rational actor.

  7. Alaska Paul says:

    I think that we need to stay the hell away from this fight. Let Assad lock and load his chem weapons (which do not exist, of course). Let Syria become a smoking hole. If the weapons are a threat to Israel or Turkey, let them deal with it. Let the region see that there are serious consequences of having these nutcases playing with chem weapons. Maybe somebody will learn. Hey, I can dream, can't I.

  8. Doug says:

    What is the difference how Assad kills his people? We sat on the sidelines as he has killed 40,000 plus with good old conventional arms so killing 10,000 with mustard gas should not matter to us. Dead is dead and his actions do not effect the United States. If we move in after chemical weapons are used it will prove that our administration is nothing but a bunch of hypocrites.

    However, my personal opinion is Assad will not use his chemical stockpile. I'm quite sure his army is not properly equipped and trained to work in such an environment and since the rebel forces are fighting blocks away from Assad's palace the last thing he will want is for the wind to shift and have the stuff coming in through his bathroom window.