2013 September 01 Sunday
Sunnis Want US To Take Sunni Side In Syria

What is the Syria war really about? Look at who is on each side. Arab Sunni monarchies want the US to overthrow an ally of their Persian Shia enemies.

Saudi Arabia and other Persian Gulf monarchies have privately urged the United States to take decisive military action to topple the government of Mr. Assad, whom they view as the main regional ally of their foe, Iran.

If the US supplies the Sunni fundamentalist warriors in Syria with enough weapons and air support to overthrow Assad's minority Alawite-Shia regime the Sunnis will grow stronger in the MIddle East. Is that in the US interest? I don't see it that way myself.

But what about Iraq? You will recall that the United States overthrew the Sunni minority government. Now Iraq (at least the non-Kurdish part) is ruled by Shia Arabs. The Shia Arab Iraqi government does not want Assad overthrown, may provide Assad's family a palace if they are overthrown, and are discussing with Iran how to support Assad.

The sources pointed out that “the supreme directives issued by creating one of the presidential palaces in the Radwaniyah or within the presidential compound on in Baghdad to be ready to receive al-Assad and his family at any moment if he wishes to have recourse to Iraq,” noting that “the parties in the Shiite alliance see if Maliki to host Assad a risky venture will have repercussions. ”

Does it really make sense to side with the Sunnis? If so, why? Just because there are more of them? Are they less likely to do crazy things like throw nukes around? Is there any realistic calculation over the Sunni-Shia struggle when the highest levels of the US foreign policy establishment discuss the Middle East? Or are the participants so caught up in liberal mythologies that assorted ridiculous ideals drive the discussion?

If Assad gets overthrown what will the next government of Syria be like? Will they hold one election and basically choose a Sunni dictator for life?

The Gray Lady gets to the heart of it: Saudi Arabia will even use Qaeda affiliates to wage war against Iran's allies. Anyone remember 9/11?

...but has become a volatile regional morass that pits Iran and Hezbollah, the Shiite militant group in Lebanon, against Qaeda affiliates backed by Saudi Arabia and other Persian Gulf benefactors.

What would George Herbert Walker Bush and Brent Scowcroft do about Assad, Saudi Arabia, Sunni fundamentalist warriors, Iran's client states, Lebanon, Kurds, and all the rest?

Update: Partition is the most sensible thing to do about the rivalr religious sects and rival extended families of the Middle East. They can not be trusted to rule each other fairly. Either the majority shafts the minorities or a minority shafts the rest. The main advantage of minority rule: The minority in power tends to treat the other minorities better and has to do more to placate the majority. So minority rule seems best if the untrusting and unfair groups are going to be bundled up into the same sovereign state.

But regardless of which sect a ruler belongs to we can count on the elites to shaft the rest. The only question is just how badly. A long established royal house (e.g. in Jordan) is likely to be more restrained in its parasitism. But really good government is just not in the cards.

Share |      By Randall Parker at 2013 September 01 06:59 PM 

bbartlog said at September 3, 2013 6:57 AM:

Bush and Scowcroft would probably have done the same thing, though perhaps more effectively. The influence of Prince Bandar and Saudi Arabia generally on US foreign policy is longstanding (Huma Abedin is another one of their agents). I've heard claims that the overthrow of the Libyan and Syrian governments is regarded as making amends (to the Saudis) for kind of screwing over the Sunnis in Iraq War II; they weren't happy that they gave us a green light on Iraq and that we then dicked around and let it turn in to a Shia-aligned state.
There are also pipeline considerations in Syria, of course.

Sam said at September 3, 2013 3:16 PM:

The whole Huma Abedin thing has always weirded me out. She is obviously a spy. Her clothing budget when younger must have been subsidized by someone. She sleeps with Hillary for a long time and then marries a Jew. Very strange.

The whole Iraq, Syria, Libya, Egypt attack is all driven by Israel. They may corporate with others but they drove it. I think the whole thing will backfire on them. We should stay away from this ill considered plot lest we be tainted any more with the destruction.

Check it out said at September 3, 2013 5:06 PM:

Moral of the story: do not believe a word John Kerry says; imagine a barefaced liar in charge of a country's diplomacy. Why, in 2011, Kerry was calling Bashar al-Assad "a very generous man" no doubt remembering the dinner he and his wife shared with the Assads two years previously, smiling politely at each other around the table.

Has the Obama administration informed its citizens of its funding and arming of the Syrian opposition, which includes terrorists with links to al-Qaeda? Has it explained its plans for military action? Does anyone really believe that it will amount to a few cruise missiles or more obviously, will it not be a campaign to topple the Syrian Government and turn the country into a haven for al-Qaeda?

Are the American Catholics aware of the official position of the Vatican, blasting the western powers, claiming there was no evidence against President Assad in the Ghouta attack and taking a firm stand against military intervention?

How is it possible that any country would use chemical weapons, or any weapons of mass destruction, in an area where its own forces are located?

There is no case against President Assad, who has a 70% approval rating among the Syrian population. Source: NATO. There is a huge and growing case against Presidents Obama and Hollande and Prime Minister Cameron. As they sit smugly calling President Assad a barbarian, do they remember the acts of those they support, such as slicing breasts off women, gang rape, slitting of throats, decapitations, the sex trade in Syrian women and children by Jihadi Islamist fanatics, harvesting human organs, taken from the bodies of refugees while they are still alive, mostly carried out in Turkey and the starvation of hundreds of thousands of civilians in Aleppo by their terrorist forces?

No, they do not because Messrs. Obama, Hollande and Cameron are the pawns of the banking lobby which has its eyes on Syria's sovereign fund and the energy lobby which has its eyes on shale gas drilling and oil reserves. And the concrete "evidence" the USA claims to have is hearsay, rumour and rhetoric, in plain English, piss and wind, with nothing concrete about it.

Is this what Congress is going to vote for?

Check it out said at September 3, 2013 5:27 PM:


What a bunch of cowards and idiots American young have turned into. Even the hippies had more brains and guts back in the 60's. Even in their LSD trips they were able to bend the corrupt government's arm with their demonstrations against the Vietnam war. That "lost generation" of hippies and rebels was one of the best America ever had. They had drive and ideology and determination.

Today pusillanime Americans feel how their government openly fucks them up the ass, commits acts of terrorism puttin the blame in others and destroying countries for profit.

What a bunch of cowards today's American youths and adults are. So decadent in their values. FOR A COWARDLY PEOPLE THERE'S ALWAYS A DICTATOR.

Get the fuck up from your lazy asses and do some fuken thing already!

map said at September 4, 2013 9:10 PM:

Check it out -

Those hippies are now in control. They did not need guts because there were no institutions opposing them. The adults of the age looked upon the hippies for what they were...their children.

Today, the hippies are now in control. They have placed mechanisms to prevent a similar opposition from emerging.

Check it out said at September 10, 2013 2:59 PM:

"Those hippies are now in control."

No. Those now in control stopped being those hippies and became something else: the idle rich owners and politicians. Let's kick their ass too, whether they were former hippies or not.

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