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Thread: Trump Does 180 Shift On Syria: Regime Change Back On The Table

  1. #1

    Default Trump Does 180 Shift On Syria: Regime Change Back On The Table

    He's losing it.

    Will the war in Syria never end? Will the international proxy war and stand-off between Russia, the United States, Iran, and Israel simply continue to drift on, fueling Syria's fires for yet more years to come? It appears so according to an exclusive Washington Post report which says that President Trump has expressed a desire for complete 180 policy shift on Syria. Only months ago the president expressed a desire "to get out" and pull the over 2,000 publicly acknowledged American military personnel from the country; but now, the new report finds, Trump has approved "an indefinite military and diplomatic effort in Syria".

    The radical departure from Trump's prior outspokenness against militarily pursuing Syrian regime change, both on the campaign trail and during his first year in the White House, reportedly involves "a new strategy for an indefinitely extended military, diplomatic and economic effort there, according to senior State Department officials".
    This even though one of the Pentagon's main justifications for being on Syrian soil in the first place the destruction of ISIS has already essentially happened as the terror group now holds no significant territory and has been driven completely underground.
    But most worrisome about the Post report is that sources said to be close to White House policy planning on Syria suggest that Trump has made a commitment to pursuing regime change as a final goal.
    Crucially, the report describes that "the administration has redefined its goals to include the exit of all Iranian military and proxy forces from Syria, and establishment of a stable, nonthreatening government acceptable to all Syrians and the international community."
    Of course, there's the glaringly obvious issue of the fact that the most powerful top competing "alternatives" to the current government in Damascus include groups like Hay'at Tahrir al-Sham, which currently holds Idlib and is under direct allegiance to al-Qaeda chief Ayman al Zawahiri (as recently confirmed in the US State Department's own words).
    Donald J. Trump
    @realDonaldTrump





    President Bashar al-Assad of Syria must not recklessly attack Idlib Province. The Russians and Iranians would be making a grave humanitarian mistake to take part in this potential human tragedy. Hundreds of thousands of people could be killed. Don’t let that happen!
    3:20 PM - Sep 3, 2018



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    The shift stems from the White House's re-prioritizing the long held US desire for the complete removal of Iranian forces from Syria. There's reportedly increased frustration that Russia is not actually interested in seeing Iran withdraw, despite prior pledges as part of US-Russia largely back channel diplomacy on Syria.
    However, the Post report quotes a top Pompeo-appointed official, James Jeffrey, who is currently "representative for Syria engagement" at the State Department, to say that U.S. policy is not that “Assad must go” but that immense pressure will be brought to bear, and in terms of future US troop exit, “we are not in a hurry”.
    “The new policy is we’re no longer pulling out by the end of the year,” Jeffrey said while noting the mission would largely shirt ensuring Iranian departure. He also indicated to that Trump is likely "on board" on signing off on "a more active approach" should there be direct confrontation with either Iran or Russia.
    It goes without saying that such a significant policy shift makes the possibilities of just such a confrontation or perhaps "provocation"over Idlib all the more dangerous considering it now appears Trump may now be looking for an excuse to act, which would provide the usual convenient distraction from problems at home.
    Source
    "We'll know our disinformation campaign is complete when everything the American public believes is false." --William J. Casey, D.C.I

    "We will lead every revolution against us." --Theodore Herzl

  2. Default

    The Post does their usual thing here of citing ‘senior officials’ as their source, yet just quoting one guy for the entire article. They chuck in the name of another guy midway, who isn’t quoted, but who helps to pad things out a bit. Things might be up in the air, as usual with Trump, but I’m not going to take their word on current events from one guy’s say so.

  3. #3

    Default

    The Post is a disgrace. Ditto the NYT. In fact, the Western Media in general are so fucking awful I barely read them anymore. At best they've become stenographers and at worst outright liars and propagandists for the neoliberal ideologues who control them.

    End of rant.
    The shadow is a moral problem that challenges the whole ego-personality, for no one can become conscious of the shadow without considerable moral effort. To become conscious of it involves recognizing the dark aspects of the personality as present and real. This act is the essential condition for any kind of self-knowledge.
    Carl Jung - Aion (1951). CW 9, Part II: P.14

  4. #4

    Default Syria - U.S. Reveals Underpants Plan For Indefinite Occupation

    Today the United States officially announced a new policy in its war on Syria. It is an equivalent to the three step business plan (vid) of the underpants gnomes:



    The new U.S. plan is to: 1. keep north-east Syria indefinitely occupied, 2. ???, 3. Iran leaves Syria and the 'regime' in Damascus falls:
    President Trump, who just five months ago said he wanted “to get out” of Syria and bring U.S. troops home soon, has agreed to a new strategy that indefinitely extends the military effort there and launches a major diplomatic push to achieve American objectives, according to senior State Department officials.Although the military campaign against the Islamic State has been nearly completed, the administration has redefined its goals to include the exit of all Iranian military and proxy forces from Syria, and establishment of a stable, nonthreatening governmentacceptable to all Syrians and the international community.
    The first major step of the "diplomatic push" is to prevent the imminent Syrian army operation against al-Qaeda aligned groups in Idleb province:
    While the United States agrees that those forces must be wiped out, it rejects “the idea that we have to go in there . . . to clean out the terrorists, most of the people fighting . . . they’re not terrorists, but people fighting a civil war against a brutal dictator,” as well as millions of civilians, [U.S. special representative for Syria James] Jeffrey said. Instead, the United States has called for a cooperative approach with other outside actors.“We’ve started using new language,” Jeffrey said, referring to previous warnings against the use of chemical weapons. Now, he said, the United States will not tolerate “an attack. Period.
    Jeffrey just visited Turkey. The intent was to stiffen Turkey's objection to the upcoming Idleb attack. The result was a plan that the Turkish president Erdogan presented today at the Tehran summit with President Putin of Russian and President Rohani of Iran. It included:

    • prolongation of the deescalation ceasefire
    • 12 armed groups, including Hayat Tahrir al Sham to be disbanded
    • Turkey will train a new rebel force to control Idleb under Turkish command
    • Groups who resist will be targeted in counter terrorism operations
    • ...

    The plan is nonsense. It is a copy of the task list Erdogan was given when the deescalation zone in Idleb was established at an earlier summit in the Astana format. Erdogan failed to implement it. HTS still rules Idelb province. HTS still rejects to dissolve. The observation posts Turkey established around Idleb still depend on the goodwill and protection of HTS fighters.


    Erdogan has no way to implement his plan. Accordingly today's summit in Tehran ended with a mealymouthed statement. It failed to come up with a common way forward for Idleb.

    via Thomas van Linge - biggerSyria and its allies Russia and Iran should proceed with their plans to cleanse Idleb of terrorist. The U.S. is bluffing. It has no realistic means to prevent the operation. Any U.S. attack on Syrian and Russian forces involved in it would likely escalate into a conflict between nuclear powers. That is a risk the U.S. military is unwilling to take. It knows that the forces it planted into Syria are vulnerable to attacks.


    The U.S. is now screaming of imminent chemical attacks by the Syrian army on "civilians" in Idleb:
    “If they want to continue to go the route of taking over Syria, they can do that,” said Nikki Haley at a UN press conference today, without explaining how a nation’s only recognized government can ‘take over’ the country it governs. “But they cannot do it with chemical weapons. They can’t do it assaulting their people. And we’re not gonna fall for it. If there are chemical weapons that are used, we know exactly who’s gonna use them.
    If a chemical incident occurs the U.S. will know who did it because it provided the chemicals to the terrorist. The Syrian army will of course not use any such weapons. Sun Tzu never gave this advice:


    bigger

    Chemical warfare is ineffective. That is why everyone agreed to ban it. Like in east-Ghouta the U.S. obviously plans to again fake such a "chemical attack on civilians" to have a propaganda pretext to attack Syrian forces.


    Tomorrow the Russian fleet will finish its ongoing maneuver in the eastern Mediterranean. All Syrian army units have taken up their launching positions for the Idleb operation and are ready to go. The shaping operations by artillery and air forces have been ongoing for a while. Any hold off now would only deteriorate the readiness of the troops and give the U.S. more time to implement counter measures.


    The Russian President Putin seems to understand that. At the press conference at the Tehran summit he said:
    "Regarding a ceasefire, we consider it unacceptable when, under pretext of protecting the civilian population, they want to withdraw terrorists from being under attack, as well as inflict damage on Syrian government troops."
    Russia is not in the mood to compromise. It warned the U.S. military that it would soon launch an operation against ISIS forces under protection of the small U.S. garrison in al-Tanf. Those forces recently launched another attempt to recapture Palmyra but were caught and defeated before they could achieve their aim:
    Russian complaints about the presence of potential Al Qaeda or ISIS fighters in the buffer zone are not new, the US officials point out. But with an imminent Russian-backed assault by Syrian regime forces in the Idlib area in the north, there is concern Moscow could see this as an optimum time to conduct multiple offensive operations.
    And there is the problem of the new U.S. strategy in Syria. The position in al-Tanf is untenable. The U.S could put a full brigade there, including anti-air assets, and it would still be too vulnerable. That is why today the U.S. launched a rescue and exfiltration exercise in al-Tanf. The place is too far away from other U.S. assets to withstand a committed attack.

    In the north-east of Syria the U.S. positions is likewise endangered. Since early August 1,900 trucks brought in weapons and equipment for its Kurdish proxy forces, the SDF. The Saudis have committed to pay some money for reconstruction and the U.S. surely hopes to use the oil fields there to finance a future occupation. It will soon start to announce some 'independent' regional government that will be under its complete control.

    But Turkey is against such empowerment of Kurds. The supply lines through Iraq are vulnerable. The population is diverse with many Syrian Arab tribes unwilling to live under Kurdish/U.S. control. They will resist the sectarian and ethnic cleansing the Kurds have planned. That makes it easy to instigate a guerilla war against the U.S. occupiers and their proxy forces. What happens when the U.S. forces start to take serious casualties?

    The U.S. presence in Syria is costly heap of underpants with no chance to ever turn it into a profit. It was a mistake by Trump to fall for the siren songs of the neo-conservatives and Zionists who pressed for this plan. It is he who will have to pay the political price.

    Posted by b on September 7, 2018 at 11:53 AM | Permalink
    "We'll know our disinformation campaign is complete when everything the American public believes is false." --William J. Casey, D.C.I

    "We will lead every revolution against us." --Theodore Herzl

  5. #5

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    In relation to the US occupation of this small part of Syria, I thought the following article from BusinessInsider was interesting (assuming for the moment it is actually true?).

    The assumption here is that the US forces inside Syria (illegally) are quite possibly their own hostages in the event the US tried anything daft.

    Russia reportedly warns the US that it's prepared to attack a key base where dozens of US troops are stationed






    • Sep. 7, 2018, 12:46 AM
    • 6,051









    A US service member in the Syrian town of Darbasiya in 2017.Rodi Said/Reuters

    • Russia has warned the US that its military and allied Syrian forces are ready to attack a key US-held base in Syria, according to a CNN report.
    • Dozens of US troops are reportedly stationed at the base.
    • The US reportedly warned Russia that it would defend itself if attacked.

    Russia has warned the US that its military and allied Syrian forces are ready to attack a key US-held base near the borders of Syria, Jordan, and Iraq, US defense officials said in a CNN reportpublished on Thursday.
    The Kremlin is said to have accused the US-led coalition base At Tanf of protecting nearby militants, with Russia delivering two warnings in the past week, CNN said, citing US officials. At Tanf, from which a coalition of dozens of US troops and Syrian rebels launch operations against the Islamic State terrorist group, is seen as a critical location within the scope of Iranian, Syrian, and Russian influence in the region.
    "We have absolutely advised them to stay out of At Tanf," a US official told CNN. "We are postured to respond."
    "The United States does not seek to fight the government of Syria or any groups that may be providing it support," another official added. "However, if attacked, the United States will not hesitate to use necessary and proportionate force to defend US, coalition, or partner forces."
    Syrian and Russian soldiers at a checkpoint near the Wafideen camp in Damascus, Syria, on March 2.Omar Sanadiki/Reuters
    US troops would not need permission from superiors to defend themselves if attacked, which the US reiterated to the Kremlin, CNN reported.
    A state-sanctioned attack by Russia could spark a flashpoint conflict in the region. Tensions were raised in February afterdozens of Russian mercenarieswere killed during a failed assault on a US-held position near the city of Deir al-Zor.
    Russian forces have not recently been seen amassing their troops; however, the US military is still on alert, officials said. Senior military officials, including Defense Secretary James Mattis and Gen. Joseph Dunford, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, are aware of the warnings, CNN said.
    Russia's warnings come amid a looming assault by Syrian and Iranian forces against the city of Idlib, where Syrian rebels have been cornered. Russia delivered an ominous warninglast week that some experts saw as an indication that the Syrian government might indiscriminately use chemical weapons against the city.
    The US followed with a threat of its own, warning Syrian President Bashar Assadthat if he "chooses to again use chemical weapons, the United States and its Allies will respond swiftly and appropriately."
    "President Donald J. Trump has warned that such an attack would be a reckless escalation of an already tragic conflict and would risk the lives of hundreds of thousands of people," the White House press secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, said in a statement.


    The shadow is a moral problem that challenges the whole ego-personality, for no one can become conscious of the shadow without considerable moral effort. To become conscious of it involves recognizing the dark aspects of the personality as present and real. This act is the essential condition for any kind of self-knowledge.
    Carl Jung - Aion (1951). CW 9, Part II: P.14

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