Beyond the Cusp

September 8, 2013

Ramifications of Obama’s Syria Blundering

The news stories have spent much ink and headlines pointing out the fiasco around Syria, chemical weapons, and President Obama’s pronouncement of the necessity for a strike against Bashir al-Assad’s military infrastructure in order to send a message that his use of such weapons will not and cannot be tolerated by the United States, the world, and in particular, President Obama and his advisers. We have read and heard about the shrinking credibility President Obama may suffer if he does not strike even if he should have the excuse that Congress would not authorize his request to use force. Many have pointed out that President Obama does not require anything from Congress in order to exercise his option as President to use force for up to ninety days before any Congressional action is required. I have always thought this was somewhat of a joke as a way to curtail the power of a President to engage in military actions as should a President instigate a military intervention and have even a mere thirty days freedom to act as he believes is necessary, a President could easily get American forces so engaged and deeply into a mission that no sane Congress would vote to pull the rug out from under them at that point. The reality that President Obama could have ordered his strikes on Syria and they would have been planned and executed all before the Congress returned from their Labor Day break assuming President Obama was being forthright when he said all he planned to do was strike selected military targets from the air using Tomahawk Missiles and other stand-off air assets fired from over the Mediterranean Sea from B-2 and B-52 heavy bombers. So, what has President Obama gained and lost by invoking Congressional approval and once again choosing dithering over acting?

 

The gains are easy for one to see but they are not envious gains and are likely going to cause the President serious harm and probably Congressional approval. The grandest gain is the American people have been allowed to give voice to their feelings on the whole matter of Syria and it appears they are almost unanimously against any form of United States military actions for any purpose in the Syrian conflict. Not sure if this is exactly a gain, but we now have a few more gems of complete inane and completely ridiculous comments from Senator McCain who among his brilliant opinions comes his defining the meaning of “Allahu Akbar” for the rest of us members of the ignorant masses which he defined as the same as a Christian exclaiming, “Thank G0d” and not what we had all likely assumed which was, “Allah is the greatest.” Many Americans are finding out whether or not their Congressional representative, be they either Senator or their Representative in the House, are able to understand that when hundreds if not thousands of their constituents call in demanding they vote against a military intervention, that such actions actually means the people do not want them to give the President blessings to go ahead and strike Syria. There may be a future lesson when at the next election for these same representatives who decide not to heed their public comes around and we will see if their constituents have any memory and actually meant what they said. There have already been a number of Senators and Representatives who have been interviewed specifically on why they changed their position from originally supporting the President for a strike on Syria and within a day or two changed their minds. Of the few I have been fortunate enough to hear or watch, and I always love watching politicians backing away from a previous position, it is just so amusing watching them stumble and try to sound contrite and convincing all at the same time, none of them have simply stated the plain truth. I sometimes wonder how difficult it is for a grown person to simply state, “After the barrage of calls my offices have received on this issue demanding my vote on this issue I have listened to the people and will do as they elected me to do and vote their desired position.” There you have it, all you politicians looking for what to say to the cameras in explaining your change, plain, simple, and oddly enough, it is the truth which would be nice to hear for a change. The final and possibly only advantage President Obama has gained by invoking Congress is he will have a way out of backing his poorly chosen red line threat without completely losing face as he can claim it is the will of the American people and after all, he will be able to claim he is nothing if not a man of the people.

 

The real ramification will have little effect on actions the United States was ever actually going to commit but at least that is now a certainty. If the Israeli leadership ever entertained the idea that President Obama actually intended to prevent the Iranians from gaining nuclear weapons, they have now been completely disabused of that notion. The evidence is now overwhelming and the truth is plain to see, President Obama is completely ineffectual on foreign policy. He is exactly as was warned coming in to the last elections by us here that the main problems on the doorstep of the world and especially the United States were not the seemingly immense problems with the economy or other items concerning the home-front but the affairs of state and the international crisis which were all coming to a boil almost in a tsunami. The world can only be left on autopilot so long before it begins to lose altitude and a crash becomes inevitable if nobody takes hold of the controls and steers it back on course. This has been the case numerous times throughout history, recent history even. Anyone observing the world stage during President Obama’s first term watched as Iraq slowly devolved back into sectarian violence with Sunni-Shia fighting growing almost daily by the end of the first term. Terrorism has been steadily rising and the Iraqi government has become a puppet of the Mullahs of Iran who have completely replaced the United States as the guiding influence. Egypt also has become unstable as President Morsi with the backing of the Muslim Brotherhood attempted to install an Islamic governance structured around Sharia and get the equivalent of what has taken Turkey’s Prime minister Erdogan almost a decade to do there and the Egyptian people revolted. The Egyptian military has subsequently intervened and replaced the Morsi government and now comes the slow decent into civil strife with terrorist bombings, shootings, burning buildings, and worst of all, the complete dissolution of Egypt’s oldest establishment, the Coptic Christians who are helplessly watching their churches and monasteries burned to the ground or converted into Mosques; their homes and businesses looted and destroyed; their women and children kidnapped, forced into marriages, forced to convert, or even murdered; watched as their numbers dwindle away as those who can get out of Egypt flee, and they realize that one of the oldest Christian communities is on the verge of following Egyptian’s once flourishing Jewish community into oblivion and wiped from the pages of history. Turkey is also experiencing violence between Shia and Sunni segments of the population and there have even been some demonstrations against the creep towards Islamist Sharia Law which the people are resisting at long last. Syria has completely melted down and the Christian community is being slowly decimated. There is also growing violence between the Kurdish elements and militias and the Sunni rebel forces. Al-Qaeda and the Muslim Brotherhood have supplanted the pro-democracy forces of the rebel cause and the fight is now between Sunni and Shia forces with Iran and Hezballah supporting Shia al-Assad and his predominantly Alawite military forces while the al-Nusra Front, al-Qaeda, Muslim Brotherhood, and mujahedeen fighters are flocking into Syria to fight for Sunni preeminence in the Muslim world. Then there has been the financial collapse of much of Europe with Germany and France trying to prevent the complete meltdown of the Euro as an effective and useable currency. These are just the highlights of a world in complete upheaval almost anywhere one looks. We have not mentioned the still completely out of control Horn of Africa, the struggles between Christians and Muslims in Nigeria and Mali, the continuing friction between China and both Japan and the Philippines over claims on solitary islands and free travel within the South China Sea, the drug wars in Mexico, the collapsing scene in Afghanistan and Pakistan where terrorist forces are once again growing in power, civil strife in a number of Asian nations, financial difficulties among many South American countries and a plethora of lesser problems almost anywhere one looks. Add in the growing adversarial relations between the United States and Russia as well as China and it almost seems the Cold War has returned.

 

And lastly there is the Iranian drive to produce nuclear weapons which recently was uncovered is not only enriching uranium but is also producing plutonium making their drive a dual route pursuit for nuclear weapons doubling at the least their likelihood of attaining nuclear status that much sooner. With the now obvious punting of any possibility of an intervention by the United States concerning Iran, the entire responsibility will likely fall on Israel, just as it did in the early eighties when nobody was willing to prevent Saddam Hussein and the French had even built him a reactor aiding his drive for nuclear weapons. Israel addressed that problem and the world was fortunate that Saddam Hussein’s nuclear program was so easily derailed. Despite what eventually was a grateful United States who years later quietly thanked Israel for preventing a nuclear Iraq, at the time of Israeli action against the Osirak reactor President Reagan joined the rest of the Security Council in condemning the Israeli strike. Preventing an Iranian nuclear weapon will not be as easy as a single sortie on one location but will require days or maybe weeks of sorties covering almost the entirety of Iran in order to cripple the majority of the nuclear sites strewn strategically throughout the vast country. Making matters worse is that Israel has to fly routes which would take her aircraft over such hostile nations as Turkey, Iraq, Syria, and of course Iran. It is also not guaranteed that such as Saudi Arabia or Kuwait or any other nations which control alternate and much longer routes would be willing to stand down. The only probable nation which would be agreeable would be Jordan and I guess one should be thankful for any favors. Add to Iran the seeming determination of President Obama to divide Israel up in order to form a Palestinian state even to the point of dividing Jerusalem once again and Israel really has a difficult immediate future. The claims made by a number of Palestinian official spokespeople that President Obama and Secretary of State Kerry provided the Palestinians with assurances that the borders would be crafted along the 1949 Armistice lines with only the land swaps the Palestinians allowed to alter the borders and one might decide that the best hope would be no success to the talks. Such possible outcomes make one hopeful that the Palestinians continue in their past tendencies to never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity. Unfortunately, they only have to not miss one opportunity to make up for all those missed in the past, may it not be this one.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

About these ads

2 Comments »

  1. Reblogged this on Oyia Brown.

    Comment by OyiaBrown — September 8, 2013 @ 8:54 AM | Reply

  2. I thought you might like to read this. This is not the first article that I read on the subject. I would like to say “happy new year to you and your family and staff” but more importantly I hope for a safe one, especially for Israel.

    Blessings,

    Linda

    Is this what Syria war really about?

    Major oil, gas interests run through Middle East nation

    Published: 16 hours ago

    author-imageby Aaron Klein Email | Archive

    Aaron Klein is WND’s senior staff reporter and Jerusalem bureau chief. He also hosts “Aaron Klein Investigative Radio” on New York’s WABC Radio. Follow Aaron on Twitter and Facebook . More ↓ Less ↑

    gas-oil-shipment

    PHILADELPHIA – Is the reported willingness of Arab Gulf states to fund a U.S. military campaign in Syria really about major oil and gas interests that run through the country?

    The potential for trillions of dollars of energy revenue in deals that snake through Syrian territory may be a motivating factor for the U.S., Russia, Turkey and Arab states in the current Syria crisis.

    Syria is a key energy transit route to Europe. A number of countries appear to be seeking dominance of the energy market that runs through Syria.

    In a hearing earlier this week, Secretary of State John Kerry said Arab counties have offered to pay for any U.S. military intervention in Syria.

    “With respect to Arab countries offering to bear costs and to assess, the answer is profoundly yes,” Kerry said. “They have. That offer is on the table.”

    Aaron Klein’s “Impeachable Offenses: The Case to Remove Barack Obama from Office” is available now, autographed, at WND’s Superstore

    Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, R-Fla., asked for an estimated amount the Arabs might contribute. Kerry replied that they offered to pay for a full invasion.

    “In fact, some of them have said that if the United States is prepared to go do the whole thing the way we’ve done it previously in other places, they’ll carry that cost,” Kerry said. “That’s how dedicated they are at this. That’s not in the cards, and nobody’s talking about it, but they’re talking in serious ways about getting this done.”

    Unmentioned are major gas and oil deals that could impact the economies of Qatar, Turkey and Saudi Arabia enormously.

    In 2011, Syria announced it had discovered a promising gas field in the city of Homs, which would later see some of the fiercest battles between Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s forces and the rebels.

    Oil Minister Sufian Allawi told the state-run SANA news agency that the first wells “were in the Homs governorate and the flow rate is 400,000 cubic meters per day.”

    “The discovery opens new perspectives in the region of Qalamun, and the Syrian company will continue its drilling,” said Allawi.

    Beside the prospect of its own gas field, Syria is also one of the most strategic locations for natural gas pipelines to flow to Europe.

    Qatar, home to the world’s largest gas field along with Iran, has proposed a gas pipeline from the Gulf to Turkey that would traverse Syria to the Mediterranean, with the gas then being shipped to Europe.

    However, Assad in 2009 refused to go along with the plan, instead inking deals with Russia and Iran.

    Syria is site of the proposed construction of a massive underground gas pipeline that, if completed, could drastically undercut the strategic energy power of U.S. ally Qatar and also would cut Turkey out of the pipeline flow.

    Dubbed the “Islamic pipeline,” the project may ultimately favor Russia and Iran against Western energy interests.

    Set to open in 2016, Iran, Iraq and Syria signed a deal in 2010 to construct the 3,480-mile natural gas pipeline connecting Iran’s South Pars field to European customers.

    Iranian Deputy Oil Minister Javad Oji announced the pipeline would ultimately have the capacity to pump 3.9 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day. He told Iran’s official Mehr News Agency the route would “pass through Iran, Iraq, Syria, the southern Lebanon territories and also through the Mediterranean basin,” with a refinery and infrastructure to be built in Damascus.

    A key portion of the Islamic pipeline is concentrated on the Syrian ports, which would export directly to Europe out of the Eastern Mediterranean.

    Russia has reportedly built up its naval presence along the major Syrian ports of Latakia and Tartus.

    The Islamic pipeline is viewed as a major threat to Turkey, which has long desired to become the main bridge for natural gas and oil between the East and the West.

    Turkey, however, is a key player in the Nabucco natural gas pipeline, which is being constructed to transit natural gas to Europe from the Central Asia and Caspian regions. The pipeline is set to traverse Azerbaijan, Georgia, Turkey, Bulgaria, Romania and Hungary, and end in Austria. Turkey has been a key supporter of the rebels fighting Assad’s regime, while Qatar has reportedly been supplied arms and training to the rebels.

    If Assad can be deposed, Turkey and Qatar would like the Nabucco pipeline to run through Syria.

    Perhaps in a bid to wean Russia off of the Islamic pipeline, Saudi Arabia last month presented a plan to Moscow in which Russia would reject Syria’s president in return for a huge arms deal and a pledge to boost Russian influence in the Arab world.

    Agence France-Presse reported President Vladimir Putin refused the plan in a meeting with Saudi Arabia’s intelligence chief, Prince Bandar bin Sultan.

    Bandar reportedly proposed that Saudi Arabia buy $15 billion of weapons from Russia and invest “considerably in the country,” according to AFP.

    Demonstrating that oil interests are clearly at play, AFP reported: “The Saudi prince also reassured Putin that ‘whatever regime comes after’ Assad, it will be ‘completely’ in the Saudis’ hands and will not sign any agreement allowing any Gulf country to transport its gas across Syria to Europe and compete with Russian gas exports.”

    Comment by Linda — September 8, 2013 @ 9:40 AM | Reply


RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

The Rubric Theme Blog at WordPress.com.

%d bloggers like this: