Beyond the Cusp

December 24, 2018

The Syria Connection

 

One hears rumors of deals and arrangements being touted which predicated the United States departure from Syria. One can only pray that these are valid statements but should plan as if those words were never heard. Does anybody in their right mind believe that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is really going to end his murdering of the Kurdish population in Syria? How many actually are able to convince themselves that once the United States has departed that Bashir al-Assad will not simply begin to slaughter not only the fighters who still oppose him in the eastern parts of the nation but will also choose a genocidal approach to the civilian populations in these regions slaughtering millions of innocents for the crime of being Sunni Muslims or Kurds. There was one promise already kept, but whether the promise was made to United States President Donald Trump or to Israeli Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu is unclear. The good news is that Russian President Vladimir Putin did lean on Lebanon regarding the Hezballah tunnels dug under the border and into Israel plus warned them to take steps to assure the border with Israel remains quiet. This also serves Russian influences and interests that there does not open up warring between Lebanon based Hezballah and Israel as such a war is bound to spill into Syria even if just to prevent arms from reaching Hezballah from Iran through Damascus, the route usually taken, though of late Iran has begun using Beirut International Airport to transport guidance system upgrades to the massive Hezballah rocket inventory making them deadly accurate missiles instead of launch and pray rockets with marginal accuracy.

 

The problem is that either President Trump has not learned that in the Middle East falsehoods are a way of life and actually demanded of the followers of Islam if that lie furthers the goals of Islam. The American President is accustomed to making deals with people whose word is their bond and such does not exist throughout most of the Middle East, Israel being the exception. This has caused Israel many serious problems when dealing with the Palestinian Authority (PA) as they would often make a promise which they had no intention of ever honoring as that would be counter to their interests, and as they are Muslim, their interests when dealing with Jews is an imperative that they gain specifically when they lie. The PA has not kept virtually everything they have ever agreed upon with the greatest and most obvious lie being that they rewrote their charter removing calls to totally destroy Israel and kill all the Jews. To the credit of the PA, when Washington DC sent State Department monitors to determine if the PA was to alter their charter, they had a vote to form a committee to look into having a committee which would consider making the prescribed alterations. The State Department monitors returned to Washington DC reporting that the PA was indeed going to make the changes required, and that settled that argument. Of course, that committee saw no reason to form another committee to decide if the changes should be made, as obviously they never intended to alter one letter of their charter and nobody in the Western World can understand their charter as it is written in the apparently untranslatable Arabic. We can expect the same for any and all guarantees given to President Trump as conditions under which the United States military could leave the region-claiming job done in the defeating of the Islamic State.

 

That takes us to whether or not the Islamic State has indeed been defeated. That would depend on one’s definition of defeated. The Islamic State lost virtually all of the territory it once held, had its declared capital city taken and has been reduced to sparse groups scattered over many square miles of territory all of whom have melted back into the population, often in the very villages they left to fight with the Islamic State. Such a dispersed group would be next to impossible to hunt down and the effort would make such more and more difficult as time progressed as many of these people would be torn from their communities leading to resentment and making more terrorists. So, was the Islamic State defeated? Well, yes, as much as such can be the case as the remainder has vanished into the countryside and in small towns and villages. The remnants if they were to gather to attempt another power seizure, they would become a simple target which could be eliminated using aircraft from the fleet in the Arabian Gulf or Mediterranean Sea as soon as they were identified. Will the Islamic State ever return and become a new menace? Probably not, or at least not in the same form with the same leadership and it would only take the name Islamic State because there is a history to be found in the ruins of the Islamic State. President Trump was basically correct in reporting that the Islamic State had been defeated, but his move to pull the troops may prove to have been premature.

 

Reports have stated that this was a decision made by the President and only the President. Security Adviser John Bolton argued against pulling the troops out claiming it was premature. Secretary of Defense James Mattis was in so much agreement with Bolton that he tendered his resignation claiming that the President should have somebody supportive of his decision rather than himself who was vehemently opposed to this move. The leadership of the Democrat Party stated that what the President did with pulling the United States military troops from Syria was a form of deserting America’s post in the troubled region. Yes, you read that correctly, the Democrat Party is now in favor of a military campaign half way around the globe to eradicate every last person who ever had any cordial relations with the Islamic State. These are the same people who scream as if somebody murdered their pet puppy any time Israel is forced to act against Hamas, a terrorist group on the immediate border from Gaza yet bemoan the removal of United States military which was fighting terrorists extremely far removed from the American borders. That, our friends, is hypocrisy. But nobody ever honestly claimed that the United States had no double standards when it comes to Israel. Every nation, or virtually every country, holds contrary expectations of Israel which are far and away more restrictive and bordering on making it dangerous to the point of allowing Israel to face destruction while applauding any other nation taking steps for protection from terrorists even if the threat was thousands of miles distant; for example, the United States and Islamic State for whom the United States sent troops to the far side of the planet.

 

Former Secretary of Defense James Mattis

Former Secretary of Defense James Mattis

 

The first and near immediate consequence of the United States pulling her troops from the region will produce will be Iran establishing a direct route across Iraq and into Syria and Lebanon with the equipment headed for Lebanon and will be utilized by Hezballah. The IRGC will become more active vis-à-vis the Israeli border with more regularly stray bullets just happening to strike somewhere along the Golan Heights and even rockets will stray into the Golan Heights all of which will make soldiering on this front more demanding. Bashir al-Assad will take the American troop withdrawal as a signal that he will be free to do as he pleases while he completes his retaking of Syria. The human rights abuses are simply going to become a major part of the coming Syrian despotic regime returning to power. Assad will definitively punish those peoples he feels were disloyal or critical of his rule. This will include the Kurds and the Sunni Arabs in large part as their Alawite Shiite leader purifies their nation. Once the perceived enemies of the Syrian despot have been cowed, then everything will return to an eerie form of normalcy. Such will take time as the people are going to have to rebuild their lives and their homes in all too many instances. Bashir al-Assad has proven to be at least as great a destroyer of worlds and has exceeded his father’s totals and Bashir is not yet near to the completion of his transformation of his nation and its population. Additionally, Turkey’s Erdoğan will be serving al-Assad by sweeping through and killing the Kurds in the north of Syria while disarming any he allows to remain. We may be on the verge of witnessing the murder systematically of millions of Kurds. In far too many cases, the military troops have been hand picked selected for their proven loyalty and their brutal oppression they are willing to inflict often on innocent persons. The anti-Kurd animosity is very apparent in both the sweeping away of described terror cells and the brutal treatment of all of those who are not them. The Kurds are also facing murderous troops in northern Iraq as the Iraqi militias, the Iraqi military and the IRGC from Iran are sweeping Kurdish territories seeking to kill anyone who ever had even the slightest connection to Kurdish Militias. This sweep may even include what is left of the Yazidis who escaped the Islamic State slaughterhouse by the skin of their teeth. Life outside of Israel in the Middle East can be horrific to the point one simply gets trampled by one despot after another. The United States departure from this region will have detrimental effects, but these will be nothing when compared to what will occur once the United States pulls their support for Israel and no longer provides cover in the Security Council. That is something which is already in the pipes and coming before you know it. Before that day arrives, Israel will require a new and kindly friend who has a permanent veto.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

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December 3, 2017

Should Israel Ally with Saudi Arabia Over Iran?

 

There have been whispers that there may be a plan taking shape between Israel and Saudi Arabia to try and prevent the obvious moves by Iran to establish themselves as the hegemonic superpower of the Middle East. This has much to do with the Shiite Crescent we have spoken of at length which Iran has put together using the southern three-quarters of Iraq, Lebanon and the soon to be reconstituted Syria of Bashir al-Assad connecting Lebanon with Hezballah into the mix. When one adds Qatar and Yemen where Iran backed Houthis are winning against Saudi Arabian efforts, one can see immediately that Iran has all but surrounded Saudi Arabia against whom Iran has often claimed they desired the Saudi Arabian oil fields as well as taking control over the Holy Cities of Islam, Mecca and Medina which are also part of Saudi Arabia. The Saudi Arabian efforts in Yemen had early support from Egypt but President Sisi has enough troubles of his own and pulled out of the efforts in Yemen and began to work more favorably with Turkey and President Erdoğan.

 

An aside, one can only hope that Sisi has since reconsidered any siding with President Erdoğan as such could end up being an ill thought out plan with President Erdoğan appearing to have hegemonic dreams of his own and also having proven not exactly unopposed to siding with Iran when it suits his needs. This could prove particularly dangerous should President Erdoğan promise assistance in the Sinai Peninsula as his offer may have ulterior motives. Additional reasons for Saudi Arabian Royal Family concerns may be tied to the apparent exit by the United States from Syrian and Iraqi support for the Kurdish forces leaving them vulnerable to Iranian allies as well as Turkey’s President Erdoğan, the man who assured President Trump that abandoning the Kurds was necessary unless the United States was ready to support their declaring themselves independent, something both the State Department and Pentagon opposed. The exit by President Trump has left the Saudi Royal family nervous and seeking another power to ally with in order to pose a more formidable opposition force against Iran. This will be double should Turkey actually agree to ally themselves with the resurgent Shiite forces of Iran. That could prove tricky as Turkey is three-quarters Sunni, but then Iran has allied with Sunni Hamas and is wooing Sunni Fatah and PLO all in their effort to also encircle Israel. One can only wonder how long before Iran offers Egypt assistance with their troubles in the Sinai Peninsula as this would give them their final front with Israel and Saudi Arabia plus a direct route for arming Hamas. Iran may also pose a threat to Jordan as Jordan also borders Israel and Saudi Arabia.

 

One last reason for Saudi Arabia to desire allying with Israel is the obvious case that Israel is considered a nuclear armed nation and Iran is a borderline, if not already, nuclear armed state who will likely turn recognized nuclear within the next two to three years. This usually brings up the old story about how Saudi Arabia financed the Pakistani nuclear program and the two nations have an unspoken agreement that Pakistan was to provide Saudi Arabia with plans and as many as a dozen nuclear warheads upon a request from the Saudi Royal Family. That agreement, assuming that it ever existed, may fall upon the old adage of, “What have you done for me lately?” Time has passed and things have changed which means the people who made that long ago agreements have left the scene and the people who replaced them may not be as eager to provide the requested assistance. Probably the most that the Saudi Royal Family should expect might be the schematics and plans for the manufacture of nuclear weaponry and not the actual weapons and as the Pakistanis have very likely long since developed more advanced nuclear weapons including thermonuclear weapons all without Saudi Arabian assistance which probably makes the Pakistani government feel far less indebted to the Saudi Arabian Royal Family for their initial financing of the Pakistani crash effort to respond to the development of nuclear weapons by India. The Saudi Arabian Royal family likely already has checked and realized that their former agreement with Pakistan no longer holds water or nuclear warheads or possibly even the plans for a nuclear warhead or other device. This very probably has not made the Saudi Arabian leaders feel any more secure about the Iranian looming threats.

 

So, Saudi Arabia is facing the reality of the Pakistan deal having gone south, the United States pulling out of every hot spot in the Middle East, Egypt sliding away from the Saudi Royals and inching towards Turkey, feeling the Iranian noose tightening around their necks thus the Saudis are seeking someone, anyone to come and take some of the problem off their shoulders knowing that this time the United States has been caught flat-footed needing a friend badly. Israel is facing much the same problems, as are the Saudi leaders, and likely just as desirous of friends and allies upon which to depend coming to their side immediately. The difference is that Israel has been here before and her faith in Hashem has always provided exactly what the Israelis required. The proof was centered and has given Israel much to think and mull over. The Israelis have faced such a threat before and survived despite all odds. This still leaves much to consider before it is too late.

 

This forced the hand of the Saudi Government to act and seek new directions and friendships. Still, now that we have the time, what should Israel do in order to survive any Iranian threats, something which must be viewed as if being under a microscope? The idea to ally with Saudi Arabia has way too many holes to actually hold much promise. Israel must weigh exactly why they should enter into any relationship, especially with a nation which is still in a state of war with Israel. The Saudi Arabian peninsula has numerous oil fields and a means of gathering the Jews closer together. Israel is dependent on Hashem and need no other protections as Hashem made a promise and will be true to his words. Still, the Israelis will be alone facing a regional super power possibly after Saudi Arabia has been eliminated as one to be reckoned with leaving Israel feeling very vulnerable. Should Israel manage to be in such a position the United States would need to provide assistance though manpower would not necessarily be required. Israel might feel that the current case of threat requires her to rely on another and to seek to find such a nation. Israel has always stood by herself and honestly does not require any additional assistance to face down Iran. Starting to rely on people whom until recently sought her destruction would not be the most prudent of acts.

 

Saudi Arabian and Iranian Maneuvers in Middle East

Saudi Arabian and Iranian Maneuvers in Middle East

 

The leaders of the Arab world now seeking to ally with Israel would turn away the instant the threat has passed. Further, forming an anti-Iran alliance would result in placing Israeli Defense Force soldiers under foreign command. That would be nothing short of suicidal. Israel has an ally in this situation, and that ally is Hashem, just as she has always had. Yes, Israel might be wise to enter into a coalition which would strengthen her position, but should also be careful not to be used simply to strengthen their position leaving Israel with insufficient forces retained for her own defense. Israel has the capacity to defend herself and protect her borders and adding in her ability to launch in kind any strike likely to originate from Iran including nuclear. Israel would, inevitably when push comes to shove, have only herself to defend her people, as none of the Arab world would permit any of their soldiers to fight to protect Jews no matter the situation. Israel must contend with protecting Israel by herself with her own forces and their stamina to go the distance. Israel will have no others on which to defend her when Iran turns her attention to Israel. The sole responsibility for protecting the Israeli people falls to Israel. We do not see Arab forces rushing to our aid in a time of need, but can realize that many would be rushing to join our enemies in the efforts to defeat us.

 

This is part of why Israel must join those who refused Saudi Arabia’s invitation to join forces to fight Iran. One can readily see that the Saudi Arabian leadership would lead the sacrifice of everybody else’s troops before losing a single one of theirs. That is a bad deal, period. Israel should commit to her reliance in Hashem as she has always committed to doing when troubles brewed internally or externally. This next test Israel is facing will be one which tests her faith and at some point, it will take measure of the Jewish People and their collective faith in the Almighty. Should Israel pass this test, then we will know that we are prepared as a People to receive the Messiah and that the time is approaching where the Messiah will finally come to establish the Heavenly Kingdom here on Earth and peace will rule the world over for a very long period. We may very well be on the threshold of the ultimate deliverance of mankind, their final deliverance. We must be prepared for such an eventuality as we need be readied for such a monumental event. The last of our brethren who will be returning to Eretz Yisroel will be gathered to Israel by Hashem and the Messianic Age will be upon all of us with a Heavenly ruler whom we had best not disappoint.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

August 30, 2017

As North Korean Missiles Fly Tillerson Lies

 

We made a poor calculation, or so it seems. We had predicted, “somewhere between Thanksgiving and Christmas Kim Jong-un will announce he has had it with the American double-dealing and perversity and lies and return to firing missiles.” Apparently, Kim Jong-un did not even wait for Labor Day as on Saturday North Korea launched a set of short-range ballistic missiles and on Tuesday fired another missile, this time over the Islands of Japan. The series of missile firing came just days after U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson welcomed North Korea’s recent “restraint” suggested talks with Pyongyang may be possible “in the near future,” (Watch video below). Tillerson stated in response to the North Korean provocations that the missiles were a “provocative act” adding that the United States would continue to search for a peaceful solution. This is where we question whether or not Secretary of State Tillerson may be going off the rails concerning Kim Jong-un and North Korea as compared to his stances on Israel, Kurdistan and the Arab World’s general offensive along with Iran and Turkey against the world, specifically the Western World.

 

 

Secretary Tillerson, it has been noted in conjecture, has been the driving force driving the Administration’s suspicions and commentary against the Kurdish intentions to vote for a referendum to declare their independence from Iraq and form their formerly promised state of Kurdistan before the British reneged on their promise. The Secretary of State has also been a consistent thorn in the side of relations with Israel. The problems with Israel do not rise to the level that the relations with the Kurds have reached, but Israel has her independence already. Still, having Secretary of State Tillerson constantly promoting policies which reflect the Arabist views of the world in general and the views of Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, or potentially Mecca and more appropriately, Medina, is wearing thin as it flies in the face of policies which would be to the advantage of the United States specifically and the free world generally.

 

We understand that the apparent assignment for the State Department is to play Devil’s advocate and oppose what would be right and best for the United States. This was evidenced when they sent a communist group to assist in writing the United Nations Charter and gave the Soviets advantages at every corner. It was further established with their strong advice to President Truman not to recognize Israeli independence, good thing he ignored their advice. Now they are advising the United States deny nationhood to the strongest and closest ally existing in the war on the Islamic State, the only group to have large success in driving the Islamic State from northern Syria, the peoples whom the United States has been arming and Israel has given tactical assistance yet the State Department claims they are unworthy of statehood as that would detract from Iraqi sovereignty and weaken Iran. We seem to remember some commentary about knocking Iran down a peg or two and rewriting parts of the deal with Iran over nuclear research into nuclear weaponry and the processing of uranium by President Trump. Apparently, Secretary Tillerson is concerned about what effect a Kurdish State might have on Iraq and Iran and very likely the Islamic State and Syrian dictator Bashir al-Assad.

 

These steps come in addition to Secretary of State Rex Tillerson making some antagonizing noise over Israeli “settlements” referring to legally built communities and cities according to the Oslo Accords stipulations while ignoring illegal building by the European Union along with the Arabs in Area C against every stipulation concerning this region by the Oslo Accords. It has become apparent that Secretary of State Tillerson and his State Department have decided once again to adopt the Arab revisionism of the Oslo Accords in which Israel has no right to Jerusalem, Akko, Ashdod, Ashkelon, Tiberius, Eilat, Beersheba and Tel Aviv. This had been the interpretation of the final settlement according to Yasser Arafat and has been adopted by Mahmoud Abbas and the PA and apparently also adopted by Secretary Tillerson in spirit if not in its entirety. Such sophomoric, treacherous and toxic advice can only embolden Abbas and the Arabs to avoid direct negotiations and in its stead demand concessions from Israel which Secretary Tillerson and the State Department will very likely pressure Israel to concede, as they always have, regardless of the position of President Trump or his Middle East envoy Jared Kushner and President Trump’s International Negotiator Jason Greenblatt which appears to be more open ended. While President Trump’s team has stated clearly an Administration position of no preconditions, preconceptions, or premonitions of the design of a solution, the State Department with a few worthy exceptions appears to be backing the continued failings of the “two-state-solution” directly in opposition to all other, including their own, efforts.

 

Secretary Tillerson also came out expressly against Kurdish independence. One would be following logic and good sense if they were to conclude from previous indications such as the United States arming of the Kurds in Syria and in warning off Turkey’s Erdoğan, who had started a general campaign militarily against the Kurds in Syria and Iraq, thus protecting Kurdish interests, that the Administration would back the concept of a new country named Kurdistan where the Kurds could fulfil their destiny free of tyrannical and counter productive interference from Baghdad. We would and have gone further in suggesting a greater Kurdistan which would span across northeastern Syria, northern Iraq and northwestern Iran and for allowing Kurds from outside the area, from Turkey, Syria, Iraq and Iran in particular, to return to their newly reestablished homelands free from outside influences or policies. The Kurds were another indigenous group which had been promised a return to their homelands and a freely established state after World War I and the divisions of the great empires of Austro-Hungary, German (which had included Poland within its borders) and Ottoman. One might be led to believe that Turkey would desire such a nation as a place they could force their Kurdish minority to emigrate and end their fears of Kurdish revolt but Erdoğan envisions a greater Turkey which would envelop the Kurdish regions and then the Kurds would be facing a similar fate than that of the Armenians under Ottoman rule. One can only wonder where Secretary Tillerson stands on the ideas of a greater Turkey or a hegemonic Iran which would include much of Iraq plus all of Syria and Lebanon (see concept map below). Greater Turkey would include areas of Syria and Iraq which the Kurds desire for their homelands and extend slightly beyond before they would run into Iranian Shiite opposition but would include Sunni areas of Iraq. Hegemonic Iran would incorporate much of Iraq and Syria plus all, if not beyond, Lebanon, Oman, Yemen, Djibouti and Qatar thus surrounding Saudi Arabia and Jordan who would be thrust together potentially being forced into having relations with Israel. The greater question would be how far along the coast of the Horn of Africa Iran might spread and whether or not Jordan would invite Saudi Arabian protection as part of the Gulf Cooperation Council (included in map).

 

Greater Turkey and Hegemonic Iran In Faceoff to Control Middle East

Greater Turkey and Hegemonic Iran
In Faceoff to Control Middle East

 

Our guess of Secretary of State Rex Tillerson reacting to such a map as depicted would be outrage that Israel would take control of the lands actually promised her by the San Remo Conference, the Treaty of Sèvres, the Treaty of Lausanne, the Mandate System, the Conventions of the League of Nations and Article 80 of the United Nations Charter making these treaties and the entirety of their implications, promises, stipulations and implications all enforced by the United Nations. He would likely view at such a point as this that Israel rightfully belonged to Saudi Arabia as the British Mandate of Jordan had been included under Saudi protective rule, why not the remaining 22% of the British Mandate. He would question, with the support of the deep state of the State Department, the protestations expressed by the Israelis and would ignore the religious implications and what would verily happen should Israeli citizens ever come under Muslim or Arab rule. Secretary Tillerson would likely read some missive from the Saudi Royals which would be presented as their guarantee of protection for the Jews of Israel as they are People of the Book (أهل الكتاب) and as such a protected class of Dhimmis. He would infer that Dhimmis meant honored guests and a protected group as stated and would ignore the horrid rumors about the Jews being Kāfir (كافر) and thus could be subjected to the choice of convert to Islam or die without ever compromising their Dhimmitude.

 

Allow us to end with a beseechment to the leading advisors and their coordination impairment and the confusion, embarrassment and detriment they have caused. Please, President Trump and especially Chief of Staff John F. Kelly, Four Star Marine General (ret), clean up the imbroglio which is the President’s Cabinet. First and foremost, determine who amongst them are capable of supporting a single set of ideas and ideals and are willing to cooperate, then be rid of the rest. Next, sit them all down and play for them the main points President Trump promised to accomplish while campaigning. Then ask who would not be capable of not only supporting but actively engaging all their energies to accomplish whatever tasks they may receive to get these things accomplished. Those who appear even the slightest to delay and especially those who cough, hem and haw, be done with them and receive not their counsel. Lastly, ask each Secretary to submit plans to, first, restructure their department, second, cut their department staffing by a minimum of fifty percent, and lastly, to dissolve their department entirely and advising where critical actions could be best served. Then meet with the President and go through these plans and decide which departments need to implement which plan. Just as a starter, may we suggest you get rid of Educations Department, Homeland Security Department; half or more of the law enforcement bureaus starting with BTFE, and have the State Department reduce its staff by fifty percent, at least twice. Advice for President Trump, ignore much of the noise which erupts regularly from the State Department, as often doing the opposite of what they advise is the best move.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

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