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06 December 2012


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Clifford Kiracofe

Yes. Parallels to the pattern of the Iraq War aside from the WMD propaganda are the heavy news management in the media to support the war and the mass mobilization of the Fundamentalists, Israel Lobby, newsmedia/radio and so on.

Look at John Hagee's Christians United for Israel website over the past few days, for example, moving the Syria WMD theme:

And the pro-Israel operators:

Three quarters of Congress voted for the Iraq War and the pro-Israel Lobby can count on even more Congressional support this time, IMO.

Mobilization of the airwaves was another element in the Iraq War propaganda campaign, particularly the Clear Channel network. I'd expect an uptick from Rush Limbaugh and the others of that ilk.

It does not seem possible to me to contain the war just to Syria in some neat and tidy fashion. War with Iran would seem possible in an escalating situation. Then, what about the Russian in particular and Chinese reaction?

Also, regional war offers the opportunity for Israel to mass expel Palestinians in an ethnic cleansing/"transfer" final solution type move. For a long time, propaganda has been that "Jordan is Palestine". Thus, topple the Jordanian monarchy and shove the Palestinians from Israel and WB into Jordan???


First time commenting, and my thanks to Col. Lang and those contributors who make this a truly edifying blog.

One thing puzzles me (maybe I have missed the relevant discussion) and perhaps others can help clarify. I understand that Assad's long association with Iran and consistent hostility towards Israel explain that nation's opposition to Assad. However, with the MB in power in Egypt and their friends in Gaza, why would the Israelis assist in bringing to power another Sunni Islamist regime in Syria? Would not a weakend, Baathist Syria be preferable? What is their line of reasoning here?


Syria conflict: US and Russia hold surprise talks - live updates

US secretary of state Hillary Clinton, Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov and mediator Lakhdar Brahimi will gather in Dublin on the sidelines of a human rights conference, a senior US official said.

Ahead of the three-way meeting, Clinton and Lavrov met separately for about 25 minutes. They agreed to hear Brahimi out on a path forward, a senior US official said.

The gathering of the three key international figures suggests possible compromise in the offing. At the least, it confirms what officials describe as an easing of some of the acrimony that has raged between Moscow and Washington.

The threat of Syria's government using some of its vast stockpiles of chemical weapons is also adding urgency to diplomatic efforts.

One idea that Brahimi could seek to resuscitate with US and Russian support would be the political agreement strategy both countries agreed on in Geneva in June.

That plan demanded several steps by the Assad regime to de-escalate tensions and end the violence that activists say has killed more than 40,000 people since March 2011. It would then have required Syria's opposition and the regime to put forward candidates for a transitional government, with each side having the right to veto nominees proposed by the other.



The Eisenhower is in the Mediterranean because it is on its way from the Persian Gulf back to Norfolk and is on a quite urgent schedule. So Debka is as usual wrong.


According to the German Süddeutsche Zeitung the U.S. wants to get NATO do to Syria:

During a diner for NATO foreign ministers on Tuesday evening NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen talked about the situation in Syria and about the conflict with Iran over the street of Hormuz in a way that one participant characterized as "beating the drums of war".

As multiple sources confirmed to the Süddeutsche Zeitung Rassmussen said with regards to the situation in Syria and the western dependency on the oil supply through the street of Hormuz that NATO must not "bury its head in the sand".

As was clear to everyone at the table what he meant: NATO should prepare for a military intervention in Syria. Politically this would be a radical change of NATO's current course which excluded any intervention in Syria. Rassmussen was supported by the foreign minister from Turkey and Great Britain as well as the American Hillary Clinton.
In difference to the USA or Rassmussen many European foreign ministers do not trust American secret service reports claiming that Syria may prepare for the use of chemical weapons. European secret services, including the German Bundesnachrichtendienst which is well networked in the Middle East, have "no perception" in that direction. Earlier Tuesday the Russian foreign minister Sergej Lavrow had warned his NATO colleges in Brussels to take reports on such weapons in Syria at face value. Russia had in recent years looked into into many such rumors and reports and many had proven to be false or half truths.

Translation of the German piece here:


And yes, I agree, it is all going to end very badly

Alba Etie

What could possibly go wrong??

The beaver


Have you read or heard about the report "Which path to Persia"?
Here is a resume of it :

A manifesto to destroy both Syria and Iran.


Perpetual war is a necessary condition for the American and Israeli status quo. This whole thing is madness.

William R. Cumming

So will this effort bolster Obama's largely disasterous first term or second?

William R. Cumming

Does anyone have a link to the citation for Obama's Nobel Peace Prize?

Charles I

As I wrote below, last night I heard on the CTV 11 pm natioanl news in Canada that according to "sources', binary chemicals had been observed being loaded into bombs, last step before deployment and use, complete with inter-cut fuzzy stock footage of a jet dropping a bomb. It was like a movie rather than the news.

Charles I



An unnamed senior defense official says there is no evidence Syria is preparing sarin gas for deployment.


This news item is buried on the net beneath a mountain of news reports declaring Assad is readying the deadly gas for use on his own people. The propaganda machine is building its case for invasion, only the official designation of Assad as the latest incarnation of Hitler remains to convince the American people of the morality of siding with the rebels in this civil war.


So, did we make 'peace' with AQ? After decimating them? Is all forgiven on both sides? Is all forgotten and we're back in the sack together? Eyes fixed on the Persians?

Clifford Kiracofe

Life under Islamists in Tunisia where young Salafis volunteer for Syrian jihad:

...."Many of the Islamists are also involved in militant activities. The Leagues for the Protection of the Revolution collect donations and allegedly recruit young men to fight in Syria's civil war.

The ruling Ennahda Party has yet to distance itself from the radicals. Ennahda founder Rachid Ghannouchi even encouraged "our young Salafists" to patiently embark on a long march. "Why the hurry?" he said in a video of a meeting with Salafists. "The Islamists must fill the country with their organizations, establish Koran schools everywhere and invite religious imams." The video was secretly recorded and posted online, but Ghannouchi claims his words were taken out of context...."

Babak Makkinejad

Mr. Harper:

US is wounding Jordan and Turkey and not Iran.

Margaret Steinfels

A citation for the German and Russian government statements?


We just cannot be this stupid of a peoples to believe this crap....again....

Paul Escobar

To all,

I second jdgalvez's question: Why are Israelis joining in this campaign against the Syrian government?

I have occasionally seen the argument that Israelis view Sunni Arabs as anarchists. Perhaps Israelis believe that the Syrian opposition will (even inadvertently) bring about the collapse of the large republic they intend to rule.

I welcome any enlightenment on the subject of Israeli motives on Syria.

Charles I

Syria is the ally of and doorway to Iran

Charles I

yet I just heard on the 5 pm news that Lavrov et al remain opposed to getting rid of Assad.

Charles I

This is the process Genvieve Adbo reported on in her excellent book on the MB penetration of Egyptian civil society:

No God but God: Egypt and the Triumph of Islam.

". . .Abdo's findings identify a grassroots model for transforming a secular nation-state to an Islamic social order that will likely inspire other Muslim nations."


She recently published on Iran as well

Clifford Kiracofe

The US Neocon/Likudnik-Bibi perspective on the "Levant" was put forward by David Wurmser back in the 1990s in a paper for the IASPS think tank:


And Richard Perle's Neocon classic "Clean Break" presented to Bibi also at IASPS

Before reading these two Neocon strategy pieces, watch General Wesley Clark explain the Neocon plan to attack/regime change seven countries in five years, Syria and Iran included. He is speaking in 2007 in San Francisco. Consider the continuity of policy under Obama1 and now Obama2:



This is in response to a number of queries about what Israel expects to gain by the overthrow of Assad: I had the opportunity to speak with a senior advisors to the chief of staff of the Israeli Defense Forces this week, and he confirmed what the commentators suggest: Israel is not happy about the prospect of the overthrow of Assad and the danger of some neo-Salafi crazies or even the Muslim Brotherhood coming into power in Damascus. They have enjoyed a ceasefire agreement with the Assad government since 1974, and the prospect of Sunni fundamentalists on the northern border is a scary proposition. What has happened, however, is that Israel has been convinced that the United States, Britain, France, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait have written a death warrant for the Assad government, and so Israel is now preparing for the likelihood of a collapse of the Assad government. They are, in fact, reassessing their military posture, to put more troops and hardware in the north to deal with this looming headache. They were not the initiators of the drive to oust Assad, but they are now preparing for the consequences, and belatedly have joined in the effort, in order to have some say in the outcome. They are the most reluctant participants for the most part, although some factions in the Zionist Lobby in the US, who are thousands of miles away from the frontline, believe that if Syria goes into a period of chaos, the military threat will be even further diminished, and it may afford Israel the rationale to permanently annex the Golan Heights as a "buffer" against the new threat from the north.

Clifford Kiracofe

Charles I,

Thanks for the reference, I will look for it.

The classic study of the MB is:

Richard P. Mitchell, The Society of Muslim Brothers (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1963; 1993 with Intro. by John Voll)

There is a certain reticence about the more esoteric aspects of the MB and the political background.

I would indicate that the roots in effect go to Lord Cromer and certain British circles. Al-Afghani was for rent and moved between the French and the British. Muhammad Abdu, an Afghani protege, and Rashid Rida both of whom influenced Hassan al-Banna, founder of the MB, were close to the British. Rarely are the lodge connections of the first three analyzed let alone mentioned. Mitchell is silent on this point. The MB are an esoteric society in the style of various 19th century European organizations but formatted to an Islamic mode.

Cromer pushed Abduh along and upwards. One reason was that strict Islamic circles had ruled against usury with implications for banking and finance. Cromer (a Baring) found Abduh of great utility in that Abduh rejected the strict Islamic injunction against usury, and so on. The Rothschilds, British and French, were of course among the main proponents for the seizure of Egypt by the British Empire in 1882. This was noticed in the US and I imagine in Canada also.

Today it is said the "business" faction of the MB is dominant. How convenient. They were prominent in Morsi's visit to China, for example.


I understand the Iranian connection with Assad. Do the Israelis think that a unified Sunni Islamist bloc in their neighborhood would be less threatening? Is that in fact the case? Or are they confident that they can block an Islamist takeover in Syria?

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