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28 May 2013


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John Minnerath

Great title sir.
And who's doing the pimping?


Israel's public allusion to attacking Russian SP-300 missile deliveries guarantees that the Russians will deliver them. Both have not committed themselves to act. Obama et al now have a clearly defined choice. Dramatically escalate so there is no Assad regime to deliver to or to withdraw from any involvement while letting Israel know that it is on its own with any confrontation with Russia.

As an aside, the EU weapons embargo is now over and this will be a huge prod for Assad and allies to carry out their offensive even more decisively and timely with all manpower and weapons available. Things are speeding up. Not a good time for befuddled decision making.

Has anyone convincingly made the case clearly as to why the demise of the Assad regime is in the US national interest? Anything beyond US credibility being at stake after POTUS calls for regime change?



My dad was a finance corps officer. Maybe they knew each other. pl

John Minnerath

Oh, that's right. Damn it's hell to get old and forgetful.


Didn't the Israeli's make a deal with the USSR for all the info Jonathan Pollard stole so as to allow emigration of Russian Jews to Israel? It doesn't look like those folks now in Israel care for the new Russian government or its policies. I'm sure not in favor of supporting them if they attack the Russians.

John Minnerath

Very possible PL.
Those who served long careers met, served with and developed long friendships with great numbers of their fellows.

William R. Cumming

The EU has announced it is withdrawing its arms embargo to the Syrian rebels.


now committed themselves to act



Surely even Israel wouldn't be naive enough to attack Russia without considering the consequences? I mean they would gain absolutely nothing from such an encounter, and in fact stand to lose a lot more.

But then again, as you've said time and time again, some governments are just plain dumb.

I imagine that the UK would follow in the US's footsteps then?

What do you think China would do in such a scenario?


Note,the S-300P could be a game-changer. The S-300 systems have been modernized repeatedly to remain state-of-the-art airplane- and rocket-destruction machines. The S-300PMU2 Favorit can launch six missiles at once, each capable of destroying aircraft flying at several times the maximum speed of the F-16 and F-22 fighter jets – the staples of the Israeli and US air forces, respectively – as well as intercepting ballistic targets.

Omo Naija

We certainly dodged a bullet with a McCain presidency. Its war war war - hopefully a viable republican candidate can come along and put him to pasture.

The fall out from the Libyan adventure is reverberating all over sahelian africa. Nigeria is facing an ever escalating insurgency from a AQ like Boko Haram. Massive explosion in Niger this weekend. Mali still under threat. All these conflicts fueled by arms from Libyan conflict.

The Syrian conflict can easily get out of hand. The Saudi's have meddled in a lot of conflicts in the regions and sooner than later will get a taste of their own medicine.

I am particularly taken with the statement by the Russians - we will supply the missiles to counter "hot heads" in the region. That is as blunt a message to the Israelis to tread carefully. It simply means the visit by Netanyahu reinforced Russias position.

Col, I am certain there are those within the US Military/IC making the right calls but largely ignored by the politicos and lobbyist. Must be mightily frustrating. What options do they have?


Col: How much of this is just for show? Didn't Russia give Israel the codes to defenat Assad's air defense system in 2007 when Israel attacked the reactor?

I remember reading that Russia exchanged this information for data on drones that Israel had sold to Georgia.

As a civilian, it is hard to know how much, if any, of this is true.



Israel could have penetrated Syrian air defenses without whatever it is you speak of. pl



Yes. The FC was so small that they pretty much knew everyone else for good or ill. pl


Russia could have delivered the missiles a long time ago. To Syria and Iran. Neither they, or Israel will do anything except bargain.

Hans Howe

I'm also trying to figure out why booting Assad out makes sense. The results of all the Arab Spring ® shenanigans have all been "meet the new boss, worse than the old boss". It's not as if there's a lack of really significant things we could do. What are these (Clinton, Kerry, BHO) people thinking?


Has Israel lost its mind?

I know they've been getting more extreme over the years, or at least the security state part of their government has, but this sounds like a catastrophic choice. If they attacked Russia, would they do it to pressure us into war? I mean, not to sound stupid, but what kind of crazy sh, er, stuff, is this?


*Is* this all kabuki?

My God, the world's gotten crazy since I last looked beyond our borders. I've been preoccupied with the crazy *within* our borders.



Putin (the New Russian Government) is not a fool, he knows and understands just what back-stabbing scoundrels that the Israelis really are, and will play them when and how it works in Russia's favor. Putin when he looks at Israel sees the scoundrels that stole and plundered Russian artifacts and Russian treasures, and being the Russian Nationalist (puts Rus first) in the finest Rus first traditions, will always cover his bets. Pity that the Israelis are soo the fools that they can't see that their lying/cheating/backstabbing ways only work to their disadvantage (both short and long term).

Now for some more pleasant beach time, here is Катя Баженова - Все о чем мечтаю

Alba Etie

IMO - President Obama will not be buffaloed into intervening in the Syrian Civil War . I also believe that the EU arms embargo lifting is moot - because the Western powers will not arm AQ - and Germany in particular will not want get embroiled in this mess.
I guess the one real wild card besides BiBi killing any Russian advisers is whether are not Erdogan decides to do something to force NATO into a no fly zone, or worse boots on the ground . But I also believe that the BHO administration would still not involve us in Syria even if Turkey or Israel takes actions that might start this turning into an escalating regional conflict . I base these assertions on the action of the BHO administration so far-not withstanding the stated policy of Syrian regieme change . I also believe that the Elites in these United States have come to realize that inserting our Military into the Syrian Civil War meat grinder would bring wide spread & sustained domestic protest across our entire comity - think Chicago 1968 . There is zero domestic support for a Syrian intervention .

Ed S

Israel is turning into a total nightmare. This is why its not a good idea to allow a small nation to arm itself to the teeth.

Small nations don't have the economic + global geopolitical power to influence world events, so they always revert back to threatening to use the only thing they have: force. And that eventually turns into a self fulling prophecy.

Someone should have put a red line on Israel's militarization once it had passed 2+ nuclear warheads. Bibi is sitting there with 400+ nuclear armed warheads and cooking up plans for doing things that will end badly for him, his people, and everyone else.



The problem with old age is that you think you have seen it all. But, I haven’t seen ethnic riots in Sweden or machetes running amok in Britain before.

The EU has lifted the ban on arms for the Syrian Sunni rebels.

Western Governments have lost all restraint in robbing the many to give to the few; including, ignoring the collateral damage from their endless money making wars. The two Johns are tip-toeing along a machete’s edge. Qatar, Israel and America are minutes away from detonating a Sunni Shiite Jihad that would engulf the Middle East from Lebanon to Pakistan and could easily escalate into WWIII.


Simon Jenkins makes a point that Western meddling, 'high on Arab Spring', has rid the MENA region of it's secularist dictators and by unleashing the surpressed/repressed forces of neoconservative Islamism, has inadvertently lessened the chance of democracy ever taking root as Western capitals would desire. As PL has said many a time, Jenkins' reading of the Arab Spring may be wrong, since the Islamists want 'one man, one vote, one time'.

Ursa Maior

What are the stakes in replacing Assad, especially with islamists? In whose interest is a chaotic arab world, from which a new Turkish led caliphate can emerge? What is the point supporting the rebels who clearly against everyhing we western democrats hold dear?

This situation is as chaos itself.

Clifford Kiracofe

This is a useful article on the SNC which is a Muslim Brotherhood dominated house of cards in a state of collapse. The two Johns are pimping for the SNC among others, cheap tricks all. Meanwhile the war expands in the region and the possibility of something much larger looms.

..."An increasingly rancourous dispute over control of the opposition alliance has pushed the SNC to the brink of collapse in Istanbul over the past five days.

“If we do not solve our internal problems here and now there will be no coalition left to speak of,” an SNC member said.

What was supposed to be a brief conference dealing with a host of pressing issues has, instead, become an embarrassing display of internal politicking and inefficiency.

It has undermined the already threadbare credibility of the main opposition alliance, both inside Syria and in the eyes of its international backers.

An opposition organiser in Damascus said the SNC had missed a chance to make itself relevant, just as the Syrian crisis is dramatically escalating and a strong, united opposition front was needed....."

Read more: http://www.thenational.ae/news/world/middle-east/syrian-national-coalition-on-brink-of-collapse#ixzz2UfvisIwZ

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