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19 September 2015


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Kim Sky

There sure have been a number of news articles, in one way or another, implying that the current US-policy in Syria is a mistake. From the mild accusation that intelligence was doctored to - the much more damaging red-bearded-chechen....

ISIS Leader Omar al-Shishani Fought Under U.S. Umbrella as Late as 2013


With U.S. Unwilling To Fight The Islamic State Russia Deploys Troops To Syria

Some seriously embarrassing stuff! Sure hope a change is in order??? Kind of doubt it though.


VietnamVet -

My understanding was that there were hundreds of thousands of Iraqi refugees in Syria from the last 12 years of chaos in Iraq. Maybe a number of them have given up on resettling anywhere in the ME in the future, and have moved on to the EU?



There will be quite a violent backlash in Europe is the professional elite try and let in 4 million economic refuges much less 20 million.


There are extremely hard working Syrians in Canada. I know because I've worked with them. Some of their children are having trouble adapting, some are excelling in school. They all used to travel back to Syria as often as possible, and they all wanted to maintain "homes" to return to.

Babak Makkinejad

Afghans have not left Iran in any substantial numbers; Iraqi refugees in Tehran are still there.

SAR will not be reconquering areas now controlled by ISIS.

But even in that unlikely event, the only people who will go back would be those that could get more money or more power in the post war world.

Rather doubtful in my opinion.

In an analogous situation, well-to-do Afghans went back to staff the government that US was building in Afghanistan - there was Uncle Sugar and the there was political and social power that they could never have had in the United States.

Babak Makkinejad

I am sure there are such people. But I should think the numbers would be rather small. And then there is the rigid credential system of Europe (excepting UK) that would prevent such people from practicing what they have learnt.

Even in the United States, people with foreign technical degrees (even outside of such guild-protected professions as Medicine and Dentistry) had a hard time finding positions - again assuming that they were competently practicing in that field - say as a Mechanical Engineer - before emigrating to the United States.

In Iran, at times, they had the Afghan engineers working as menial construction workers; Afghans hated and resented that but had no alternatives.

Babak Makkinejad


Spanish government after the economic collapse of 2008, tried persuading the surplus workers to go back to Africa or South America by giving them cash incentive.

That did not work - say one get one's 3000 Euros and goes back to the same damned mud-brick village in the mountains of Morocco or Tunisia - then what?

Economically, it is more efficient to have people concentrated so their economic output could be harnessed and made more productive rather than having people living spread-out over large tracts of barren land with nothing to recommend itself.

Babak Makkinejad

They must be from the areas of Syria that had been part of Seljuk Empire.

But I also heard from an English friend of mine that you could get mate all over Syria; which meant many Syrians came back from South America and brought mate with them.

But looking at the experience of US and Mexico - I just cannot believe that all these millions of people are ever going to go back.

I also think that their numbers will increase as the single young men - the majority of the emigrants - will be sending for wives from their respective countries of origin and bring them to Europe.


re: 1. the 99 year truce - Israel will not stick to its part of the deal under a truce. For zionism to fulfill its goal Israel will have to expand further, necessarily at Palestinian (or Syrian) expense.

The Israelis want to have their cake and eat it too, i.e. have settlement expansion and if not submission then at least no open conflict with those they expropriate.

The Palestinians have always freaked out about being robbed their ancestral lands, as they will in the future, not to mention the being treated like crap by the Israelis part. Come to think of it, outrage is actually a rather natural reaction to robbery, thuggery and colonisation.

But except for that quibble I agree, a truce is Israel best chance, and if they were not so dumb they would see that. But, as I said, to do that requires self restraint and soberness on part of the Israelis, both in short supply.


I certainly have, including one who was certifiably insane.


A Foreign Affairs article that is on point


Ken Roberts

Maybe it will clarify to move the immigrant / refugee discussion from anecdote to numbers. Canada has over the decades hovered between 0.5 percent to 1.0 percent of population coming in annually - for whatever reason, a combination economic, social and family unification factors. When level is down to 0.5 pct, we end up with shortages of skills, etc -- and when level is up to 1.0 pct, we get stress eg "taking jobs" rhetoric. Happy medium seems to be about 0.7 pct annually. Results in about 20 percent of population having been born elsewhere. Maybe a slightly higher fraction of adult population, or considering a delay in acquiring citizenship, maybe a slightly lower fraction of electorate.

Realizing that Europe, et al, are different situations, but still, perhaps the "absorption capacity" of Europe or Australia can be estimated as a calculation.


As the Al-Saud tribal fiefdom is a family mafia gang, I don't understand why their members are not PERSONALLY targeted by the SAR or other adversaries, irregardless of their age, gender or geographic location.


And there were government (US) contracts that could be (half)fulfilled, filling their coffers to buy mentions in Great Falls, VA.


They did not made the deal for legacy purposes. They made the deal to lull their opponent into sleep and cause divisions within the establishment by empowering the Rafsanjani camp. As I said before, Iran gave up a non-existant weapon's program for a USG recognition that is will not be forthcoming.


In my experience, those who go home are the successful ones with financial reserve. They are the very group that is best integrated int the host country and will not be part of any future trouble. Those that stay will cause the problems.


Perhaps this article may be of some interest to readers here?

Putin’s consistency on Syria has Washington fuming



Excellent discussion- really learn a lot from the Col. and community. A couple of points:

1. Turkey is responsible for the refugees flooding Europe. It let loose the gates of the refugee camps. Motivation? I think the refugees are coming thru Turkey. There a million, yes a million, Syrian refugees in tiny Lebanon, but I don't think they are traveling thru Lebanon.

2. Kerry is not a moderate. He's a NeoCon thru and thru. Personally, I detest him, although I did vote for him given the alternative. I could have had five Kerry class purple hearts if I"d had the low character to have put in for them. Purple hearts are for serious injuries not scratches. And then, you don't throw them (or replicas) away in a grandstanding gesture.

During the 2008 campaign he discovered his Jewish roots and that his granduncles had perished under the Nazis. His brother, Cameron converted, but I would not classify Kerry as an Israeli Firster. I think he tried hard to get relief for the Palestinians. And of course he's not as bad as Schumer, Cardin, etc. And better than Cruz et al.

Yet, just a few days ago, he said (again) that Assad must go, and further, in the past he said not be replaced by a similar person. The NeoCons will not settle for anything but lustration. They want to tear the secular fabric of Syria, outlaw the Baath party, and disband the Army like they did in Iraq. (Moregenthau would be pleased)



My first company CO was relieved of command for his bizarre and tyrannical behavior and later boarded out of the army for madness, but in the USMA AOG obit he sounds like a saint. It is a masterpiece of omission. pl


@Pat "On the other hand you have Obama's band of social revolutionaries who want to see their campaign for unlimited and unfettered human rights continue to be projected overseas in efforts for regime change in Syria, Russia, Iran and in any other place that displeases them. "

The leader of this gang, behind the curtain, is Joe Biden. He pushed the Ukraine debacle and he, as an ardent Zionist, is pushing the Syria issue. He has argued for splitting up Iraq (and Syria) since 2006.

There is little, if any, "human rights" thought behind his calculations.



I won't argue with you over Biden. My personal experience of him is that he is an Irish machine politician of the kind who once ruled many US cities. His good fellow persona is highly deceptive. IMO Sanders stands out as a human among all the candidates in both parties. I say that in spite of my reluctance to vote for someone that far to the left, but I will if I have a chance to do that. He reminds me of the Jewish Brooklynite I had for a radio operator when I was a boy lieutenant. That man stood literally at my elbow for two years. He had an MA in criminology from NYU and had allowed himself to be drafted into the infantry from a sense of civic duty. pl

William R. Cumming

YALTA CONFERENCE often criticized but it was a de facto settlement of the spoils of war if not the spoils of politics. Is all the MENA fallout just the failure of the US and Russia post-cold war meeting to design de facto spheres of influence? And having the will to announce their design?

alba etie

Col Lang
I am supporting Senator Sanders . HRC is nothing but a neocon - full stop . And I believe that Sanders despite his self proclaimed identity as a democratic socialist - is not as far to the left as many voters fear. Sanders is actually pretty good on second amendment issues. Finally in my view our collective "Overton Window ' has been pushed so far to the right that we need a countervailing constituency to push it back more in the middle of our comity. My one true love astonished me yesterday - when out of the blue she was asking many questions about our coming national elections , then stated bluntly she will vote for Sanders. MY SWMBO has been a HRC supporter for years - but she too has become weary & wary of the neocons .
"Feel the Bern... ". Sanders could well win the nomination and then who knows ...

alba etie

How do you see current affairs in Ukraine?- Do you see the West starting to look for compromise with Putin in Ukraine , so that Syria can be more effectively addressed , especially in the context of the mass exodus into Europe from Syria ?

alba etie

Col Lang
Is it true that former Senator Jim Webb opposed the Iranian deal ? And if that is true is that why perhaps former Senator Webb has has had no traction in the democratic nomination contest for 2015 ?

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