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View Diary: Syria in context (not a rant) (215 comments)

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  •  One of the Best Ever Diary Entries on Daily Kos (9+ / 0-)

    Thank you!

    But I'm still missing something ...

    If we fear weakening Assad, which might then expose the country to a domino effect of undesireable events that are bad for Syrians and bad for us ...

    Why do we want to bomb his forces?

    I haven't seen anyone put forth a convincing argument that a moderate, secular opposition to Assad would be able to take power after his demise.

    As in Iraq, other, more entrenched forces with broader demographic support -- as well as support from neighboring countries -- seem more likely to be able to seize control.

    The Assad regime is a bad one.

    And watching the body language of the Syrian president, you can see that he is hostage to institutions and forces that he does not entirely (or at all) control.

    But what is our end goal here?

    "I'll believe that corporations are people when I see Rick Perry execute one."

    by bink on Wed Aug 28, 2013 at 01:42:23 PM PDT

    •  I expect that a military action (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Lawrence, wu ming, MRA NY

      would be a very limited strike. Ideally it would target the resources of the units responsible. It's quite likely that those considering a military action have access to much better information about this incident than has been made public.

      My expectation would be that a military action would seek to avoid destabilizing the Assad regime, and be specifically targeted so as not to provoke a strong response. There are examples of similarly targeted military actions in the past. Some were successful, some weren't.

      •  yup (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        erratic, Lawrence

        i would expect any military actions to be intended (for whatever that's worth) to shake assad and his regime's confidence that they can win this outright, and serve as a shot across the bow about using chemical weapons, but not so much that his regime collapses outright.

        IMO obama's strategic endgame here is a negotiated settlement involving assad's regime (maybe not assad though), the kurds, and those elements of the sunni opposition that are amenable to peace, brokered by the great powers backing them (us, turkey, france, russia, iran, qatar, saudis). then, someone has to deal with the salafis in western syria, ideally some unified new syrian military force loyal to the new state.

        not saying that's even remotely plausible, but it's the sort of thing i see him hoping for.

        •  "not . . . even remotely plausible" (0+ / 0-)

          That's the understatement of the week . . . and if that's what our Syria policy is based on . . .

          The situation is so much like Iraq . . . take the lid (Saddam, Assad) off and watch it boil.  The chance of a "negotiated settlement" is zero . . . apart from the present government there is no one to "negotiate" with.  And as in any power vacuum the meanest, nastiest most brutal faction will win.  But that's the real goal . . . not some stable, humanitarian secular State, but Syria in chaos and rubble.  Again, just like Iraq.

          Fake Left, Drive Right . . . not my idea of a Democrat . . .

          by Deward Hastings on Wed Aug 28, 2013 at 04:34:48 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Well, actually, I'm expecting a much more limited (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          wu ming

          action, a laser-strike at the responsible parties. I think right now we're getting a lot of noise - there is no credible threat of an attack on Syria until the UN leaves, but according to the media, the bombing will start on Thursday.

          I generally agree on the strategic endgame that you're proposing, but I don't think that this potential action is intended to accomplish that. I think it's designed to show US/NATO capabilities/willingness, and force the local players to start getting involved in negotiating solutions.

          Obama has committed to being a rational negotiator, which undermines the standard US tactic of being a powerful madman. But that tactic was profoundly flawed and led to irresponsible atrocities like the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, imho.

        •  PS, I really appreciate your comments (0+ / 0-)

          and insight!

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