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Lately a number of Kossacks have complained that I have led too many of my diaries on Syria with BREAKING, like the one this morning, BREAKING: Syrian prime minister defects. One has even suggested that I hold BREAKING for the defection of Assad or the like.

So I won't call BREAKING on this. I mean what's another massacre in Syria? Another family slaughtered by Assad's goons? Get over it! This sort of thing happens everyday now. Not only is it not BREAKING, its not even news. If you don't believe me, check the evening newscasts for word of what I am reporting here. Clearly, the world has learned to live with it. If the Syrians can't, that's their problem.

I remember when the people of the Earth came together to form the United Nations and cried out as if in one voice "Never Again!" So mark well this year, 2012, and the place, Syria, where "Never Again" became "whenever."

Today's massacre, or one of them, took place in Saqha, Damascus | 6 August 2012 |  VERY GRAPHIC

Another massacre today in Ariha, Idlib. Some already dead, some breathing their last | 6 August 2012

     Twelve civilians slaughtered by warplane shelling in Sakhour district of Aleppo. | 6 August 2012

7 executed by regime thugs & found dumped in Mua'admeyat Al Sham, Damascus | 6 August 2012

13 corpses found tortured & executed near Air Force Intel branch in Khadeye, Aleppo | 6 August 2012

       What was done to a man today in Moaddamiya, Syria | Hiroshima Day 2012 | VERY GRAPHIC

I added this to my diary on the PM's defection about three hours after I published it so I don't think many people saw it. As I had put those hours into composing it and many more into thinking it through, I am repeating it here:

This defection shows for the thousandth time that the civil war in Syria is being fought between those still being held captive by a tyrant and his tiny clique of supporters, and those Syrians that have broken free of that captivity.

That drive to freedom started as part of the popular Arab uprising that began in January 2011 and now 17 months later we can see that of all the countries of MENA where the people decided to topple a long standing dictator, it is the Syrians that have had the hardest row to hoe. No other people have had to face this level of regime violence without meaningful international intervention. Everyday we hear of new massacres and atrocities as this regime pounds resistive communities all across Syrian with long range artillery and tank fire, helicopter gunships and jet planes dropping cluster bombs. The "community" of nations has let him know firmly that using chemical weapons would be crossing a red line, anything else apparently is fair game. I fear the people of the world will long rue the day that it became acceptable to suppress ones own population the way the Assad regime is being allowed to.

Kofi Annan's Peace Plan was a bad joke on the Syrian people from the beginning. By making such nebulous questions as the cessation of arms smuggling a precondition for a ceasefire, he assured that Assad would always have an out. Now he can add Syrians to those poor souls in Bosnian, Rwanda and Darfur that were massacred as he led the UN's efforts to avert exactly that.    

We now find that even Bashar al-Assad's new prime minister, chosen only two months ago, was forced to take the job under threat of death. Even at the highest levels of his regime, Assad cannot depend on loyalty or genuine support to keep his people in line. This defection and the news that has come out with Riad Farid Hijab, show definitively that this is a regime ruled by terror. From defectors as high as the PM down to the working class grunts that make up the backbone of the Free Syrian Army, we hear the same stories over and over again. They were kept at their post under threat of death. Defection is extremely difficult because if families are left behind, the regime will take its revenge on them. Many more would defect if only they could get themselves and their families out.

Beyond terror, Assad has been able to maintain his rule through strict control of the information that reaches Syrians. So many Syrian soldiers have said that they actually believed that they were going off to fight "foreign-backed armed terrorist gangs" because that's all they had heard over and over again. They defected when they found out the truth as they were ordered to open fire on unarmed protesters. That's how the Free Syrian Army was founded. A colonel defected with hundreds of his men on 29 July 2011 and founded the FSA in Deir ez-Zor after they had been ordered to open fire on unarmed protesters there. A week ago three families were massacred by regime thugs in Deir ez-Zor.

One of the major factors propelling the Arab Spring revolts forward has been a revolutionary transformation that has taken place among the Arabs that has brought democratic nationalism to the fore and pushed the tribal and sectarian identifications, division that the old regimes and the imperialists alike have relied on, much more into the background. This is any extremely important fact that is missed by many analysts of both the right and the left.

The popular opposition to the Assad regime has from the very beginning been non-sectarian, and while it has been majority Sunni, as is Syria, it has had wide support among Christians, Shiite and Alawite from the beginning. The Assad regime and its supporters have always sought to portray it otherwise. The Assad family has always ruled by pitting tribe against tribe and in this rebellion they have tried to keep the tribes closest to them under their thumb with a campaign of mis-information and outright fabrication designed to create fear among these minorities as to what might happen to them if the regime is overthrown.

To this end, and for international consumption, the Assad regime and its supporters have tried to portray the struggle as one of a legitimate government, abet in need of reform, but legit nonetheless, besieged by foreign backed Islamic terrorists bent of overthrowing a secular government and imposing Shari law on Muslims and non-Muslims alike. While they may admit to some discontent among the Syrian people, the real forces behind this attempt at regime change are Saudi Arabia and Qatar, and behind them, the CIA and the Zionist state. This is the lie that they consistently put out to their own people and the world through SANA and other state controlled media outlets.    

Of course, like all good lies, there is a grain of truth that makes them work. A small number of foreign jihadists have come to Syria to make mischief. The opposition has received some support from Saudi Arabia and Qatar. Not as much as those countries would like to take credit for, or the Assad regime would like to blame them for, but they have provided some walkie-talkies, maybe even some weapons and most importantly, money to buy weapons from corrupt Syrian officials. For all the talk about outside weapons coming into the conflict, it is clear that the FSA is fighting Assad with his own weapons and those weapons are being supplied, and no doubt resupplied, by Russia and other counties still in his corner. The CIA has also been trying to insinuate itself into this conflict and has been positioning agents in Turkey in the past few months, but that is a long ways from running things.

How can anyone seriously talk about popular support for this regime under these conditions of terror and media control? The same voices that tell us that the Assad regime has a real base of popular support that must be taken into account are precisely the voices that told us that Qaddafi had genuine supporters in Libya. Once his terror apparatus disappeared, so did his supporters. Even when a new law banning praise of the Qaddafi regime was found unconstitutional by the Libyan courts, no one wanted to take advantage of that freedom.

The supporters of the Assad regime know there is no way to convince people that the regime has not committed horrendous crimes against humanity. So they have sought to exaggerate every abuse by the Free Syrian Army and fabricate other crimes against them so they can discredit the fighters opposing the Assad regime. Their constant refrain is "Both sides commit war crimes", "Both sides commit human rights abuses" as though that was not true in every war that has ever been fought.

They seek to obliterate any distinction as to the magnitude of the war crimes or the reason for which they are fighting so that they can reduce the issue to this basic question. Their defense of the Assad regime has reduced itself to portraying the Syrian Revolution as a struggle between two armed groups, both equally bad, with the innocent Syrian civilians caught in the middle. This is a lie.

The truth is that the Syrian people have revolted against the dictatorship. After many months they have been forced to go over to armed struggle by the regime's violence. The Free Syrian Army is truly a people's army made up of defectors from the state apparatus of repression and protesters that have taken up arms after being fired upon. And they will win, with  or without our help but the deficit in lives will be on our account.

The oldest living city in the world, Damascus, and others almost as old, are being destroyed by bombardment because the Assad regime doesn't dare send in ground forces they know will only swell the ranks of the FSA. Along with thousand of lives destroyed, some of the oldest structures built by humanity on this planet are being reduced to rubble.

Henceforth, they should stand as monuments that remind the world what it allowed a tyrant to do to a people and a city.    


Here are my related diaries on Syria:
UPDATED: Syrian prime minister defects
BREAKING: UN votes to condemn Assad Regime as Reuters posts false story on Syria
BREAKING: Kofi Annan resigns as envoy to Syria
BREAKING: Senior Syrian diplomat to Armenia defects
BREAKING: Big Explosion hits #Damascus #Syria
UPDATED: Syria's Charge D'Affaires Quits London Post
BREAKING: Ground assault on Aleppo begins!
BREAKING: Protests across Syria in spite of Assad regime violence
ALEPPO: Step outside the Matrix and witness the Horror
UPDATED: US fears massacre in #Aleppo, #Syria
BREAKING: Reports of clashes between Jordan Army & Assad's Syrian army
BRAKING: Obama stops Putin from re-arming Assad in Syria
Syria: Foreign meddling increases as crisis builds
BREAKING: Aleppo, Syria bombed with fighter jets
BREAKING: Syria issues a correction, it has no WMD to use
BREAKING: Arab League asks Assad to step down!
Bashar al-Assad: New images released as slaughter continues in Syria
no blood for oil
BREAKING: Activists report toxic gas attack in Deir ez-Zor, Syria
Glenn Greenwald sees Islamist Terrorism as main issue in Syria
Will Syria's Assad make a chemical attack in Damascus on Saturday?
BREAKING: I know where Syria's President Bashar al-Assad is!
BREAKING: Massive Fire near #Assad's Presidential Palace in #Damascus, #Syria
BREAKING: Is Syria's Bashar al-Assad dead or dying?
BREAKING: Damascus explosion kills Defense Minister, other key figures
The battle for Damascus is coming
BREAKING: General Strike in Damascus
BREAKING: Intense fighting reported in Damascus now!
BREAKING: Syrian defector spills beans as important new defection reported.
Does Syria's Assad have something on Kofi Annan?
Tremseh Massacre in Syria: What we know
BREAKING: ~227 reported massacred by Assad's forces in Tremseh, Syria today!
Syria: Is Assad regime on the verge of collapse?
BREAKING: Russian Warships reported in Syria
BREAKING: #Russia changing on #Assad but not as fast as conditions in #Syria
UN Observers say violence in Syria is ‘Unprecedented’
BREAKING: Defection of major Assad insider reported in Syria
BREAKING: WikiLeaks releases 2.4 million #Syria emails
When did "Never Again" become "Whenever?" | #Douma
BREAKING: Incredible mass rally in Aleppo, Syria today!
BREAKING: HRW releases torture report on Syria
BREAKING: Syrian General defects with 293 to Turkey
BREAKING: Items not in the MSM on Syria
My response to Phyllis Bennis: Where is the non-violent opposition in Syria?
BREAKING: Syrian Air Force attacks Douma, 10m from Damascus, thousands flee
BREAKING: As Syria Burns, UN Blows More Smoke
BREAKING: Kofi Annan to propose Syrian unity gov't sans Assad!
BREAKING: Douma, Syria under massive attack, another massacre feared
BREAKING: Another mass defection from Syrian army
BREAKING: #NATO says No War in #Syria shoot down of #Turkey jet
NATO meetup tomorrow as more defect from Syria
BREAKING: Turkey calls for NATO consult on downing of jet by Syria
BREAKING: Senior Syrian Officers Defect
UPDATED: Russia reported to be preparing to evacuate from Syria
BREAKING: Syria fighter pilot defects
BREAKING: Britain stops Russian ship carrying attack helicopters for Syria
BREAKING: Russian troops headed to Syria
Qaddafi forces Strike Back in Libya
BREAKING: UN suspends mission in Syria
Libya & Syria - two videos - no comment
BREAKING: Russia denies supplying Syria with NEW attack helicopters
Syrian people rise up against the massacre
Another "Houla style" massacre in Syria
Fake Houla Massacre Photo: Was the BBC set up?
Idlib, Syria protest today on anniversary of Kent State killings
BREAKING: Massive protests in Syria following Friday pray
Syria is bleeding
Syria: Ceasefire faltering as mass protests breakout

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Comment Preferences

  •  Were those who complained (7+ / 0-)

    about "breaking" actually interested in the plight of the Syrians or just trying to score points in the "I'm superior" game.

    Peace and blessings for our Syrian brothers and sisters who have been murdered, wounded and tortured.  Peace and blessings for their families and friends.  May some energy in the universe give comfort to this suffering nation.

    Thank you for your devotion to the Syrians.

    " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

    by gchaucer2 on Mon Aug 06, 2012 at 05:51:50 PM PDT

  •  Thank you! (3+ / 0-)

    I Tweet most of your diaries & get re-Tweeted often.

  •  Clay, since you implicitly attacked me in this (6+ / 0-)

    diary allow me to tell you my side of the story. This paragraph itself is a big time attack on me:

    The supporters of the Assad regime know there is no way to convince people that the regime has not committed horrendous crimes against humanity. So they have sought to exaggerate every abuse by the Free Syrian Army and fabricate other crimes against them so they can discredit the fighters opposing the Assad regime. Their constant refrain is "Both sides commit war crimes", "Both sides commit human rights abuses" as though that was not true in every war that has ever been fought.
    But it is a misrepresentation, because I did not fabricate or exaggerate anything. I sourced all of my claims with links and videos as have many others who criticized your diaries.

    Yes I admit I said both sides commit war crimes and both sides commit human rights abuses. I said these things because they are true. I backed up what I said. Once again here is the HRW report:

    While the protest movement in Syria was overwhelmingly peaceful until September 2011, since then Human Rights Watch has documented apparent crimes and other abuses committed by armed opposition elements. These crimes and abuses include the kidnapping and detention of security force members, individuals identified as members of government-supported militias (referred to locally as shabeeha), and individuals identified as government allies or supporters. They also include the use of torture and the execution of security force members and civilians. Some of the attacks targeting Shias and Alawites appear to be motivated by sectarianism.
    http://www.hrw.org/...
    Let me go through the document in detail:
    A number of witnesses have told Human Rights Watch that non-state armed groups identifying themselves with the opposition have kidnapped both civilians and members of the security forces. “Marwan,” an Alawite resident of Karam el Zeitoun, Homs, told Human Rights Watch that on January 23 an armed gang entered his neighborhood and kidnapped his elderly parents from their home. He said,
    Human Rights Watch has reviewed at least 25 videos on YouTube in which Syrian security forces or their alleged supporters are filmed confessing to crimes under circumstances in which it appears that their statements were made under duress. At least 18 of these videos show footage of detained individuals who are bruised, bleeding, or show other signs of physical abuse.
    Other video footage reviewed by Human Rights Watch and information received in interviews indicates that members of the FSA have executed individuals suspected of crimes against the opposition in their custody.

    One video, released on YouTube on February 4, shows an individual hung from a tree by his neck in front of several armed fighters. Commentary indicates that he is a shabeeha fighter captured and executed by the FSA Kafr Takharim battalion on January 22, 2012. In a second video, which appears to have been released by the FSA Al Farouq battalion on YouTube, an individual identified as a member of Air Force Intelligence based in Homs is interrogated and confesses to shooting at protesters. The detainee’s face is very badly beaten, cut, and bruised, and he appears disoriented. Written statements accompanying the video state that it was filmed before his execution, and the interrogator in the video, amidst curses, asks him for his final request before dying.

    Just on August 1 BBC reported that HRW said:
    Human rights activists have condemned the public shooting in Syria of four apparent Assad loyalists by rebels in the battleground city of Aleppo.
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/...
    If you click on the BBC link you will see a very graphic video of the incident.

    In conclusion, I do not support the Assad regime. I believe he is a war criminal but neither do I support the gross human rights violations committed by the rebels. I condemn all violations of human rights irrespective of partisan politics or team-politics. Too bad you cannot do the same.

    Good day (or rather night) to you sir.

  •  This was in your breaking diary yesterday: (4+ / 0-)

    It would appear you don't believe it so I was wondering why you put it in your daily breaking diary yesterday?  

    "A churchgoing Syrian told me that he used to see himself primarily as “Syrian” and that religious identity, in political terms, was an idea that never occurred to him — until an opposition gang attacked his family earlier this year in Homs. “It’s a label they pinned on us,” he said. “If their revolution is for everyone, as they keep insisting it is, why are Christians being targeted? It is because what they are waging is not a struggle for freedom, and it’s certainly not for everyone.”

    As Saudi Arabian arms and money bolster the opposition, the 80,000 Christians who’ve been “cleansed” from their homes in Hamidiya and Bustan al-Diwan in Homs Province in March by the Free Syrian Army have gradually given up the prospect of ever returning home.

    A churchgoing Syrian told me that he used to see himself primarily as “Syrian” and that religious identity, in political terms, was an idea that never occurred to him — until an opposition gang attacked his family earlier this year in Homs. “It’s a label they pinned on us,” he said. “If their revolution is for everyone, as they keep insisting it is, why are Christians being targeted? It is because what they are waging is not a struggle for freedom, and it’s certainly not for everyone.”

    "As Saudi Arabian arms and money bolster the opposition, the 80,000 Christians who’ve been “cleansed” from their homes in Hamidiya and Bustan al-Diwan in Homs Province in March by the Free Syrian Army have gradually given up the prospect of ever returning home."

    "The rebels’ conduct has prompted at least some Sunnis who had supported the rebels and once-wavering Syrians to pledge renewed loyalty to Assad. Many who once regarded the regime as a kleptocracy now view it as the best guarantor of Syria’s endangered pluralism."

    A Sunni shopkeeper in the impoverished suburb of Set Zaynab, which was partly destroyed in the clashes last week, no longer supports the rebellion. “I wanted Assad to go because he is corrupt,” he said. “But what happened here, what they did, it scared me. It made me angry. I cannot support the murder of my neighbors in the name of change. You cannot bring democracy by killing innocent people or by burning the shrines of Shiites. Syrians don’t do that. This is the work of the Wahhabis in Saudi Arabia,” he added, referring to the ultra conservative Sunni sect."

    "The Global War on Terror is a justification for U.S. Imperialism. It must be stopped."

    by BigAlinWashSt on Mon Aug 06, 2012 at 08:00:35 PM PDT

  •  Clay, I've asked you several times now but (5+ / 0-)

    you've never answered.

    What do you want the US, UK, EU, GCC, etc to do?

  •  Syria Divides the Arab Left (4+ / 0-)
    http://www.zcommunications.org/...
    ...
    Al-Akhbar’s crisis is symptomatic of the debate dividing the Arab left, ideologically and strategically. Some continue to support the Syrian regime in the name of the struggle against Israel and resistance to imperialism. Others stand staunchly with the opposition, in the name of revolution and the defence of democratic rights. Still others support a middle way between showing solidarity (from a distance) with the protestors’ demands for freedom, and rejecting foreign interference: they advocate some kind of national reconciliation. The Syrian crisis is making the Arab left — whether strictly Communist, tending towards Marxist, leftwing nationalist, radical or moderate — seem in disarray.
    ...
     A prudent distance

    Part of the radical left, though denouncing the Assad regime and calling for its fall, is wary of the support the Gulf monarchies are giving to the Syrian revolutionaries; equally, it dares not subscribe fully to the anti-Assad discourse of the “international community”, especially the US. But this anti-imperialist reflex does not take precedence over support for revolution: what counts is the internal situation in Syria, and the principle of popular uprising, as it did in Tunisia and Egypt.

    But the majority of the Arab left are maintaining a prudent distance from the Syrian uprising. They condemn its militarisation, which they say only benefits radical Islamist groups and the foreign fighters flocking to Syria. They criticise the sectarianism of the conflict, pitting first Alawite then Christian minorities against a Sunni majority radicalised by repression, which they fear will lead to unending civil war. And they worry about the regional and international balance of power. With Iran and Syria set against the Gulf monarchies, and Russia and China against the US, Syria has been put on the front line of a great international war game.
    ...

  •  thank you for continuing to shine a spotlight (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Clay Claiborne, mookins

    a massacre would "BREAKING" to me, even if it was happening 100 times a day.

  •  Your analysis of the Syrian situation does not (2+ / 0-)

    agree with the majority of the media, including the pro-opposition Reuters

    A small number of foreign jihadists have come to Syria to make mischief. The opposition has received some support from Saudi Arabia and Qatar. Not as much as those countries would like to take credit for, or the Assad regime would like to blame them for, but they have provided some walkie-talkies, maybe even some weapons and most importantly, money to buy weapons from corrupt Syrian officials. For all the talk about outside weapons coming into the conflict, it is clear that the FSA is fighting Assad with his own weapons and those weapons are being supplied, and no doubt resupplied, by Russia and other counties still in his corner.
    http://www.reuters.com/...
    Analysis: No happy outcome in Syria as conflict turns into proxy war

    (Reuters) - Regional powers are pouring in money and guns, jihadists are joining rebels battling to overthrow Bashar al-Assad, while his own well-armed but hard-pressed forces are fighting back ruthlessly with combat aircraft and artillery.

    Gruesome scenes of slaughtered civilians or executed rebel fighters provide daily snapshots of the worsening conflict in Syria. Video apparently showing rebels gunning down Assad militiamen in cold blood suggests the insurgents are capable of brutality to match their enemies.

    After almost 17 months of revolt against the Assad dictatorship, Syria's conflict is turning into a regional proxy war between Sunni and Shi'ite Islam that could splinter the country along sectarian lines unless a unified rebel leadership emerges as a credible opposition to the beleaguered government.
    ...
    Although the authorities have the upper hand because of superior firepower and units of loyal elite troops, the insurgents are highly motivated combatants who are becoming better armed, better trained and better organized.

    As the conflict rages on without any solution, Syrians say homegrown Islamist jihadists and groups of fighters from al Qaeda have been taking an active role.
    ...
    Lebanese columnist Rajeh Khoury predicted: "Syria could plunge into a long protracted civil war that could last years. The civil war in Lebanon, with its much smaller population of five million, lasted 15 years due to foreign interference so Syria would be much more complicated.

    "The Syrian crisis is so inflammatory that its flames will affect the region in one way or another."

  •  You seem to be the only reporter on this subject, (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mookins, montecristo, Clay Claiborne

    although I can't be sure.  My busy life keeps me off this blog quite a bit these days.

    Breaking news is breaking news.  Perhaps there is some kind of jealousy going on that compels people to attack your posts - I have no idea.  

    But when you are the only reporter with his finger on the pulse in a place as pivotal and uncertain as is Syria, you have every right to use "Breaking" on a daily basis.

    Yours are one of the posts I always look for.  Thanks for keeping an eye on things for those of us who care but have so little time.

    Do you have any info on the attack at the Gaza checkpoint?  NPR was ascribing it to Hamas, which simply didn't make sense to me.  At any rate, it's an excuse for the Egyptian military to clamp down on that recently loosened border - which had offered a little hope for the deprived and oppressed people of the Gaza Strip.

    Government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth - Abraham Lincoln

    by Gustogirl on Mon Aug 06, 2012 at 11:42:42 PM PDT

    •  Pretty much my sentiments too, Gustogirl (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Gustogirl
    •  Thank you for your comments (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Gustogirl

      I don't know what the real story on the Gaza checkpoint is.

      Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

      by Clay Claiborne on Tue Aug 07, 2012 at 06:50:22 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  NATO propaganda. If that's all you want to read, (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Claudius Bombarnac

      go for it.

      "The Global War on Terror is a justification for U.S. Imperialism. It must be stopped."

      by BigAlinWashSt on Tue Aug 07, 2012 at 07:55:37 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  BigAl is right. Much of their reporting is (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BigAlinWashSt, protectspice

      propaganda. They have too many connections with corporations and government.

      NPR: National Public Radio Or National Propaganda Radio?

      This is NPR, National Public Radio. Support for WAMU is provided by Lockheed Martin. Bringing criminals to justice is more important than ever. Advanced systems developed by Lockheed Martin help Federal agents get the job done faster. Lockheed Martin: we never forget who we’re working for.

      Is Lockheed Martin Shadowing You?
      How a Giant Weapons Maker Became the New Big Brother
      By William D. Hartung

      Have you noticed that Lockheed Martin, the giant weapons corporation, is shadowing you?  No?  Then you haven’t been paying much attention.  Let me put it this way: If you have a life, Lockheed Martin is likely a part of it.

      True, Lockheed Martin doesn’t actually run the U.S. government, but sometimes it seems as if it might as well.  After all, it received $36 billion in government contracts in 2008 alone, more than any company in history.  It now does work for more than two dozen government agencies from the Department of Defense and the Department of Energy to the Department of Agriculture and the Environmental Protection Agency.  It’s involved in surveillance and information processing for the CIA, the FBI, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), the National Security Agency (NSA), the Pentagon, the Census Bureau, and the Postal Service.

  •  Clay, I expect you are actually aware of the fact (4+ / 0-)

    that the take down of Syria has been planned for a long time, along with the breaking of other countries of the former Ottoman Empire which were carved up in the spoils of war (WWI) by the French and the British.

    If not, you might consider reading what follows here.

    The British were keen to gain access to the oil in Mesopotamia and hence Iraq became a nation of Kurds in the north, Sunis in the Middle and Shiites in the south, boundaries drawn by the British.

    The British were not eager to rule over the Kurdish regions but they knew there was oil in the area around Mosul.

    Other countries in the region were created of many various ethnic, sectarian and religious groups, their boundaries drawn to serve the interests of the conquerors.

    Stirring up trouble among the various groups was devised as a tactic, an excellent one, by the neoconservatives who recognized this potential weakness beginning at least as far back as the early 1990's.

    A key policy document in this process was written by neoconservative Richard Perle and assisted by David Wurser and others, in July of 1996. The title "The Clean Break" which advocates the “Lebanonization” of countries of Iraq and Syria.

    In their words "Israel can shape its strategic environment, in cooperation with Turkey and Jordan, by weakening, containing, and even rolling back Syria. This effort can focus on removing Saddam Hussein from power in Iraq — an important Israeli strategic objective in its own right..."

    The main reason, as they saw it was that with all of these other countries weakened, Israel would be the unchallenged hegemon in the region. Divide, conquer and rule was the plan and remains the plan.

    Prior to 911, on 1 January 2001, leading neoconservatives were already drafting plans for a Joint US/Israeli Onslaught throughout Middle East.

    Neoconservative David Wurmser, with the assistance of his American Enterprise Institute colleague Douglas Feith, drafts a set of war plans designed around a joint military offensive by the US and Israel.

    The offensive would, in his words, “fatally strike the centers of radicalism in the Middle East.” Wurmser and Feith’s plans are extensions of an op-ed written by Wurmser weeks before (see November 1, 2000).

    Wurmser advises: “Israel and the United States should… broaden the conflict to strike fatally, not merely disarm, the centers of radicalism in the region—the regimes of Damascus [Syria], Baghdad [Iraq], Tripoli [Libya], Tehran [Iran], and Gaza [the Palestinians].

    That would establish the recognition that fighting either the United States or Israel is suicidal.” Wurmser urges both the US and Israel to be watchful for a crisis, writing, “Crises can be opportunities.”

    Link to History Commons

    After a failed attempt by Israel to break Lebanon in 2006 Iraq was the next country in line to be broken. Stovepiped intel from the neocons, bypassing normal intelligence channels provided enough cooked information for Bush to decide to proceed with an invasion of Iraq on the pretext of possession of WMDs.

    There were also unfounded claims of a Saddam connection to 9/11 and like statements from other politicians which overcame any significant public resistance to the planned attack.

    Chickenhawk neocons predicted it would take no longer than 6 weeks to secure Iraq. Of course they were wrong, off by close to 9 years. They also claimed it would weaken Iran. Again they were wrong.

    They would like to have seen Iraq broken into three pieces so as to weaken it but they were unable to overcome Iraqi government resistance.

    Even with these strategic failures there were some benefits to the US as British and American oil companies were allowed to return to Iraq and Iraq has agreed to make purchases of military hardware from the US.

    Syria was slated to be the second country broken but Iraq proved to be more than a 6 week speed-bump and other countries in the region began to stir, the so-called Arab Spring, and plans were adjusted as necessary.

    Anyone who believes the violence in Syria is the result of some internal unprovoked spontaneous uprising of the various ethnic and religious groups in opposition to the Assad Government, rather than a situation which has been carefully planned, funded and supported primarily by the US and its allies over a long period of time, is unaware of the important events in history that has brought us to this ugly period in time.

    The near future will likely be even worse, especially for those in the path of our "humanitarian efforts" to save them or in reality, partly at least, to "secure the realm".

    If only there were justice in this world ... If only people weren't so foolable. If only "the coup" had been successfully resisted.

    Links:

    Neoconservative Think Tank Influence on US Policies 1

    Neoconservative Think Tank Influence on US Policies 2

    Autumn 1992: Influential Neoconservative Academic Advocates Breaking Up Middle Eastern Countries, Including Iraq

    A Clean Break: A New Strategy for Securing the Realm

    A Policy Coup - 7 countries in 5 Years by retired General Wesley Clark

    Gen. Clark was not shy about naming a few names, those who staged the policy coup and those, some of whom, apparently remain influential in determining foreign policy.

    Orwell - "Political language ... is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable"

    by truong son traveler on Tue Aug 07, 2012 at 06:24:40 AM PDT

    •  This is not what is happening in Syria (0+ / 0-)

      The neo-cons aren't behind it. Wesley Clark  spoke of a 5 year plan in 2001 that would have ended in 2006.

      What is missing from all of the conspiracy theories is who these neo-cons secretly motivated million of Arabs to put their lives on the line to other throw oppressive dictatorships.

      I think that the didtatorships themselves provided the motivation and your CTs think these people are stupid and easily fooled.

      Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

      by Clay Claiborne on Tue Aug 07, 2012 at 07:13:28 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Same program - different schedule (2+ / 0-)
        The neo-cons aren't behind it. Wesley Clark  spoke of a 5 year plan in 2001 that would have ended in 2006.
        Glenn Greenwald: Is Obama Fulfilling the Neocon Dream of Mass Regime Change in Muslim World?

         We play an excerpt of Clark’s comments and ask Greenwald to respond. "What struck me in listening to that video just a couple of days ago is that if you go down that list of seven countries that he said the neocons had planned to basically change the governments of, you pretty much see that that vision, despite the perception that we have a Democratic president and therefore the neoconservative movement is powerless, is pretty much being fulfilled," Greenwald says. [includes rush transcript]

      •  Clark's comments were made in 2007 (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Claudius Bombarnac

        The Iraq misadventure, an attack planned by the neocon chickenhawks, was predicted to be completed "in 6 days, maybe 6 weeks, certainly not 6 months".

        The neocons predicted that the invasion of Iraq which, along with the other countries scheduled to be attacked, as related by General Clark (classified information), would weaken Iran. They were wrong again. The end result was a strengthening of ties between the Shiite led governments of both countries, Iran and Iraq.

        Syria was to be the second country to be broken. It was delayed by the long war in Iraq, which took about 9 years longer than predicted, and by the Arab Spring. In the meantime we were able to complete the neocon planned regime change in Libya.

        There is no CT here Clay. This is history. It is clearly on the record.

        Keep sucking up the propaganda and spreading it around for all to see. Someday the truth will be revealed to all and some people are going to look like fools.

        These bullfeather featured diaries help to keep 5 deferment Dick Cheney and his neocon friends smiling. They are probably gloating at how clever they are at being able to fool so many people so often.

        Orwell - "Political language ... is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable"

        by truong son traveler on Thu Aug 09, 2012 at 07:38:42 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Also by your thesis, the Arabs shouldn't (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Cynical Copper

      try to overthrow their oppressors because if they do they will be playing into the hands of the neo-cons.

      Do you think that for the greater good they should accept a police state because you think it anti-imperialist. The funny thing is that the Syrian rebels think Israel, Obama and NATO want to keep Assad. Judging  by their actions, not their words, I have to agree.

      Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

      by Clay Claiborne on Tue Aug 07, 2012 at 07:28:44 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Why should the US intervene in Syria more than (3+ / 0-)

        facilitating the supply of arms to the opposition? The longer the conflict lasts, the more militant fighters (from both sides) will be eliminated. What could be better for the US than two opponents killing each other.

        There will also be more damage to infrastructure and social structures which will leave the country completely powerless and dependent on the west in the end.

        All this for zero costs in American lives and very little treasure. This may sound cynical but if a country's government can let millions of it's own people die due to lack of health care in order to enrich a few, do you really think it cares about the lives of a few thousand foreigners?

        America's foreign policy never changed with the election of Obama. As you know, he kept the same people in charge. In any event, I don't think any president really has the power to change it radically.

  •  Syria conflict: Jihadists' role growing (0+ / 0-)
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/...

    When peaceful protests demanding regime change in Syria erupted 16 months ago, there were no signs of the presence of jihadist groups on the ground other than the claims of the regime.
    ...
    In order to assess al-Nusra's abilities and its geographical reach, I analysed 128 attacks between March and June for which it claimed responsibility in formal statements, and which have been recognised by jihadist forums as genuine.

    Findings show that jihadists are operating actively in urban areas; 54% of attacks took place in the capital, Damascus, and 20% in the second city of Syria, Aleppo.

    Other areas in which jihadists have operated include Deraa (17% of attacks) and Deir al-Zour (about 6%). Other areas account for 3% of attacks.
    ...
    He told Mr Abdul Ahad about jihadists: "Are they good fighters? Yes, they are, but they have a problem with executions. They capture a soldier and they put a pistol to his head and shoot him. We have religious courts and we have to try people before executing them."
    ...
    Jihadist forums announce the death of foreign fighters in Syria on a frequent basis - from Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Egypt and so on. The authorities in Jordan have arrested a couple of jihadists trying to sneak into Syria.
    ...

  •  Sectarian violence being pushed by Bahrain Salafis (0+ / 0-)
    http://www.middle-east-online.com/...
    2012-08-07

    Leader of Bahrain Salafists from Syria: Victory over ‘hated Safavids’ looming

    DUBAI - Bahrain's government on Tuesday distanced itself from Islamist MPs who visited Syria at the weekend and delivered aid to rebels in the north where they are fighting regime forces.
    ...
    MPs Adel al-Maawda and Abdulhalim Murad along with former MP Hamad al-Mohanadi and judge Faisal al-Ghurair, all members of the Salafist Asala political association, had said they visited Aleppo and met members of the rebel Free Syrian Army on Sunday.

    They posted pictures of their meeting on the Twitter microblogging website.

    "We gave pledges to build three field hospitals and delivered donations from the people of Bahrain to the army (FSA)," Murad tweeted after Islamists in the Gulf kingdom organised fundraising campaigns to support Syrian rebels.

    More notable than this, however, is the language Murad uses (again on Twitter) to describe visit, which he says is in support of ‘the falcons of al-Sham’ against ‘the hated Safavids’ (Shia). ‘Victory is looming’, he added.

  •  Why Doesn't Assad Make a Deal? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BigAlinWashSt
    Sami Ramadani Pt4: US, Saudi and Turkey's support of Muslim Brotherhood in Syria makes a deal unlikely
    Watch full multipart The Syrian Civil War and Big Power Rivalry

    More at The Real News

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