Tag Archives: Syria

What Trump’s Syrian withdrawal really reveals, by Stephen Cohen

Mostly what it reveals is delusion, arrogance, avarice, and corruption. From Stephen Cohen at rt.com:

President Trump was wrong in asserting that the United States destroyed the Islamic State’s territorial statehood in a large part of Syria—Russia and its allies accomplished that—but he is right in proposing to withdraw some 2,000 American forces from that tragically war-ravaged country. The small American contingent serves no positive combat or strategic purpose unless it is to thwart the Russian-led peace negotiations now underway or to serve as a beachhead for a US war against Iran. Still worse, its presence represents a constant risk that American military personnel could be killed by Russian forces also operating in that relatively small area, thereby turning the new Cold War into a very hot conflict, even if inadvertently. Whether or not Trump understood this danger, his decision, if actually implemented—it is being fiercely resisted in Washington—will make US-Russian relations, and thus the world, somewhat safer.

Nonetheless, Trump’s decision on Syria, coupled with his order to reduce US forces in Afghanistan by half, has been “condemned,” as The New York Times approvingly reported, “across the ideological spectrum,” by “the left and right.” Analyzing these condemnations, particularly in the opinion-shaping New York Times and Washington Post and on interminable (and substantially uninformed) MSNBC and CNN segments, again reveals the alarming thinking that is deeply embedded in the US bipartisan policy-media establishment.

Continue reading

Advertisements

The Syrian War Is Over – It Never Should Have Started, by Ted Snider

There was never any good reason to get involved in Syria, just a few bad ones. From Ted Snider at antiwar.com:

At the close of 2018, President Donald Trump announced that American troops were being withdrawn from Syria. By the open of 2019, National Security Advisor John Bolton and Senator Lindsey Graham were saying that there would be no withdrawal before a full defeat of the Islamic State and other objectives were achieved.

As usual, the tune being played by the White House is more cacophony than symphony, and no one knows when the troops will be withdrawn from Syria. The notes played have included everything from immediately, to a month, to several months to not until were done.

Whenever it is to be done, the withdrawal of U.S. troops has brought near unanimous criticism from the mainstream media. The alternative media has had several very good articles on the appropriateness of the withdrawal since all of America’s objectives in Syria have been realized to the extent they can be realized. Trump, himself said this when he said, via Twitter, “We have defeated ISIS in Syria, my only reason for being there. . . . ”

But, it is not true that the defeat of the Islamic State was the only reason for American troops being in Syria. The reasons have ranged and changed from regime change, the Islamic State and chemical weapons to Iran. And most of the alternative media articles have missed the more important point that, if America’s objectives have been realized, it is only because they were never problems in the first place. If the obstacles to peace are gone, it is only because they were never there. If the troops can be withdrawn from Syria, it is only because they never should have been there.

Continue reading

Trump Foreign Policy for 2019, by Philip Giraldi

Is Trump’s foreign policy method to madness or just madness? From Philip Giraldi at unz.com:

Never before has any presidential administration been as all over the place in terms of national security and foreign policy as is that of Donald J. Trump. Indeed, one might well argue that there is no overriding policy at all in terms of a rational doctrine arrived at through risk versus gain analysis of developing international situations. Instead, there has been a pattern of emotional reactions fueled by media disinformation supplemented by “gut feelings” about a series of ultimately bilateral relationships that frequently have little or nothing to do with American national interests.

This is not to suggest that the “gut feelings” are always wrong. Established wisdom in Washington has long reflected the view that the United States must exercise leadership in establishing and maintaining the neoliberal consensus that gained currency after the devastation of the Second World War. Elections, free trade and a free media were to be the benchmarks of the new world order but they also came packaged with U.S. hegemony to confront those who resisted the development. And it turned out that those “benefits” were frequently difficult to achieve as elections sometimes produced bad results while trade agreements and an uncontrolled media often worked against broader U.S. objectives. All too often the United States found itself going to war against nations that it disapproves of for reasons unrelated to any actual interests, routinely claiming inaccurately that dissident regimes were both “threatening” and disruptive of the universal values that Washington claimed to be promoting.

Continue reading

Reasons To Believe In Trump’s Syria Withdrawal Are Vanishing, by Caitlin Johnstone

Trump proposes; the Deep State disposes. From Caitlin Johnstone at medium.com:

On the first of April last year I published an article titled “Ignore The Words Of US Presidents. Watch Their Actions Instead.”, about Trump’s claim that his administration would be pulling troops out of Syria “very soon”. Watching the actions and ignoring the words is a personal policy I’ve found very useful in dealing with top government figures who understand that power has nothing to do with truth and everything to do with narrative control, and in that particular case the president’s claims were quickly memory holed after a highly suspicious chemical weapons allegation in Douma a few days later. The president’s words said the troops were leaving, and what actually happened was the US bombing the Syrian government for a second time in a year while troops remained where they were.

Everyone completely lost their shit last month when the president once again made the claim that US troops will be brought home from Syria. Establishment loyalists of the political/media class went into full meltdown, Mattis handed in his resignation, and #Resistance Twitter pundits who’d never typed the word “Kurd” in their lives suddenly became self-appointed experts on the geopolitical dynamics between the Turkish government and the YPG. Support for the president’s words also rushed in from anti-interventionists and anti-imperialists everywhere, as well as from a few surprising places like Democratic Representative Ted Liu and Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren.

Continue reading→

 

 

Doug Casey on Syria and Afghanistan

It’s never too late to abandon a bad idea. From Doug Casey at caseyresearch.com:

Justin’s note: President Trump is pulling troops out of Afghanistan and Syria.

And frankly, it’s about damn time. After all, the U.S. government has already wasted more than $1 trillion fighting these wars, not to mention all the lives that have been lost.

Still, many people are critical of this decision. To find out why, I got Doug Casey on the phone. Below, you’ll find his take on this important development…


Justin: Doug, Trump is pulling troops out of Afghanistan and Syria. And I think most Americans would agree that this is the right thing to do.

But both Democrat and Republican politicians have been highly critical of this decision. Why is that?

Doug: It’s more clear evidence of how the Deep State has totally captured the U.S. government. Recall that the Deep State is not a formal conspiracy of any type. It’s composed of perhaps a couple thousand powerful congressmen, bureau chiefs, lobbyists, corporate heads, generals, lawyers, academics, and media people that share a common worldview.

The character of the U.S. has changed a lot since the Vietnam War. And quite radically over the last generation or so. Constant low-grade war is today’s leitmotif. The U.S. is actively at war in at least two countries, has something on the order of 700 or 800 bases in over 100 other countries, and is constantly prodding the Russians, the Chinese, and the Iranians, among others.

U.S. soldiers are not welcome in any of the places where they’re stationed – except by local quislings, professional cronies, and lickspittles. So pulling out of Afghanistan and Syria – however belatedly – is one of the few intelligent things that Trump said he was going to do and may actually do. But I’ll believe it when I see it.

Continue reading

Trump Walks Back Syria Pullout As Noose Tightens, by Tom Luongo

As Trump has found out, repeatedly, it’s hard to take on the Deep State. From Tom Luongo at tomluongo.me:

f anyone still thinks that Donald Trump has some master plan to kill off his Deep State adversaries they should check themselves into therapy. I know withdrawal is hard, but admitting you have a problem is the first step to curing it.

He doesn’t have a plan. He may fight them but it won’t be with any kind of master plan to trap them in some beautiful bit of political judo.

Frankly, Vladimir Putin he is not.

No, Trump is winging things at this point. While he still has the office he’s trying to do some of the things he promised. Doing that may keep him in power for a few more months.

But with his walking back the timetable for pulling troops out of Syria after a visit from Lindsay Graham (R-MIC/AIPAC) should tell you all you need to know about Trump’s willingness to stand up to the pressure he’s under.

Add to that the opening salvo from Mitt Romney (R-Wall St.) and it becomes pretty clear that Trump was told what the score really is. When, not if, the Democrats push for impeachment or a 25th Amendment proceeding against him Graham and Romney will lead a GOP revolt against him, siding with Senate Democrats to get rid of him.

Continue reading

The Mattis Dilemma, by Philip Giraldi

James Mattis fell on the sword of policies that haven’t worked in order not to have to support policies that might work. From Philip Giraldi at strategic-culture.org:

The resignation letter of Secretary of Defense James Mattis that was published last Thursday revealed much of the Deep State mindset that has produced the foreign policy catastrophes of the past seventeen years. Mattis, an active duty general in the Marine Corps who reportedly occasionally reads books, received a lot of good press during his time at Defense, sometimes being referred to as “the only adult in the room” when President Donald Trump’s national security and foreign policy team was meeting. Conveniently forgotten are Mattis comments relating to how to “Be polite, be professional, but have a plan to kill everybody you meet.” His sobriquet in the Corps was “Mad Dog.”

In the media firestorm that has followed upon General Mattis’s resignation, he has been generally lauded as a highly experienced and respected leader who has numerous friends on both sides of the aisle in Congress. Of course, the press coverage should be taken with a grain of salt as it is designed less to praise Mattis and more to get at Trump over the decision to leave Syria, which is being assailed by both neoliberals and neoconservatives who believe that war is the health of the state.

Continue reading