Syria: Here It Comes
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2018-04-12 14:09 by Karl Denninger
in Foreign Policy , 312 references Ignore this thread
Syria: Here It Comes
[Comments enabled]

So tell me again exactly where the authority comes to blast a nation that (1) is sovereign, (2) has not attacked us or an ally with whom we have a mutual defense pact.

Note that we're not talking about a declaration of War (which Congress could authorize) nor is this a matter of "hot pursuit" (e.g. we get attacked and the President retaliates before we reasonably can get Congress seated and declare war.)  No, instead this is a circumstance where some small group of people in the Executive simply want to destroy a government.

Leave aside the alleged pretense of the use of chemical weapons, which I remind you we were told happened last time in Syria and it was later unable to be proved that Assad's forces did it.  Of course that was after we had blasted a Syrian airbase.

This time around who knows if the attack really happened with chemical weapons.  Or, for that matter, who used them.  It's not like Assad is losing, you know -- to the contrary, he's winning.  So who has motive to use chems?

Let's not forget that we have supported the "rebels" who have motive to use chems since they are losing -- and who are intent on overthrowing said government of Syria.  Meanwhile we have a bunch of Democrats who are arguing that Russian interests bought a few ads to attempt to "sway" an election here.  So it's terribly evil, I suppose, that some Russians bought ads to attempt to persuade people to vote a certain way while it's perfectly fine for us to "persuade" through fomenting a violent overthrow of a sitting government, we may have enabled or at least sat back and let them obtain chems and now, it appears, our "support" includes actually shooting at said government ourselves?

Exactly where does our authority to do that derive and if we don't have it would you mind explaining why, if we do blow up Syria why some other nation doesn't do the same thing to us?

Never mind the very real risk that Russia will decide they've had enough of this ****. They have sea-skimming hypersonic missiles and while our carrier group and individual ships can almost-certainly defend against a fairly decent-sized assault by them it only takes one that gets through to do severe damage -- and possibly sink whatever it hits.  Even worse one little tac-nuke over the top of that carrier group would destroy it and everyone in it.

Of course if either of those things were to happen I hope you have a nice bottle of Scotch -- or something stronger -- because the odds of that getting out of control immediately and turning into a full-scale strategic exchange is rather high.

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Bagbalm
Posts: 5411
Incept: 2009-03-19

Just North of Detroit
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I lived through the Cuban missile crisis sitting between two strategic targets in Columbus Ohio. I personally have not felt things were this close to the edge since then until now. We packed a couple fanny packs as go bags and a soft bag of clothing. Some other camping supplied and tools in the back of the 4x4 truck. If anybody starts taking out US ships that is our signal to head up north. There are remote areas that are only accessible seasonally by forest service roads and it will be time to go camping for a bit. We live way too close to the runways at Selfridge, and the industrial target of the northern suburbs of Detroit. Sadly I don't think anybody would target the actual city of Detroit now, except maybe to sever the connection to Canada.
Chaparral
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Los Angeles
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Well, yes. As a matter of fact I do have some nice bottles of Scotch, and rum.

I shall try and consume it all before our new Chinese overlords land troop ships on the West coast.
Themortgagedude
Posts: 10590
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saint louis
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Where was it disproved? Show me the link please. I've always figured it was a false flag and I think this one is too. You'd be a damn idiot to gas your own citizens so close to the victory you've fought a decade for. And idiot he is not.

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I think its time we ask ourselves if we still know the freedoms that our founding fathers intended for us. Ronald Reagan 1964
Brendangm
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United States
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People on horses look better than they are.
People in cars look worse than they are.
Marya Mannes

And the disaster addendum .. People sitting
in foreign policy councils are more ignorant
and biased than they appear and will not tell
the President the truth about who should
be sitting in their chair.

Good Luck Mr. President
Thorvold
Posts: 218
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NY
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Obama backed off on starting a war in Syria. The lies and resulting debacles in Iraq and Libya were still fresh in people's minds and there was enough public pressure to dissuade the administration. Obama of course reminded us that there was no need to involve Congress if he didn't want to:

"So even though I possess the authority to order military strikes, I believed it was right, in the absence of a direct or imminent threat to our security, to take this debate to Congress."

They've been relentless in pushing for this war just like the previous ones and they don't give up regardless of what the public thinks or possible repercussions here and elsewhere. The election of Trump was, in part, due to his criticism of these foreign adventures. Now he's promoting them.
Tickerguy
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At some point I will be forced to start hoping that if he shoots he gets nuked in response.

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Kgmqt
Posts: 128
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Minnesota
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https://www.nbcnews.com/news/mideast/u-s....

Quote:
The U.S. now has blood and urine samples from last Saturday's deadly attack in Syria that have tested positive for chemical weapons, according to two U.S. officials familiar with the intelligence.


Quote:
Officials also said that the U.S. has compiled intelligence from the U.S. and other countries, including images, that indicate the Syrian government was behind the weekend attack.


So, I am guessing that last year somebody wanted to justify going to war in Syria and created some type of chemical weapon attack. But they were sloppy, it left some doubt into what was the impact and who did it. So they fixed those errors and did another attack. Now Asad looks evil and the US can justify removing the regime.

The thing that gets me on this is Syria is kind of a **** hole, but it is in the way for routing gas and oil to Europe from Iran(Russia) or Saudi Arabia(US?). Five years ago I could see the US pushing to do this for Saudi Arabia, but now I don't get it. If this is just to block Iran/Russia from putting a pipeline to Europe in then we are ****ed. Am I missing something? Is there a win for the US if we remove Asad?

Tdurden
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Quote:
At some point I will be forced to start hoping that if he shoots he gets nuked in response.


I'm profoundly apathetic at the possibility of them getting nuked. Think about the biggest targets: DC, NYC, Chicago, LA, San Fran. The bulk of those people think we're all a bunch of racist maniacs who need to be disarmed. And I don't think they care about how much force is used to do it. If stupid foreign policy results in nukes getting used, they die first. Sure I may get it in a second round if it goes that far or starve to death in nuclear winter, but they die first.

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"I'd like to live just long enough to be there when they cut off your head and stick it on a pike as a warning to the next 10 generations that some favors come with too high of a price." -Vir Cotto Babylon 5
Azengrcat
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Its not authority but consent. If the populous decided that Trump was going to cause a Nuclear War that would kill them all, then a violent revolt increases the individuals chance of survival. The international law is used to punish weaker nations, stronger nations tell the USA to get bent or the USA ignores its own rules and just blows **** up. We keep coming back to the rule of law scam.
Chaparral
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Los Angeles
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The largest cities in the CONUS can dissappear and we'd be left a stronger nation because of it.

My chief fear in a the current scenario is that a certain overpopulated country with 1.5 billion souls in need of lebensraum and arable land would escape the multi-hundred megadeath holocaust and cause insurmountable problems for the survivors.
Vernonb
Posts: 2057
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East of Sheol
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Donald Jackass Trump said on Twitter:
Quote:
Never said when an attack on Syria would take place. Could be very soon or not so soon at all! In any event, the United States, under my Administration, has done a great job of ridding the region of ISIS. Where is our Thank you America? 3:15 AM - 12 Apr 2018


DJT... moron and psychopathic narcissist. He thinks it is funny to do this crap. When people call his bluff there are going to be millions dead in the USA. Don't threaten people idly - especially ones with nuclear weapons. Meanwhile Trump will be hiding in a bunker somewhere threatening to avenge the fallen while parts of the country become toast . I can only hope the Russians have some nulear bunker busters if this crap starts.

Maybe he has forgotten the Russians have nukes aboard submarines too and likely reside just off our shore line.

Time DJT got those balls out of his mouth and used them to replace the rocks in his head.

What a freaking evil moron. Personally I think it was the RUSSIAN influence not the USA that has better stabilized that region. They want to overthrow a secular government in Syria so it can be replaced by Jihadist? So much for freedoms of the Syrian people.

Trump calls Assad an animal for an unconfirmed gas attack that might have been staged. Yet Trump gives support to the banning of bump stocks and the resulting deaths of millions - perhaps 10's of millions- of Americans in unconstitutional seizures?

Now tell me who the REAL animal truly is.




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Tickerguy
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Assad is a dickhead.

But if we have the right to "assist" those trying to depose him then any other nation has the right to so assist some group trying to depose Trump.

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Winding it down.

Mooreupp
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Ohio
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I am actually not one who doubts at all the Syrian government has used chemical weapons (and beyond that has butchered many in rival ethic/religious lines).

Regardless though I do agree we better be dam careful here. Risks for things blowing up are real and very underappreciated. Beyond that, what victory looks like is questionable. I like seeing a united Western front here (US, France, and UK actually seem on the same page), but there are few long term desirable outcomes in all this and some very bad outcomes possible after we decide to invest the political capital.

I am not sure entirely where I stand on all of this, but am definitely nervous.

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Tickerguy
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Well I don't know if the rebels did it, Assad did it, or it didn't happen at all and is trumped up.

Really, from my point of view at this point in time it doesn't matter. By what rights do we shoot there when nobody has invited us, we have no mutual-defense agreement with the parties involved, Russia is the party to whom all the chems were allegedly turned over to years ago AND they are present in the nation with the permission of the Syrian government?

Remember we have been providing "help" to the rebels, including weapons -- and have been for quite some time. At least some of the groups involved are either associated with or are jihadists outright. Trump allegedly stopped providing arms -- but are we really "gone"? No, although he has supposedly been debating leaving.

Again the point stands:

If we have the right to provide assistance to and even arm those trying to overthrow a government then please explain to me why some other group (say, a jihadist group!) does not have the very same right to provide assistance to and even arm some group of people who might want to overthrow our government.

If we blow **** up over there we have little room to complain when someone comes over here and starts blowing **** up.

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Azengrcat
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Quote:
But if we have the right to "assist" those trying to depose him then any other nation has the right to so assist some group trying to depose Trump


Might makes Right(s)
Tickerguy
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Well then about Russia.....

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Bjonsson
Posts: 1172
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Ventura County, California
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Quote:
Personally I think it was the RUSSIAN influence not the USA that has better stabilized that region. They want to overthrow a secular government in Syria so it can be replaced by Jihadist?

YES.

This is why the cover story we are being sold makes no ****ing sense to me.

I don't necessarily agree, but I understand, that sometimes there is hegemonic rationale for getting involved in a third world civil war to try at tip the scales in a particular geopolitical direction. What seems UTTERLY INSANE to me is getting involved in a third world civil war in a role where you are fighting against BOTH PARTIES fighting the war?

I thought this war was Assad (who we don't like because he's an Iranian/Russian client) versus ISIS and Al Nusra, etc., basically remnants of Al Qaeda (who we don't like for reasons of torture, beheading, slavery, and some wreckage created in Lower Manhattan a few years ago). Getting involved in this would be like Britain getting involved in the US Civil War, and fighting BOTH the Union and the Confederacy.

Just what in the bloody hell is going on with our leadership? I know that the Kurds are involved... but it's my understanding that the Kurds lived under Assad in the past in kind of a live and let live basis, and the folks who REALLY were trying to take it to the Kurds were the ISIS/Jihadist side. The Kurds have been kind enough to extend their military reach deeper into Syria, into historically non-Kurdish areas, in a coordinated attempt to take down ISIS... but the Kurds have NO interest on any campaign going as far as, say, Damascus.

I shudder to think what kind of quid-pro-quo we offered the Kurds in exchange for this deeper encroachment into Syria, and this also makes me wonder if said potential quid-pro-quo might be one of the reasons why Turkey is livid with us.

What a ****ing mess. Unless a better rationale is given, hell, if its this pipeline issue then, OKAY, at least that IS a rationale albeit a ****ty one given the risks involved. Just how valuable IS this pipeline in this context? It had better be pretty ****ing valuable, and as a citizen I'd really like this laid out. In public. Preferably in an open session of Congress, like how the Constitution says its supposed to be handled.

When you lie down with dogs you end up with fleas, and this feels to me like a flea infested ****hole. What makes me even MORE angry is the complete whitewashing that Congress and the media is giving this potential military action. Makes me think that the Deep State, so to speak, is up to NO GOOD.

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"If you don't have borders... if you don't have laws... you don't have a country."
Quik49
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Online
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Ding ding KD....this is 1914 without the mutual defense agreements....end result the same....not good.

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Long Vaseline....

Click
Posts: 168
Incept: 2017-06-26

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First and foremost I'm an American, but I don't believe for one minute my own government's accusations that (Ass)ad gassed anybody... Ass is a killer, yes indeed, and so is Putin, yet I fail to see why America (led by Trump) should chest bump the Russians until one side or both decide to get into a serious fight.

There is absolutely no good reason whatsoever for Washington to start something that might finish with MAD...

And, once again, it is Alex Jones who seems to be the one reporting on the dire outcome of the U.S. government miscalculating how Russia might respond to its forces being killed by a Twitter-In-Chief....

Alex interviewed Marc Faber today. I think it was a decent interview. I wonder why Fox, CNN, MSNBC, PBS, ABC, CBS, NBC, NYT, News Week and all the rest can't seem to do a worthwhile interview that isn't actually propaganda?

When Alex Jones is closer to the truth than multi-billion dollar news corporations, that tells you everything you need to know about assessing the risk of Washington starting yet another war..

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=8PYPGx_gaJ....

Get your prepping done.
Tickerguy
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@Themortgagedude - right here Mattis says we have no evidence that Assad was responsible for sarin use: https://apnews.com/bd533182b7f244a4b771c....

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Winding it down.
Clock
Posts: 1127
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South of Billings Mt
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The USA should pull
out of the whole region,
and let Israel (since they're
close by anyway) take care
of things.
https://www.google.com/maps/dir/Damascus....

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If you see a snake, just kill it - don't appoint a committee on snakes. ~Ross Perot~

Zappafan
Posts: 3049
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Atlanta
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The really dirty thing here is who is behind the movement to get rid of Assad, a guy who for whatever his faults never threatened the US or any European country with so much as a strongly worded insult. It seems to be the Saudis who are behind this if you believe the rumors, having offered Trump millions to pay for taking out Assad.

That would be the same group of stuck-in-the 5th century cretins that are starving Yemeni children, and recently tortured to death one of their own generals in a hotel:

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2018/03....

Then there is Nuttanyahoo who seems to enjoy gunning down Palestinians, and don't forget Erdogan who is now massacring plenty of Kurds in the northern part of Syria, which he opportunistically invaded (another violation of international law overlooked by the likes of Nikki Haley.)

If putting our boys and girls in the military in harms way in the service of these "characters" isn't high treason, I don't know what is.


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Ich bin der Tankendau!
Cheapbastud
Posts: 925
Incept: 2007-10-09

Rainbow Star. Pay no attention to the green star....err...uh
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Karl, You talk about rights in regards to the interactions between nations. What does that mean? We can barely maintain the rule of law in this country. There is definitely no rule of law between countries. International law is defunct. The UN is a show. It is always anarchy between nation states. Especially the powerful ones.




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limit(r-->m) k(r) = b


Analog
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arkansas ozarks
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I'm hoping Trump and Putin are two wiley old coyotes putting on a show worthy of Pro Wrestling TV , to the end of draining their respective swamps.

An aside - How are those newfangled railgun catapults on our carriers working out?

a.

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