The Humanitarian-Interventionist Complex and Syria

Over the past few months, my Facebook feed has been showing numerous, very alarmist ads from allegedly “humanitarian” Western NGOs, about the alleged “threats” faced by people in the various portions of Syria that the central government has been retaking¬† from the well-armed, extremist-dominated rebels who have controlled them for some years. On the right … Continue reading “The Humanitarian-Interventionist Complex and Syria”

Elizabeth Tsurkov on the failings of Syria’s “rebels”

Elizabeth Tsurkov is a young Research Associate with the West Jerusalem-based “Forum for Regional Thinking”, who has published several articles and hundreds of tweets over the past two to three years that were all strongly supportive of the anti-government forces in Syria. All the more notable, then, that on July 10, FORTH (as it is … Continue reading “Elizabeth Tsurkov on the failings of Syria’s “rebels””

Syria, the Western “left”, and the Palestinian-rights movement

I’m sorry that I’ve been absent from the blogosphere for so long. There has been a lot to ponder in international affairs. But I’ve been busy for the past 7-plus years publishing other people’s work. I feel very good about what my publishing company, Just World Books, has achieved. But I regret that because I’ve … Continue reading “Syria, the Western “left”, and the Palestinian-rights movement”

Brahimi on how to understand Syria

I just saw this May 18 interview with Lakhdar Brahimi. In it, the UN’s recently retired negotiator for Syria said: I think the Russian analysis was right at the beginning, but everybody thought that it was an opinion and not an analysis.¬†The Russians were saying that Syria is not Egypt and it is not Tunisia, … Continue reading “Brahimi on how to understand Syria”

The Russia-Syria deal: What it means and what now?

Watching Syrian FM Walid Muallem on the TV news announcing his country’s acceptance of Russia’s plan to consign all Syria’s CW stockpile to international control and then destruction was an amazingly powerful sight. With this one stroke, all the air went out of the campaign Pres. Obama has been ramping up, to win public and … Continue reading “The Russia-Syria deal: What it means and what now?”

Syria in the crosshairs of the west

2013 is very far from being the time that independent Syria has been targeted by the west (sometimes, including Israel.) The history of western intervention in the country has been long– starting from, of course, the protectorate that France established there in the wake of World War I, under the guise of a ‘Mandate’ from … Continue reading “Syria in the crosshairs of the west”

Syria: The genocide risk, and no-fly zones

There are so many disturbing aspects to Pres. Obama’s decision to start providing weapons to the Syrian opposition(s) that it is hard to know where to start in commenting thereon. Perhaps, with the completely unclear, unsubstantiated nature of the allegations Obama’s spokesperson made regarding the Asad regime’s use of chemical weapons? Obama’s administration hasn’t even … Continue reading “Syria: The genocide risk, and no-fly zones”

The Hizbullah factor in the Syrian conflict

Practically all westerners looking at the influence that Hizbullah’s entry into the Syrian conflict has been having on the conflict have focused wholly on the military role that Hizbullah’s very well-trained and highly motivated fighters have played on the battlefield, especially in helping bring about the Syrian government’s reassertion of authority on Tuesday night, in … Continue reading “The Hizbullah factor in the Syrian conflict”

Four important reads on Syria

The first two are excellent, on-the-ground reporting from Aleppo, by the seasoned, native Arabic speaker Ghaith Abdul-Ahad: Dec 27 and Dec 28. The second two are from the Carnegie Endowment: This thoughtful Dec 24 piece by Yezid Sayegh: Can the National Coalition Lead Syria?; and this very well-informed Dec 4 piece by Aron Lund: Aleppo … Continue reading “Four important reads on Syria”

Yes, I was right on Syria. (And what now?)

I realize it is unseemly, in the world of international-affairs analysis, for someone to say quite bluntly “I told you so”. I realize, far more importantly, that the situation in which Syria’s 25 million (or so) people find themselves is one of deep and very hard-to-escape crisis– one that, whether Pres. Asad stays or goes, … Continue reading “Yes, I was right on Syria. (And what now?)”