Thursday, June 13, 2013

Is Obama Going Down The Same Path of G. Bush and WMDs?

The Obama Administration has said it is ready to provide Syrian rebels with military support after evidence that Bashar Assad's regime has used chemical weapons; sarin in particular. The reasoning is Assad is known to have a large stock of chemical weapons, which it has said it would never be used on their own people. The White House has said they have confirmed that the Assad regime has used chemical weapons against opposition targets, which is in contradiction to the UN investigation that has shown it was the rebels that have used the sarin gas, which makes much more sense and I'll explain why. First it is well known that President Obama has said that if the Assad regime were to use chemical weapons it would be a "game changer" and a "red line" that must not be crossed. The simple fact is the use of chemical weapons in Syria has been extremely limited and have had no military effect what so ever;  while there have been no reports of rebels deaths by chemical weapons, the highest casually incident killed 15 Syrian soldiers. We know that one of the major factions within the The Free Syrian Army are al Qaeda associated forces (ie Jabhat al-Nusrah), does it not seem highly likely that al Qaeda would use chemical weapons for the purpose of blaming the Assaud regime, as it guarantees the US will intervene. Further, as the US  has clearly positioned it self as anti-Syrian, it has taken a predisposition that  it is Assad's forces that have used chemical weapons.

 Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., who met with the rebels last month and has been a vocal critic of the president's Syria policy said in a joint statement with Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C.: "We appreciate the President's finding that the Assad regime has used chemical weapons on several occasions. We also agree with the President that this fact must affect U.S. policy toward Syria. The President's red line has been crossed. U.S. credibility is on the line. Now is not the time to merely take the next incremental step. Now is the time for more decisive actions...A decision to provide lethal assistance, especially ammunition and heavy weapons, to opposition forces in Syria is long overdue." Syria Used Chemical Weapons Crossing Red Line

This predisposition of the US looking for any reason to increase it's presence in the Syrian conflict is not lost on Syria or it's ally Russia.

Both the administration of US President Obama and other representatives of the anti-Syrian alliance have repeatedly warned against the use of chemical weapons, called it a “game changer” and have repeatedly accused the Syrian government and military for using chemical weapons so as to justify a military aggression against Syria. Russia and Syria have repeatedly demanded full, independent investigations into every single case of chemical weapons use by expert commissions.

The US administration and members of the anti-Syrian alliance continue using chemical weapons threats to position the Syrian government and military as war criminals. A UN investigation as well as other, mounting evidence strongly suggests that it is the foreign backed opposition, first and foremost the strongest of the fighting forces with al Qaeda association, such as Jabhat al-Nusrah, which are using chemical weapons including sarin Syrian Military Seizes Sarin Gas From Rebels

Another interesting development is addition to Russia siding with Assad you now have the appearance of  Hezbollah.

 The claims of a Hezbollah presence in Syria’s north follow a pledge by its leader, Hasan Nasrallah, to back Assad to victory and indicate that the movement could be used as a guerrilla force wherever required. A long-standing ally of Syria and Iran, its decision to knuckle into the fight raises the specter of a regional conflagration spilling over Syria’s borders, pitting Sunni against Shiite. Underscoring that point, Syrian rebels and Hezbollah fighters engaged Sunday in their first serious clashes on Lebanese soil. Hezbollah’s involvement in Syria draws retaliation by Syrian rebels against Lebanese

Regardless of the facts of who is using the sarin gas, we clearly have a proxy war building in Syria, with the US , al Qaeda and the Sunnis on one side and Russia, Assad, Hezbollah, and  the Shiites on the other. The inclusion now of Hezbollah in this Syrian  proxy war is quickly disintegrating into Sunni-Shiite sectarian conflict that could easily spread though out the middle east.  Further there is no way one could guarantee that the weapons the US will be feeding the non al Qaeda rebels will not end up in the arms of al Qaeda.

"The Syrian state is disintegrating in much of the country, leaving vast ungoverned spaces that are being filled by extremists, many aligned with al Qaeda," McCain told the Brookings Institution think-tank. "They are the best armed, best funded, and most experienced fighters. And every day this conflict grinds on, these extremists are marginalizing moderate leaders like the commanders I met last week."The Free Syrian Army and its commanders seeking to oust President Bashar al-Assad were in desperate need of "ammunition and weapons to counter Assad's tanks, artillery, and air power," he said. Arm Syrian Rebels Or Risk Rise Of Extremism

The comparison between the Bush Administration intelligence showing  WMD  in Iraq and the Obama Administration claiming  use of sarin gas was not from the rebels, as a provocation to invade Syria, is not lost with the Russians.

Officials from Russia, which along with Iran is Mr. Assad's most prominent foreign ally, said the evidence on chemical weapons isn't rock solid."We had a meeting with American representatives in which Americans tried to present information to us about the regime's use of chemical weapons, but frankly speaking, the evidence Americans set out looks unconvincing," Yuri Ushakov, the Kremlin's top foreign-policy aide, said Friday, according to Russian news agencies.
Mr. Ushakov cited the flawed intelligence assessment from the administration of former President George W. Bush about weapons of mass destruction in the run-up to the Iraq war but said he didn't want to "draw any parallels."Other Russian officials were more direct. "The data on Assad's use of chemical weapons is fabricated just like the lies about weapons of [Saddam] Hussein's weapons of mass destruction," read a tweet on the feed of Alexei Pushkov, chairman of the Russian parliament's international relations committee. "Obama is going down the path of G. Bush." Russia Hits Back at U.S. Over Syria

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