Alternative Insight

Misconception to Quagmire
From Sudetenland to Syria land

United States administrations have exhibited a strange method for repelling terrorists - let them enter an area, establish themselves, become strong, commit atrocities and then attack them -- the spider approach. This characterization became apparent after the 9/11 terrorist attacks on U.S. soil. Muhammad Atta and his eighteen partners freely entered the United States, studied how to go up and not come down and did their dirty deeds. Only then did the U.S. start its war against terrorism.

Following a similar pattern, the battle against ISIS developed from U.S. allies providing finances (Kuwaitis and Qataris), weapons (Saudi Arabia), a path for ISIS to enter Syria (Turkey), and then permitting the Islamist extremists to establish themselves, become strong, and commit atrocities. With ISIS firmly in place, President Barack Obama announced, "We have had enough." No argument with "now that ISIS has firmly got off the ground it must be brought down." The argument many ponder is, "Why was ISIS allowed to leave the ground?" As usual, the United States is now paying the procrastination penalty, having gone from a deliberate misconception into an unintentional quagmire. Dig down deep and we find the misalignments are almost innate, in the DNA of western diplomats. The situation in Syria is reminiscent of the time of the Munich pact. More on that later.

Destroying the vicious Islamic group that threatens the safety and sanity of all the world's peoples is most important. However the U.S. thrust tends toward resembling a political maneuver, a strategy for the Democrats to demonstrate strength and win the senatorial elections rather than a strategy to defeat the mightiest of all al-Qaeda. Missing from the strategy are reality - the often stated comment that nations do not have friends but shared interests -- and expediency - the U.S. should place interests of its own citizens before those of international corporations.

Although never having been targeted as an enemy nor harmed by Syria, U.S. administrations have always considered and treated Syria as a dangerous foe. Granted that Assad's rule is brutal and denied citizens many freedoms - speech, press, fair elections, marginalization of some communities -- but the people received education, access to health services, sufficient food, religious freedom, a suitable standard of living and organization. On the Human development Index, the ever harassed Syria arrived at the middle range with a score of 0.648, slightly below Egypt's score of 0.662. Forgotten are the sacrifices by the Baathist regime in providing for the Palestinians displaced by Zionist forces and for Iraqis made refugees from U.S. actions. While the U.S. permitted immigration by several thousands of Iraqi refugees, whose displacement it directly and indirectly caused, the Baathists gave succulence to several hundreds of thousands of Iraq refugees.

Assad feared what US now fears, opening the door for mass terrorism by Radical Islam. Before the civil war unleashed extreme violence and atrocities from all combatants, the Syrian leader's operations were not much different than leaders from other authoritarian and accepted nations - China, Vietnam, Saudi Arabia, Emirates, Kuwait, Morocco, Algeria, Egypt -- some of whom are considered to be good friends of the U.S. One difference between Assad's Syria (include Iran with Syria), and the oil producing states of Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, is that Syria and Iran assisted the United States in its war on terrorism after 9/11, while Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, and include Qatar, have had nationals provide monetary and material support for the Taliban and ISIS. (Reference:
Although Syria and Iran share a common interest with the United States in subduing international terrorism, the U.S. government scorns them and befriends those who harm its interests. Note that Iran cooperated in the deposition of Iraq Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki and welcomed a new direction for incorporating Sunnis into the Iraq government.

Why does the U.S. favor those who harm its interests and eschew those who can assist them? Of course the answer is oil; the U.S. hesitates to antagonize the Middle East oil producers who are enemies of Iraq and Iran. Because the Middle East nations must sell the oil and the U.S. can always purchase sufficient oil on the world market and guarantee oil deliveries, there is no adequate reason for this policy. In effect, the U.S. is protecting the international oil corporations and harming its citizens by arrangements with the Gulf OPECs.

It was obvious from day one of the hostilities that the Free Syrian movement could not move far; those who formed ISIS proved it by moving quickly and eclipsing the former organization. If the Free Syrian movement, which was already established in Syria, had support of the people, why did it not gain territory while the foreign elements that formed ISIS have been able to vigorously contest the government? U.S. solicitation of the Free Syrian army is not presented as having the rebels fight their government; it is presented as gathering a mercenary army to fight for the U.S. and dispose of the ISIS fighters, the same ISIS fighters that the rebels fought along side in the capture of ar-Raqqah.

From the day that the foreign Islamists gained victories, it was evident that if they won, not only would Assad be gone, but all of Syria - its economy, culture, educational institutions, social life, religious freedoms and any other limited freedoms. Would that be better for the Syrians and the world? Somehow, no consideration was given to Syrians wanting to preserve their Syrian nation and not one ruled by foreigners or combined with Iraqis.

The policy of trying to see with blinders continues; the bombings might halt ISIS advances but cannot undo its occupations of Syrian territory - only ground forces can push them from control. Who will supply those ground forces? Can it be the Free Syrian movement who can not be located as a solid organization on the Syrian map and whose armaments may end up with ISIS? Franklin Lamb, a well known observer of Hezbollah and the Syrian regime, reports in
Counterpunch of his conversations with Syrians in the Barzeh neighborhood of Damascus. Lamb's report might be considered favoring the regime, but it is interesting that close to Damascus many elements of competing forces and those opposed to the Assad regime exist in the open and are outspoken. Lamb writes:

In some Damascus suburban neighborhoods there are currently few if any families, only fighters. But in many others, residents are trickling back to their homes or never left despite the widespread danger. As a generalization it can be said that the current line-up of fighters around close-in Damascus neighborhoods is roughly: 70% FSA, 25% Al Nursa, and, as of now, relatively few, Da’ish (IS). During meetings with young men from the Barzeh neighborhood, an area maybe five blocks by eight blocks, this observer is advised that there are approximately 700 FSA, 110 al Nursa and only 7 or 8 Da’ish fighters (IS).

As for the Free Syrian Army (FSA), now dubbed by some in the Obama Administration as the “National Coalition—kind of like the National Guard”—it is viewed by many here as corrupt, manned to a large extent by lowlifes and thieves. The “Free Syrian Army,” as one pithy adage has it, is neither free, nor Syrian, nor an army. And at least in Barzeh, at any rate, it is also viewed as being for sale to the highest bidder. Moreover, the residents here, though increasingly vocal about jihadist militias, seem to hold actually more respect for al-Nusra, despite its Islamist extremism, than for the Western-backed FSA.

Is it not either Assad's forces or the U.S. army that must perform the task? And after it is all over and ISIS is totally defeated, who will administer the regained territory? Is it not either the Syrian Baathists or…or…? For sure, Americans and Syrians do not want America, and so it will be Assad, just as it was finally realized that expedient action against Adolph Hitler depended upon not battling but soliciting the support of Joseph Stalin. When presented with only a choice between two evils, what other choice can there be but the lesser of the two evils? Sad but wise.

At that time of the Munich Pact, the Soviet Union was the pariah of the western world and, although Stalin offered to send a million troops to stop Hitler's annexation of the Sudetenland, the animosity of Great Britain and France to the communist nation prevented any agreement. This proposal has been verified by documents described in an article by the British Telegraph. Stalin 'planned to send a million troops to stop Hitler if Britain and France agreed, 18 Oct 2008,

Fear of having Soviet troops advance to Czechoslovakia was legitimate; fear of the Soviet Union was illogical. What happened? The Nazis went on a violent and expansionist rampage that eventually forced the western powers to rely on their fabricated enemy to help liberate them from Nazi occupation.

Syria has battled to stop ISIS and been ignored by the western powers who have always regarded the Baathists with the same illogical animosity proffered upon the Soviet Union in 1938. Now the "allies" are helping Syria to stop ISIS. Not exactly the same but definite resemblances -- only the names have changed.

The misconceptions of American leadership are supported by the dutiful manner of the media - falsifying history by misrepresenting or not presenting events in a manner that encourages wise thinking. One could not exist without the other.

Due to consistent U.S. State Department failures, each year Alternative Insight is forced to update a popular article, Failures of U.S. Foreign Policy, which after 15 years is almost a book. The article still receives 30,000 plus visitors each year and has had about 400,000 visitors.

The constant falsification of history, which is represented by an annual media frenzy during the June anniversary of the events at Tiananmen, and which consistently misrepresents the 1989 events at Tiananmen Square, is clearly exposed in another popular Alternative Insight article, The
Tiananmen Square Confrontation, which after 13 years of publication repeatedly garners 10,000 new visitors each year and has had about 200,000 visitors.

Despite the documented foreign policy failures, the U.S. administrations care not.
Despite the retreat from conventional media, due mostly to its mendacious posture, that media will not change its dutiful and retrograde stance.

When will it ever end? Errors and falsifications will continue; articles will expose and be widely read. But nothing will happen until the Republocrats are replaced by a meaningful political Party. No neeed to continually choose between the lesser of two evils. Create a new political Party. If not now, when?

ISIS must be stopped and so must the U.S. administration's defeating strategies. It is time to bring back the famous War against World War I poster of Stegosaurus representing the US government -- ALL ARMOR PLATE AND NO BRAIN.

october 2014