Revisiting the win-win-win-win outcome in Syria – The Saker

A bird’s eye view of the vineyard

Revisiting the win-win-win-win outcome in Syria

[this analysis was written for the Unz Review]

In his recent article “The Road to Damascus: How the Syria War Was Won” Pepe Escobar summarized the outcome of the war in Syria in the following way:

It’s a quadruple win. The U.S. performs a face saving withdrawal, which Trump can sell as avoiding a conflict with NATO ally Turkey. Turkey has the guarantee – by the Russians – that the Syrian Army will be in control of the Turkish-Syrian border. Russia prevents a war escalation and keeps the Russia-Iran-Turkey peace process alive. And Syria will eventually regain control of the entire northeast.”

This otherwise excellent summary overlooks two out of three members of the “Axis of Kindness”, including Israel and the KSA.  Of course, later in his analysis Pepe does address these actors, and also includes Kuwait. Furthermore, a thorough discussion of what took place would have to also include China, Hezbollah, Yemen and the EU (well, the ones that matter, the UK and France.  The rest are just voiceless colonies of the USA).

Most of the analyses of what just took place focused on the “what”.  I will try to look into the “why” and the “how” of what just happened in Syria.  Still,  I don’t propose to make such a detailed analysis, but I do want to re-classify the actors in a somewhat different way: by their relative strength.

Actor Theoretical Strength
The “Axis of Kindness”:United States+CENTCOM+NATO+Israel+KSA by far the most powerful actor almost by any measure: a bigger military force then all the other actors combined (at least when looked at regionally), huge economic power (the dollar is still THE #1 currency on the planet), total control of the region (via CENTCOM) and quasi unconditional support from Europe (via NATO).  Finally, Israel does pack a powerful military punch.  This actor has only ONE weakness, but more about that later.
Iran+Hezbollah+Houthi+Shia forces in Iraq in regional terms, Iran is the local superpower which can even successfully defy the Axis of Kindness forces (and has done so since the Islamic Revolution of 1979).
Russia+Syria I placed Russia and Syria in the same group and I could have added Iran, but since I believe that Russia objectively has more power over the Syrian government than Iran, I think that it is important to put Russia and Syria together simply because Damascus cannot say “no” to Moscow, but could do so, at least in theory, to Tehran.  Finally, Russia and Iran agree on the main issues, but have different visions for the future of the Middle-East.  Thus this is another reason to look at them separately, even if not necessarily in opposition to each other.  In military terms, Russia is very strong, then very vulnerable, then very strong again, it all depends on your level of analysis (see below)
Turkey+pro-Turkish factions in Syria That one is a difficult one to classify.  On one hand, Turkey does not have any regional allies (the Ottoman Empire left only hatred and deep resentment in its former colonies).  For a while, the pro-Turkish factions, which were liberally showered with weapons, money, training, logistical support, etc, by the US and the KSA, but eventually these factions grew weaker and weaker until they reached a state of advanced impotence leaving Turkey pretty much alone (we will also look into that below).
The Kurds For a while, they sure looked potentially powerful: not only did the Kurds have a pretty big military power (albeit mostly one restricted to infantry), they had the support of Axis of Kindness and, especially, Israel which saw any form of Independent Kurdistan as a great tool to weaken and even threaten Iraq, Turkey, Iran and Syria.  Furthermore, the Kurds happened to control a lot of oil rich regions and they could always retreat in the mountainous areas if needed.
The Takfiris (i.e. the many and constantly name-changing franchises of what used to be called “al-Qaeda”). In reality, the Takfiris really ought to be classified together with the Axis of Kindness since they have been the foot-soldiers/cannon-fodder for the AngloZionist since the 1980s (from Afghanistan then to modern day Syria).  Nonetheless, we will consider them as distinct from the rest of the Axis of Kindness forces.

Of course, and just like any other taxonomy, this one is necessarily somewhat subjective and others might use different criteria or categories.  Now let’s look at what I believe is the key to the control of the entire region: the ability to place “boots on the ground” or the lack of such an ability: (…)

Source: http://thesaker.is/revisiting-the-win-win-win-win-outcome-in-syria/?fbclid=IwAR3FrI33yyB0PDDMmwuuX7GI82o42aT2_zptfyZUj3WdExOqOYpxh7JsP90

 

 

Iran goes for “maximum counter-pressure”

Pepe ESCOBAR 20.06.2019

Sooner or later the US “maximum pressure” on Iran would inevitably be met by “maximum counter-pressure”. Sparks are ominously bound to fly. For the past…

Quelle: Iran goes for “maximum counter-pressure”

Hans Christian WÄCHTER postet diesen Artikel in deutscher Sprache: https://www.facebook.com/permalink.php?story_fbid=2222106107867312&id=100002038339031

unter der Überschrift: KRIEGSHUNDE BELLEN VERRÜCKT

 

 

„Explosive“ Leaked Secret Israeli Cable Confirms Israeli-Saudi Coordination To Provoke War; zerohedge 07.11.2017

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-11-07/leaked-secret-israeli-cable-confirms-israeli-saudi-coordination-lebanon

„Explosive“ Leaked Secret Israeli Cable Confirms Israeli-Saudi Coordination To Provoke War

Early this morning, Israeli Channel 10 news published a leaked diplomatic cable which had been sent to all Israeli ambassadors throughout the world concerning the chaotic events that unfolded over the weekend in Lebanon and Saudi Arabia, which began with Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri’s unexpected resignation after he was summoned to Riyadh by his Saudi-backers, and led to the Saudis announcing that Lebanon had „declared war“ against the kingdom.

The classified embassy cable, written in Hebrew, constitutes the first formal evidence proving that the Saudis and Israelis are deliberately coordinating to escalate the situation in the Middle East.

The explosive classified Israeli cable reveals the following:

  • On Sunday, just after Lebanese PM Hariri’s shocking resignation, Israel sent a cable to all of its embassies with the request that its diplomats do everything possible to ramp up diplomatic pressure against Hezbollah and Iran.
  • The cable urged support for Saudi Arabia’s war against Iran-backed Houthis in Yemen.
  • The cable stressed that Iran was engaged in „regional subversion“.
  • Israeli diplomats were urged to appeal to the „highest officials“ within their host countries to attempt to expel Hezbollah from Lebanese government and politics.

As is already well-known, the Saudi and Israeli common cause against perceived Iranian influence and expansion in places like Syria, Lebanon and Iraq of late has led the historic bitter enemies down a pragmatic path of unspoken cooperation as both seem to have placed the break up of the so-called „Shia crescent“ as their primary policy goal in the region. For Israel, Hezbollah has long been its greatest foe, which Israeli leaders see as an extension of Iran’s territorial presence right up against the Jewish state’s northern border.

The Israeli reporter who obtained the document is Barak Ravid, senior diplomatic correspondent for Channel 10 News. Ravid announced the following through Twitter yesterday:

  • I published on channel 10 a cable sent to Israeli diplomats asking to lobby for Saudis/Harir and against Hezbollah. The cable sent from the MFA in Jerusalem [Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs] to all Israeli embassies toes the Saudi line regarding the Hariri resignation.
  • The Israeli diplomats were instructed to demarch their host governments over the domestic political situation in Lebanon – a very rare move.
  • The cable said: „You need to stress that the Hariri resignation shows how dangerous Iran and Hezbollah are for Lebanon’s security.“
  • „Hariri’s resignation proves wrong the argument that Hezbollah participation in the government stabilizes Lebanon,“ the cable added.
  • The cable instructed Israeli diplomats to support Saudi Arabia over its war with the Houthis in Yemen. The cable also stressed: „The missile launch by the Houthis towards Riyadh calls for applying more pressure on Iran & Hezbollah.“

Watch today’s Hebrew broadcast Channel 10 News report which features the Israeli diplomatic cable – the text of which is featured in Channel 10’s screenshot (below) – here.

DN-Vw3tXcAAomyL.jpg

Below is a rough translation of the classified Israeli embassy cable using Google Translate as released by Israel’s Channel 10 News:

„To the Director-General: you are requested to urgently contact the Foreign Ministry and other relevant government officials [of your host country] and emphasize that the resignation of Al-Hariri and his comments on the reasons that led him to resign illustrate once again the destructive nature of Iran and Hezbollah and their danger to the stability of Lebanon and the countries of the region.

Al-Hariri’s resignation proves that the international argument that Hezbollah’s inclusion in the government is a recipe for stability is basically wrong. This artificial unity creates paralysis and the inability of local sovereign powers to make decisions that serve their national interest. It effectively turns them into hostages under physical threat and are forced to promote the interests of a foreign power – Iran – even if this may endanger the security of their country.

The events in Lebanon and the launching of a ballistic missile by the signatories to the Riyadh agreement require increased pressure on Iran and Hezbollah on a range of issues from the production of ballistic missiles to regional subversion.“

Thus, as things increasingly heat up in the Middle East, it appears the anti-Iran and anti-Shia alliance of convenience between the Saudis and Israelis appears to have placed Lebanon in the cross hairs of yet another looming Israeli-Hezbollah war. And the war in Yemen will also continue to escalate – perhaps now with increasingly overt Israeli political support. According to Channel 10’s commentary (translation), „In the cable, Israeli ambassadors were also asked to convey an unusual message of support for Saudi Arabia in light of the war in which it is involved in Yemen against the Iranian-backed rebels.“

All of this this comes, perhaps not coincidentally, at the very moment ISIS is on the verge of complete annihilation (partly at the hands of Hezbollah), and as both Israel and Saudi Arabia have of late increasingly declared „red lines“ concerning perceived Iranian influence across the region as well as broad Hezbollah acceptance and popularity within Lebanon.

What has both Israel and the Saudis worried is the fact that the Syrian war has strengthened Hezbollah, not weakened it. And now we have smoking gun internal evidence that Israel is quietly formalizing its unusual alliance with Saudi Arabia and its power-hungry and hawkish crown prince Mohammed bin Salman.

If Russia Wins Aleppo It’s the End of American Hegemony in the Middle East

Wed, Oct 5, 2016 |

Originally appeared at Asia Times On Monday, Barack Obama administration fulfilled its week-old threat to ‘suspend’ bilateral talks with Russia over Syrian crisis. Are the dogs of war being unleashed?The US spy planes are spotted ever more frequently in the Eastern Mediterranean and the Black Sea over Russian bases, especially Tartus and Hmeimim in Syria.The thought may seem preposterous but tensions are palpable.

Quelle: AT If Russia Wins Aleppo It’s the End of American Hegemony in the Middle East

Hybrid Wars 4. In the Greater Heartland (II) | Réseau International (english)

As promising of a potential that the Greater Heartland has in fulfilling what seems to be the world’s inevitable multipolar destiny, it runs the risk of being held back by the adroit manipulation of its “Eurasian Balkan” socio-political vulnerabilities. To bring the reader up to speed real quick, this is the idea first espoused by Zbigniew Brzezinski that the mass of territory spanning from North Africa to Central Asia is riskily threatened by large-scale fragmentation along identity-based lines (ethnic, religious, historical, etc.), mirroring on a much larger scale the demographic “irregularities” that intensified the fratricidal Balkan Wars of the early 1990s.

These preexisting identity differences never played much of a role in domestic or regional affairs until the US began experimenting with them in the mid-2000s until the present day, and the fruits of its socio-political labor have already led to the manufactured “Sunni-Shia rivalry”. Given that the US has been wildly successful in militantly reviving as distantly dormant of a conflict as the more than millennium-old sectarian divide in Islam (hitherto peacefully expressed for the most part), it’s not unlikely that it could do the same with less grandiose and more recently occurring identity conflicts such as the ones that will be concisely (but not comprehensively) enumerated below: (…)

http://en.reseauinternational.net/hybrid-wars-4-in-the-greater-heartland-ii/

Quelle: Hybrid Wars 4. In the Greater Heartland (II) | Réseau International (english)

Hybrid Wars 4. In the Greater Heartland (III) | Oriental Review

RELATED POSTS Smashing Greater Central Asia (III)Central Asia: Top 10 Developments in 2010 Smashing Greater Central Asia (II)Turkmenistan as the Three-for-One Staging Ground of Eurasian Destabilization Hybrid Wars 3. Predicting Next Hybrid WarsNew Integration Project for Eurasia – Making the Future Today Comments comments

Quelle: Hybrid Wars 4. In the Greater Heartland (III) | Oriental Review

Hybrid Wars 4. In the Greater Heartland (I)

orientalreview.org

Hybrid Wars 4. In the Greater Heartland (I)

Editorial

(Please reference the entire Law of Hybrid War series in order to get acquainted with the strategic themes of this article)

The Crossroads Of The Multipolar World

Redefining The Heartland:

The “Greater Heartland” acquires its premier strategic and economic importance due to being the supercontinental fulcrum of multipolar integration. As was mentioned at the end of Part III, there’s a direct overlap between Russia’s Eurasian Union and China’s New Silk Road, and the countries of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan presently fall under both connective umbrellas. To those attuned with geopolitical theory, these three states noticeably correlate with the broad territory that early 20th-century British strategist Halford Mackinder termed the “Heartland”, which he defined as the geopolitical pivot of Eurasia. More contemporary strategists narrowed the region down to the former Soviet Republics of Central Asia, but the author feels that this is presently insufficient to accommodate for the changing dynamics of the evolving world order, and thus proposes a modification of the concept to include Iran, Afghanistan, and Pakistan as well. This redefined version of Mackinder’s original thesis moves the center of geopolitical gravity in a more southwards direction (by contrast, Mackinder’s broad contours included all of Siberia and most of the Russian Far East) in order to reflect more relevant areas of geopolitical competition between the unipolar and multipolar worlds in the context of the New Cold War.

Connecting Eurasia:

Central Asia

b083fe96fac217b9f70c13Corresponding to the Greater Heartland, there are four generalized zones of connectivity, and each has them has their own geo-economic role in the large framework. (…)

Hybrid Wars 4. In the Greater Heartland (I)

The full article attached as PDF:In the Greater Heartlands 20160325

 

 

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