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Added: Saturday, December 7th 2019 at 12:55pm by chuckman

John Chuckman







“Can allies trust an administration that boasts of using military power to pillage other nations' resources?”




Trump has used his remarks about “liking to steal oil” as a lame-joke way to hide his real purpose. He thinks the poor joke is more acceptable to the world than the truth.


The Syrian war has never been about oil. It has been about destabilizing or toppling a government the United States and its regional friends dislike because it is independent-minded and does not embrace America’s vision for the region. It refuses to take the Pledge of Allegiance.


And Syria has always refused to relinquish the territory Israel has occupied since the 1967 War, the Golan Heights, a territory Israel claims to have annexed against all international law.


With the help of Syria's allies, the main war, a vicious proxy war using recruited outsiders such as al Nusra and ISIS and others, is now largely over, and the United States did not win.


The effort in Syria’s northeast with the American occupation of the country’s oil fields is about claiming a consolation prize for the larger loss, effectively crippling the Assad government’s future efforts at rebuilding the war-torn country.


Trump, I believe, at one point genuinely wanted to leave Syria altogether, knowing the main war was lost.


But powerful pressure groups in Washington immediately opposed withdrawal. The consolation prize of hurting Syria was demanded. And Trump, focused insanely on getting himself re-elected and on the need for heavy-duty campaign donations, gave them what they wanted. He’s never had any problem with reversing himself on policy if there’s a personal benefit.


The United States is using the notion of keeping the oil from ISIS as an explanation. But it is a feeble explanation because ISIS is not strong in that region, and the unpleasant truth is that the United States has never genuinely fought terror inside Syria.


Not at all. It is ultimately responsible for the terror being there, a responsibility it shares with Israel and Saudi Arabia, originally Turkey, and a few other regional friends. Although I suppose America’s ideal outcome would see the terror groups having achieved their goals in Syria and then be disbanded or destroyed. They are trash to be temporarily used, not allies for the future. Geo-political toilet paper.


The United States has had some conflicts with ISIS, as you'd expect when dealing with such unholy thugs, but the focus of the terrorist groups has always remained toppling or hurting the Syrian state, which just happens to be the aim of America and its close regional friends. They have never attacked the interests that true jihadi types would attack, Israel and the corrupt Saudi Royals.


Over the years, the United States has used the presence of ISIS and others as a convenient excuse to keep troops in various locations and to bomb things in Syria it wanted to bomb. The terrorists have proved quite handy that way.


It has been a very dirty war.




Just an additional note on the causes of the Syrian War.


The names of the Middle East countries destroyed in a series of wars now often called the Neocon Wars were long ago on an official American government list of seven countries to be toppled over future years. The list was part of a secret Pentagon document.


The list was seen by former General Wesley Clark at the Pentagon not long after 9/11. He has spoken of seeing it several times.


And, remember, Condoleezza Rice, former National Security Advisor and Secretary of State, spoke of hearing the "birth pangs of a new Middle East" at the time of the invasion of Iraq. America, essentially, has long had a secret plan for a kind of vast and bloody urban-renewal project surrounding Israel.


The list was assembled under leading American Neocon Paul Wolfowitz, one of the Pentagon’s highest officials then. Syria was on the list, as was Iran.


Just as the invasion of Iraq was not really about oil, so the hybrid proxy war in Syria was not. By using covert means and proxy forces, Washington avoided another costly invasion like Iraq, something that had created a lot of adverse reaction in the world.


The open and extremely violent invasion of Iraq violated international law, and it offended many, even in friendly nations. So, the approach would not be repeated for other nations on the list.


Iran, with its now demonstrated impressive military capabilities under renewed American belligerence, may just have avoided the fate of the other countries on the Pentagon’s list.  The range and accuracy of Iran’s many missile and other systems have been impressive.


Iran began developing new capabilities as a national project after the long and bloody Iraq-Iran War of the 1980s, a war the United States encouraged and supported, even going so far as supplying Iraq’s Saddam Hussein with deadly chemical weapons to adjust the odds against the forces of Iran’s much greater population. Huge numbers of Iranian soldiers were gassed.

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