Home Topics in Depth Foreign Affairs Why Taking Out Assad is a Stupid Thing to Do

  • Ohio Barbarian (1861 posts)
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    Why Taking Out Assad is a Stupid Thing to Do

    You’ve all heard it, the constant refrain that the only way to bring peace to Syria is to somehow “get rid of” or “remove,” and probably just assassinate, President Bashar al-Assad of Syria. You’ve heard it from American and European politicians and from countless overpaid talking heads on the corporate news networks. I am here to say that they are idiots, morons, fools and ignoramuses, as well as being in many cases boors and turds. This is why.

    They don’t even pay attention to very recent history. We don’t even have to go that far back. In 2011, America and a couple of European powers colluded to overthrow Muammar Gaddafi, the longtime dictator of Libya. He was not a nice man. He led an authoritarian, repressive regime which tolerated no dissent. He’d even written a Little Green Book, something of an Arab version of Mao’s Little Red Book, in which he said some weird and possibly crazy things. Well, so did Mao. He also wanted to trade oil with a currency other than American dollars. He had to go. And he went.

    And look at Libya now. Chaos, two different governments claiming national sovereignty in Tripoli and Tobruk. Instability. A breeding ground for terrorists who now plague some neighboring countries. Hillary Clinton bragged “We came. We saw. He died.” Ha fucking ha. So did I don’t know how many Libyans. They continue to die trying to escape to Europe.

    Let’s go back just a wee bit further in time, to 2003. Saddam Hussein is an evil, brutal dictator who butchers his own people! This evil man definitely has Weapons of Mass Destruction and will use them on America! We can’t wait for confirmation in the form of a mushroom cloud! You remember all that.

    So the great and noble American Empire conquered Iraq, executed Saddam, and…we’re still there! Thousands of civilians dying in Mosul right fucking now, killed by indiscriminate American air strikes and Iraqi government artillery bombardment. A truly insane terrorist group that didn’t even exist before 2003 took over a third of both Iraq and Syria thanks to our little imperial and oh-so humanitarian adventure. Now they have to be destroyed, and the cost is borne by people who just wanted to be able to  live and watch their children grow up in peace. Iraqis all over the country live in constant fear of suicide bombers or American bombers, neither of which they had to worry about before Bush’s crusade.

    And now our moronic leaders want to do the same thing to Syria. In fact, to a large extent they already have. Obama, you moron.

    The modern states of Syria, Libya and Iraq were all consequences of European imperialism. The Italians took Libya away from the Ottoman Empire and ruled it until World War II. Syria was given to the French and Iraq to the British in a secret deal, the Sykes-Picot Agreement, during World War I. After the war, in spite of the pleas of the Arabs who had risen in revolt to provide invaluable aid to the Allies against the Turks, not to mention those of Lawrence of Arabia, the French and British took those countries over with military force. They also drew the the borders with no regard to all of the different ethnicities and religious groups that already lived there.

    They didn’t care. Neither has any interventionist American government since. It was a recipe for disaster then, and still is. The fact is, the only times those countries have had any kind of stability where their people didn’t have to worry about getting blown up on the way to work or market or school or religious services has been when there was a strong, authoritarian leader in charge. Like it or not, that is just a fucking fact. 

    I work with a couple of Egyptians. Yes, they’re both Coptic Christians, but they grew up in Egypt. I asked one what he thought of Sisi, the current ruthless dictator.  “I like him,” he replied. “I know he’s a dictator, and I know he’s repressive and all that, but democracy just doesn’t work in Egypt. Otherwise the religious nuts will take over, and that’s worse.”

    He did mean religious nuts like ISIS. Or the Saudis.

    So when the Russian Foreign Minister recently publicly asked the question, “What is your game plan?” to Rex Tillerson and Donald Trump, he asked a very good question. So you get rid of Assad, a dictator much like Gaddafi, Hussein, and Sisi for that matter. Then what?

    The silence from Washington and our corporate media is deafening. We know damned well what: the same thing that happened in Libya and Iraq. That’s not liberation. It’s mass murder on a scale that Assad would never have perpetrated. It’s unnecessary suffering for millions of people, including beautiful babies. It’s a spawning ground for more suicide bombers and even more atrocities.

    So the people who advocate getting rid of Assad are either (A)Stupid or (B)Evil because they see a chance to make a profit selling weapons in the aftermath.

    I am so sick of this shit! Thank you for your time and have a nice day.

    FanBoy, tonyl, vattel and 24 othersTwilightSporkle, Xyzse, lawal, historylovr, canoeist52, mrdmk, Enthusiast, Shlabotnik, chknltl, Koko, Rozinante, Art from Ark, Pam, OzoneTom, davidthegnome, Marym625, Silver Witch, broiles, Mom Cat, PADemD, ozoneman, resist99, bemildred, NV Wino like this
    "Identity politics is the last refuge of the politically incompetent."  --Me, with a hat tip to Isaac Asimov  

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    • NV Wino (2656 posts)
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      1. One word: yes.

      Screenshot_2017-04-13-10-18-38-1-1  
    • PFunk1 (933 posts)
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      2. Sometimes removing a bad leader brings about a worse result

      Hey I’m far from an Assad fan but if the US actually does succeed in taking him out (which I seriously thing the Russians wont allow) then life for Israel will get very interesting -and I don’t mean in a good way.

      • Ohio Barbarian (1861 posts)
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        3. I wonder if Netan-Yahoo and his ilk are smart enough to realize that.

        David Ben Gurion, Golda Meir, Shimon Peres, Menachim Begin, sure, but that guy? I honestly don’t know. He seems to want Assad gone.

        I suppose Israelis can be stupid, too.

        "Identity politics is the last refuge of the politically incompetent."  --Me, with a hat tip to Isaac Asimov  
    • Mom Cat (6678 posts)
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      4. Good analysis! Thanks!

           NEVER FORGET      BERNIE WON!          
      • Ohio Barbarian (1861 posts)
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        8. I am always glad to receive your endorsement, Mom Cat, especially because

        we don’t agree on everything. That’s a good thing, though. Alliances of people who agree on everything don’t accomplish much in the long run.

        "Identity politics is the last refuge of the politically incompetent."  --Me, with a hat tip to Isaac Asimov  
        • Mom Cat (6678 posts)
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          9. When you nail it, you nail it! Also, when we disagree, it is done with mutual

          respect.

               NEVER FORGET      BERNIE WON!          
          • Ohio Barbarian (1861 posts)
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            10. Amen, sister!

            "Identity politics is the last refuge of the politically incompetent."  --Me, with a hat tip to Isaac Asimov  
    • ozoneman (402 posts)
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      5. You hit all the key points.

      I might add that the strong men like Hussein, Ghaddafi, and Assad, all had secular governments, where women had full rights, they were educators, doctors, engineers, and now that is gone. So, I cringe when I hear U.S. “feminists,” Clintonites, or Howard Dean talking about regime change. I invite them to go to these countries and talk to women there.

      • NV Wino (2656 posts)
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        6. And, that is a key point.

        Screenshot_2017-04-13-10-18-38-1-1  
      • Ohio Barbarian (1861 posts)
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        7. And you are completely correct in that observation. It's a good one.

        I’m not sure about Gaddafi, however the hell it’s spelled, but both Hussein and Assad were, are, Ba’athists, the descendants of the secular pan-Arab nationalist movement that started after World War II. The original dream was a secular, socialistic Arab state that would erase the boundaries established by European imperialism. This is why, for a couple of years, the United Arab Republic once included both Egypt and Syria. It didn’t last long, but that is why there are two stars on the middle stripe of the Syrian flag. One for Egypt, one for Syria. I think that happened during Nasser’s time.

        They just couldn’t agree on who would actually be running things, and it fell apart quickly. The Arabs are not some monolithic culture that should scare the bejeezus out of anyone else. They are a wondrously diverse people. Unfortunately, they have absolutely no democratic or republican traditions(note the lower case; it’s deliberate and important), and it’s kinda hard for them to develop one when outside powers keep fucking with them.

        "Identity politics is the last refuge of the politically incompetent."  --Me, with a hat tip to Isaac Asimov  
        • ozoneman (402 posts)
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          11. You're the history expert.

          I vaguely recall that Gaddafi was instrumental in establishing OPEC.

          Here is some general history. He seemed like a progressive. :)

          ———-

          History of Libya under Muammar Gaddafi
          “Jamahiriya” redirects here. For other uses, see Jamahiriya (disambiguation).
          Green flag of the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya was the only national flag in the world with just one color.
          Muammar Gaddafi became the de facto leader of Libya on 1 September 1969 after leading a group of young Libyan military officers against King Idris I in a bloodless coup d’état. After the king had fled the country, the Libyan Revolutionary Command Council (RCC) headed by Gaddafi abolished the monarchy and the old constitution and proclaimed the new Libyan Arab Republic, with the motto “freedom, socialism, and unity”.[1]

           

          After coming to power, the RCC government initiated a process of directing funds toward providing education, health care and housing for all. Despite the reforms not being entirely effective[citation needed] , public education in the country became free and primary education compulsory for both sexes. Medical care became available to the public at no cost but providing housing for all was a task the RCC government was not able to complete.[2]Under Gaddafi, per capita income in the country rose to more than US $11,000, the fifth highest in Africa, but was highly stratified and concentrated within elite ranks loyal to Gaddafi.[3] The increase in prosperity was accompanied by a controversial foreign policy, with increased political repression at home.[1][4]

           

          During the 1980s and 1990s, Gaddafi, in alliance with the Eastern Bloc and Fidel Castro’s Cuba, openly supported rebel movements like Nelson Mandela’s African National Congress, the Palestine Liberation Organization, the Irish Republican Army and the Polisario Front (Western Sahara). Gaddafi’s government was either known to be or suspected of participating in or aiding terrorist acts by these and other proxy forces. Additionally, Gaddafi undertook several invasions of neighboring states in Africa, notably Chad in the 1970s and 1980s. All of his actions led to a deterioration of Libya’s foreign relations with several countries and culminated in the US bombing of Libya in 1986. Gaddafi defended his actions by citing the need to support anti-imperialist and anti-colonial movements around the world and to influence domestic politics in capitalist societies. Notably, Gaddafi supported anti-Zionist, pan-Africanist, and black civil rights movements. Gaddafi’s behavior, often erratic, led outsiders to conclude that he was not mentally sound, a claim disputed by the Libyan authorities and other observers close to Gaddafi. Despite his close ties to the KGB and communist intelligence, and despite receiving extensive aid and technical assistance from the Soviet Union and its allies, Gaddafi retained close ties to pro-American governments in Western Europe, largely by bribing Western oil companies with promises of access to lucrative Libyan energy sectors. After the 9/11 attacks, strained relations between Libya and the West were mostly normalised, and sanctions against the country relaxed, in exchange for Libyan efforts to shrink its controversial nuclear program.

           

          https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Libya_under_Muammar_Gaddafi

          • Ohio Barbarian (1861 posts)
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            12. If Gaddafi was a progressive, he was a self-aggrandizing progressive. His family

            lived quite well, thank you very much. He did some Pretty Bad Things such as the downing of the airliner over Locherbie, Scotland. He was all for civil rights so long as those rights didn’t erode his position of absolute power in Libya. In short, he was an asshole. So was Saddam, so is Assad, so is Sisi.

            I hope I’m making it clear I never liked or approved of the guy. The Wikipedia article looks mostly accurate to me, though. In short, for the time and the place, Gaddafi was a mixed bag. He did do some good things for his people. He was certainly no more of a monster than say, Henry VIII or Oliver Cromwell. Like Assad, he wasn’t Hitler or Stalin or Mao or Pol Pot, Augusto Pinochet or Anastasio Somoza.

            The bottom line is that, for most Libyans, they were better off under Gaddafi than what they have to live with now, thanks to the Obama/Clinton “humanitarian” intervention and its aftermath, which is now conveniently forgotten by our American PTB.

            "Identity politics is the last refuge of the politically incompetent."  --Me, with a hat tip to Isaac Asimov  
            • ozoneman (402 posts)
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              13. Yup, they were much better off under Gaddafi

              Hussein, and Assad. They were secular, women had rights, professions, education, and health care. The U.S. has destroyed all of that. So, who are the real demons?

              • Ohio Barbarian (1861 posts)
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                14. Capitalists.

                "Identity politics is the last refuge of the politically incompetent."  --Me, with a hat tip to Isaac Asimov  
    • Ohio Barbarian (1861 posts)
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      15. I must rise and, not shine, but drag my ass to work in the morning.

      Thanks for the comments, they are much appreciated. I must retire. Just so you know I’m not deliberately ignoring anyone.

      "Identity politics is the last refuge of the politically incompetent."  --Me, with a hat tip to Isaac Asimov  
    • Marym625 (16876 posts)
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      16. On The Daily Radical

      I’m sorry I didn’t put it up yesterday. I had to take a phone call when reading it then spaced. :)

      948c8f248a Thank you DNC, Hillary Clinton, The Hillary Clinton Players, GOP, RNC and CrossCheck for Trump. Enjoy it while it lasts. The Revolution may not be televised but it's beginning. And we'll win
    • davidthegnome (950 posts)
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      17. I think the question was rhetorical, in any event…

      I do not believe the Russian Foreign Minister expected an answer to this question: ““What is your game plan?”

      It is unlikely that such a question would be answered truthfully, in any event.  Undoubtedly it has something to do with (the official response) “Creating stability and democracy in the middle east!  Saving people!  Protecting innocent bunny rabbits!  Righteousness and the will of God!”  I think though, that most of us know better than that.  It has to do more with our economic interests, control over the world’s remaining oil supply, particularly through (as in the case of Syria) new pipelines we might build… this is about enormous wealth, simply put, about resources.

      The US and it’s allies (eager or grudging) do not want Russia to gain a foothold in the middle east where they might challenge us more powerfully in regards to held resources and the oil trade.  We now play the role of both export and import – and as always… people want more – the rich most of all.  I suspect, that a lot of this is being manipulated because the US very much wants an excuse to go to war with Russia – an immense Nation with what is likely to be huge untapped resources in regards to that black piss we call oil.  What many in the US seem to ignore is just HOW large Russia is, or the history of the Nation – and how, even with much of their Nation burning, burned more themselves, rather than let their enemies have it.

      From the invasion of Iraq… to now, I believe this has been the genuine goal.  Not spreading democracy, not saving the lives of starving people, not even retaliating for some monster’s “chemical weapons attack” on his own people – or protecting them from tyrannical governments, but, simply put, gathering, controlling… and maintaining resources.  Today, it is all about oil.  If the world survives, tomorrow, it will likely be all about what remains of the world’s water supply.

      Everything else I think to be lies, manipulations – and justifications to mask the true intent.  Many will buy them – but I do not.  I have read too much history, seen too much in my own relatively short life time to think that.  The US authorities are very deliberately jabbing the Russian bear, today, perhaps we can bully them into giving up Assad (and their limited power in Syria) but tomorrow, or the day after… I suspect we will see increasing rhetoric about just how evil Putin is… and why he needs to be taken down.

      The Trump administration, like the Obama before it… is playing a damn dangerous game.  It could very easily blow up in all of our faces.  This saber rattling could ultimately result in a world-ending war.  We are ruled… by idiots.

      “There is no distinctly native American criminal class save Congress.” - Mark Twain
      • Ohio Barbarian (1861 posts)
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        21. Oh, I think the Russians' question was dead serious, but I don't think they

        expected an answer. They know as well as you do what the real goal is–total global hegemony for the Western financial aristocracy. Are you sure you’re not a Russian agent? You sure think like one. 

        "Identity politics is the last refuge of the politically incompetent."  --Me, with a hat tip to Isaac Asimov  
    • MannyGoldstein (1792 posts)
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      18. But this time, it will work.

      It’s totally different.

      No, more different than last time. No, totally much more different.

      Stop laughing, dammit, you sound like a hyena.

      "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it" - Upton Sinclair
      • Ohio Barbarian (1861 posts)
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        22. Yip yip cackle cackle!

        :roflmao:

        "Identity politics is the last refuge of the politically incompetent."  --Me, with a hat tip to Isaac Asimov  
    • chknltl (80 posts)
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      19. Stupid? No, i do not think so.

      If our government represented our needs-our educated needs and this is what we wanted then yes we would be stupid.

      I doubt that you will find many Americans who currently think ‘our’ government represents us.

      As we here well know our government represents the highest bidders. In the cases outlined, we further know that these highest bidders are making trillions on creating and maintaining instability throughout the Middle East.

      Worse, these murderous ratfuckers are doing all this in our name (government of by and for us), and on our (taxpayers) dime! Pretty damned smart if you ask me.

      Fools and imbeciles don’t have this kind of power, the power to control American POTUS’s, the power to control our military and our intelligence gathering infrastructure.

      Bush was their tool; Obama was their tool; Trump is their tool and Hillary wanted to be their tool. They control our CIA and our FBI,  they just dropped the Mother Of All Bombs on Afghanistan.

      What they do is well thought out-premeditated is what the courts would call it and they are well aware of the consequences.

      No….stupid is not a word I would use to describe these ‘people’. If it were up to me, words to describe them would come from an International Tribunal investigating them for Crimes Against Humanity.

      • Ohio Barbarian (1861 posts)
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        23. Risking a military confrontation with a nuclear-armed power that has the ability

        to kill us all is not only stupid, it is dangerously insane. I disagree with you. I think far too many Americans think our ruling classes are smart. They’re not. They’re small, petty-minded people. They’ve even started inbreeding and we’re already seeing the inevitable results.

        "Identity politics is the last refuge of the politically incompetent."  --Me, with a hat tip to Isaac Asimov  
    • Major Hogwash (1885 posts)
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      20. Face it, Assad is history, whether you like it or not.

      It’s all going according to plan PNAC. A little late, but still not veering from the plan.

      • Ohio Barbarian (1861 posts)
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        24. Another one overestimating the intelligence of our PTB.

        I don’t know whether Assad is history or not, yet; he may yet survive. Who knows? Trump may get us into a war with North Korea that will leave the whole peninsula, and maybe Japan, devastated. He may forget all about Assad. I don’t think he has a very long attention span, anyway. The man has the mind of a spoiled child.

        "Identity politics is the last refuge of the politically incompetent."  --Me, with a hat tip to Isaac Asimov  
      • RealityCheck (563 posts)
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        34.  Face it, Assad is history

        I agree. If not in less than 4 yrs, 5-20 yrs. Once the Bush Family entered the US into the ME quagmire, many countries (over there) will smolder for decades to come while draining our re$ource$ like billionaires on crack. Iraq will never be right just like Syria will never be right for 50-100 yrs. Just as our old PNAC NeoCons had planned. Mission Accomplished!

        Removing Assad is a bad call …… simply because from what we’ve witnessed in the past when interfering with other countries and their leaders. Once enough havoc was created in Syria under our BushCo rule, more bad crap was sent into motion there under Obama’s leadership. Not that Assad is one of my favorite leaders in the world (but it’s his country to run it), but once it was decided to destroy/remove him, he’s been under the gun for a long while now that has drawn reactions/orders from him in order to hold onto his country. I personally believe that he’s had to do some things there unfavorable in my eyes simply because of the really messed up situation there now. To the majority of the world, he’s the bad guy. Mission Accomplished.

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        • kidfrumcleveland (80 posts)
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          31. Oh so you do realize that the reason they hate us has mostly because of Israel

          Arab terrorists didn’t exist until the Munich Olympics.    Pakistan has had a female prime minister.  Sounds like you are still blaming religion.  It’s not like conservative Jewish positions on women are that much different that conservative Muslim positions.

          • Ohio Barbarian (1861 posts)
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            32. Well, I see that we've BOTH had posts deleted because we BOTH violated the

            JPR community standards and guidelines. Congratulations, kidfrumcleveland! You are the very first poster on JPR who pissed me off so much that I stepped over the line in my response!

            I salute you.

            That said, the condescension in your post #31 is truly insulting to me. So I will demolish it.

            First, Arab terrorists existed long before the 1972 Munich Olympics. There were both Arab and Jewish terrorists in Palestine when it was still under British rule. If you don’t know when that was, The Google is your friend; I am not.

            Second, what the hell does Bhutto or Pakistan have to do with my OP? Don’t bother answering; I will. Nothing, that’s what. You are engaging in typical, petty, political board snark by bringing in something totally irrelevant to the topic at hand. I’ve seen this before. And you’re implying that all Muslims, regardless of ethnicity or language or denomination(yes, they do have them, just like Christians do) are the same. You’re wrong. Period. End of discussion.

            Third, you bring in the misogyny that exists in both Judaism and Islam, which is totally irrelevant to the OP, which was about whether it is wise to want to get rid of the Syrian president. I don’t know where you were trying to go with that, and I really don’t care.

            So I will leave it there.

            "Identity politics is the last refuge of the politically incompetent."  --Me, with a hat tip to Isaac Asimov  
            • kidfrumcleveland (80 posts)
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              41. I'm sorry you are the one defending Terrorist leaders like Ghadfi and Assad…

              Sorry these are not nice people and trying to take them out during the Islamic Spring Was and still is a good idea.  You are also basicially telling me that people in the Middle East are way too barbaric for Democracy.  Sorry pal, that sounds a bit RACIST to me.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Do we even have a functioning Republic anymore in this Country?  SOunds like the Pot calling the kettle black to me?

              • Ohio Barbarian (1861 posts)
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                44. How ironic. Here, you accuse me of being racist towards Arabs and Muslims.

                On this other thread, I am implicitly accused of being racist towards Jews. To paraphrase Isaac Asimov, I’m beginning to think that identity politics with its attendant accusations of racism directed against opponents is the last refuge of the politically incompetent.

                Hey! That’s a good tag line! Thanks!

                "Identity politics is the last refuge of the politically incompetent."  --Me, with a hat tip to Isaac Asimov  
    • Enthusiast (6622 posts)
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      27. Recommended to max!

      “My country right or wrong.”

      Fuck that noise.

      "The NSA’s capability at any time could be turned around on the American people, and no American would have any privacy left, such is the capability to monitor everything. There would be no place to hide."  Frank Church
      • Ohio Barbarian (1861 posts)
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        28. Thanks, and fuck that noise again. There's a video somewhere…ah!

        "Identity politics is the last refuge of the politically incompetent."  --Me, with a hat tip to Isaac Asimov  
    • Rocker (450 posts)
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      29. and yet you posted you hoped the CIA took out Trump

      So you favor an intelligence coup in the U.S. but not in Syria?

      Explain the difference.

      • Ohio Barbarian (1861 posts)
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        30. That is a good question that deserves a good answer, so you shall have one.

        It deserves some thought and consideration. I’m going to take some time to think about it in order to give your excellent question a worthy response. It doesn’t deserve a flip answer. I promise I’ll reply again.

        "Identity politics is the last refuge of the politically incompetent."  --Me, with a hat tip to Isaac Asimov  
      • Ohio Barbarian (1861 posts)
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        33. I said something like, "If the intelligence community takes down Trump, good for

        them!” several weeks ago. The difference is that, in my opinion, Trump is a dangerous, mentally ill man with the mentality of spoiled child. I also don’t think he’s the brightest bulb in the ceiling. He throws tantrums with missiles. He needlessly escalates tensions on the Korean peninsula and now with Russia. He’s escalated Obama’s drone campaign and increased the military commitment to Syria and Iraq. In short, he’s much more of a threat to American national security than Assad could ever be.

        More importantly, Trump is the American president. If the CIA or somebody just provides the evidence that he committed high crimes and misdemeanors, they are doing us all a service as well as their own duty to uphold and defend the Constitution of the United States. They would not be overthrowing the legitimate government of a foreign country.

        In short, I have no objection to Americans acting to save their own country from a madman, idiot, or criminal in the White House. In 1974, it was Congress who acted when they were given testimony President Nixon’s own staff that he had clearly broken the law. In 2017, if the IC provides such evidence to Congress, I don’t have a problem with that. That wouldn’t even be a coup. It would just be the IC doing its job.

        Finally, I object to the long American practice of overthrowing foreign governments. Every time we do that, the people of that country are worse off, it increases the danger of attacks on the American people, and only benefits a few wealthy American interests. I know that right now we are an empire, but I would like to see that change. Hope that answers your question.

        "Identity politics is the last refuge of the politically incompetent."  --Me, with a hat tip to Isaac Asimov  
    • Xyzse (1856 posts)
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      35. Absolutely!

      I am quite against regime change.

      Thank you for the analysis.

      • Ohio Barbarian (1861 posts)
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        36. Thanks and no problem.

        "Identity politics is the last refuge of the politically incompetent."  --Me, with a hat tip to Isaac Asimov  
    • Robert Thomas 85 (160 posts)
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      37. If Assad is taken out,

      I definitely think that ISIS or some other group of religious extremists will end up taking his place. No doubt this will end up being a very stupid move.

      • Ohio Barbarian (1861 posts)
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        39. Yes, it's pretty simple, isn't it?

        "Identity politics is the last refuge of the politically incompetent."  --Me, with a hat tip to Isaac Asimov  
    • vattel (1097 posts)
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      38. Step 1: Collect Assad. Step 2: ? Step 3: Syria profits.

      The deep state gnomes don’t know what the fuck they’re doing.

      • Ohio Barbarian (1861 posts)
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        40. I think Step 2 is that somehow magic happens.

        I can see corporate assholes really believing in that visualization and really believing what you want actually works, but the intelligence types should have, well, more intelligence about the whole process.  I have no doubts that there are low-ranking analysts who get it right, but the ones at the top have fat corporate jobs waiting for them if they deliver corporate policies.

        It’s the decisionmakers who are the problem. I don’t see that changing so long as the potential for bribery by the oligarchy in the form of financial reward exists. How would you get rid of that? Dammit, now I’ll have to read up on shit again. 

        "Identity politics is the last refuge of the politically incompetent."  --Me, with a hat tip to Isaac Asimov  
    • Blue Meany (258 posts)
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      42. I have been wondering for a long time what is actually behind the US

      attacks on Syria, and for that matter Libya, Yemen, Iraq and the war-mongering about Iran.  No doubt oil companies have their eyes on on oil and pipeline routes, but I don’t think this really explains it. The chaos that ensues after the fall of a strongman in countries with ethnic and religious cleavages is not conducive to oil exports or pipelines (although Western companies will seek to grab everything they can).   But maybe chaos and fragmentation of established nations is actually not a by-product but the real goal of these interventions.  As long as ethnic and religious groups are fighting among themselves they will be weakened in any efforts to fight Israel and/or outside powers.  If Iraq and Syria end up being divided into federated states with fairly homogenous ethnic/relgious populations, it establishes this as the regional norm, weakens Arabs as a political force, and legitimizes an Israeli state that is Jewish (ethnically and religiously) and in which Arabs may be compelled to migrate.  Isrraeli conservatives seems to be the only groups whose interests are consistently served by these interventions.

      • FanBoy (7108 posts)
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        43. "maybe chaos and fragmentation of established nations…"

        “is actually not a by-product but the real goal…”

        +++

      • Ohio Barbarian (1861 posts)
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        45. That's possible. It is also possible that the arms merchants encourage this sort

        of thing for the sake of their own profits. Or both.

        "Identity politics is the last refuge of the politically incompetent."  --Me, with a hat tip to Isaac Asimov