So, it appears that we are back to delusions and fairytales again. For eight years we had lived in a world of unreality, a fantasy world. In this world, we could defeat the Islamic State while also working to destroy the only force in the region that is keeping them from coming to power.
In this fantasy world, we could get a mass murdering dictator to step down peacefully, even though it will lead to the genocide of his ethnic group. If we are going to invade Syria, which it appears that we probably are, then it is necessary that you know what we are getting into.
A few pieces of fact and reality are in order here. The American government has been calling for a “peaceful transition” of Assad out of power. This is our first Syria delusion. Bashar Al-Assad is an Alawite.
The Alawites are a minority ethnic group in Syria, they make up about twelve percent of the Syrian population. An example of when a minority ethnic group was unseated from power: the Tutsis were unseated by the Hutu majority in Rwanda (the Hutu promptly carried out a genocide against the Tutsis, known as the Rwandan Genocide).
Assad knows that if his regime loses power, and thus his Alawite group loses power, it will probably mean a genocide against the Alawites. And when, the American government says they want Assad out of power, what they mean is that they want a democracy or the “moderate opposition” to take over.
Either of these options would mean the fall of the Alawites from power, which would probably result in a genocide against them. Why on earth would Assad willingly do something that is likely to lead to the genocide of his own people and his own death?
The second Syria delusion is what the US thinks will happen once Assad leaves power. As I have mentioned previously, the US Neo-Cons have stated that they want/think the “moderate rebels” will take over.
The “moderate rebels” they are referring to have been largely wiped out. The Free Syrian Army has pretty much fallen apart, with various factions going to join the Al-Nusra front (an offshoot of Al-Queda) and others going to join the Islamic State.
At this moment, there is no significant “moderate opposition” to Assad. This means that getting rid Assad means opening the door for ISIS or Al-Nusra to fill the power vacuum.
The third and final Syria delusion is this idea that Assad is insane or bloodthirsty. There can be no doubt that Assad is brutal and completely sociopathic but insane isn’t a label I would assign to him.
You don’t keep power for as long as he has by being irrational or illogical. Assad must have known that the only thing that would draw the United State back into the Syrian conflict would be the usage of chemical weapons, so why would he do it?
He wouldn’t. It is only by portraying Assad as insane that the Neo-Cons can logically say that he was responsible for the chemical attack and thus justify a war against him.
The truth is, the people pushing for war with Syria don’t really care about any of what I have talked about. For them, this is all about fighting Russia and, as an ally of Russia, Syria is a good target with which to attack Russia’s interests. They can have their war, but I wouldn’t expect the military to fight it for them.
The US military has the lowest morale levels they’ve ever had and one more pointless war is all that it would take for a bunch of these guys to desert the military. And that’s when little Lindsey Graham and John McCain can strap on their helmets and go fight Russia themselves.