Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
September 01, 2013

Obama's Carte Blanche War Resolution

Any war resolution Congress would pass would likely be interpreted by the administration as a license for all out war on Syria and beyond.

But the first draft the executive is putting to Congress is even worse:

The President is authorized to use the Armed Forces of the United States as he determines to be necessary and appropriate in connection with the use of chemical weapons and other weapons of mass destruction in the conflict in Syria in order to -
  1. prevent or deter the use or proliferation (including the transfer to terrorist groups or other state or non-state actors), within, to or from Syria, of any weapon of mass destruction, including chemical or biological weapons or components of or materials used in such weapons; or
  2. protect the United States or its allies and partners against the threats posed by such weapons.
This draft is nearly as wide as the Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Terrorists that Congress passed on September 14 2001 and which has been (ab-)used by the Bush and Obama administrations as an undiscriminating, unlimited license to incarcerate, torture or kill anyone at the free discretion of the executive.

The key words in Obama's draft and their meaning are:

  • "as he determines to be necessary and appropriate" ==> no limits apply
  • "in connection with" ==> as everything is connected ...
  • "or deter the use or proliferation" ==> by whatever means
  • "to .. other state .. actors" ==> target Iran
  • "or components of or materials used" ==> from corrugated steel to petroleum products
  • "protect ... or its allies and partners" ==> the Zionists
  • "against the threats posed" ==> includes non-use but assumed existence of such weapons

It is clear from this wording that such a resolution would allow nearly everything far beyond the "punitive" few cruise missile strikes against Syrian forces the administration marketed so far. It could easily be used for an outright blockade of Iran or even a "preemptive" strike against Iran's industries in the name of "deterrence" and "protecting" Israel.

It is all or nothing, peace or unlimited war. Anyone with peace on her mind should hope and work to prevent any war resolution from passing Congress. The abuse of any war resolution by this and the next executive is practically guaranteed. And even with a Congress approved war resolution any attack by the United States against Syria would still be a illegal war of aggression under international law.

There is some hope that the French parliament may come to help. The French president is now under pressure to also allow a vote on a war on Syria and beyond. That would would likely come before Congress votes and the French people are very much against a war. A "no" vote in the French parliament would increase pressure on Congress to also reject war.

During next weeks discussions it will be important to point out that the U.S. "intelligence" about the chemical incident in Syria is full of holes. The paper by the British Joint Intelligence Organisation used by Cameron to ask for war speaks of 350 people killed in the incident. On Friday Secretary of State Kerry spoke of 1,429 people killed. The draft war resolution speaks of "more then thousand" killed. 350, 1,429, 1,000 - which is it?

Even the often quoted, pro-insurgency Syrian Observatory for Human Rights rejects these numbers as propaganda:

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, an organization that monitors casualties in the country, said it has confirmed 502 deaths, nearly 1,000 fewer than the American intelligence assessment claimed.

Rami Abdel-Rahman, the head of the organization, said he was not contacted by U.S. officials about his efforts to collect information about the death toll in the Aug. 21 attacks.

"America works only with one part of the opposition that is deep in propaganda," he said, and urged the Obama administration to release the information its estimate is based on.

If the British and U.S. intelligence can not get the death count right what else in their estimates are just guesses based on open source rumors and insurgency propaganda? Are such unconfirmed estimates, not knowledge, really enough to send off armed forces to kill more and more people in foreign lands?

Posted by b on September 1, 2013 at 6:18 UTC | Permalink

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well,look like Iran used this mess very quickly ....
http://www.presstv.ir/detail/2013/09/01/321597/camp-new-iraq-clashes-kill-44-mko/

and maybe this is a message to west that Iran won't lose this chance to weaken USA ...

Posted by: R.P | Sep 1 2013 17:15 utc | 101

Guardian: David Cameron accused Ed Miliband of 'siding with Russia' over Syria
Will US politicians get down and dirty like this?
I hope so. Politics should be 'no holds barred'.
Harry Truman: If you can't stand the heat get out of the kitchen.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Sep 1 2013 17:15 utc | 102

@somebody
Iran might attack Saudi Arabia
Nope. There's no evidence that Iran's defense policy is anything but defensive.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Sep 1 2013 17:17 utc | 103

If a US carrier were sunk or seriously damaged the result could be a crash in the dollar and global financial markets. US dollar strength largely a function of perceived military invincibility.

Posted by: Andoheb | Sep 1 2013 17:18 utc | 104

The people who persistently argue that Israel is not interested in the conquest of Syria but only in that of Iran, evidently haven't grasped the strategic situation. Before Iran can be destroyed, it is necessary to neutralise Hezbollah's missile threat, and Israel considers a precondition for that is to cut Hezbollah's supply line through Syria. They calculate that as long as Hezbollah cannot replenish its stocks, they will be able to annihilate its offensive potential by means of saturation bombing. But if Hezbollah could replenish its stocks, then it would be able to respond to such a campaign with an unacceptably damaging reprisal within a matter of a couple of months, thus diverting the Iran war effort, which will certainly last longer than that.

Posted by: Rowan Berkeley | Sep 1 2013 17:22 utc | 105

@89

"74) I was not analyzing who is to blame.

Phew!!

Of course your whole premise is completely suspect given that you seem refer to something called "the Middle East" as if it was some sort unified entity such as a Nation State, as in

"the Middle East could come up with a different business model"


Perhaps that is why you have this so backward?

"The Middle East" is a hodge-podge of Nation States containing, to varying degrees, Multi-Ethnic/religious populations within their borders. All of this is mostly the result of possibly arbitrary [though probably not] decisions made without the consent of the people affected by those decisions, mostly in the aftermath of WW1, by a bunch of rather twisted Imperialists.

If you really want to work out why they have little indigenous industry there, then it would be advisable to stop pretending that there is some sort of real entity called "the Middle East".

"Fact is old colonial powers still seem to have a very easy job splitting Middle Eastern populations along ethnic and sectarian lines detracting them from finding own solutions for development,"

Fact is old colonial powers [Almost Any Nation State Run by evil f'kers] still seem to [could quite easily] have a very easy job splitting Middle Eastern populations [ANY non-homogenous population] along ethnic and sectarian lines detracting them from finding own solutions for development.

I think your problem, when it comes to the problems you are having with such basic analysis, is that your focus is far too narrow.

Posted by: hmm | Sep 1 2013 17:22 utc | 106

Don, 96,

That was almost certainly a false flag Israel coordinated with LBJ, with the intent of blaming it on Egypt. They wont be doing that to the Russians.

If they did, the Russians do have subs and can always retaliate unofficially.

And Re: the Liberty, the US navy may have done the same. Google INS submarine Dakar.

Posted by: Lysander | Sep 1 2013 17:23 utc | 107

"Nope. There's no evidence that Iran's defense policy is anything but defensive."

who needs evidence when you can just state anything you like and pretend it's true, despite all evidence to the contrary?

Posted by: hmm | Sep 1 2013 17:24 utc | 108

@95 Don - just curious on this report since they are all away for the holiday? Are congressional staffers in town?

Posted by: Siun | Sep 1 2013 17:25 utc | 109

@94

"But you can't really accidentally shoot a war ship. And at any rate embassies can't hit back, whereas ships can."

Excellent point. someone should make sure ZUSA war planners are brought up to speed on this not-so-subtle distinction between the 2

Posted by: hmm | Sep 1 2013 17:27 utc | 110

Iran won't attack Hejaz ( the true name of that country - KSA ) because Mecca and Medina are most holy places for Muslims and KSA can use this to make more brain-dead so called Jihadi for himself ...

Posted by: R.P | Sep 1 2013 17:30 utc | 111

The attack on the USS Liberty was a multi-pronged blatant Israel attack with no coverup attempt. The ship was gathering commo intel during the Six-day War.
wiki:

On 8 June 1967, during the Six-Day War. The combined air and sea attack killed 34 crew members (naval officers, seamen, two Marines, and one civilian), wounded 171 crew members, and severely damaged the ship. At the time, the ship was in international waters north of the Sinai Peninsula, about 25.5 nmi (29.3 mi; 47.2 km) northwest from the Egyptian city of Arish.

Israel apologized for the attack, saying that the USS Liberty had been attacked in error after being mistaken for an Egyptian ship.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Sep 1 2013 17:31 utc | 112

Putin's going to continue to make the case that such a strike would be illegal w/o UNSC authorization. The US has no legal defense for that charge.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Sep 1 2013 17:34 utc | 113

Putin's going to continue to make the case that such a strike would be illegal w/o UNSC authorization. The US has no legal defense for that charge.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Sep 1 2013 17:34 utc | 114

John Kerry's military experience included shooting defenseless civilians in the Mekong Delta of Vietnam, so he believes that Syria would be another such turkey-shoot. But it wouldn't be.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Sep 1 2013 17:40 utc | 115

John Kerry's military experience included shooting defenseless civilians in the Mekong Delta of Vietnam, so he believes that Syria would be another such turkey-shoot. But it wouldn't be.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Sep 1 2013 17:40 utc | 116

Re 91


don't know if there is an Russki Naval presence in the Persian Gulf, if not then an attack from that direction would certainly negate any possible advantage Syria might gain from Russki Navy in the Med.

Posted by: hmm | Sep 1 2013 17:47 utc | 117

Iran won't attack Hejaz ( the true name of that country - KSA )

No, Hejaz is a region of Saudi - the west coast. There isn't a single other name for the territory conquered by Ibn Saud; it was a collection of regions.

and

No, the Iranians won't hesitate to attack Saudi because of the Holy Cities, because there are plenty of targets far from Mecca and Medina, notably the oil fields in the Eastern Province. Must be 1000 km from Mecca.

and

No, Iran won't attack Saudi for the reason given by Don, Iran's defensive posture. That said, Iran did invade Iraq in 1982 during the counterattack against Saddam's initial invasion of Iran. It was a very desperate fight, which the Iraqis nearly lost. That was when chemical weapons were first used (no doubt supplied by the good old US of A). The Iraqis were also said to have put high-tension cables into the canals, and electrocuted the Iranian soldiers.

Posted by: alexno | Sep 1 2013 17:48 utc | 118

@Somebody and Hmmm

Don is correct. Iran has a very strong Anti Access and Area Denial strategy.

This is just one of many documents discussing it. www.csbaonline.org/wp-content/uploads/.../CSBA_SWA_FNL-WEB.pdf

Posted by: BillyBoy | Sep 1 2013 17:50 utc | 119

This is interesting. While most certainly all of the latest videos of choking children can and will be found on YouTube for the forever, this video - which I found from a tweet on Joshua Landis twitter stream and viewed at the time - is now:

"removed as a violation of YouTube's policy on violence. Sorry about that."

A sorry display indeed, considering I can watch the heads being chainsawed off of poor Mexicans having only to create a YouTube account.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=2kIuMEcY5B8

This is the level of information warfare we are in. Orwell would be astonished. The only thing he got wrong was the outward appearance: It isn't, on the surface, a big government we're all supposed to praise running everything. It is us were to believe in. Even journalism is passé, we don't accept that. We believe "open source" and "average folks" and "NGOs" producing the content.

Our "Big Brother" is us. We are to sit and declare "doubleplus good these brave color revolutionaries fighting those dictators" and have our two minutes hate over Julian Assange and Edward Snowden because they help "the terrorists." Al Qaeda became "Syrian Rebels" and we go from "the War on Terror" to "War on Assad." And "We have always been at war with Assad" even though just 5 years ago he was helping us fight Al Qaeda.

We have "War is Humanitarianism" and "Wage slavery is Freedom" and anyone who dares expose what is really going on goes to room 101 - or at least the Navy brig in Quantico. Don't be fooled though, in the background we still have someone running the memory hole - it's just they get to ply ping pong during break and have free snacks just off the L train in Manhattan.

No doubt that the inner party has the best of all there is to have.


Posted by: guest77 | Sep 1 2013 17:52 utc | 120

@115

Don't know why that would directed at me, since I certainly never disagreed with him on that point.

I already know that Iran, unlike say the zionasties in Israel, acts primarily defensively.

Posted by: hmm | Sep 1 2013 17:54 utc | 121

OOPS! Sorry.

who needs evidence when you can just state anything you like and pretend it's true, despite all evidence to the contrary?

I assume then that the above was directed at somebody.

Posted by: BillyBoy | Sep 1 2013 17:56 utc | 122

@115
Ps
Unfortunately your link is broke.

until it's fixed, zomebody won't be able to dl that pdf to see the evidence for himself, which would be a shame, don't you think?

Posted by: hmm | Sep 1 2013 17:58 utc | 123

No probs

Posted by: hmm | Sep 1 2013 17:59 utc | 124

@116 Sorry, I didn't say what was in the video:

The "rebels" stop three trucks at a checkpoint and pull the Shia drivers from their cabs. They interrogate them and finally ask "how many times do you kneel for prayer." When they answer incorrectly they are executed.

Too "violent" or just the wrong side doing it?

Posted by: guest77 | Sep 1 2013 18:00 utc | 125

115 this here is the working link

Well, "denial of access" could be anything including an attack. Of course they could attack US gulf bases - would be best for PR.

Iran, in particular, has been investing in new capabilities that could be used to deter, delay, or prevent effective U.S. military operations in the Persian Gulf. Iran’s acquisition of weapons which it could use to deny access to the Gulf, control the flow of oil and gas from the region, and conduct acts of aggression or coercion, are of grave concern to the United States and its security partners. ... Iran has had ample opportunity over the last twenty years to examine the “American way of war” and to deduce that allowing the United States and its allies to mass overwhelming combat power on its borders is a prescription for defeat. Therefore, Iran is pursuing measures to deny the U.S. military access to close-in basing and make traditional U.S. power-projection operations in the Persian Gulf possible only at a prohibitive cost.

If that has been the aim for 20 years they might as well put it into practice now.

Posted by: somebody | Sep 1 2013 18:03 utc | 126

@Don Bacon - could you please cut it a bit?

Short one liner snipes ain't your most valuable comments. They lack facts and back up. Write less and more founded please.

Posted by: b | Sep 1 2013 18:08 utc | 127

Sorry -- my comments don't immediately appear, and then some appear and some don't. I assume that I'm not alone. I've tried previewing and not previewing to see if there is a pattern. Apparently there isn't.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Sep 1 2013 18:11 utc | 128

b -- okay.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Sep 1 2013 18:13 utc | 129

@122
"They might as well put it into practice now."

Someone really should tell them that, eh?

Posted by: hmm | Sep 1 2013 18:13 utc | 130

@ alexander ...

nope , Arab peninsula , was named as Hejaz ... except Yemen and Oman ( and there was not such thing named Qatar , UAE , Kuwait before 1900 ) ... so it is safe to assume its name is Hejaz ....

and

for most of Muslims ( simple mind Muslims !! ) , KSA is equal to Mecca and Medina ... no matter how you look at this , they will rise their arms for Jihad against Iran ...

and

we eliminated Iraq army for almost three times but other countries help them to rebuild their army .... for example only Kuwait gave nearly 40 Billion dollars to Iraq - back then each oil barrel price was around 10$ !!! ...

our leader should be worry about our people as well ... they can't ignore people ....

Posted by: R.P | Sep 1 2013 18:15 utc | 131

Of course Iran wont start attacking anyone if Syria is attacked. Where does these fantasies come from? Same with the fantasy-comments that Russia would attack US, Saudiabia, a theory which died out luckily.

Of course Israel/US want Iran to get involved and Iran knows this very well. They wont go into the trap.

Posted by: Anonymous | Sep 1 2013 18:17 utc | 132

The Catholic Community in the Middle East ... and king PlayStation ... call for peace:


http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/29/pope-francis-king-abdullah-jordan-syria-dialogue_n_3839052.html

"Pope Francis and Jordan’s King Abdullah II reaffirmed that dialogue is the “only option” to end the conflict in Syria"

"Archbishop Maroun Lahham, the vicar for Jordan of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem, said he hoped the “world’s ‘bigs’” would 'make peace instead of war and find a peaceful solution.'"

"Other Syrian Catholic leaders have been even more vocal in condemning a possible Western intervention."

"Bishop Antoine Audo of Aleppo told Vatican Radio that military action risked sparking a “world war.”

"Syriac Patriarch Youssef III Younan went as far as to accuse Western powers of arming the rebels and stoking sectarian violence between Sunni and Shiite muslims."

Posted by: guest77 | Sep 1 2013 18:22 utc | 133

@ 132
well , If Mr. Assad and Bath Party show some courage , and response back ... then it would be a limited strike ... else USA will repeat his limited strike for x time and won't even bother himself to talk about it ...

we have a proverb that say

" fear and death are brothers "

I hope Assad won't say " Yes " to the fear or else the death will come with it

Posted by: R.P | Sep 1 2013 18:23 utc | 134

Perhaps it is shit like this that has the Brits are so skittish, Iraq 2.0:

Revealed: Britain sold nerve gas chemicals to Syria 10 months after war began

FURIOUS politicians have demanded Prime Minister David Cameron explain why chemical export licences were granted to firms last January – 10 months after the Syrian uprising began.

BRITAIN allowed firms to sell chemicals to Syria capable of being used to make nerve gas, the Sunday Mail can reveal today.

Export licences for potassium fluoride and sodium fluoride were granted months after the bloody civil war in the Middle East began.

The chemical is capable of being used to make weapons such as sarin, thought to be the nerve gas used in the attack on a rebel-held Damascus suburb which killed nearly 1500 people, including 426 children, 10 days ago.

Posted by: guest77 | Sep 1 2013 18:32 utc | 135

#118....

"That was when chemical weapons were first used (no doubt supplied by the good old US of A)"

Go back to 1981, and google Cheney's manipulation of our export laws. There you will find our complicity in Saddam's procurement of chemical weaponry. If I recall correctly, Rumsfeld was also involved. These pieces of shit were war criminals waaaayyyy before 9/11.

Posted by: PissedOffAmerican | Sep 1 2013 18:34 utc | 136

The most noteworthy factor in the anti-Syria forces is their radicalization.

NYTimes:

Nowhere in rebel-controlled Syria is there a secular fighting force to speak of. . . the Supreme Military Council, the umbrella rebel organization whose formation the West had hoped would sideline radical groups, is stocked with commanders who want to infuse Islamic law into a future Syrian government.

In a video statement released on Aug. 22, the five front-line commanders from the opposition-backed Supreme Military Council announced they were abandoning the group and choosing instead to work with any group willing to fight Assad. They tendered their resignation while sitting in front of the black flag of Jabhat al Nusra, a key opposition group with growing ties to al Qaeda in Iraq – implying they have rejected U.S. demands not to work with jihadists.

This radicalization would be a major reason why the US shouldn't help them by attacking Syria, so the pro-war faction is fighting back.

Senator McCain has said only a small portion of the so-called rebels are radical jihadists fighting to convert Syria into failed state dominated by Sharia law. He has said that al-Nusra only accounts for 7,000 of the 100,000 mercenaries inside Syria.

Elizabeth O'Bagy, the Syria Team Lead at the Institute for the Study of War, a neocon Kagan institution, has written that:

"The conventional wisdom holds that the extremist elements are completely mixed in with the more moderate rebel groups. This isn't the case. Moderates and extremists wield control over distinct territory. Although these areas are often close to one another, checkpoints demarcate control." -- WSJ, Aug 30

As the push to war progresses the can expect more of these claims that "the opposition are non-radical secularists" who should be helped, and not radical Islamists who should be feared.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Sep 1 2013 18:35 utc | 137

"Capable of being used"

Brilliant line

My computer for example is "capable of being used" as a murder weapon.

I could smack somebody over the head with it repeatedly, which would do the job effectively enough, I guess

I guess the old phrase "dual use" would remind everyone too much of the shenanigans prior to the War on Iraqis in 2003

Posted by: hmm | Sep 1 2013 18:39 utc | 138

re 131 RP

The Encyclopaedia of Islam on al-Hijaz:

al-Hijaz, the birthplace and still the spiritual centre of Islam, is the north-western part of the Arabian Peninsula.
...
No substantial agreement exists on defining the geographical limits of al-Hijaz. Although Tihama is, strictly speaking, not a part of al-Hijaz, it is often included in the region. ... In the east al-Hijaz is sometimes carried as far as Fayd near Adja" [q.v.] and Salma, but this is an extreme interpretation, as is the one that extends al-Hijaz northwards into Palestine. The most circumscribed version of the northern extent excludes Madyan and its hinterland Hisma from al-Hijaz. In the south al-Hijaz once marched with al-Yaman, but in recent times Asir [q.v.] has been interposed between the two. As treated in this article, al-Hijaz corresponds in general to the Western Province of the modern Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

Sorry to waste everybody's time on a pointless insistence on error by R.P.

Posted by: alexno | Sep 1 2013 18:44 utc | 139

A quick look at http://www.potassiumfluoride.com/ shows that the chemical has "many uses" as does sodium fluoride. Can you say weaponised toothpaste?

It's the hypocracy that (should be) breathtaking.

Posted by: BillyBoy | Sep 1 2013 18:48 utc | 140

#132 - of course they will retaliate

“Say that you bomb Syria.” Larijani said. “A country that has been damaged so much at the hands of terrorists will not be impacted as much as others … that oppose Syria.” He added, “If international laws are ignored by the West and some countries in the region in this adventurism that is to the benefit of the Zionist regime, what reason is there for Syria to believe [in those laws]?”

Larijani added that Iran’s parliament “warns America and the West that it is possible that with the help of some of the countries in the region, who all have their own specific goals in seeking power, you will begin operations against Syria, but it will not be you who will end this. By the way, you have to be concerned for your illegitimate Zionist child in the region, and most certainly in the future you will witness against yourself the result of your tactical encounter with terrorists.”

Larijani also warned that if Israel “has a desire for sedition, they will have presented themselves with a fate more agonizing than the 33-day war.”

Posted by: somebody | Sep 1 2013 18:48 utc | 141

Also, google Donald Riegle, or the Riegle Report.

Posted by: PissedOffAmerican | Sep 1 2013 18:55 utc | 142

I don't even know what to make of the thinking of US intellectuals about this war. It is not that they can't cobble together an excuse for this war, it's that they don't even have any wood.

Read this, from the CFR. This is what qualifies as "itellectual thought"? It's no wonder the Russians think we have no idea what we are doing - that we rush in with half plans, blow up the place, and then throw up our hands and say "those crazy muslims!" - we fucking DON'T have any idea.

It is the most pungent stew of toxic ignorance, putrid conjecture, blaming your own team, and simple full on horseshit I have ever read.

http://www.dw.de/us-in-uncharted-territory-in-syria/a-17058333

In which the well-paid man from the CFR admits:

A) It is not a sectarian war ("He [Assad] has a big army, but they're all Sunni")

B) There are many in Washington who would rather see Assad beat Al Qaeda than the other way around ("Assad, all of a sudden, he's got a lot of people [in Washington] who admire him for being a bulwark against al Qaeda")

C) That Assad had no motive for such an attack ("I haven't heard anybody offer even a low-confidence explanation for why he did it.")

D) Assad'd recent victories, proclaimed by himself in interviews, were not apparent to him ("Maybe things were going Assad's way - but maybe Assad didn't think so.")

E) That the strikes not have a clear objective ("Part of my problem with this whole escapade is that you have no idea what to target unless you know why [Assad used poison gas] and what it would take to deter him from doing it again.")

F) That the rebels could in no way govern Syria ("when Assad eventually falls, the place is just going to be a big mess")

G) That this is all a big stupid shock and awe show with no actual objective ("He could bomb airfields...that's always a crowd pleaser. They're probably going to blow up ... a physically prominent downtown building, and they'll probably be able to get a video of that blowing up."

H) The best he con come up with for why Assad would risk everything he and the Syrian people have fought for over the course of two years is that Assad saw US weakness in Egypt and figured he'd gas people just for the hell of it ("So it may be that looking at Obama's performance on Egypt, Assad decided he really didn't have too much to fear from Obama."

Welcome to Idiocracy.

Posted by: guest77 | Sep 1 2013 18:58 utc | 143

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_support_for_Iraq_during_the_Iran%E2%80%93Iraq_war#Chemical_and_biological_exports

In 1984, Iran introduced a draft resolution to the United Nations Security Council, citing the Geneva Protocol of 1925, condemning Saddam Hussein's use of chemical weapons on the battlefield. In response, the United States instructed its delegate at the UN to lobby friendly representatives in support of a motion to take "no decision" on the use of chemical munitions by Iraq. If backing to obstruct the resolution could be won, then the U.S. delegation were to proceed and vote in favour of taking zero action; if support were not forthcoming, the U.S. delegate were to refrain from voting altogether.

USDEL should work to develop general Western position in support of a motion to take "no decision" on Iranian draft resolution on use of chemical weapons by Iraq. If such a motion gets reasonable and broad support and sponsorship, USDEL should vote in favor. Failing Western support for "no decision," USDEL should abstain.[33]

Representatives of the United States argued that the UN Human Rights Commission was an "inappropriate forum" for consideration of such abuses. According to Joyce Battle, the Security Council eventually issued a "presidential statement" condemning the use of unconventional weapons "without naming Iraq as the offending party."[14]

Posted by: PissedOffAmerican | Sep 1 2013 18:59 utc | 144

@somebody #141
Ali Larijani is the current chairman of the Parliament of Iran. He doesn't speak for the government. Tracking the comments of Iranian parliamentarians is like following the statements of US congress-critters, and is not definitive of the government's positions.

And Larijani didn't mention Saudi Arabia, did he. Saudi Arabia is not the "illegitimate Zionist child in the region" that he refers to.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Sep 1 2013 19:03 utc | 145

Deja Vu.....

"Joost R. Hiltermann says that when the Iraqi military turned its chemical weapons on the Kurds during the war, killing approximately 5,000 people in the town of Halabja and injuring thousands more, the Reagan administration actually sought to obscure Iraqi leadership culpability by suggesting, inaccurately, that the Iranians may have carried out the attack.[24]"

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Halabja_poison_gas_attack#Controversies

Posted by: PissedOffAmerican | Sep 1 2013 19:04 utc | 146

@141 Could that be rhetoric? Anyway, retaliation is a response to being attacked. They won't initiate an exchange.

Posted by: BillyBoy | Sep 1 2013 19:04 utc | 147

@138 & @140

Your getting at the wrong point.

The question here is not whether he used the chemicals to make toothpaste or not, but instead why the British people should be asked to spend oodles of cash they don't have to in an effort to prevent a country from having chemical weapons when just a year ago they were enhancing that same country's ability to make them.

Posted by: guest77 | Sep 1 2013 19:07 utc | 148

@143 I don't mean to imply some of the points he makes are wrong - many of them are right on the mark. The thing is he makes them, even those which clearly undercut every single excuse for this attack, while at the same time clearly wanting the war to happen.

Posted by: guest77 | Sep 1 2013 19:10 utc | 149

141) This is the Obama supported official Syrian opposition

The head of the main Syrian opposition group, Ahmad al-Jarba, urged the Arab League’s foreign ministers to back potential U.S. led Western strikes on the regime of President Bashar al-Assad on Sunday.

He made the statement during a meeting of the Arab League in Cairo.

“I am here before you today to appeal to your brotherly and [humane] sentiments and ask you to back the international operation against the destructive war machine,” of the Syrian regime, Reuters quoted al-Jarba as saying during the meeting.

Jarba said he is calling for a military strike to stop the “Syrian regime killing its people with the help of the Iranian invader.”

He described Iran as “concealing its false brotherhood.”

He also warned that fighters from Iran, the Lebanese Shiite movement Hezbollah, and “extremist militants” from Iraq are “killing the Syrian people.”

The opposition chief said the “Syrian people have suffered enough from the Syrian oppressive regime.”

He added: “Syria should be the battle ground to confront Iranian interference,” in the region.

Egypt, by the way, does not seem to want to have anything to do with it.


Posted by: somebody | Sep 1 2013 19:14 utc | 150

The Arabs in the Middle East and mostly concerned with Israel's nukes, not with Iran's non-nukes. Polls continue to show that, but the US-MSM of course doesn't report it. They only report the comments of the Gulf potentates, who don't represent their people.

The Arab League has been unsuccessful in their quest to make the ME a nuclear-free zone, because of US resistance. So countries (Syria, in this case) take other steps, and if there are buyers then there are sellers

Reuters, Aug 28
Syria's chemical weapons program was built to counter Israel

(Reuters) - Syria, defeated by Israel in three wars and afraid its arch enemy had gained a nuclear arsenal, began in earnest to build a covert chemical weapons program three decades ago, aided by its neighbors, allies and European chemical wholesalers.

Damascus lacked the technology and scientific capacity to set up a program on its own, but with backing from foreign allies it amassed what is believed to be one of the deadliest stockpiles of nerve agent in the world, Western military experts said.

"Syria was quite heavily reliant on outside help at the outset of its chemical weapons program, but the understanding now is that they have a domestic chemical weapons production capability," said Amy Smithson of the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies in Washington, an expert on nuclear, biological and chemical weapons.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Sep 1 2013 19:21 utc | 151

somebody #141

Are you seeing something we dont see? NOTHING in the link your provided showed that they would attack. This is not the first time, why are you doing this?

Posted by: Anonymous | Sep 1 2013 19:32 utc | 152

PissedOffAmerican/146


It just disappeared from Wikipedia!!!

Posted by: Caroll | Sep 1 2013 19:32 utc | 153

@somebody #150
Ahmad al-Jarba, urged the Arab League’s foreign ministers to back potential U.S. led Western strike

That's like Bandar talking to himself. Ahmad al-Jarba is Bandar's man in Syria.

al-akhbar, Aug 6
Bandar, the Prince of Jihad: Expect a Syrian Shift in Power

In theory, Syrian opposition fighters now have one single commander: Saudi Prince Bandar bin Sultan. The man, who had a failed military adventure in Beirut, is vying today to alter the balance of power in Syria. But his foes say they will not let him win this time either. . .the top Saudi security man is their main financier, arms source, and their virtual political spokesperson, whether directly or through his deputy, the head of the Syrian National Coalition Ahmad al-Jarba.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Sep 1 2013 19:33 utc | 154

"Syria's chemical weapons program was built to counter Israel"

Were I an Iranian citizen, having noted with alarm the actions of Israel and the United States, I would expect my leaders seek to match the military capabilities of the Israeli military. It would be irresponsible for Iran's leaders not to seek nuclear weapons capability, as long as Israel refuses to abandon its nuclear arsenal. Ironically, Iran's future development of nuclear weaponry may well be the factor that assures that the Middle East will avoid any nuclear conflicts. As long as Israel is the sole possessor of a nuclear arsenal the specter of nuclear holocaust cannot be ignored. MAD worked for Russia and the United States, and surely the same concept would work between Israel and Iran. Noting Israel's use of white phosphorous and cluster munitions against civilian non-combatants, I have no doubt that they have the propensity to incinerate a few million Muslims in a nuclear fireball.

As far as I'm concerned, Iran can't acquire nukes fast enough. I hope they do, soon. The only thing that would change my mind is for Israel to destroy its own nuclear arsenal, which we all know is not going to happen.If there was a military balance of power between Israel and its neighbors, we would be much closer to peace in the Middle East.

Posted by: PissedOffAmerican | Sep 1 2013 19:37 utc | 155

@155 Makes sense. But you know how devious those Middle Easterners can be. You may end up with a situation where neither side admits to owning them.

Posted by: dh | Sep 1 2013 19:42 utc | 156

First Blood in the War?


Iraq: Camp Ashraf clashes result in Iranian exile [MEK Terrorists] deaths


Once home to more than 3,000 exiles, Camp Ashraf is now thought to house about 100

Clashes and explosions resulting in deaths have been reported at a camp for dissident Iranians in central Iraq.



Posted by: hmm | Sep 1 2013 19:45 utc | 157

@152

Good question

Don't expect that you'll get an intelligent truthful answer though . . .

Posted by: hmm | Sep 1 2013 19:48 utc | 158

"But you know how devious those Middle Easterners can be"

Comical you would say that while I'm listening, on CNN, to this asshole Kerry blather forth with his devious and hypocritical natterings.

What amazes me, listening to his oral defecation, is his insistence that "our credibility is at stake". Surely this lying posturing piece of shit must realize that it is the blatant hypocricy of this administration, and prior administrations, that destroys our credibility with the world community. The man stands there SHREDDING our credibility, while insincerely lamenting the loss, and disingenuously presenting the reasons behind the loss. He thinks the entire world community is comprised of idiots that cannot see through this charade?

These people such as Kerry truly are maggots. They have turned US into the "evil empire". They all should swing from a gallows. Our government needs a serious fumigation, and its a shame it won't get it before its too late. This country is toast.

Posted by: PissedOffAmerican | Sep 1 2013 19:55 utc | 159

152) Of course, that is one of the "known unknowns" if they will attack or not, they have no reason to say so. They have been very clear though, that the result of US intervention for the region would be catastrophic. Where do you think would the regional catastrophe come from if it is just the Syrian government fighting the US keeping it strictly within their borders. It is plain silly to think the US can enter a proxy war in Syria without the parties involved on the other side doing something.

154) I know. The US supports him. Is that the US line, that they fight Iran in Syria? You except Iran not to respond?

Posted by: somebody | Sep 1 2013 19:55 utc | 160

155
If there was a military balance of power between Israel and its neighbors, we would be much closer to peace in the Middle East.
There is balance of power between Israel and its neighbours. They are not going to war. The US tips the scales to get an outcome more desirable for themselves. The Iranians are right in warning "you will start this war but you will not end this war". Not without boots on the ground, to stay. So like in Iraq and Afghanistan the US will not get an outcome that is in its interest (nor will Israel).

They have learnt nothing, they repeat Iraq - from the silly pretext of war onwards.

Posted by: somebody | Sep 1 2013 20:03 utc | 161

160 somebody

No Its not a "known unknowns", even if you Think about it yourself, your claim makes no sense.
They talk about "catastrophic" not in the sense that they will attack but that US will fail to reach its objective just as previous american led wars in the region past decade.

Again Israel/US want Iran to step in the trap, unless you want too, you shouldnt spreading their propaganda.

Posted by: Anonymous | Sep 1 2013 20:06 utc | 162

Israel of course has a gigantic CBW program. The name 'Nes Ziona' should be enough to remind most people of that, though in fact Nes Ziona is a town just 20 km south of Tel Aviv, in the middle of which is this Israel Institute for Biological Research. It's quite a substantial establishment, about 600 or 700 metres along each axis and sort of campus-like, but it's near the town centre. Apart from the front office it's shown as blank on maps, but you can see it quite clearly on the satellite photo.

Posted by: Rowan Berkeley | Sep 1 2013 20:08 utc | 163

Someone asked, upthread, what happened to the ridiculous "peace talks" that Kerry was positivelly orgasmic about.

Well, not sure. But I imagine that Netanyahu's arrogant continuation of settlement activity derailed the whole thing, and the reason it ain't in the news is this Administration is trying to choreograph the charade that will cast the Palestinians as the spoilers.

Surely, in respect to the ridiculous nature of holding "peace talks" while Israel continues to suck up contested acreage, this Syrian diversion is a welcome development in the minds of those such as Kerry.

Don't worry, the lying sacks of shit will feed you the script soon enough, as soon as they can cast the Palestinians in the role of the villian.

Posted by: PissedOffAmerican | Sep 1 2013 20:09 utc | 164

#161.....

"There is balance of power between Israel and its neighbours"

I should probably let hmmm respond to that bit of disingenuous squeaking.

But, instead, I'll just ask you if Israel's nuclear arsenal is part of that "balance" you attest to?

Posted by: PissedOffAmerican | Sep 1 2013 20:14 utc | 165

@160

Somebody, it's simple, Iran won't initiate an attack on the US.

1. They would have to be irrational. They do not come across as irrational,in fact their negotiators have acted in a very measured and rational way.

2. They hold the legal high ground on the nuclear issue and very few countries in the real "international community" disagree.

3. They have not directly said they will attack US forces in the region.

The Iran Pulse page you linked to in order to support your theory also has a story with a parlimentary official saying the first casualty will be Israel. Why not argue Iran will attack Israel?

Posted by: BillyBoy | Sep 1 2013 20:16 utc | 166

Not only do US foreign military acts decrease USA credibility, they increase the incidents of terrorism.

politico

. . .Pape and his team of researchers draw on data produced by a six-year study of suicide terrorist attacks around the world that was partially funded by the Defense Department's Defense Threat Reduction Agency. They have compiled the terrorism statistics in a publicly available database comprising some 10,000 records on some 2,200 suicide terrorism attacks, dating back to the first suicide terrorism attack of modern times — the 1983 truck bombing of the U.S. Marine barracks in Beirut, Lebanon, which killed 241 U.S. Marines.

"We have lots of evidence now that when you put the foreign military presence in, it triggers suicide terrorism campaigns, ... and that when the foreign forces leave, it takes away almost 100 percent of the terrorist campaign," Pape said in an interview last week on his findings.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Sep 1 2013 20:20 utc | 167

I believe the "peace talks were due to clashes between the IDF and PALS.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887323407104579037181685789604.html

Posted by: BillyBoy | Sep 1 2013 20:22 utc | 168

@ POA

That should say I believe the peace talks were stopped due to clashes between the IDF and Pals wher 3 Palestinians were killed.

The Palestinians stopped them supposedly.

Posted by: BillyBoy | Sep 1 2013 20:25 utc | 169

"Not only do US foreign military acts decrease USA credibility, they increase the incidents of terrorism"

Of course the absolute logic of that sentence has been apparent since 9/11.

Espousing a goal of "national security" as justification for acts and policies that actually endanger all of us, our "leaders" feed us a great lie. We sow terrorism by our own actions, whether it be drone strikes in Yemen, 500 thousand Iraqi children dead by virtue of the sanctions, our unconditional subsidation of Israeli war crimes and expansionism, or the blatant hypocricy of our insincere and contrived concern for human rights.

Viewed logically, it is no wonder we are hated and attacked. Sadly, "we" deserve it. A shame those that would target us can't confine thier efforts to the actual perpetrators of our criminal and murderous policies. Would we really miss three quarters of the posturing lying sacks of shit that have slithered and bribed their way to the top of the food chain in Washington DC?

Posted by: PissedOffAmerican | Sep 1 2013 20:36 utc | 170

@POA & hmm

But you all not using the hasbara glossary.

bal·ance
ˈbaləns/
noun
noun: balance; plural noun: balances

1.
a condition in which the power of one side outweighs even the combination of all others.

Use:
"There is balance of power between Israel and its neighbours"

Posted by: guest77 | Sep 1 2013 20:41 utc | 171

This Syria "threat to US security" does manage to take attention away from Kerry's too-brief failed peace quest, doesn't it. War wins nearly every time over peace, unfortunately, where the US is concerned.

But now they have the difficulty of making a case to Congress that US security is threatened by Syria. Sending US citizens to war merely "to send a message" doesn't cut the mustard.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Sep 1 2013 20:41 utc | 172

Haha look at this. Did Netanyahu write this for the rebels?


"Dictatorship's like Iran and North-Korea are watchin closely to see how the free world responds to the Assad regime's use of chemical weapons against the Syrian people," the Syrian opposition coalition said in a statement Sunday. "If the free world fails to respond to such an outrageous breach of international norms, dictators around the world will be encouraged in their efforts to follow the example set by Assad."

http://www.thestar.com.my/News/World/2013/09/01/Syrian-opposition-urges-US-congress-to-back-military-action.aspx

Posted by: Anonymous | Sep 1 2013 20:42 utc | 173

"I should probably let hmmm respond to that bit of disingenuous squeaking."

nah you lot doing fine on yer own

though i wouldn't have used 'disingenuous"

dis·in·gen·u·ousˌdisinˈjenyo͞oəs/adjective

1.not candid or sincere, typically by pretending that one knows less about something than one really does.

synonyms:insincere, dishonest, untruthful, false, deceitful, duplicitous, lying,mendacious;

I'd have likely gone for #'s 2, 4, 5 & 7 from the synonyms and thrown in a few references to the obvious Nazi nature of zomebody's homeland, Jizzrael


Posted by: hmm | Sep 1 2013 20:50 utc | 174

#169...

"The Palestinians stopped them supposedly"

Well, Abbas's credibility, already practically non-existent, was destroyed by his willingness to enter into these talks in the first place. How can you hold credible peace talks, advocating for the Palestinian people, while Israel arrogantly continues to advance settlement activity, even while these "peace talks" are ongoing? Abbas is a joke. As is Kerry, for braying so loudly over an obvious sham designed to conceal Obama's impotence in regards to "the peace process". Netanyahu already made an ass of Obama during Obama's first "efforts". Now Kerry has managed to make an even bigger ass of himself with Netanyahu's able assistance.

And now this Syria debacle....

My God, the inside of the White House must smell like a donkey stall that hasn't been mucked in a month. Hee haw....hee haw....have you ever seen such a pathetic display of leadership??? And I thought Bush was a buffoonish jackass.

Posted by: PissedOffAmerican | Sep 1 2013 20:50 utc | 175

POA

Actually I Think it smells donkey at Obama's.

More on SNL's fellate-a-donkey for Israel skit
http://mondoweiss.net/2013/02/fellate-donkey-israel.html

Posted by: Anonymous | Sep 1 2013 20:55 utc | 176

peace talks
/pēs tôk/
noun

1.
an irritating but ultimately insignificant occurrence happening once every four years when US presidents seeks to build a "historical legacy" out of something other than blatant murder.

correct usage: "we have no partner in the peace talks"

incorrect usage: "we will finally accept the Palestinians legitimate demands at the peace talks"

synonyms: "a g-ddamn waste of time", "a chance to sample the prostitutes of Oslo", "a good time to slip Arafat the polonium";

Posted by: guest77 | Sep 1 2013 20:55 utc | 177

This Syria "threat to US security" does manage to take attention away from Kerry's too-brief failed peace quest, doesn't it. War wins nearly every time over peace, unfortunately, where the US is concerned.

But now they have the difficulty of making a case to Congress that US security is threatened by Syria. Sending US citizens to war merely "to send a message" doesn't cut the mustard.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Sep 1 2013 20:57 utc | 178

A peace of lebanon, a peace of jordan a peace of syria . . , .

That's the only peace the Zionasties are interested in

Posted by: hmm | Sep 1 2013 20:57 utc | 179

Too true. Anyways the peace talks are the equivelent of giving a rape victim a choice of positions to get fucked in.

Posted by: BillyBoy | Sep 1 2013 20:58 utc | 180

"I'd have likely gone for #'s 2, 4, 5 & 7 from the synonyms and thrown in a few references to the obvious Nazi nature of zomebody's homeland, Jizzrael"

You were doing fine until you added that bit of useless crap. Don't mistake my differences with "somebody" as an alliance with you. Your ad hominem is crude and unimaginative. Bluntly put, boring. There is a science to ad hominem, and applied correctly it can be informative, lightly amusing, and forgivably offensive. Your particular ad hominem is none of that. Your insults are simply repetitious obscenities, neither clever nor amusing. I hope you'll do a bit of introspection, and try to find a more creative manner with which to throw insult. For a small fee, I may be willing to offer my assistance in that endeavor. It might not work out though, because my fee would be your silence.

Posted by: PissedOffAmerican | Sep 1 2013 21:06 utc | 181

" Don't mistake my differences with "somebody" as an alliance with you."

Oh i can assure you I never did

Finished ranting yet?

Get it all out, very cathartic

Posted by: hmm | Sep 1 2013 21:09 utc | 182

Once the US solves this "threat to national security" in Syria, there are at least 17 other countries in the world where situations have caused "threats to US security" that have resulted in US "national emergencies."

They are: Cote d'Ivoire, Cuba, Zimbabwe, Iran, Somalia, Yemen, Burma, Iraq, Belarus, Western Balkans, North Korea, Russian Federation, Liberia, Lebanon, Colombia, Democratic Republic of the Congo and Sudan.

Details are here.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Sep 1 2013 21:10 utc | 183

#181...

Thats a little better. Not much, but a little. Theres hope for you.

Posted by: PissedOffAmerican | Sep 1 2013 21:15 utc | 184

Blair: We'll pay a terrible price for Syria vote

http://politics.co.uk/news/2013/09/01/blair-we-ll-pay-a-terrible-price-for-syria-vote

Posted by: Caroll | Sep 1 2013 21:22 utc | 185

166) US/Israel war against Iran has been going on for quite a while now. What exactly do you think hit the US in Iraq and Afghanistan, two places they have just left/are leaving without a friendly governement in place? Allies Pakistan and Saudi Arabia?
Sure it is done via proxy. However, the US plan to tick their list to the end, at one stage the fight will have be direct. It could be Iran's interest to tie the US in Syria.


Posted by: somebody | Sep 1 2013 21:22 utc | 186

#184....

Are you the TWN Caroll? The Mondo "american"?

Posted by: PissedOffAmerican | Sep 1 2013 21:29 utc | 187

#186

i did not get a joke ;-(

Posted by: Caroll | Sep 1 2013 21:34 utc | 188

Well of course the Arab League wants "measures" against Syria, and if this along with the Zionist Lobby influences the vote in any way, Syria should drop a well-packaged gift on the Saudi Oil Fields, Iran should close the Strait of Hormuz and Hezbollah should stand guard at the southernmost tip of the Litani River just to let Zionists know what will NEVER be theirs!

Posted by: kalithea | Sep 1 2013 21:35 utc | 189

#183

"The Critic is a class of person that frequently imagine themselves to be of much greater profundity than they really are."

Henry Fielding


Posted by: hmm | Sep 1 2013 21:39 utc | 190

Obama is really getting hammered by the media press-titutes. The following are top billing in Google News at the moment:

"In Syria, Anger and Mockery as Obama Delays Plan"

"Syria gloats over American retreat after delay on military strikes"

"Syrian President Bashar al-Assad is 'euphoric' about President Obama's surprise announcement"

Clearly the decider is not deciding in the right way fast enough for some people...

I can't recall ever seen a president pushed so hard on an issue. The media would apparently be fine if he just launched the missiles right now.

Lets not forget that this is the gut who told Bill Clinton "you tell me what the right thing is and I'll sell it." Okay, so what happens when he doesn't think the thing he is being told to sell is actually the right thing to do?

I'm not trying to let him off the hook, but we may be dealing with a guy who lets others in his administration have too much power and now he is the one being asked to sign off on something that he A) doesn't agree with but B) can't say he doesn't agree without exposing the fact that he has let things get out of control.

So he is basically playing a game of chicken with reality.

I may have just blown my own mind. But if this is how we are getting policy, we're doomed.

Posted by: guest77 | Sep 1 2013 21:42 utc | 191

It intriques me that no one has noted the comments of Dennis Kucinich and Ron Paul. Both of them have expressed the belief that this chemical attack was a "false flag" event.

I think that the paths of both Kucinich and Ron Paul, these last two decades, really underscore how completely the pursuit of "truth" has been excluded from the agenda of our so-called fifth estate. Surely, when an elected Representative makes such an assertion such as Paul's and Kucinich's, it warrants media investigation, and public airing.

Watching these two be demonized and marginalized by our media, as well as by the political process, demonstrates clearly the state of the union, and the purposeful failure of the media to fulfill its responsibilities as a "Fifth Estate". It is impossible to know where the lie begins and where the lie ends when our media is merely the advocate for policy, weaving untruths masqueraded as information. Hannity, Maddow, Cooper, etc.....worse than the puppet masters they serve. There can be no more despicable a calling than that of an over-paid media liar, tasked to provide misinformation, and, in so doing, divide the people along partisan lines. We bicker amongst ourselves due to carefully nurtured partisan differences, while these fuckers in DC rob us blind, steal our security, and through the media whores, feed us fantasies about a concern for our well-being.

Posted by: PissedOffAmerican | Sep 1 2013 21:49 utc | 192

#187...

Sorry. Actually, wasn't a joke. I was inquiring if you were a certain commentor that I have interacted with for a number of years now on different blogsites, most notably the old "Washington Note". Apparently you aren't that individual.

Posted by: PissedOffAmerican | Sep 1 2013 21:51 utc | 193

#189....

I'm sure the other participants here have arrived at their own conclusions as to preference. I will admit to a certain iota of concern about their opinion. But I can assure you that yours means absolutely nothing to me.

You have already defined yourself by your interaction with Don and somebody. Being somewhat weak in my ability to disengage from useless banter, I continue with you in the hopes that it will become amusing, informative, or even remotely challenging. Hopefully my optimism will soon be completely extinguished, because it increasingly appears that I'm simply wasting my time.

Posted by: PissedOffAmerican | Sep 1 2013 22:00 utc | 194

There is a possibility here that hasn't been discussed. I bring it up not because I subscribe to it, but because it is simply a possibility that hasn't been explored.....

What if Obama's plea for Congressional permission is simply a diversion to entice the Syrian's into relaxing their readiness???

If so, an attack could be imminent.

Could this be the reasoning behind Kerry's insistence that the President does not really need to procure Congressional permission? And, the introduction of further "evidence", such as we've seen these last few hours, may be the ultimate justification for Obama launching missiles before Congressional consideration. Its a very real possibility that Obama is just resurrecting an element of suprise that was lost by his initial threatening rhetoric.

Posted by: PissedOffAmerican | Sep 1 2013 22:09 utc | 195

@191

Here is Kucinich from 2011: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kdo12rGvU7U

He is, of course, committing the ultimate sin of being rational.

And of course Spitzer being a complete ass. He feels bold enough to lecture a man who has actually been to the country and talked to the parties about what is and isn't the reality on the ground.

The absolute best part is that Spitzer he has the temerity to compare Assad with crooked Wall Street bankers! If only missile strikes on the headquarters of Goldman Sachs were in the offing!

What gives people such license to talk out of there ass? Is that what happens to a personality that's highest aspiration is balling hookers?

Holy shit our elite is fucked.

Posted by: guest77 | Sep 1 2013 22:12 utc | 196

There will be no attack on Syria if there is a real possibility of heavy Israeli casualties in a retaliatory strike. US elites do not give a damn about Moslems or Christians, but Israeli lives are sacred.

Posted by: Andoheb | Sep 1 2013 22:20 utc | 197

This gentleman was on RT's CrossTalk the other day. He definitely has some interesting insights from the loyalist side.

Dr. Yazan Abdallah

Here is a search for him on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/results?search_sort=video_date_uploaded&search_query=Yazan+Abdallah

Here he debates a member of the Syrian National Council (giving appropriate looks of derision). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M5QMfGYi5_c

Posted by: guest77 | Sep 1 2013 22:21 utc | 198

@194


the Syrians are already way ahead of you on that one


Syria Evacuates Most Army Buildings In Damascus In Preparation For Western Military Strike

Posted by: hmm | Sep 1 2013 22:21 utc | 199

Saudi influence does not seem enough

However, some influential members of the League, including Egypt, Iraq, Lebanon, Tunisia and Algeria, have expressed opposition to foreign military intervention.

Egypt's foreign minister on Sunday said that his nation objected to "any aggression in Syria".

190) I am not sure what Obama wants. He is sure following the Bush neocon Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, and Iran take over logic. He is just trying to be more clever about it, getting proxies to do the work, no boots on the ground, not getting tied down. In Libya he skipped the occupation and withdrawal phase that way - the result is no better than Iraq. Syria would look the same after the "limited targeted strikes" are through. He is just facing more resistance this time and the continuation of Bush policies is too obvious. So he might not be able to sell it this time.

I guess there is a very real split on what to do in the PTB. Obama is basically hedging to be able to backtrack if necessary.
Israel will freak out either way. Even extensive strikes without boots on the ground would mean chemical stockpiles might fall into the hands of Al Qeida or whoever.

Remember the "training of rebels to secure chemical weapons"? Forget it, it is Al Nusrah on the ground. A failed state with Hezbollah on the Golan would not be any better. Assad with Hezbollah on the Golan might be the best option Israel can get.

I would be very surprised to find the Israel Lobby putting pressure on congress in favour of a strike on Syria. They keep their fingers crossed Assad manages to finish off Al Nusrah and the Syrian army keep control of those chemical stockpiles.

Posted by: somebody | Sep 1 2013 22:32 utc | 200

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