News Iraqi unrest, Syrian unrest, and ISIS/ISIL/Daesh

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Dotini

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In what might sound like a clever trick, Russia has announced its support for parliamentary and presidential elections in Syria, as well as readiness to provide air support for the Free Syrian Army, which Russian foreign minister Lavrov characterized as the "patriotic opposition".
http://news.yahoo.com/russia-says-ready-support-free-syrian-army-air-100733500.html
 
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he Iraqi government, under severe military pressure from insurgents, is apparently on the verge of collapse. They requested US military aid, but, were refused. Is it just me, or does anyone else find this disturbing?
I think it boils down to how many young soldiers are going to die?

There is no win-win situation, the last time I read about the complexity of being there was, that the American soldiers were getting shot from all sides (Sunnis, Shias )
Then the multifaceted terrorists groups were happy to rush to the conflicts where Americans and western countries were involved just to get a good shoot at the soldiers.
Add up that the cost of being there maybe was around a trillion, <----(inputs are welcome), our debt is in trillions too ( input is welcome). The economy strength of the dollar or our economy is/was ( you pick) touchy. The European countries along with America are not so excited about going in there any more (popularity loss?), I think Canada is pulling out (right?).

But then it also comes to what would you rather have spend all that money in the Middle East or fix the deficits in our economy? as Social security for example? Many states have huge deficits. I was wondering, all those men that rush out of Syria should have being trained and armed, send to fight for their country a Syrian draft, (instead of westerners ) and give the asylum to women, elders and children.
Tough decisions for any president or government of the Western Hemisphere. :frown:
 
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I think it boils down to how many young soldiers are going to die?

There is no win-win situation, the last time I read about the complexity of being there was, that the American soldiers were getting shot from all sides (Sunnis, Shias )
Then the multifaceted terrorists groups were happy to rush to the conflicts where Americans and western countries were involved just to get a good shoot at the soldiers.
Add up that the cost of being there maybe was around a trillion, <----(inputs are welcome), our debt is in trillions too ( input is welcome). The economy strength of the dollar or our economy is/was ( you pick) touchy. The European countries along with America are not so excited about going in there any more (popularity loss?), I think Canada is pulling out (right?).

But then it also comes to what would you rather have spend all that money in the Middle East or fix the deficits in our economy? as Social security for example? Many states have huge deficits. I was wondering, all those men that rush out of Syria should have being trained and armed, send to fight for their country a Syrian draft, (instead of westerners ) and give the asylum to women, elders and children.
Tough decisions for any president or government of the Western Hemisphere. :frown:
I think that it would be an interesting idea... I doubt the effectiveness of such army... however seeing a face of Kosovian Albanian who pretends being a Syrian would be a worthy... ;)

That's Western EU... curious how many of them would immediately declare being conscientious objectors... So far they deserve top grades for gaming the system...
 
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:rolleyes: Kosovian Albanian, soldiers?

The Irak-Bush II war cost I think 3000 American dead soldiers and I think 500,000 wounded. (clarification is welcome) .

The groups involved:
Syrian Gov. Forces and:Ba'ath Brigades[1], PFLP–GC[2], Syrian Social Nationalist Party[3], Arab Nationalist Guard[4], Syrian Resistance [5], Jaysh alMuwahhideen[3],Forces of Abu Ibrahim[6],Sootoro, Palestine Liberation Army[7],Liwa Abu al-Fadhal al-Abbas[8], Liwa Fatemiyoun[9], Fatah al-Intifada[10], Badr Organization[11], Asa'ib Ahl al-Haq[11], Kata'ib Hezbollah[12], Peace Companies[13], Arab Democratic Party[14], DHKP-C[15], Faylak Wa’ad al-Sadiq[16], Houthis[17]
Jaysh al-Wafaa[18], Liwa Al Quds, Liwa Dhu al-Fiqar[19][20], Dareh al-Sahel[21], Dareh al-Areen[21], Al-Hosn[21], Dareh al-Watan[21], al-Berri clan[22][23], Tayy tribe militias[24], al-Jihesh tribe militias[25], Maghawir Forces[26], Kata'ib Sayyid al-Shuhada, Popular Committees (2012), Syria Slavonic Corps[27][28] (2013),InfoboxHez.PNG Hezbollah[29], Iran[30][31][32], Quds Force[33], Basij[34][35][36], Revolutionary Guards[37], Russia[38], Armament support:, Russia[39][40], North Korea[41][42][43], Iraq[44]
Belarus[45], Egypt (from 2015)[46][better source needed], Cuba[47], Non-lethal support: Venezuela[48][49][50][51][52], Angola[53], China[54][55] Algeria[56]


Here We (?) are, notice at the very bottom:
Syrian oppositon and al Qaeda Network:

Allied armed groups:

Joint operations rooms:[85]

Armament support:

Non-lethal support:

Wikipedia source

We have some jihadist in our side or we are in their side for first, second, third? time in history? (some time we are friends and some times we are not)
So at one moment we are fighting al Qaeda and at another time we are "joined" or help ( input is welcome) al Qaeda. Pretty interesting situation. So it is not like we are not helping I believe. Just American foot soldiers (Army?) are not (?) thoroughly involved in the fighting I think. Very very complex indeed. Exhaustion might be the key for everyone to pack and go home, where ever home is. Let the water finds its level and come back another time.
 
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Astronuc

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Britain's Tony Blair: Iraq war contributed to rise of IS
Blair insisted that removing Saddam was the right thing to do, but apologized, as he has before, for failures in post-war planning.
http://news.yahoo.com/tony-blair-iraq-war-contributed-rise-101116941.html [Broken]
 
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Astronuc

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IS blows up columns in Syria's Palmyra to execute 3: monitor
http://news.yahoo.com/blows-columns-syrias-palmyra-execute-3-monitor-204112651.html

Daesh = deranged and demented

Since the jihadists seized Palmyra from regime forces in May, they have destroyed multiple sites and historic artefacts, including its celebrated temples of Bel and Baal Shamin as well as several funerary towers.

IS has used Palmyra's grand amphitheatre for a massacre in which child members of the group killed 25 Syrian soldiers, execution-style, in front of residents.

It also beheaded Palmyra's 82-year-old former antiquities director in August.
 
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I've recently watched an interview with Julian Assange with regards to Syria's situation.
It turns out there were documents dating back to 2006 on plans to undermine the Syrian government.
 
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russ_watters

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I've recently watched an interview with Julian Assange with regards to Syria's situation.
It turns out there were documents dating back to 2006 on plans to undermine the Syrian government.
That's pretty surprising. Syria has been a dictatorship led by the Assad family for 40 years. I would have expected plans to undermine it to have been kicked-around since the '80s.
 
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That's pretty surprising. Syria has been a dictatorship led by the Assad family for 40 years. I would have expected plans to undermine it to have been kicked-around since the '80s.
I don't think the US has a problem with dictatorships.. They support\undermine them when there is a geopolitical\economical reason to do so, the human rights angle is just an excuse.
The Shah of Iran is one example. The situation in Saudi Arabia in terms of human rights is much worse than the one which existed in Syria prior to the uprising, yet I'm pretty sure the US does not plot to destabilize it (being it's ally). And what about Brunei, starting to apply the death penalty for being gay? Obama called it's Sultan one of his best friends (look up The Sultan and Nipples fleet - Last week tonight on youtube).
 
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I don't think the US has a problem with dictatorships.. They support\undermine them when there is a geopolitical\economical reason to do so, the human rights angle is just an excuse.
The Shah of Iran is one example. The situation in Saudi Arabia in terms of human rights is much worse than the one which existed in Syria prior to the uprising, yet I'm pretty sure the US does not plot to destabilize it (being it's ally). And what about Brunei, starting to apply the death penalty for being gay? Obama called it's Sultan one of his best friends (look up The Sultan and Nipples fleet - Last week tonight on youtube).
I think that you try to shock Russ with info that US could accommodate some dictators... I'm as surprised by this info as he is :D
I think, that you did not get his message. That's not about "fighting dictators", it's about some "long term, usually low intensity confrontation with Assad family".
 
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It could be that Russia has an ulterior motive for supporting Assad. It also could it be that Russia is only defending Assad in a small part of Syria where Russia has a military asset.

The Syrian government also allowed the Soviet Union to build a resupply station at the port of Tartus, which is now Russia's sole remaining naval base in the Middle East and on the Mediterranean sea.
http://www.economist.com/blogs/economist-explains/2015/09/economist-explains-22
 

russ_watters

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Yes, my interpretation was that we were supposed to find the news that we've been investigating how to undermine Assad for 10 years shocking, when in reality it is an entirely normal thing. The issue of my use of the word "dictatorship" (lazy? Perhaps) is besides the point.

It's been my perception that Wikileaks, more than anything else, is a misplaced outrage generator.
 
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Here is the article I was looking for in regards to Russia leaving Assad in power of only a small portion of Syria.

President Obama says Russia is doomed to fail in the Syrian quagmire. But Russia is not trying to reconquer the country for Assad. It is consolidating a rump Syrian state in the roughly 20 percent of the country he now controls, the Alawite areas stretching north and west from Damascus through Latakia and encompassing the Russian naval base at Tartus
https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/putin-marches-obama-watches/2015/10/22/82643b98-78e5-11e5-bc80-9091021aeb69_story.html

Then again this is only an opinion piece from Charles Krauthammer. Could the hammer be correct? It does sound logical.
 
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Yes, my interpretation was that we were supposed to find the news that we've been investigating how to undermine Assad for 10 years shocking, when in reality it is an entirely normal thing. The issue of my use of the word "dictatorship" (lazy? Perhaps) is besides the point.

It's been my perception that Wikileaks, more than anything else, is a misplaced outrage generator.
I personally suspect that there is a high demand for shocking secret news, so people settle with a substitute. I can't explain otherwise why people in the UK were excited by Prince Charles letters or in Poland about "waiter conspiracy" - tape recordings of our politicians.
 

Astronuc

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Defense secretary says US is retooling fight against IS
http://news.yahoo.com/us-defense-chief-sees-changes-battle-islamic-state-141722374.html [Broken]

Russia pounds Syrian rebels, then reaches out to opposition
http://news.yahoo.com/russia-pounds-syrian-rebels-then-reaches-opposition-211506422.html [Broken]

What a mess.


U.S. weighs special forces in Syria, helicopters in Iraq
http://news.yahoo.com/u-weighs-special-forces-syria-helicopters-iraq-020248563.html

Upping the ante.
 
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lisab

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I don't think the US has a problem with dictatorships.. They support\undermine them when there is a geopolitical\economical reason to do so...
Countries don't have friends - only interests.

No matter where you live, this is true.
 

Astronuc

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Countries don't have friends - only interests.
Well - friends when interests are mutual, and not, when interests are conflicting or competing.
 
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Astronuc

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Those topic become somewhat intermingled, like in a good thriller:

Any idea to which topic one should put: "Ukrainians who through open source intelligence are gathering and publishing data about Russian involvement in Syria"
It could go in the thread on Russian and Chinese military reaching out. But it's part of the mess in Syria.


Meanwhile - the turmoil in the Middle East and North Africa is motivating folks to migrate to Europe. Daesh is but one factor. Others include internal conflicts like that in Syria, and dysfunctional governments, like the one in Iraq.

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/culture-clash-isis-could-send-101500405.html
Just this week, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi complained about the dire fiscal situation in the country. Speaking on national TV, he said: "We make 59 trillion Iraqi dinars from exporting oil. When we take the cost of exportation out, that leaves us with 45 trillion. When we take the cost of serving the debts, we have 40 trillion left. The state employees' salaries and pensions cost us 50 trillion. How do we spend on war, health, education, agriculture, services, poverty and others?"
 
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mheslep

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Are there any right now? I really wish I could convince myself they exist, even if we have to stretch the term "moderate" a little bit.
Territory held by non-ISIS affiliated Sunnis? Of course, to include large areas of Iraq and Syria, not to mention the Sunni controlled nation-states. Or perhaps I misunderstand your point?

This sounds more like a fantasy. If by "decades ago" you're alluding to the first gulf war, then the Arabic/Sunni contribution was tiny, almost symbolic, compared to the American forces...
Kissinger is referring to the cold war period (he references 1973 in the essay) in which the US maintained western friendly states, as opposed to Soviet to client states, by arms deals among other means. Jordan and Saudi Arabia come to mind. As to scale, opposing ISIS has no comparison with the attack on the nation state of Iraq under Saddam which at the time was, I believe, the world's 5th largest army. How many tank factories has ISIS, or how many can they buy and have shipped in through a deep water port?

As to wishful thinking, lets apply context. How wishful is Kissenger's proposal with historic precdents, against the US's current non-air campaign air campaign and total US troop pull out from Iraq?

"Another problem is that neither Egypt nor Jordan have a huge incentive to fight"
Perhaps not "huge", yet, and hence the arms deal proposal by Kissenger. But Jordan has already attacked ISIS at least once with the King in the cockpit. Many ME states have reason to oppose ISIS, but without backup they might feel they're punching out of their weight class to conduct a foreign campaign against a guerrilla army.

Arms agreements and closer ties to the US won't cut it, and Arabic nationalistic sentiment isn't particularly high...
Debatable. Perhaps not, but by no means do I grant that arms deal motivations are simply wishful thinking and dismissed by hand waiving. As to closer ties to the US, well, unfortunately this US administration has done nearly everything it can to make closer ties to the US worth less than before for those in the US (faux red line threats, withdrawal of all Iraqi support, encouragement of Iranian shias, ...)

The Russians need to be convinced of that as well...must be guarantees that the Russians
In the present reality I see no guarantees obtainable from the Russians.
 
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Territory held by non-ISIS Sunnis? Of course, to include Iraq and Syria, not to mention the Sunni controlled nation-states. Or perhaps I misunderstand your point?
For some reason you seem to think that ISIS is the only problematic group over there... I think HossamCFD meant rebels who are not jihadist salafis or just plain terrorists ala PKK.
 
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Territory held by non-ISIS affiliated Sunnis? Of course, to include large areas of Iraq and Syria, not to mention the Sunni controlled nation-states. Or perhaps I misunderstand your point?
I think HossamCFD meant rebels who are not jihadist salafis
Yes exactly. Excluding the Syrian kurds and the FSA, it seems all other rebels are in alliance with Al-Nusra front and other Jihadist groups that can't really be called moderate. This of course only applies to Syria. The situation in Iraq is different.

Kissenger is referring to the cold war period in which the US maintained western friendly states, as opposed to Soviet to client states, by arms deals among other means.
I see. Well in this case it is less of a precedent. The Arab states friendly to the US were never "enlisted" to actually fight anyone in the cold war as far as I'm aware.

As to wishful thinking, lets apply context. How wishful is Kissenger's proposal with historic precdents, against the US's current non-air campaign air campaign and total US troop pull out from Iraq?
I agree. The current strategy doesn't seem to lead anywhere.

I don't mean to dismiss Kissenger's proposal entirely. I'm just extremely sceptical that Arab states may take a leading role in a major offensive against ISIS that involves ground troops.
 

mheslep

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The USA Today has a piece detailing the 16 times the US President has stated there would be "no boots on the ground in Syria". The earliest such statement, from August 2013, is typical:

"In no event are we considering any kind of military action that would involve boots on the ground, that would involve a long-term campaign. But we are looking at the possibility of a limited, narrow act that would help make sure that not only Syria, but others around the world, understand that the international community cares about maintaining this chemical weapons ban and norm. So again, I repeat, we're not considering any open-ended commitment. We're not considering any boots-on-the-ground approach."
The USA story was prompted by yesterday's announcement from the Obama administration of boots on the ground in Syria, specifically "less than 50" special forces are authorized to fight ISIS in Syria. The common sense observer might say this is a change in administration policy, but press secretary Earnest says no, the mission has "not changed". Why can't the Obama administration manage the least little bit of candor on Syria and ISIS? If they can not state their initial approach was ineffective, then at least say something like, conditions have changed, so we changed our approach? This Orwellian double think, i.e. "nothing to see here, move along", is destructive in numerous ways. It is disrespectful of the armed forces men and women sent in to harms way there, encourages others such as allies to consider ISIS a non-problem, and, perhaps most importantly, avoids having the discussion about why those US boots are necessary (and I think they are).
 
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Astronuc

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Indeed - Analysis: Obama crosses own red line with Syrian deployment
http://news.yahoo.com/analysis-syria-deployment-obama-crosses-own-red-line-071956227--politics.html [Broken]
 
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nsaspook

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The USA Today has a piece detailing the 16 times the US President has stated there would be "no boots on the ground in Syria". The earliest such statement, from August 2013, is typical:
But it was the location, not the number, that elevated the significance of his Syrian decision. It was the first time the U.S. has openly sent forces into Syria, expanding the geographic reach of Obama's military efforts in the Middle East.
He's just making it official about what's been happening for a long time in Syria.
https://www.physicsforums.com/threads/iraqi-unrest-syrian-unrest-and-isis-isil-daesh.757697/page-8#post-4830197
 

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