Friday, January 25, 2013

Syria: No sign Assad will be overthrown says France

France said on Thursday there were no signs that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad is about to be overthrown, something Paris has been saying for months was just over the horizon
 France, a former colonial ruler of Syria, has been one of the most vocal backers of the rebels trying to topple Mr. al-Assad and was the first to recognize the opposition coalition.

“Things are not moving. The solution that we had hoped for, and by that I mean the fall of Bashar and the arrival of the [opposition] coalition to power, has not happened,” says Laurent Fabius

Mr. Fabius told RFI radio in December “the end is nearing” for Mr. al-Assad

 He said Syrian opposition leaders and representatives of some 50 nations and organizations would meet in Paris on Jan. 28

Check back for updates, I have more stuff to add and no time to get in here.


  1. what's new the battle was lost when their grand strategy to destroy the Citadel failed in June/July. This was meant to be the crowing moment just before the UNGA leaders meeting. As to WWW and his tirade against Russia, yes it is true Russia gives conflicting signals. Neither Putin or the Oligarchs have a sway over the Orthodox church. This is the red line for the church they will not accept the downfall of Assad and his secular government. The big disappointment has been the Greek Orthodox church and their control by the Zionist.

    1. It's not a tirade. I'm making a case for the negative role I think Russia is secretly playing. I really don't have any animosity or negative emotions toward Russia (at least until I suspected a ruse re Syria--pardon the pun). In fact, I once viewed Russia as being sinere the last hope against Western hegemony.

      I just see things very differently and I'm getting exercised because I see a massive deception being played out. I could be wrong of course but my instincts tell me not. I've seen this play before.

      You say Russia has a red line?

      But Russia has already said it has no red line! Period. They said they will not intervene militarily and that Assad is a dead man and that both sides are to blame, etc. The U.S. and NATO do not need a UN resolution to attack Syria so they do not need Russia (as we saw in Libya and now Mali). The Gulf countries and the media are not being sincere when they allege that Russia is the only thing preventing more violence. They are doing this to build up the bona fides of the good cop. To make it seem they are on the good guys side and then at the last minute they will fade away as the bad cops come in to give the victim the business.

      I suspect a long slow grind down insuragancy is part of the plan. The Syrian state needs to be weakened before these jackals will go in.

      Those claiming victory could not be more wrong. Victory is stopping the flow of terrorists and weapons coming from NATO and the Gulf, into Syria, yet now Russia has basically proved it will do nothing about this. Russia is not punishing the West for this illegal action. The flow of arms continues yet Russia still wants to negotiate with the rebels! Iran at least is requiring them to put their weapons down first.

      It's counterintuitive and a conspiratorial position I'm taking . . . but it seems like Russia is assisting in this war by pretending to oppose it when they are really green lighting it in secret. Sometimes a tyrannical act is more easily achieved when there seems to be some opposition to it. We see this in domestic politics all the time.

      If Russia were sincere it would threaten to use force and never would have taken this option off the table. Can you imagine if the U.S. took force off the table when defending its allies? Never! It's crazy!

    2. Ok. Maybe tirade is fair. I prefer "well made and damning argument," but it's fair.

      Regarding the Church I'm wondering how this political pressure will play out because it seems to me Putin et al. already set them down the course of allowing Syria to fall and not punishing the West for its aggression. Seems like a done deal. So how does the Church walk this back using domestic politics?

    3. russia has 'said' they won't intervene militarily?
      And yet they stationed Iskanders and advisers.
      Isn't that military intervention?
      I see it that way:

      here is a comment I left at MoA regarding a change in the coverage on syria

      There has been some sort of attitude change towards Syria.
      I first noticed it around Christmas 2012

      First an article was published in the UK
      Russia's presence in Syria complicates intervention.

      Contained in this post

      This article discussed the Iskander and the presence of Russians advisers along with the missiles

      "The depth and complexity of Syria's anti-aircraft defences mean that any direct western campaign, in support of a no-fly zone or in the form of punitive air strikes against the leadership, would be costly, protracted and risky. The possibility of Russian military casualties in such a campaign could have unpredictable geopolitical consequences"

      That seemed a pretty big admission, contrasting most of the rhetoric that had been forthcoming from western media talking heads

      The second item of interest?
      At Christmas time, again. Israel planted the chemical weapon story and the US has fallen all over itself, repeatedly to deny it.
      To say it was wrong. To say the information was incorrect. Etc.,
      You get the picture
      And yet the chemical weapon story persisted with the US issuing more then one clarification, rebuttal etc
      Covered it twice at my place...

      Those two incidents signaled to me something was up. Or something had changed.
      Since the new year the narrative has toned down completely
      There are other factors of course. The cohesiveness of Syrian army. The hatred of the vast majority of Syrians towards the NaTO backed terrorists

      I have some other stuff bookmarked on Syria and Russia specifically
      I suggest to you that you overestimate Russia's ability to intervene militarily save for an immediate move to nukes.
      A move no one wants

    4. Supplying weapons to a country you are long-standing allies with so they can defend themselves from outside attack is not "intervening" militarily. It's following through on legal contracts. Signing new contracts or rushing the weapons is closer to intervening but Russia didn't do that.

      In fact, Russia has said they won't engage in future military contracts with Syria because they don't want to offend the West (and Israel). So sending the Iskanders in late 2012 is an example of doing too little rather than an example of Russia going out of it's way to defend Syria.

      "Intervening" in Syria by Russia would look much different. Look to how the U.S. intervenes militarily for instance. They start out warning and threatening and exaggerating the behavior of their targets to justify an attack. You don't see Russia preparing for war in a similar way.

      Putin already said they would not send in the Russian military to defend Syria! I fail to see the Syria-is-Victorious-yet-Again crowd acknowledging this fact. Why do you think Putin said this? To misdirect (he really intends full scale war in defense of Syria but wanted to feint the other way)? Why? Wouldn't a better approach be to vocally advertise the fact the Russian military will fight whoever attacks Syria and is prepared for WWIII if needed? Won't this be a deterrent? Why would they keep the deterrent secret? Wouldn't these Iskander stories, or the various stories about the Russian navy, be all over the press if Russia were indeed using these as legitimate threats?

      Just doesn't make sense that Russia is sincere. Sorry.

      And I agree the tone has changed since Christmas 2012. But the tone is not to be trusted. We have no real idea of what's really going on on the ground. No idea. The media is almost completely controlled. The bad guys set the "tone" so we should not take their bait. They want us to feel like there is a "lull" in fighting or the oppossition is in disarray or don't have weapons or that Syria achieved "victory" or whatever. Then they switch to the opposite propaganda bout Syria's impending demise (e.g. th3e recent video of a Syrian tank supposedly being hit by the opposition--I think it may be fake).

      Again, I remind you the threat has not been neutraliized. This is not victory. If anything the opposition are emboldened because the West is pretty much admitting they are illegally attacking a sovereign country and they are suffering no consequences. There are no economic sanctions against the U.S. because of the criminal attack on Syria. In fact Russia has rewarded the West rather than punish or threaten them. Why not withdraw from the WTO? Why not bring the U.S. in front of the World Court or public opinion for violating the treaty dictating how many troops and material they get to have in Europe and the Middle East? Why not rush airplanes and war material to Syria? Why not support Iran's diplomatic efforts and instead play footsie with the West in the UN?

      I'm willing to stand corrected and in fact I hope I'm wrong. The only force capable of stopping the West's attack on Syria, and the inevitable collapse of the country's government, is Russia. And it's clear to me Russia is not going to do this. I put the odds Russia is sincere at less than 15% or so.

    5. And I would love to get an answer to my question about the Orthodox Church and domestic Russian politics.

      How does this play out? What's the scenario for domestic politics stiffening Putin's spine and reversing course on his previous pledge not to intervene (actually, I think it was Lavrov that said this and Putin said Assad was a dead man).

      Does the church form an opposition party? Remove Putin from office if he lets Syria fall? Not support him in the elections?

      Are they threatening to do this now? I know the communists have been somewhat critical of these foreign policies but what is their exposure in the media? What about other groups?

  2. And since I don't trust any official story from the gov. of France, I don't trust this assessment of the war. They vary between overestimating or diminishing opposition strength when needed. We cannot trust these sources. For all we know the are doing massive arming.

    1. They are doing massive arming and what has it been worth
      That Syria is still intact at this stage of the destabilization says much about Syria, it's army, it's people and it support on the international stage.

      This much appears to be lost on you WWM and I am not quite sure why?

      That all said, and I do say it cautiously Israel is the wild card
      They can launch a go it alone strike on Syria.

    2. Being intact is not victory. It's testament to the fact that Syria is a much harder nut to crack than Iraq, Libya, or Tunisia and it will take much more softening before they crack it open. Syria's army is indeed winning short term "battles", or probably more accurately tamping down terrorist actions after they occur.

      But victory for Syria is stopping the assault. This means stopping the attacks emanating from Turkey, Jordan and elsewhere. Syria can either invade these countries and neutralize the threat or use its diplomatic power to punish these countries. It needs Russia (and China) to enforce any kind of punishment and Russia, instead of punishing the West, seems to be growing ever closer (e.g. joining the WTO, working together in Mali and Afghanistan, etc.).

      I really don't see how people on "our" side (like at MOA--a website that censors inconvenient arguments) are claiming victory. This has been about the 3rd or 4th declaration of victory in the last two years. Did the West give up and go home? No more funds for the rebels? Are they going to promise never to try to illegally attack a sovereign country again? Just like after Libya, right? I'm sure the West learned their lesson that the Russian bear will smack them around if they commit massive war crimes by invading sovereign countries, right? No? They keep getting suckered in exactly the same way and end up participating in the crimes?

    3. Your right WWM, intact is not victory
      Which is why I used the word intact.
      I am trying to be clear about what is being discussed
      At this point in time intact is as good as it gets and for the Syrian people this is just awful

      You don't acknowledge that Russia has indeed intervened militarily because it is not the sort of intervention you had envisioned or hoped for?

      Russia is not a powerful militarily as the US/NATO machine. They just aren't.
      You don't seem to want to accept it( basing that one your comments)
      Unless you think it should go nuclear that is where Russia and the US can match one another, but to what end?
      Global holocaust?

    4. I do assume that Russia is providing some war material like Iskanders--although the reporting is spotty and I'm not certain. Russia and Syria signed a bunch of contracts in the mid 2000s and have delivered some weapons it seems. Although, significantly, Russia has held off delivering the most effective weaponry, like the most advanced fighter jets and the S-300 missiles (

      But Russia is not providing the type of help the U.S. would to say Israel if it wanted to prevent an attack.

      Russia could not defeat US/NATO in a full war but as you say, why would the West choose to start WWIII over Syria? If Russia were to move it's military in right at the beginning it would have put the pressure on the West to abort their attacks.

      If there were 100,000 Russian military in Syria and Russia promised retaliation who would be in the right?

      If Russia doesn't stand up for the principle of sovereignty now it never will. It's too late now anyway. After Libya who in their right mind would trust NATO/the West again? Yet that is precisely what Russia is doing in Mali!!!!!!! And in Syria by default.

      The West is responsible for the holocaust. And Russia could do quite a bit more short of war to make it's point. They could veto every UN resolution. They could withdraw from the WTO. They could sell ALL oil in non dollars and make even more bilateral non dollar agreements. They could withdraw permission for NATO to use Russian supply lines for Afghanistan. Etc., etc.

  3. neither the war to end all wars nor the #nazis taught #europe a lesson: now they seek to destroy #algeria

  4. Here's an alleged recent "ultrakill" of a Syrian tank in an urban area.

    Looks potentially faked. I suspect most "fighting" in Syria has been terrorist type fighting and not engagements with Syrian military. But who knows.