Skip to comments.Egypt, Syria, Iran and Israel - Approaching the Tipping Point
Posted on 11/21/2011 9:56:17 PM PST by SunkenCiv
Egyptian riot police in Tahrir Square have had to use tear gas and rubber bullets on 5,000 protesters who are demanding that the ruling military begin the process of stepping down and handing over power to an elected government... The protesters are also angry about the slow pace of reforms and apparent attempts by Egypt's ruling generals to retain power over a future civilian government... A Syrian rebel movement that stands against President Bashar al-Assad in Syria is taking advantage of the application of international pressure against the regime. The British have opened up lines of dialogue with the opposition movement... France said that it, too, was ready to work with the Syrian opposition, maintaining that it is too late for the Assad regime to save itself by carrying out reforms... Turkey has been calling for action, saying more must be done to stop the "massacre"... The United Nations estimates that at least 3,500 people have been killed since the government began its crackdown... in March... The European Union has already imposed sanctions on Syria, but Russia, a close ally of Syria, and China have blocked any wider international measures under a United Nations umbrella... Recent news has indicated that Israel may plan to strike by next summer. Israel recently test-launched a ballistic missile and conducted an aerial drill in Italy with the participation of IDF fighter pilots. The IDF also held a home front drill simulating a missile attack on the greater Tel Aviv area -- a realistic scenario in case of an attack on Iran's nuclear sites. Israel's training operations seem to have been stepped up after a UN report said Iran appeared to have worked on designing an atom bomb...[Zero] and the [Demwit]s are demanding the abolition of Israel without saying it outright.
(Excerpt) Read more at canadafreepress.com ...
Obama is empowering the worst enemies of Israel and the West. Those radicals wish to annihilate all non-Muslims, but especially Israel and the United States
I recently heard a figure that there are now about 10,000 defected Syrian military, many of whom are working/fighting against Assad. A group of them attacked an Air Force installation/group? which is especially involved in repression of the demonstrators. A carefully selected target. I think about 35 of Assads military were killed.
Masses start and allow wars by allowing the paths taken a continuance, or an overwhelming of one mass by another mass of people. Leaders simply receive the credit be it good or bad. Without the masses the leader never would have existed. (imho). So is this time (our present), a 'here we go again' moment? Praying it will not be so.
My apology to both of you if this comment is off topic.
If youd like to be on or off, please FR mail me.
Morale in the Syrian military has always been poor. Syria’s got an odd demographic — all Syrians are required to do five (maybe it’s three, but I think it’s five) years of mandatory military service starting age 18; families and kids save up money so at 17 and 3/4s the kids can “visit” one of the Gulf State countries, get a job there (there are few real jobs in Syria), and not only avoid military service, but send back some money and never go back. Ten or so years ago I read that whichever Assad was dictator at the time offered amnesty for those who’d skipped out (it’s illegal to do so), trying to get people to move back. Few takers.
Regarding Egypt, huge crowds have been attacked in Tarir Square. The most recent figure is 29 killed and more that 1,700 hurt.
I wonder how many of the 1,700 hurt were hurt by other rioters? In a huge crowd, 29 killed is a surprisingly low number, particularly in comparison with, say, Iran or Syria. Guess which deaths will provoke the most outrage, though?
Divide and rule is often the only course of action available for the management of other polities. For that to remain effective, alliances have to be shifted and wrecked. If there were unity in the Arab world, no amount of foreign (or alleged) intervention would keep it from happening. Historically though, the Arabs have only been unified one of two ways — 1, by a non-Arab occupying power, or 2, by some kind of Arab regime, but it is very short-lived.
The US (and the Gulf States including Saudi Arabia) backed Saddam Hussein after he launched the invasion of Iran; after eight years the two sides finally reached a cease-fire arrangement which included Iraqi retreat from Iranian territory it had seized. A year or so later, Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait, and was paid off a hefty ransom to pull out.
From nearly the beginning of his regime, and leading up to his second (and more famous) invasion of Kuwait, he’d continually sent sabotage teams across the border to blow up Kuwaiti oil rigs. When he invaded Kuwait the second time, he brought the rest of the Arab world down on his head, not to mention the US and parts of Europe, while the Iranians let him stash part of his airforce on their territory (pretty openminded, eh?) to keep it out of harm’s way.
Jordan is considered an ally of the US, but whether or not that’s true, it definitely has no other allies, apart from its longstanding informal alliance with Israel, which dates back to Israel’s expulsion of Jordan in 1967. It has provided a buffer for Israel’s longest frontier, as well as a destination for so-called Palestinian so-called refugees. The 1994 treaty between Jordan and Israel had less fanfare than the Egypt treaty, but is at least as important to both countries.
In 1973, Sadat’s strategy was to grab the limited objective of regaining the eastern bank of the Suez Canal and making it so costly to dislodge Egyptian forces that the Israelis would talk; it also involved his making Egyptian peace with Israel, booting out the Russians, and becoming an ally and client of the US.
Sadat didn’t of course mention any of this to his allies in the war, and it’s not unlikely that he’d have pressed on had Israel indeed collapsed, but he regained for Egypt the prestige lost by his predecessors’ foolish wars against Israel (all of them were defeats) and got rid of the Russians, who had continuously stirred up trouble in Egypt, Syria, Iraq, and elsewhere. As someone pointed out on FR the other day, Israel purchased the Golan Heights from Syria’s regime, paying quite a pretty penny for it, and entirely on the QT, and Sadat knew it. It wouldn’t surprise me to learn that the sale was the tipping point for his transformation into a peacemaker.
After the Russians were given the boot in Egypt, Sadat found himself under fire from the old-line Nasserites (the *other* old-line Nasserites, Sadat was one himself), and took the risky step of releasing hard-line Islamofascists from Egyptian prisons as a sort of balance. It was those jokers who assassinated him.
Saudi Arabia and Egypt spent a chunk of the 1950s and early 1960s fighting each other in Yemen, both directly and by proxies. Nasser was a secular, socialist hero and poster boy for Soviet policy, and it was that little war that led inexorably to the complex system of alliance, codependency, and subservience (in series, in combo, or all at once) between the Saudis and most other Arabian states, and the United States.
The Suez Crisis (it had begun when Nasser militarized the Canal and booted the French and British) involved the British and French’ using Israel to try to dislodge the Egyptians from the Canal (that was the first Israeli invasion of the Sinai). Eisenhower turned on the UK and French gov’ts over this audacious plan, bringing down the UK gov’t (I can’t remember what happened in France, probably led indirectly to increased US involvement in SE Asia) and was, not surprisingly, another manifestation of the divide and rule approach. :’)
Thanks for the fascinating background information.
It is hard to find an analysis that puts all the factors into context.
Will say one thing regarding the islamists. As saudi rulers have pointed at others saying go attack them not us, several african and middle-eastern nations forbid moslem brotherhood activity till recently, thanks in part, to masses of people deciding to go to a more extreme way of thought to rationalize their activities. The divide and control method possibly is failing (especially in africa and the middle-east) while the remainder of the world (mostly) practices philosophy (including myself) and does not understand the consequences of the new mindset, or if one does understand when brought toward reality one rationalizes one mind could never understand. Added in is many minds (in africa and the middle-east) of separate and diverse thought and dictatorships seeking to survive. Then there is the end to which the means or path taken arrived at the point where the present leads toward the future. Who leads at this point in the countries where the dictatorships have fallen looks not to be in doubt, and those stepping forward to lead look less friendly to the world, as a whole, for securing some form of peace in the present and future.
The disruptions (fights) are becoming more prolific in their scope and with the reports of possible chemical weapons having been utilized in Egypt to control the crowds, therein is an attempt at control having to use weapons unthought of endangering more lives as current rulers protect themselves, as the masses expose themselves to present death from possible chemical agents. Could this indicate more people maybe are dying than everyone is being told?
Somewhere (if the cash is available) in the ranks of the oppressed there are probable weapon acquisitions occurring and plans are being drafting for (action = reaction) more of the same. Libya's weapons maybe are making their way to Egypt? Unknown, but the entire region is nearly aflame. Should more weapons enter the mix, as most certainly will happen, the winners will wind up as losers, and a new cycle of death would probably occur due to humanitarian efforts being thwarted.
Please understand none of what I typed may be relevant. One possible outcome in a whole host of outcomes. Doubtful mine is an educated guess.
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