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Syria's War Nearing Resolution?

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57 minutes ago, zapatos said:

If you are going to criticize the plans of others because it won't accomplish much, it's kind of important that your plan would accomplish much.

tuco criticized Trump's behavior and not Trump's plan; as of yet Trump has not decided on one:

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Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis on Wednesday said the U.S. is standing by, ready for military action if or when directed.

"We stand ready to provide military options if they are appropriate as the president determines," Mattis said. 

But Sanders said no decision has been made yet on Syria. She also told reporters that "the president holds Syria and Russia responsible for this chemical weapons attack."

"It sounds like all options are on the table and a final decision hasn't been made," Sanders said.  

Last Updated Apr 11, 2018 5:39 PM EDT

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/white-house-press-briefing-today-2018-04-11-live-updates/

 

 

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58 minutes ago, tuco said:

 

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I do not have such plan

 

Then what was this?

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I would wait for an investigation (that would prevent Russia from using rhetoric cited above among other things) and I would not escalate tensions (I prefer de-escalation and diplomacy). I would also not signal what I was gonna do, with regard to military actions, next.

More importantly, I would care about Syrians through the whole conflict and not only when some of them die in a chemical attack. As I noted, killing civilians is unacceptable by any means and in my mind, chemical weapons are not my "red line". My "red line" is human suffering of any kind.  

 

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Syria, Deterrence of Chemical Weapons and U.S. Policy in the Middle East – By Joshua Landis

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The mistake of both Obama and Trump has been to allowed the use of Chlorine gas to slip under the radar. It was not originally proscribed in the 2013 deal, and though added to list later, has not been acted upon. Trump can probably deter further use of chlorine gas in Syria  by hurting the regime with a missile strike. But such a strike will be a narrow response, unlikely to change the course of the war. Some 1,900 Syrians have been killed so far by chemical weapons. Further missile strikes will not change the course of the civil war or address the deaths of close to half a million Syrians.

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The US has failed in its effort to produce a US-friendly and democratic Northern Middle East, where Sunnis and Shiites power-share and emulate US forms of governance. Turkey has turned to Russia and authoritarianism. Iraq is a Shiite dominated state that needs decades to build reliable institutions that will allow it to turn away from dependence on Iran. Assad’s authority has survived in most of Syria, and Hizbullah is more powerful than ever in Lebanon. For the US to believe that it can turn around this history of political failure and misspent millions by launching a comeback in North Syria is nothing short of goofy.

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There is no quick fix to the region’s problems. Ensuring that Syrians and Iranians remain poor in the hope that they will demand regime-change is a bad policy. It has not worked, despite decades of sanctions. Instead sanctions have brought collapse, war and bitterness to the region. Dividing Syrians and keeping them poor may ensure short-term US interests; but in the long-term, it will ensure failure and more wars. Only by promoting growth and unity can the United States advance stability, the rule of law, and liberal values.

2

http://www.joshualandis.com/blog/syria-deterrence-of-chemical-weapons-and-u-s-policy-in-the-middle-east-by-joshua-landis/

So the way I understand it. 

- Accept Assad won

- Do not abandon Kurds

- Tolerate Iran and Russia in the region

- Do not send new, nice and smart 

Edited by tuco

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And you are sending the message that the use of chemical warfare is acceptable.
Assad will use them again at the next available opportunity, if not against his own people, against neighbors.

But you might be right, targeting the military installations that launched the gas is probably ineffective.
When did M Gaddafi quiet down ?
When R Reagan targeted HIM with bombing strikes.

Just saying.

Edited by MigL

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5 hours ago, tuco said:

So the way I understand it. 

- Accept Assad won

- Do not abandon Kurds

- Tolerate Iran and Russia in the region

- Do not send new, nice and smart 

Okay. So we should let Assad alone. But wait a second....... that would counteract your previous point:

22 hours ago, tuco said:

My "red line" is human suffering of any kind.  

Last I checked people in Syria are suffering pretty badly.

In fact, they were suffering so badly they attempted to overthrow Assad(and other reasons, but suffering is definitely a contributing factor).

So. Do you think Assad is a nice forgiving person, that he's just gonna stop being so mean to his own people? It's one of the reasons they rebelled in the first place.

 

 

I can understand what you're saying. It's a fairly logical position however it's flawed.

Diplomacy with someone like Assad is basically saying a few stern words and vowing never to let him get away with something so horrific again, and then doing the same thing when he does, in fact, do it again.

This is not the first time he's used chemical weapons.

 

Do I think Trump's plan is the best? Not really. Do I know of a better one? Not really. Other than not using twitter so much.

 

It's easy to criticise someone, however, unless you have a better way, your criticism will hardly be taken well. 

Edited by Raider5678

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Since it's apparently not clear, I was summarizing an article by  Joshua Landis.

Also, I am not interested in answering your questions nor explaining myself. We are in realms of opinions and priorities and to me its a waste of time and energy debating opinions/priorities in great length. I have stated mine clearly several times already and I am not trying to convince anyone of anything. Support the kick in the balls, I could not care less. To me its stupid but what can I do? Skilfully craft paragraphs of text only to be told .. I do not agree with you? I do not think so. Been there, got the t-shirt and moved on.

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18 hours ago, tuco said:

Since it's apparently not clear, I was summarizing an article by  Joshua Landis.

Also, I am not interested in answering your questions nor explaining myself. We are in realms of opinions and priorities and to me its a waste of time and energy debating opinions/priorities in great length. I have stated mine clearly several times already and I am not trying to convince anyone of anything. Support the kick in the balls, I could not care less. To me its stupid but what can I do? Skilfully craft paragraphs of text only to be told .. I do not agree with you? I do not think so. Been there, got the t-shirt and moved on.

Kinda defeats the object of contributing to a discussion, doesn't it?  

So here's my tuppence worth:

When a bully just won't listen to reason or fair play you're obligated to at least aim for the balls whatever the consequences, because the alternative will always be worse.

 

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18 minutes ago, dimreepr said:

Kinda defeats the object of contributing to a discussion, doesn't it?  

So here's my tuppence worth:

When a bully just won't listen to reason or fair play you're obligated to at least aim for the balls whatever the consequences, because the alternative will always be worse.

 

The domino effect is not predictable. I don't know if there would've even been a Syrian Civil War or ISIS had the U.S. not removed Saddam. I don't know if Libya is any better off now that Gaddafi is gone. There will inevitably be repercussions either way whether nothing is done or something is done. The goal is to act in a manner that carries the least worse outcome as all possible outcomes appear to involve people dying. Assad chemical attacks kill people and so too do U.S. airstrikes. 

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I do not think so. I post my stuff and give others opportunity to read it and say their stuff. There is no truth to be found. I posted my reasoning and arguments already. I can only repeat them. 

Russia ridicules Trump's Twitter diplomacy in Syria standoff 

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"We cannot depend on the mood of someone on the other side of the ocean when he wakes up, on what a specific person takes into his head in the morning," 

No kidding.

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Defense Secretary James Mattis said Thursday the US wanted more evidence that the Assad regime was responsible for the attack before launching military intervention.
Mattis told lawmakers he believed there had been a chemical attack and that it was "simply inexcusable, beyond the pale," but he called attention to the risks of further US involvement in Syria and made clear no response plan had been made.
"We are trying to stop the murder of innocent people but on a strategic level its how do we keep this from escalating out of control, if you get my drift on that," he said.

Word.

https://edition.cnn.com/2018/04/13/middleeast/russia-trump-twitter-syria-chemical-attack-intl/index.html

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45 minutes ago, Ten oz said:

The domino effect is not predictable. I don't know if there would've even been a Syrian Civil War or ISIS had the U.S. not removed Saddam. I don't know if Libya is any better off now that Gaddafi is gone. There will inevitably be repercussions either way whether nothing is done or something is done. The goal is to act in a manner that carries the least worse outcome as all possible outcomes appear to involve people dying. Assad chemical attacks kill people and so too do U.S. airstrikes. 

There's a reason the world decided this type of warfare be banned.

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2 hours ago, dimreepr said:

There's a reason the world decided this type of warfare be banned.

I don't see how that has anything to do with what I posted. Obviously Assad's action are morally and ethically appalling. There is no argument there. My point was that there isn't a way to know what willing happen in the long term if he were to stay in power vs not. I believe doing what's right matters more than managing the right outcome in lieu of the fact that the future is unknowable. Currently what action(s) do you think is right? 

 

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24 minutes ago, Ten oz said:

I don't see how that has anything to do with what I posted. Obviously Assad's action are morally and ethically appalling. There is no argument there. My point was that there isn't a way to know what willing happen in the long term if he were to stay in power vs not. I believe doing what's right matters more than managing the right outcome in lieu of the fact that the future is unknowable. Currently what action(s) do you think is right? 

 

Syria has committed more than 50 chemical weapons violations in 7  years. There has to to come a point when you say "No more". It looks like that time is near. What will be, will be.

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2 minutes ago, StringJunky said:

Syria has committed more than 50 chemical weapons violations in 7  years. There has to to come a point when you say "No more". It looks like that time is near. What will be, will be.

I don't see how your post isn't compatible with what I posted. What would you like to see done? 

 

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8 minutes ago, Ten oz said:

I don't see how your post isn't compatible with what I posted. What would you like to see done? 

 

Missiles need to be dropped where those bombs are being made/stored  and air  runways pot-holed but I'm sure our military have better ideas. 

Edited by StringJunky

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1 minute ago, StringJunky said:

Missiles need to be dropped where those bombs are being made/stored  and air  runways pot-holed but I'm sure our military have better ideas. 

Does Assad need to go and or do troops need to put boots on the ground and inspect facilities to ensure all chemical weapons (WMDs) have been destroyed? Chemical weapons locations have been targeted by airstrikes repeated in the past and it hasn't seem to have gotten the job done. In my opinion, I would still like to see yours, there isn't much use targeting Syrian facilities and blowing stuff up if Assad remains. Assad has Russia's full support. Assad can always get more weapons. Additionally targets of real value will be/are being stored on Russia controlled bases to ensure they won't be bombed. Assad (and Putin) knows Israel, the U.S., UK, and etc won't attack Russian facilities in Syria. As such putting potholes in runways accomplishes very little. It is Russia's air support Assad most benefits from and Russia's runways will remain spotless. 

 

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9 minutes ago, Ten oz said:

Does Assad need to go and or do troops need to put boots on the ground and inspect facilities to ensure all chemical weapons (WMDs) have been destroyed? Chemical weapons locations have been targeted by airstrikes repeated in the past and it hasn't seem to have gotten the job done. In my opinion, I would still like to see yours, there isn't much use targeting Syrian facilities and blowing stuff up if Assad remains. Assad has Russia's full support. Assad can always get more weapons. Additionally targets of real value will be/are being stored on Russia controlled bases to ensure they won't be bombed. Assad (and Putin) knows Israel, the U.S., UK, and etc won't attack Russian facilities in Syria. As such putting potholes in runways accomplishes very little. It is Russia's air support Assad most benefits from and Russia's runways will remain spotless. 

 

I think we'll have to see. I'm sure you're familiar with Russia's antics elsewhere and this is probably as much about them as Assad; this maybe the theatre where those issues become focussed militarily. The NATO plan won't be to take out Assad because I think they would use boots on the ground for that, .

Edited by StringJunky

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22 minutes ago, StringJunky said:

Missiles need to be dropped where those bombs are being made/stored  and air  runways pot-holed but I'm sure our military have better ideas. 

2 minutes ago, StringJunky said:

I think we'll have to see. I'm sure you're familiar with Russia's antics elsewhere and this is probably as much about them as Assad; this maybe the theatre where those issues become focussed militarily.

"Missiles need to be dropped" is a strong statement. I don't think it should be followed by "I think we'll have to see" and "maybe". I don't think bomb first and figure out the intricacies later isn't a good way to proceed. I also don't currently have full confidence in those making the decisions here in the U.S. or the UK, by the way. Trump is clearly incompetent and has empowered other incompetent people to run our agencies. In the UK it isn't as bad but it is bad. In both cases Russian propaganda played a role in driving wedges between citizens and influencing elections. When you say the military has better ideas I honestly don't have faith you're correct. Here is the U.S. both our Sec of Defense and National Security Adviser are trigger happy idiots. I personally rather see a long term position that Assad most go supported by strong sanctions supported and enforced by U.S., UK, and EU against Syria and those who aid Syria (Russia and Iran) than more airstrikes. 

 

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11 minutes ago, Ten oz said:

"Missiles need to be dropped" is a strong statement. I don't think it should be followed by "I think we'll have to see" and "maybe". I don't think bomb first and figure out the intricacies later isn't a good way to proceed. I also don't currently have full confidence in those making the decisions here in the U.S. or the UK, by the way. Trump is clearly incompetent and has empowered other incompetent people to run our agencies. In the UK it isn't as bad but it is bad. In both cases Russian propaganda played a role in driving wedges between citizens and influencing elections. When you say the military has better ideas I honestly don't have faith you're correct. Here is the U.S. both our Sec of Defense and National Security Adviser are trigger happy idiots. I personally rather see a long term position that Assad most go supported by strong sanctions supported and enforced by U.S., UK, and EU against Syria and those who aid Syria (Russia and Iran) than more airstrikes. 

 

The military top brass are the ones with the knowledge and the politicians follow their advice on which options are best. 

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Let's do a quick recap

Spring 2011

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Arrested during a protest in Saida, 10km east of Daraa, on April 29, Hamza's body was returned to his family on Tuesday 24th May, horribly mutilated.

The child had spent nearly a month in the custody of Syrian security, and when they finally returned his corpse it bore the scars of brutal torture: Lacerations, bruises and burns to his feet, elbows, face and knees, consistent with the use of electric shock devices and of being whipped with cable, both techniques of torture documented by Human Rights Watch as being used in Syrian prisons during the bloody three-month crackdown on protestors.

Hamza's eyes were swollen and black and there were identical bullet wounds where he had apparently been shot through both arms, the bullets tearing a hole in his sides and lodging in his belly.

On Hamza's chest was a deep, dark burn mark. His neck was broken and his penis cut off.

"Where are the human rights committees? Where is the International Criminal Court?" asks the voice of the man inspecting Hamza's body on a video uploaded to YouTube.

 

 

 

https://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/features/2011/05/201153185927813389.html

 

Since then:

List of massacres during the Syrian Civil War - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_massacres_during_the_Syrian_Civil_War

List of Syrian Civil War barrel bomb attacks - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Syrian_Civil_War_barrel_bomb_attacks

Use of chemical weapons in the Syrian Civil War - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Use_of_chemical_weapons_in_the_Syrian_Civil_War

Human rights violations during the Syrian Civil War - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_rights_violations_during_the_Syrian_Civil_War

around:

500 000 dead

2 000 000 wounded

11 000 000 displaced

1 000 000 besieged and denied life-saving assistance

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Syrian_Civil_War#Impact

https://www.hrw.org/world-report/2017/country-chapters/syria

________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

And now there is red line, now we say no more. Well, seems to me we have a pretty high threshold when it comes to the suffering of our fellow human beings. 

Edited by tuco

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49 minutes ago, StringJunky said:

The military top brass are the ones with the knowledge and the politicians follow their advice on which options are best. 

I do not agree. I don't think that statement holds any truth. For starters the top brass are not responsible for deciding foreign policy. They (top brass) do not decide which operations the military should and should not engage in. Their responsible for organizing and executing operations. Their input is limited in scope to what they have been tasked with and cabinet. It is an administrations team of advisers that come up with what to do. The top brass figures out how to do it. Additionally it is the advisers and cabinet which select who the top brass shall be. Once one is elevated to Flag Officer they must continue to advance every couple years or retire. For example a term on the Joint Chief of Staff here in the U.S. is only 2yrs and to stay one must be renewed. The Joint Chief of Staff reports to Sec of Defense (Political appointee) and the President. Who continues and who retires is decided by politicians. The current Sec of Defense here in the U.S. was basically been fired Obama yet in now back and in charge of the whole military.

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Lost in the inaugural hullabaloo was Tuesday’s news that President Obama has relieved Gen. James “Mad Dog” Mattis, the colorful and highly decorated Marine who’s been in charge of the crucial US Central Command, which oversees the various wars in the Middle East, since 2010.

For an administration whose relationship with the military is, to put it mildly, fraught with tension, Mattis is yet another wall trophy, to go alongside the heads of Gen. Stanley McChrystal (fired in 2010 as the commander of the US forces in Afghanistan) and David Petraeus, who left CentCom to be buried alive at the CIA (and later resigned over the Paula Broadwell sex scandal).

Officially, the administration offers a nothing-to-see-here explanation for Mattis’ departure, noting that his tenure in the crucial job was about average for the post.

Maybe. But politics is at play here as well. The brusque Mattis apparently fell afoul of National Security Adviser Tom Donilon, an Obama apparatchik. Why? Because Mattis says things the Obama team doesn’t want to hear, especially about what might well become the next theater of operations — Iran.

https://nypost.com/2013/01/24/exit-another-fighting-gen/

 

 

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1 hour ago, tuco said:

Let's do a quick recap

Spring 2011

 

https://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/features/2011/05/201153185927813389.html

 

Since then:

List of massacres during the Syrian Civil War - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_massacres_during_the_Syrian_Civil_War

List of Syrian Civil War barrel bomb attacks - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Syrian_Civil_War_barrel_bomb_attacks

Use of chemical weapons in the Syrian Civil War - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Use_of_chemical_weapons_in_the_Syrian_Civil_War

Human rights violations during the Syrian Civil War - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_rights_violations_during_the_Syrian_Civil_War

around:

500 000 dead

2 000 000 wounded

11 000 000 displaced

1 000 000 besieged and denied life-saving assistance

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Syrian_Civil_War#Impact

https://www.hrw.org/world-report/2017/country-chapters/syria

________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

And now there is red line, now we say no more. Well, seems to me we have a pretty high threshold when it comes to the suffering of our fellow human beings. 

What would you propose we do then?

If your position is "I'm going to complain how we're doing things, even though I have absolutely no idea what else we could do" then you have no place to complain. 

I don't care about your feelings on how you don't like something if you have no other solution.

 

If we use democracy, nothing get's done. We attempted that. If you look at history, they tried this to try and stop world war 2. Tens of millions of people died at the hands of Nazi's because we wanted to avoid war. We didn't want to see another massive conflict that killed millions.

So we tried. We tried to sanction them, we tried diplomacy, we tried expressing our contempt for the things they were doing, and the result was that the regimes didn't care.

If you don't believe me then look up the world diplomacy at that time and the foreign policy. 

 

At some point, we have to get involved. People are quick to point out how terrible war is, and I agree. It sucks. People die. People suffer. Not just soldiers, but families of soldiers, the citizens in the territory, families of those who die, and more. 

But Assad isn't some rude politician. He's a dictator, who actively kills his own people. He actively tortures them in horrific ways for speaking out against him.

Then, when those people are fed up with him, they rebel. And they would have won if Russia had not gotten involved. 

 

You're complaining about our tolerance for human suffering when you yourself are MORE THEN WILLING to let the 18 million people in Syria suffer and die under Assad.

When they clearly wanted freedom only to be invaded by a foreign power, not to get rid of their government, but to restore it back to a ruthless dictatorship.

 

 

You can complain all you like. Go ahead. However unless you have a better idea, and provide it, there is absolutely no way you should expect us to take you seriously.

 

 

 

 

53 minutes ago, Ten oz said:

I do not agree. I don't think that statement holds any truth.

The military advises on what course of action they think we should take.

And, contrary to popular belief, it isn't always some old white dude smoking a cigar saying "Nuke the shit out of em."

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My thoughts ( for what they're worth ), would be to target Assad.
Not necessarily to kill him, but just to throw a good scare into him.
Make him feel like he'll never be safe again, and can be taken out anytime.

That might just change his attitude.

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On 8. 4. 2018 at 9:19 PM, tuco said:

What can the US administration do? Launch rockets again? 

 

Psychic

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Then I guess we're all psychic since no-one argued.

12 hours ago, Ten oz said:

I don't see how that has anything to do with what I posted. Obviously Assad's action are morally and ethically appalling. There is no argument there. My point was that there isn't a way to know what willing happen in the long term if he were to stay in power vs not. I believe doing what's right matters more than managing the right outcome in lieu of the fact that the future is unknowable. Currently what action(s) do you think is right? 

3

Sorry, my mistake I had meant to quote tuco, but no chance to check (bedtimes are strick round here :rolleyes:).

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