Diane Sori
by on October 24, 2019
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By: Diane Sori / The Patriot Factor / Right Side Patriots on American Political Radio
“ It's time for us to get out of these ridiculous Endless Wars.”
- President Trump, October 7, 2019
Over the past week and a half I have written two articles concerning not only the ongoing situation in Syria but the players involved. One article titled, Leaving Allies Behind...or Are We? laid out the situation itself, the players involved, as well as what I believe to be one possible reason why President Trump pulled us out of Syria when he did. The second article titled, The U.S. in Syria...Who's to Blame and Why, dealt directly with who really got us involved in Syria, what our specific role in Syria was, and I delved more deeply into the role our supposed allies played. This newest article will show a chain of events that is anything but pretty, but events that in the end might be for the best and I'll start with the fact that the Republicans jumped the gun in their taking action against President Trump and his (rightful) withdrawal decision.
As soon as President Trump announced that our troops would be withdrawn from the northeast quadrant of Syria, an area that butted up against the southern border of Turkey...actually a “buffer zone” area between the two countries...all hell seemed to break loose here at home. A civil war we should never have become involved in saw the Democrats morphing said war into Trump's war as they and some Republicans chastised him for overstepping what they considered to be legal bounds by not consulting with Congress first before supposedly leaving the Kurds behind. But what they forget is that the Kurds are a people with their own agenda...an agenda we should not now or ever be a part of...as in their wanting to secure for themselves an autonomous homeland. And that should remain the Kurds battle and should never be ours as we are not now nor must we ever become nation builders.
But the reaction here at home was so animated in its condemnation against our president...the very man who knows that we should be protecting our own borders not someone else's...that it led to a House resolution being passed that formally rebuked President Trump for pulling us out of northern Syria and for supposedly abandoning the Kurds.
Passed in a 354-60 vote, the bipartisan resolution garnered support from all Democrats plus 129 Republicans, and was sponsored by House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Eliot Engel (D-N.Y.) and the committee’s top Republican, Rep. Michael McCaul (TX). Stating that the House "opposes the decision to end certain United States efforts to prevent Turkish military operations against Syrian Kurdish forces in Northeast Syria," the resolution also called on Turkey to end its military action against the Kurds, for us to continue protecting the Kurds, as well as for President Trump "to present a clear and specific plan for the enduring defeat of ISIS"...as if ISIS' incursion into Syria was Trump's fault. What they should have done was congratulate President Trump for cleaning up what was and still is Obama's mess.
But politics being what politics is would not and will not allow that, yet politics comes into play even more so now as we just might be bearing witness to a possible major Middle East geopolitical shift in power...a shift that while it might seem damning on the surface in the end just might work out in our favor. Let me explain.
We all know, as I write this, that our military is now fast tracking its plans for what will amount to an almost total withdrawal from Syria, and that Russia is moving in. And in a way it's a good thing for like I've stated many times before what's happening in Syria was and remains a sovereign nation's civil war...especially it being a civil war in a country that doesn't like us very much. And we also know that the YPG Kurds fighting in Syria have not only called on Bashar al-Assad for help in holding back the advancing Turkish forces now crossing into Syria, but that they reached out to Russia as well. And Russia...and Putin... are more than happy to help because with the Kurds now on al-Assad's side, control of Syria shifts back into his corner...a corner Russia is an integral part of...as well as Russia now being added to the list of key Middle East players.
In other words Russia becomes the de facto winner as we rightfully withdraw our troops from Syria with those troops now being deployed to western Iraq where they will conduct operations to (hopefully) prevent a resurgence of ISIS.
And this Russian win can be witnessed by al-Assad's government forces now seeing the once U.S. allied Kurdish fighters becoming an integral part of the Syrian army’s Fifth Corps...which is directly under Russian command. In fact, over just the past week alone al-Assad's forces have made more territorial gains than they did in the past three years of fighting...and it's with Russian help of course. And these gains include areas within Syria's northern quadrant, not only the areas we withdrew from, but areas that are rich in oil and agriculture...areas and resources desperately needed if Syria is ever to be rebuilt.
And so with Russia now continuing to expand its military presence in Syria...filling the place and positions of our withdrawing U.S. forces...there's a chance that al-Assad could turn over Syria's Port of Tartus to Putin as a “thank you” of sorts, after all Tartus is a strategic port, a port al-Assad knows well that Putin not only wants but needs as Russia has no port of its own on the Mediterranean Sea, whether said port be for military staging or for simple commerce. And by his giving Putin what he has long coveted, and by his staying in Putin's “good graces” if you will, Bashar al-Assad knows that Tartus might just be the key to making sure that Russia's military might helps him stay in power.
But is Tartus all that Vladimir Putin wants from Syria or is Tartus just one part of his and Russia's bigger plan? Let's just say that Tartus is the bottom rung on a ladder that sees Russian involvement in Syria and the Middle East being even the more important rungs on said ladder than most people think. How so? One has to understand that back in 2015 when Russia first entered in earnest into the Syrian fray, Syria's civil war was in full force with Syrian casualties mounting up on all sides...on al-Assad's side, the supposed rebels side, and most especially on the civilian side...in addition to the refugee crisis getting to a point of it being quite out of control. And while Putin knew that taking sides in Syria had to be done with extreme caution, especially after the nightmare fiasco that was Russia's incursion into Afghanistan, he also knew that Syrian intervention could possibly translate into the benefits outweighed the risks he and Russia would be taking.
And now it has...at least to some degree.
In fact, Vladimir Putin saw and still sees Syria as being his chance to reset Russia's status as both a key Middle East player as well as a true global power...second only to the United States that is. And with Putin himself having no use for the likes of ISIS and their ilk...something our two countries have in common...it can be surmised that Putin hopes it will be he and Russia who will be the ones to not only broker a political solution in regards to ending the Syrian conflict...and know that Syria's civil war will end around a conference table and not on the battlefield per se...but that he, Russia, and al-Assad will be successful in keeping not only ISIS at bay, but that he and Russia will also be the ones to broker an end to the actual decades long fighting between Syria and Turkey. And this specific fighting has gone basically unreported as its being buried, news wise, under the Syrian civil war itself...the same civil war that is now seeing al-Assad's Russian backed Syrian government troops facing off against the supposed rebels of the opposition Free Syrian Army...rebels who have now joined the still invading Turkish-led forces... ceasefire be damned.
Also, with our withdrawal Russia will be given a chance to flex its new political muscle by not only keeping ISIS at bay, but that the world will now see Russia as being an able-bodied player in the global war on terrorism as well as one who will reshape Middle East policy hopefully for the better. A major publicity coup for Russia I'd say...maybe even being a big enough publicity coup that it could help change the negative publicity Russia received after their forced takeover of Ukraine...at least negate it enough so that public perception is toned down a bit.
But even as all the above stated unfolds there remains a downside for Russia as well, and the downside comes in the guise of Iran, the very country that just might try to instigate an even a bigger more far reaching war by their playing all sides against the middle...as in starting a war between Russia, Turkey, and Syria...with their prize being total control of Syria, a country that shares a border with Israel. And while Russia is aligned with Iran to some degree...at least on the surface...that alignment is not written in stone for Russia has many of the same conflictions with Iran as we have...the prime one being the islamist nature of Iran itself. And with Russia now also forming both closer economic ties and a stronger relationship with Israel, the very country Iran wants wiped off the map, that's something, I believe, neither Putin himself nor Russia as a country would ever allow or take part in. In fact, I'll go as far as to say that if Iran ever did attack Israel that Putin would join together with those in Israel's corner. And Iran knows this, that's why they've been quiet to some degree in regards to the recent developments in Syria.
But being quiet does not mean that Iran is doing or planning nothing or that they have not been in contact with Bashar al-Assad himself, after all Iran knows well the animosity between Syria and Israel, and that's something they can and will use to their advantage unless Russia steps in to stop them. How will Iran do that...simply by their aiding al-Assad in regards to Syria's shared border with Israel. Again how so...by their implementing an operational line of monetary and arms support running from Iraq into Lebanon via Syria in order to supply their Lebanon-based, proxy militant group Hezbollah with the arms and monies needed for them to become an even bigger problem for Israel than they already are. And if they're an increasing problem for Israel they will, in time, become a problem for Putin and Russia as well.
So as it stands right now with our withdrawal from Syria well underway, Vladimir Putin and Russia have become the de facto keepers of Syria, and along with it they will inherit Syria's problems. And problem number one could turn out to be the YPG Kurds who've said they're given up their long held dream of having their own autonomous homeland after they, the Syrian Democratic Forces, and the Syrian government struck a deal brokered by Russia to join forces together in the fight against their common enemies, Turkey and the anything but Syrian rebels. But I'm sure even Putin knows that those words uttered by the Kurds were probably said with fingers crossed behind their backs as dreams of having a homeland don't die that easily...they just sit and simmer on the back burner until it's the right time for them to be resurrected yet again.
But still with our withdrawal from Syria, and with U.S. military personnel handing over positions in the northern Syrian city of Manbij to incoming Russian forces, Russia has basically become the new regional power in the convoluted game that is Syria. And with Vladimir Putin warning Turkey...warning Recip Erdogan himself...that he will stop Turkey from attacking Syrian troops after the U.S. withdrawal is complete, hopefully can see Vladimir Putin...who is not America's enemy as too many choose to believe...cleaning up the mess of Obama's doing that President Trump was prevented by Democrats and by Republican turncoats from seeing through to fruition.
And might I add that just before I was to go to press President Trump announced that conditions have been met between Turkey and the YPG Kurd-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) for what he called a "permanent ceasefire" between the two sides, adding that he is lifting sanctions on Turkey that were put in place following their invasion of northern Syria. But will this now "supposed permanent" ceasefire hold...we have until next Tuesday 6am to see if the YPG Kurds do pull back the required 20 miles from the border or if Syrian border guards and Russian military police...now being deployed to Syria's northeast border...will have to step back as Turkey would then resume its offensive. It's any one's guess, but in a land consumed by century's old hatreds I wouldn't put any money on a "permanent ceasefire" holding.
Copyright @ 2019 Diane Sori / The Patriot Factor / All Rights Reserved.
https://thepatriotfactor.blogspot.com/2019/10/op-ed-convoluted-endgame-that-is-syria.html
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For more political commentary please visit my RIGHT SIDE PATRIOTS partner Craig Andresen's blog The National Patriot to read his latest article, The Great Impeachment Debacle - Part 1.
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RIGHT SIDE PATRIOTS...LIVE!
Tomorrow, Friday, October 25th, from 7 to 9pm EST on American Political Radio, RIGHT SIDE PATRIOTS Craig Andresen and Diane Sori discuss 'The Convoluted Endgame That Is Syria'; 'The Great Impeachment Debacle - Part 1'; and important news of the day.
Hope you can tune in at: http://listen.samcloud.com/w/73891/American-Political-Radio#history...or on Tune-In at: https://tunein.com/radio/American-Political-Radio-s273246/
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