Wednesday, October 7, 2015

What if Putin succeeds in Syria?

A provocative article appeared in the online publication, Counter Punch that predicts that Vladimir Putin's forces and tactics will prevail in Syria.

Given the information that's presented in the article, the prospect of victory raises a lot of questions about President Obama's hands-off, anti-war policy in the Middle East. If Putin does succeed, it will be a huge embarrassment to Obama, who just last week predicted abject failure to Putin's aggressive tactics. 

Not only has Putin bombed Syrian rebel targets, he's committed Russian ground forces in Syria, euphemistically called "volunteers," a move that Obama has refused to make.

It's an interesting piece, though a bit optimistic. 

While I'm not a war monger, I very much disagree with Obama's hands off policy regarding Syria. 

With active assistance from the U.S., the moderates who years ago spearheaded the widespread uprising against the humanitarian nightmare that was and is Assad's regime, could have accomplished it. The opportunity was there.

Instead, inaction let Assad achieve a stalemate that prolonged the war and opened the door to extremists in Syria such as the Al Nusra Front and gave rise to ISIS. Inaction precipitated the current quagmire. 

The situation is so bad now and continuing to deteriorate that a return of Assad is preferable to the growth of the cut-throat Muslim lunatics of ISIS and the Nusra Front. 

A quick online search of either will reveal the grotesque cruelty these maniacs employ to kill thousands of innocent people and even fellow Muslims to impose their harsh control.

The current refugee crisis in Europe, which will soon reach the shores of the U.S., is the direct result of U.S. and European inaction in Syria. Putin seems to know that unless someone steps in and puts an end to the fighting there, it could easily destabilize Russia.  

Now Russia is moving in forcefully and seems to be winning. The article reports 700 surrenders, and expects more on the way. If Russia succeeds in defeating the Syrian rebels and pushing the extremists out of Syria, it will be a major embarrassment to Obama, if not the U.S. military.

If the Muslim extremists are pushed out of Syria and into Iraq, and clearly into the hands of the U.S.-trained and back Iraqi forces, then what? 

The Iraqis have shown no stomach for facing up to ISIS, which has captured massive amounts U.S. arms and equipment from the Iraqis and uses it against them. 

This could put even more pressure on Obama to commit U.S. ground forces once again into Iraq. This eventuality is something that Obama has refused to do, but he may have not other choice if Russia succeeds. 

The situation is bad, but is the result of the inability of the Obama administration to recognize the serious threat posed by Islamic fundamentalists. Russia has had to deal with extremists in the past, and has done so harshly. 

As bad as it is, it seems to be the only effective solution.

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