Alarming News

April 28, 2004

Up next: Syria.

If I were James Taranto, the headline of this post would be ‘The Road to Damascus’. Anti-Com reports that: ‘Syrian President Bashar al-Asad has backed armed resistance operations against the US occupation forces in Iraq.’

Posted by Karol at 12:58 PM |
Comments

Assad’s comments seemed perfectly reasonable to me. All he did is give verbal support to the Iraqi resistance. Apparently voicing an opinion that Anti-com does not like gets one on their hit list. I guess I better be careful about what I say, too.

Posted by: Dan at April 28, 2004 at 2:00 pm

I take ‘has backed’ to mean assistance. Why wouldn’t it read ’supported’ otherwise?

Posted by: Karol at April 28, 2004 at 2:27 pm

Syria up next….
OK. We have a total active armed service population of roughly 1.4 million (that includes reserves and national guard units that are active) and 1.3 million in the ready reserves and the national guard. Of those active, perhaps 490,000 are Army. Right now 70% of the regular Army is in Afganistan, Iraq and South Korea.
So who goes to Syria ? The Marines ? Only 175,000 total and posted already around the globe. You either lower the Marine standards or you can not count on high Marine activity in a Syrian campaign.
Syria is probably better territory for the Navy then most other nations in the region (there is a decent port) but resources remain limited to support a major fleet for a long time in that region.
The airforce would have to be involved big time which means bases in Turkey would have to be used heavilly. But that still does not provide boots on the ground.
If Syria is next, either our ready reserves will have to be called up in large numbers; we shift the active reserves out of the US lessening border protection, airport security, the much undermaned port security and run a major security risk; we have to disengage somewhere and severly limit our forces in one of the previously manned fronts; or we have a draft.
Do we pull out of Iraq ? Even with the transfer of power on paper to Iraq in June, we’re gonna be in there a while. Yes, we brought democracy to Japan and Germany. We were not facing a guerilla war and we had 12 million in the primary armed forces at the end of 1945. We have a fraction of that today.
No easy choices and we are spread thin enough as is.

Posted by: Von Bek at April 28, 2004 at 2:43 pm

Karol:
Anti-com only demonstrates that Assad has shown verbal support for the Iraqi resistance. Anti-com wants killed “Any ‘leader’ who speaks against US forces.”
Nowhere do they provide any evidence that Syria is actively supporting the Iraqi resistance.
Von Bek:
The neocons may want war with Syria, but I think there is little chance of that as long as the U.S. is bogged down in Iraq.
In fairness to Anti-com, if I was Assad, I would back armed resistance in Iraq to bog down the Americans, but do it clandestinely until the Americans tire and go home.

Posted by: Dan at April 28, 2004 at 3:18 pm

Dan,
The difference between someone like you voicing your opinion and Assad’s statements is simple: The most your opinion can elicit is either laughter or pity.
Assad’s statements, on the other hand, have a different kind of influence. As far the US military interests are concerned, there is not much difference between financial support, and PR support. Propaganda can be used as a weapon, and should be dealt with accordingly.

Posted by: Ivan Lenin at April 28, 2004 at 5:34 pm

Ivan:
Propaganda is best countered by better arguments. Attacking the Syrians because you disagree with Assad sounds like you just don’t want any criticism of the American occupation of Iraq.

Posted by: Dan at April 28, 2004 at 10:01 pm

Ivan,
PR must be dealt with accordingly? By some comments it’s seems a legitamite response to propaganda is war.
Doesn’t that seem a little excessive?

Posted by: PAUL at April 28, 2004 at 10:04 pm

Paul,
It would be excessive if it were just propaganda. But it’s more than that; in case of Syria that involves way, way more.
The problem with people like Assad, or Saddam for that matter, is that they are not accountable for the inciting murder. The US military is the only force that can hold them accountable.
It’s not just my “disagreeing” with something. It’s my having experienced that kind of government. Human decency and freedom are a little bit more than words to me, because I know how it can be otherwise. That’s why I support people who are willing to kill or die for it.

Posted by: Ivan Lenin at April 28, 2004 at 11:09 pm

Ivan,
I agree with that. However I don’t think Assad has said anything yet to incite anyone. His comments make a biased observation of what is happening in Iraq. I wouldn’t say he is getting people fired up to kill Americans.

Posted by: PAUL at April 28, 2004 at 11:42 pm

Assad doesn’t have to say anything to incite people. He already has his henchmen running a brutal occupation of Lebanon, a terror campaign against Israel, and a guerrilla war against coalition forces in Iraq. Not to mention the brutal police state he imposes on his own people.

Posted by: Peter at April 29, 2004 at 1:25 am

Yea and these kind of statements from him just puts him higher up Americas Shit List.
Not a bright move on Assads part.

Posted by: PAUL at April 30, 2004 at 11:56 am
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