The Tabqa Su-22 Shoot-Down And Aftermath

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The Tabqa Su-22 Shoot-Down And Aftermath

FILE IMAGE: REUTERS

“The Race to the Elbe”

The current situation resembles the closing months of World War 2 in Europe, when Soviet and Western Allied armies were racing into the collapsing Third Reich. While they were still fighting against a common enemy, it was already clear they were staking out territory in anticipation of a post-war world order which would be divided, in keeping with the Tehran and Yalta conference understandings, into great power spheres of influence. But in 1945 the situation did not escalate into an armed clash between the erstwhile allies because there already existed a political framework for their ultimate meeting, namely the Elbe River. However, it should be noted, this framework did not preclude a number of clashes in between US and Soviet aircraft, and was barely sufficient to contain fanatically anti-Soviet US officers like General George S. Patton from seeking to press forward in violation of the political agreements. It also helped that President Franklin Delano Roosevelt was not interested in a US-Soviet confrontation and his authority and reputation were sufficient to rein in the anti-Soviet faction of the US and British military and intelligence services.

Today we are once again seeing to coalitions, one Russia-led and one US-led, racing to fill the void leaving by the rapidly vanishing ISIS whose fighters are either choosing to go to the ground or are being evacuated to safe havens to be used in another theater of war. But there is no political framework on how the void is to be filled, and there is no FDR in the White House to rein in the anti-Russian faction in the US military and intelligence. The last but not least difference between Germany and ISIS is that US forces are operating in and over Syria wholly illegally from the point of view of international and even domestic US law, and the fact the US is waging an illegal “shadow” war makes it that much more difficult to work out common rules to avoid incidents.

Who gave the order?

Unlike the Shayrat strike, which was clearly approved at the very top of the US chain of command, the earlier incidents at al-Tanf and the current one at Tabqa were most likely motivated by the unilaterally adopted US rules of engagement which posit any and all force may be used to prevent harm from coming to US servicemembers who are embedded with a variety of irregular formations, such as the so-called “Free Syrian Army” or the Kurdish “Self-Defense Forces.” The rapidity with which the situation over Tabqa escalated means that there was no way a decision to shoot-down the Su-22 could have been made had higher authorities at the Pentagon or the White House been consulted. In all likelihood, the highest US officer to be involved in the decision was the duty officer at the CENTCOM headquarters in Qatar, and the incident was most likely the product of a combination of the rapid SDF and SAA advances that put the Su-22 over an area which was believed to be still held by ISIS. The Su-22 pilot or the command which planned the mission, for its part, likely had no inkling US military personnel would be present in the area to which it was dispatched.

Shadow Boxing

This is not to say the US is not pursuing an agenda of limiting Russian influence in Syria, or the level of control of the legitimate Syrian government over its country’s territory, to the maximum extent possible. While “regime change” is no longer on the agenda in Washington, the goal of dismembering the Syrian state in order to establish a variety of US-controlled Sunni and Kurdish enclaves to serve as a barrier between Iran and Lebanon and as a corridor for pipelines toward Turkey and, ultimately, Europe, still remains. It is likewise plainly evident that Russia, Syria, Iraq, and Iran are doing everything in their power to prevent that agenda from being implemented, and the Tabqa incident is but the most recent manifestation of that clash of interests. What the two nuclear superpowers backing each of the coalitions have thus far shied away from doing is targeting each other’s personnel and assets directly. It is notable that US aircraft do not fly in the vicinity of Russian ground units in Syria, and likewise there were no Russian aircraft present over Tabqa, either. What unfortunately complicates the situation is the absence of not only a political agreement but also a unified chain of command that ensures both coalitions know exactly what the other is doing and  prevent incidents such as al-Tanf and Tabqa. Syrian, Iraq, and Iranian forces involved in the conflict are waging their own wars whose aims may not wholly coincide with those of Washington or Moscow, but which may nevertheless draw Washington and Moscow into a direct confrontation with each other, not unlike the 2008 conflict in Georgia or the current civil war in Ukraine.

The Aftermath

Since the US evidently does not want to be the first to shed blood in a US-Russia confrontation, the most obvious “symmetrical” response is to embed Russian troops with every SAA, Hezbollah, and Shia militia unit operating in the Raqqa Province, back them up with fighter air patrols, and to make the US military command aware of that fact. So far, US forces have shied away from clashing with Russian forces in Syria, therefore that particular “red line” will likely be advanced as far forward as possible to prevent further US attacks on Syrian, Iranian, or Shia forces operating in eastern Syria.

Secondly, Russia would definitely benefit from having a powerful military ally akin to Turkey that can occasionally target an asset of a nuclear superpower and…largely get away with it. Iran’s launch of ballistic missiles at ISIS targets near Der es-Zor suggests it has decided to enter the fray in a far more overt fashion, likely secure in the knowledge that US is no more likely to attack Iran in retaliation for a ballistic missile strike that kills or wounds some of its troops in Syria than Russia was going to attack Turkey in retaliation for the Su-24 shoot-down. Moreover, the US does not even have the ability to use sanctions to force Iranian compliance, in the way that Russian sanctions have forced the Turks to moderate their own policy in Syria.

Fortunately, Washington seems aware that Moscow will not be bullied into appeasement by such incidents or, especially, attacks on its own forces. Such attacks are far likely to provoke a symmetric Russian retaliation against US assets in the region, all of which are vulnerable to Russian cruise missile strikes, just as US aircraft would quickly suffer losses if confronted with Russian fighters and ground-based air defenses. Unfortunately it means that the only way to contain Washington’s adventurism in Syria is by deliberate Cold War-style “brinksmanship” by Moscow in concert with Tehran.

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  • MeThinks

    but UNlike Germany post war slice and dice

    SYRIA prewar post war social order The Arab State of Syria STILL STANDS

  • BL

    I stopped reading after the author spewed the nonsense about pipeline. Any serious person who still believes Syria’s war was over pipeline is either a shill or a complete idiot. A basic mathematical calculation is enough to disprove this nonsense theory without getting into the complete lack of evidence for this nonsense explanation. The cost of a pipeline bypassing Syria going through the sea would have been a tiny fraction of the all money spent trying to destroy Syria. This theory is another false propaganda created by the Zionists similar to the oil excuse for the Iraq war in order to hide the fact that all these wars are happening as part of Israel’s regional agenda and future ambitions for expansion of its territory as part of the multi decade old Oden Yinon Greater Israel Project.

    Professors Mearsheimer and Walt have already discussed these fake theories in details in their book “Israel Lobby” proving beyond a reasonable doubt that the oil explanation for the Iraq war was a complete fabrication with no actual evidence.

    • Blaine

      With exception the pipeline is paid for mostly with private $ and the US military activity and material in Syria are paid for by the taxpayer = free $ to those making the decisions.

      • BL

        There is zero evidence pipeline motivations has anything to do with the Syrian war. This is just a random theory thrown out there by all the paid shills and disinformation agents and is just accepted by the masses who aren’t exposed to any other explanation. On the contrary the Oden Yinon Greater Israel Project has been in existence for several decades the details of which match precisely to what has been happening in the Middle East since 2001.

        As I said before the cost of bypassing Syria would have been only slightly more than a pipeline going through Syrian territory. Even if the pipeline is free of cost as you suggested still the number of years worth of revenue lost not delivering oil/gas to Europe still far outweighs dragging on the Syrian war indefinitely. If pipeline was the goal creating an alternative pipeline would have been far more cost efficient no matter how you look at it.

        The Syrian war has nothing to do with oil and gas pipeline.

        • Blaine

          Why can’t it be part of the Yinon Plan (to which I agree 100%) and about pipeline geopolitics as well? This aligns all the players. The preconditions are the same – Assad out, fracturing of Syria, exclusion of Iran.

          • BL

            It can’t be about pipeline because there is no evidence for it and the actions on the ground are inconsistent with this theory. Let’s assume for a second the war was about pipeline. How would the US attempt to carve out a Kurdish region in northern Syria advance this theory in any way? The Kurdish region being carved out by the US has no outlet to any other location, it is land-locked and surrounded on all sides, how would that help establishing a pipeline? The US already has access to Turkey through the Iraqi Kurdistan region and the Kurdish region of Syria has no other outlet to US friendly territory other than Iraqi Kurdistan and Turkey.

            You may remember all the “alternative” media sources during the Iraq war were spewing the lie that the Iraq war was for oil. During the huge anti-war demonstrations against the Iraq war there were thousands of signs saying “No War for Oil”. What happened after the war? Does the US control Iraqi oil? No. Was there any evidence that any oil companies lobbied for the Iraq war? No. Was there any evidence of any attempt by oil companies to take control over Iraqi oil? No. As I said in my previous post, professors Mearsheimer and Walt have already documented these facts in their book “Israel Lobby”.

            You can’t just make up a random theory based purely on speculation, there needs to be some concrete evidence to back it up.

          • MikeH

            “It can’t be about pipeline because there is no evidence for it and the actions on the ground are inconsistent with this theory. ”

            Partitioning Syria is consistent with this theory. Thanks.

          • BL

            No it is not, as I explained clearly above. You just didn’t bother to read the rest of my post.

          • MikeH

            Your assertion on my reading of your post is as correct as as your assertion that this cannot be about a pipeline.

          • BL

            You clearly can’t respond to my argument and are resorting to one liner nonsense, you fail the argument by default, don’t waste my time anymore. Blocked.

          • MikeH

            I shall endeavor to continue without your witticisms. I will be a challenge by I promise to persevere.

          • Blaine

            It isn’t to create a pipeline, its to prevent one being built to the benefit of our “near peer competitors” at the least.

            Again, I agree the primary reason by far is the Yinon Plan. Another reason comes to mind as well (tying into the pipeline aspect) is Israel’s illegally seized Gaza offshore gas deposits, which would be improved both in value and attractiveness to developers with no competing pipeline in place.

        • adam77

          This would be Qatar, Saudi arabia, Jordan, Israel, (Lebanon), Mediterranian, Turkey, Bulgaria?

          • BL

            yes, you would basically only skip the Syria part and go through the sea instead

    • Derapage

      You did not consider the profits earned from the pipeline enough to trigger a war.
      There are profits even with the reconstruction
      http://thediplomat.com/2017/02/will-china-pay-for-syria-to-rebuild/

    • Sam I. Am

      You’re wrong about the pipeline. You don’t understand the larger economic dimension of this geopolitical chess match being played out in the region. Russia is the dominant supplier of natural gas to Europe, as well as Ukraine. The West is seeking to build an alternate pipeline to Europe to undercut Russia, and to prop up the US petrodollar. And as Blaine stated below, the financing of the pipeline includes private investment capital. I read an article a while back which detailed the private investors that are involved included Soros, the Clinton Foundation, and many names you would recognize from Wall Street interests and the Deep State. I’ll try and track down a link. I agree with you about Israel and the Yinon Plan, but it’s important to remember that multiple interests are at play in these events.

      • BL

        You missed my point. If pipeline was truely the intention here, it would have been a lot less costly to bypass Syria entirely and go through the sea. No matter how you look at it, whether from a financial perspective, a political perspective, or a humanitarian perspective, bypassing Syria would have been far far less costly. The actions on the ground are inconsistent with this theory, please read my response to Blaine below.

        • grumpy_carpenter

          If taken as the single objective of the US effort in Syria yes you are correct but when all the other objectives of the US war effort in Syria are considered a pipeline through Syria is value added.

        • Ma_Laoshi

          Well the war machine doesn’t operate like a normal business, let alone a rationally managed one. War costs are cheap taxpayer money or simply debt, while war profits go to interests that actually matter. Bypassing Syria when there is a good war to be had might not have been, so to speak, the American way. Add in a chance to hurt a Russian/Iranian ally and get some Lebensraum for Israel and it’s all good, really.

        • More

          BL
          You failed to reply to grumpy_carpenter.

          • BL

            I just responded to him

        • Rodger

          The war isn’t paid by the same people who would have to pay more for the pipeline if it would go around Syria. What do big investors care if the American people get deeper in debt? But I think Syria was/is more about influence in the region after the US lost the top seat in Iraq to Iran and the Shias. And now they are losing another country to them…

        • Maj Dan

          Don’t ignore the aggregate power of the religious “fanatic” factions and the empire building aspirations of the Turks and the Iranians.

      • Sam I. Am
        • BL

          See my response to grumpy above

    • grumpy_carpenter

      “Any serious person who still believes Syria’s war was over pipeline is either a shill or a complete idiot.”

      To say the whole Syrian war is over a single objective like building a gas pipeline is an overly simplistic view of the conflict but that doesn’t mean one of the achievable objectives of the US in Syria is building a pipeline to Europe ….. among others of course.

      It makes sense. A pipeline to Europe would seriously hurt Russian gas exports and significantly weaken Russia economically. Given the USA’s willingness to ruin relations with Germany and Austria by targeting the Nord Stream 2 pipeline with sanctions should be evidence enough of the US strategy.

      I suspect there is a shopping list of US objectives in Syria…..a homeland for the Kurds, a buffer for the Israelis, denying a shia crescent from Iran to Lebanon and a route for Qatari gas to Europe are all among them. This is a war of opportunity fought mainly by proxies, so all the stakeholders will have a similar list of objectives and will maneuver strategically during the endgame to meet as any of these objectives as they can.

      • More

        grumpy_carpenter
        Excellent opinion.

      • BL

        I can agree to the point that there are usually more than one set of objectives to these conflicts, however it can be proven logically and mathematically that a gas pipeline isn’t one of them. Let’s look at the facts. According to the false Zionist created theory this is the pipeline that is being fought over in Syria:

        http://www.moonofalabama.org/images4/qatarline.jpg

        Now let’s take a look at what the cost of building a typical land pipeline is. A currently proposed land pipeline in the United States called the Atlantic Coast Pipeline that would stretche roughly 1000 kilometres has the estimated construction cost of roughly $5.1 billion. That gives you roughly the cost of $5.1 million per kilometer. Now let’s look at a pipeline that goes through the sea. The proposed Russian South Stream pipeline was planned to be roughly 2,300 kilometers a little less than half of which would have to be constructed through the Black sea similar to an alternative pipeline bypassing Syria going through the sea. The Russian stream pipeline was estimated to cost around $13 billion. Although more than 1/3 of this pipeline goes through the sea for argument’s sake we’ll just assume only 1/3 of this pipeline is to be constructed in the sea. Since we already determined that the cost per kilometer of a typical land pipeline is about 1.3 million/km we can assume that out of the 2300 kilometers, 2/3 or about 1533 km had the costs of roughly 1.3 million/km giving us a total of roughly $2 billion cost for the land part which means the sea part cost $11 billion giving us a total of roughly $14.3 million per km for a pipeline going through the sea.

        I understand these costs are unique to that individual project but the costs of similar projects even in different environments won’t be hugely different. We can even assume several times difference in terms of price but that is not too significant in the overall picture.

        Now if you look at the map of the supposed Syrian pipeline you will see that instead of going through Syria you could go through Jordan, Israel, and the Mediterranean sea. We’re talking about less than 500 kilometers of sea distance instead of land. We already determined that the cost of going through the sea is about (14.3-5.1)=9.2 million dollars/km larger than the cost of going through land. So the difference in cost between these two plans would be 500x(14.3 million-5.1 million) = $4.6 billion

        In other words going through the sea bypassing Syria would have costed less than $5 billion. Now I’m not going to calculate for you the amount of money the combined forces of the US and its allies have spent on destroying Syria let alone the humanitarian and political costs they had to endure but I assure you it’s A LOT larger than $5 billion.

        If you still don’t get it, you will never get it, I can’t make it any simpler, sorry.

      • BL

        I had made a very detailed and long response to your post but (((disqus))) censored my comment. Basically I used official data to calculate the cost of building a land pipeline compared to a sea pipeline. Bypassing Syria and going through the Mediterranean would only mean the difference of roughly 500 km of going through the sea vs. land which would end up costing a little less than $1 billion more. The amount of money that has been spent by the US and its allies has been far more than $1 billion. This is mathematical/logical proof that the Syrian conflict isn’t over a gas pipeline.

        • More

          BL
          What is the sea route?

          Where does the pipeline enter the sea?

          • BL

            Stupid disqus deleted my comment, I should have known to save it, I had pictures and everything in it. Anyways, if you look at what the alleged proposed Qatar-Turkey pipeline is (See picture)

            http://www.oil-price.net/cartoons/non-russian-gas-pipelines.jpg

            Imagine instead of going through Syria, you go through Jordan to Israel to the Mediterranean sea and then to Turkey. You would only need to go through about 500 km of sea instead of land which would add no more than $1 billion to the cost of the pipeline. In my censored comment I had everything sourced using official data, and I made all the mathematical calculations proving logically that a pipeline couldn’t possibly be the reason for the Syrian war.

          • More

            BL
            Thank you for the response.
            That route is not feasible.
            The Saudis are stupid but not completely stupid.
            If their pipeline went through Israel, there would be an Arab uprising, rioting, etc.

          • BL

            1. The Saudis are already working with Israel, it’s now officially in the news, they don’t really care about what their people think.
            2. Even if they really wanted to avoid Israel they could go through the Sinai, Egypt and bypass Israel as well.

          • More

            BL
            Sinai would be a better route for the Saudi pipeline.

          • RamboDave

            To BL ……. I have also had some trouble with my comments on Disqus …. “detected as spam”. At first I thought it was someone with their own agenda. But now I think it may be a bug in their software. The problem always occurred when I edited my comment several times after posting it. So now I compose comments in MS Word, and make sure they are correct, and then paste them into Discus. You can still edit once or twice in Discus, but wait a minute between each edit.

          • BL

            My comment was posted correctly initially but after a few minutes it was gone, it has happened to me several times before, and only on the occasions when I’m exposing the system or the lies, never on innocent/neutral comments.

        • grumpy_carpenter

          “This is mathematical/logical proof that the Syrian conflict isn’t over a gas pipeline.”

          That’s because you’re relying on mathematics / logic alone for your calculus. This is not just foreign policy but US foreign policy we are talking about. Money spent

    • More

      BL
      “…A basic mathematical calculation is enough to disprove this nonsense theory …”

      Can you prove your statement.

      • BL

        Yes I can, see my post below

    • Gary Sellars

      FFS cease and desist with the endless BS denying the pipeline factor. The Syrians had formally refused the pipeline thru their territory, so its clear a pipeline was (is) planned. A submarine pipeline is a LOT more expensive, particularly as it would likely need to bypass Zionistan for political reasons (no Arabs will pay transit fees to the Jews) and therefore pass thru Sinai and skirt around Gaza. Additionally, there will be security issues playing pipe offshore Zionistan, and you can bet that those thieving bastards will cause trouble.

      The pipeline isn’t the only driver, but its a significant one, and its a little silly claiming thats its not.

      • RamboDave

        It has nothing to do with a pipeline. Whoever says so is trying to
        deflect attention away from Israel’s bloody hands in this matter. Please see my post directly above.

    • RamboDave

      You are totally correct BL. I notice some people make comments about pipelines and other reasons, but, that is not the reason for the Israel-Saudi-(and Neocon) alliance, or why we are over there.

      It is all about the “Shia crescent” that has resulted from the Iraq war. the Saudi’s are not happy about that recent development. And, to understand this, you have to examine what happened in 2002, during the buildup to that Iraq war. You have to go back 15 years to understand what is happening today.

      There was a deal made in 2002 between Israel (and their Neocon supporters in the US) and
      Saudi Arabia, in order to get the Saudis to join the Iraq war coalition.The deal was to do regime change in Iran and Syria after Saddam was removed in Iraq. That is what the Saudis demanded in exchange for the Iraq war to proceed.

      Israel and their Neocon corner, must now complete their part of the bargain. The Saudis may be threatening to expose the whole thing if they don’t.

      That is why we got the Iraq war. ……. But there is more to it !

      Here is probably what happened in 2002 in a deal worked out by Dick Cheney:
      The Iraq war, and removal of Saddam, would have been impossible unless the Saudis agreed to it in advance. Therefore, in 2002 Saudi Arabia (Prince Bandar) was shown a list of seven countries where the neocons (Zionists) wanted to do regime change. This is the same list that General Wesley Clark later spoke about seeing. Watch this video:

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LAFHOHIiFZA

      The Saudis agreed that, in exchange for the high probability that, after the war, Iraq would be taken over by the Shiites, there would be regime change in both Iran and Syria to compensate the Saudi’s.

      The neocons must absolutely complete their part of a grand bargain made back in 2002 with Saudi Arabia. In the alternative, they must partition Syria, to create a Sunni State to break up the Shia Crescent.

      If they can’t complete their grand bargain, the Israeli / Saudi alliance will fall apart. Israel will
      appear powerless, at a time when they are dependent upon the perception that they control Washington. The Saudis may also be threatening to expose the entire deal unless the promises made to them are carried out.

      It has nothing to do with a pipeline. Whoever says so is trying to deflect attention away from Israel’s bloody hands in this matter.

    • Antikapitalista

      But the facts are that the CIA started funding the so-called Syrian opposition right after Syria’s government refused to accede to the gas pipeline project.

      And do not be fooled; the cost of supporting the terrorists are rather small, especially if they can finance themselves by looting and plundering.

      Also, do not be fooled by the fact that the Coalition of the Drilling did not go there for oil (and the control of it) and war profiteering in order to line the pockets of those who were in power and were the decision-makers.
      Regardless of the cost incurred to the others, the warmongers were still poised to make a profit.

      • RamboDave

        You didn’t give any dates. Why? ….The CIA began it’s shipments of arms to Syria from Libya in January 2012. Some Gulf states had been sending money to al-Qaeda rebels in the Spring of 2011. Does any of this correspond to your thesis?

        And if “the Coalition of the Drilling” were so intent on either capturing the oil wells, or capturing land for their pipeline in Eastern Syria, why didn’t they have the SDF (Kurds) march South of Tabah dam and Raqqa and grab that area before the SAA cut them off? And why did they also get cut off in Southern Syria, just North of the al-Tanf crossing?

        Either they were very stupid, or it doesn’t sound like they were very intent on doing what your thesis required them to do.

        • Ronald

          RamboDave and Antikapitalista ; Not to deny your arguments , but to add to them , you might consider the following .
          The book by J. Assange , published in 2015 , “WikiLeaks Files” , exposes US State Dept and various intel agency documents showing , the American war against Syria began back in 2006 . Various moves to destabilize the Assad government , including trying to bribe , SAA officers to cooperate in a coup , assassination funding etc. By 2011 they had already made many unsuccessful moves .
          Prior to 2005 , there was the discovery of a gigantic oil strata under the Golan Heights , estimated to be almost as large as that of Saudi Arabia .

          Genie Energy Lttd. was incorporated in NJ. , by , J. Rothschild

          The “US – Israel Energy cooperation Bill ” , was tabled in the Senate in 2005 , and passed in 2007 .
          So with that in mind , fracturing Syria into smaller states would lessen Syria’s legal claim to the Golan Heights .

          • RamboDave

            ” fracturing Syria into smaller states would lessen Syria’s legal claim to the Golan Heights ”

            Thanks …. That is also a very good reason to explain what is happening, even if there is no oil in the Golan Heights. I notice that Israel, in recent months keeps trying to gain recognition for their annexation of the Golan, which the UN says is illegal.

          • Ronald

            Look up Genie Energy Ltd. , and AFEC Oil and Gas in Israel .
            Read “WikiLeaks Files” .

    • Kell
  • Geys Home

    Dirty Russians don’t want Europe to have free energy from Qatar and Saudi Arabia pipeline through Syria!!!
    Dirty Russian Bolsheviks want Europe to be poor and to pay them for oil and gas!!!
    The Number ONE democracy in the world must stop this!!!
    US of A, world police!!!
    America, FUCK YEAH!!!!

    • Alex

      forgot your meds or are you just being sarcastic ?

      • More

        Alex
        Appears to be sarcastic as well as right.

        Work it out.

        Consumer gas prices in the UK are at an all time HIGH with wholesale gas prices to the UK at an all time LOW.

        It would have been better if Mr Assad had allowed the Saudi Qatar pipeline, Syria would not have been destroyed, lives lost, infrastructure destroyed, economy trashed.

        Syria would have been making transit fees and EU consumers would be enjoying lower domestic gas prices.

        • Alex

          Thought that europeans were going to abolish dirty backward fossil fuel and go with “green” energy instead, windmills and solar panels etc etc lol. Turned out to be a total bs story xaxa. In any case, i think that it’s about time the world stopped dancing to the western tune that seems to profit west and keep everyone one else 100 steps back. You wanted war, now enjoy your govs. putting it all on you, high prices, subsidies cuts and REFUGEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEES. Embrace your african future.

          • More

            Alex
            “…Thought that …”

            Well you though wrong.

            “…REFUGEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEES. Embrace your african future….”

            Agreed the UK has now been flooded by all types of migrants, they are everywhere in London by the millions.

          • Alex

            You should persuade your govt. officials to take them into their mansions, they did favour the intervention and refugees absorption after all

          • More

            Alex
            British people do not control the UK government, Israel does as 90% of MPs (Members of Parliament) are members of “Friends of Israel”. Almost no MP can become an approved candidate if they are not.

            If a British person complains or does what you suggest there is an outcry “Wacist, Wacist, Wacist, LoL:)))

            The UK Government is pursuing a NeoLiberal (puppets of Neoconservatives) agenda, promoting EU immigration and cheering of wars, conflicts and chaos in countries that are / were enemies of Israel or periphery countries that causes Migration.

            The UK Government creatures want tens of Millions of African and Muslim Migrants along with tens of Millions of East European and EU migrants.

        • Antikapitalista

          That is like saying that it would have been better if the U.K. would have agreed to the modest proposals of Mr Hitler.

          The U.K. would have enjoyed German investment and the Europeans would have enjoyed a united Europe with essentially all the benefits of today’s European Union but without the war and destruction.

          • More

            Antikapitalista
            Cant write about British – Hitler cooperation, was not around at that time other than say the British Empire must prevail.

            As a firm believer that the British Empire was a force for good developing many Countries Government Structure, Legal and Judicial System, Banking, Economy etc.

            Development of Road, Rail, Sea, Air networks, Water, Electricity, Municipal Services, Municipal Planning of Villages, Towns and Cities. Hospital, Clinics and Schools, Etc. etc.

            Regarding Syria per this discussion.

            Syria made the wrong decision preventing the Arab pipeline proposal and also Putin conned Mr Assad in 2010 by promising to protect Syria.

            This is the reality:
            Putin – Russia helped Syria at the last moment, Oct 2015 to December 2016 to prevent the fall of the Syrian government and building of the Saudi Qatar oil and gas pipeline.

            Since the Tillerson – Putin meeting of Jan 2017 the help has been reduced.

            2010 – Minimal Russian help for Syria
            2011 – Minimal Russian help for Syria
            2012 – Minimal Russian help for Syria
            2013 – Minimal Russian help for Syria
            2014 – Minimal Russian help for Syria
            2015 – January to September – Minimal Russian help for Syria
            2017 – Minimal Russian help for Syria

    • More

      Geys Home
      Unfortunately you are right, you get an up vote.

  • javier

    “Unfortunately it means that the only way to contain Washington’s adventurism in Syria is by deliberate Cold War-style “brinksmanship” by Moscow in concert with Tehran.”

    kind of , except sadly the crazies running us policy might actually want big war

  • Nuno Cardoso da Silva

    With the exception of Israel the US no longer can hold the ground anywhere in the ME. Sooner or later Iran will fight Saudi Arabia and the other American stooges in the Gulf, and the US will have no alternative but withdrawing from the region. Unless it wants to lose a couple of aircraft carriers and a few thousand troops on the ground. Russia may even sit that one out, simply watching the US melt away.

    • More

      Nuno Cardoso da Silva

      Under simulated Battleplan scenarios run by the US over the past 15 years, the US NATO “Terror Axis” has lost the war to Iran if it is conducted in the Persian Gulf / Arabian Gulf.

      The other events are destruction of Saudi – Qatar – Kuwait – UAE etc as well as the Iranian oil and gas fields and the closure of the Straits of Hormuz.

      Eventually Iran does get defeated by the US NATO “Terror Axis” but the time line is not known, could be 3 months / 1 year, etc.

      The US led “Terror Axis” is not willing to take the above risks which would halt 40% of world oil output and cause oil prices to go through the roof resulting in a global depression.

      So there will be no real war scenario with Iran.

      Instead Iran will be financially bled dry by Russia in a continuous slow motion war in Syria.

      • Nuno Cardoso da Silva

        “… Iran will be financially bled dry by Russia in a continuous slow motion war in Syria…”

        I very much doubt that. Iran financially survived a much more intense and long war with Iraq. As to the US, no way it can defeat an alliance of Iran, Iraq, Syria, Hezbollah, with the material assistance of Russia, and possible help of Turkey too. The US is in no state to carry out a ground war in the ME, counting only on the help of Saudi Arabia. Not being directly threatened, Israel would sit that one out, leaving all the work to the US…

        • More

          Nuno Cardoso da Silva
          “…the material assistance of Russia, and possible help of Turkey too….”

          The results of Russian and Turkish assistance to Syria since 2010 to current are:

          Syria 500,000 plus killed, 1.9 Million injured, 6 Million displaced refugees,

          Syrian life expectancy has dropped from 70.5 years in 2010 to an estimated 55.4 years in 2015.

          Syrian Infrastructure destroyed.

          Syrian oil production dropped from 400,000 B/D to 8,000 B/D, there is hope this will rise to 12,000 B/D.

          Syria was a very large exporter of Phosphates in 2010, currently zero exports.

          This war has already cost Syria approx US$650 Billion in lost economic growth and could cost Syria nearly US$1.3 Trillion in lost economic growth by 2020.

          • Ronald

            The result of the American war on Syria has been as you listed .
            Turkey , Saudis “Sunni Circle” apart of that American war .

          • More

            Ronald
            Was just humoring that guy.
            US – Saudi – Qatar – Turkey, etc are Satan in Syria.

  • Terra Cotta Woolpuller

    Many people seem to have a theory about this conflict one way or another such as oil and gas pipeline , Oded Yinon Plan, regime change ,etc. The partitioning of Syria was part of a plan in 1983 called “Bringing Muscle to Bear Against Syria” ,this is available for reading at the CIA Library FOIA reading room , which should enlighten people to the true motive behind this folly . Motives of this action has been laid out just the change of the players names , all of these plans seem to align to supporting the true underlying reason.The US has always desired a sense of control to feed their ambitions and global hegemony , using economic and military like previous empires before . The emerging centers of economic prosperity over the past century have always exerted an influence over other economies which has threatened other economic centers through time . The US economy in the early part of the century had started growing into an economic powerhouse its various industries were growing and were needing political influence to promote their industries internationally .The US started using the government to promote its commercial endeavors abroad in helping forge trade and forming business alliances merging the new with the old . These newly formed economic alliances as previous ones have always used economic trade and military to ensure its economic supremacy over all trading centers , starting conflicts through political avenues or economic and or military to achieve their goals . Those that have challenged the system of the alliance have become called ” Pariah States”, a threat to their system ,vilified etc. , enemies of their economic, political trade and order and replaced. We have seen countries attacked and partitioned in the past century , from the Prussian, Austro-Hungarian, Russian ,Yugoslavia all these countries have been broken up into smaller countries to one extent or another . The Balkan being divided along ethnic lines have had nothing but trouble and rely on constant intervention to maintain a semblance of peace . There are other countries like, Libya , Iraq ,Afghanistan ,Syria , Yemen all these countries still face external and internal strife , the partitioning of Syria and Iraq on ethnic divides will leave a constant need for a military presence just as the Balkans has required 20+ years later . The reason is to keep these regions from developing into competing economic centers , since this would interfere with the current ruling leader’s place in the economic order . They don’t want a competing economic system that would topple the current one , this is about order and following the same old Bubble and burst system . The Rich get richer , the poor get poorer we are all economic slaves to this order .

  • More

    This is a fair minded article.

    In relation to Aftermath in the article, it is more than wishful thinking, a hope and prayer to the great God Putin.

    “…the most obvious “symmetrical” response is to embed Russian troops with every SAA, Hezbollah, and Shia militia unit operating in the Raqqa Province, back them up with fighter air patrols, and to make the US military command aware of that fact….”

    It is a known fact Putin / Russia’s position which is all talk and blunderbuss:

    1. Russia will never give S300 or S400 to Syria.
    2. Russia will not give Air Defence to the Syrian military.
    3. Russian jets will never defend Syrian jets in No Go Zones.
    4. Russian troops will never embed into the Syrian Military.

    Result:
    The US has established a 55 km No Go Zone around Al Tanf.
    Now Raqqa is a No Go Zone
    There will be more US No Go Zones that will be established in Syria.

    2017 Facts:
    Israel freely attacks Syrian military in Damascus, Palmyra, etc.
    Syria airbase attacked by US.
    Syrian Air Force jet is shot down.
    Syrian military convoys are wiped out.
    US led “Terror Axis” embedded and loose all over Syria.

    Bottomline:
    Russia will continue to bleed Iran dry of US$s for supplying “Monkey Kit”, obsolete or defective or under performing Military equipment to Syria.

  • Manuel Flores Escobar

    USA change ISIS allies for SDF Kurdish allies…the purpose is to take control of Raqqa governate and its petrol fields….but petrol fields are now under SAA control and ISIS continue fighting!…for other side USA change Al Qaeda allies for SDF sunni Arab “moderates” in SoutherSyria to take control of Iraqi/Syrian border…but this has failed as SAA/PMU is now at Iraqi border….so what USA can do?…to throw sporadic bites of rabid dog tied!…What Russia can do?..a non fly zone protected by S-400 in Raqqa and SouthernSyria, deploy S-400 in Damascus, to warn SDF Not to advance vs SAA…in brief to protec Syria in the same way as NATO members protect Baltic countries or another Allied!…

  • watcher12

    So this is mostly about the Syrian pilot, finally able to do his job and stop isis, and the russian over flight he could reliably count on to protect his back. They did not protect his back, did not retaliate against the americans quickly fleeing the scene but entirely on radar. Did they lack rules of engagement or did those rules stiputlate to never, ever attack an american plane after it attacks a Syrian jet? The question always is a big if … Had the Russians said to the Syrian pilots – we will alert you if there is a coalition plane in the area, if so back off and do not attack target, or were the Russians merely hoping the Americans would not attack a Syrian pilot doing his job. It seems that, at best, ceretain communication was lacking. Even the statement from the Russian MOD is a big maybe – we will target and follow any plane violating a part of Syrian air space, but it does not say – kiss your ass goodbye! Always a political out – that is what many comments are concerned with.

    • Antikapitalista

      They most likely lacked the rules of engagement, as such an engagement would have probably contravened some political agreements which had been made before… (possibly during Tillerson’s visit to Moscow or at a later meeting—perhaps during peace talks?).

  • RamboDave

    This attack was pre planned provacation. It has now been reported that the Su-22 had not yet dropped any bombs, let alone attacked the SDF. It was on it’s way to bomb ISIS. The F-18 was just waiting for it.

    The SDF is playing with fire. They were intentionally rushing into villages that the SAA had caused ISIS to withdraw from.

    What if Russia makes a deal with Turkey to allow them to attack the SDF ? Will the US complain ? What will the US do when Turkey tells the US they can no longer use their Incirilik air base, claiming they are no longer attacking ISIS, but US is helping ISIS ?

    • Ronald

      Like yourself , I have read the SAAF pilot was only in the air 15 minutes from take off , and had not dropped anything .
      Also interestingly ; Rizan Hadu of the Syrian Democratic Council ( Kurdish ) , stated the SAAF version of events was correct , and that ” the US was trying to deteriorate relations between SAA and SDF “.

  • eric zweistein

    My guess:
    Mossad has infiltrated all Pentagon operations in the Middle East and clandestinely creates mayhem & chaos any time it sees fit, while the Pentagon generals scratch their head in bewilderment and wonder: ” My oh my, what was that?!?”

  • Antikapitalista

    No, I beg to differ.

    All these U.S. acts of aggression follow a well-established path of escalation and had therefore been prepared in advance, “the murderers of women and children” were just lurking for an opportunity to carry them out.

    Furthermore, there is no need use the lives of Russians as cannon fodder just to score a legal point in a framework which the Americans hold in abject contempt anyway.

    After all, it would be better for the Russians to resort to the same legal arguments as the Americans and invoke the right of collective self-defence, as per the previous U.S. nonsense, which had no legal basis, unlike the Russian and Syrian alliance.

    • John Mason

      Agree with you, none of these incidents would have occured if the US was not present or supporting terrorists. US is in violation of a number of UN Charters and International Law and this should be used against them for their ultimate removal. UNSC has a choice, either do your job or a global conflict is assured, then there will be no need to have a UN.

  • Jonathan Jarvis

    Excellent thanks j
    hawk

  • tigbear

    There is no law and rule in these sorts of engagements. There is only “might make right”. Who cares about what the UN says, or what international law says, or what the rules of engagement are. The US doesn’t care. People had better wake up to that fact now. It was always a given that the US would act freely, break whatever the accepted rules were, breach borders, bomb safe areas, fly in no-fly zones, and generally act the bully …. because it CAN. Russia had better work out what the end game is. Syria too. These two nations have dicked around too long and have lost their advantage a long time ago. Time to get serious. If Russia isn’t interested in going all out and protecting its ally, Syria, then it should never have committed to helping it. Russia builds up certain expectations and then lets its allies down. Its allies are going to lose trust in it. Russia has been behaving too two-faced up until now. Putin had better stop the diplomatic ballet. It’s clear what Washington’s game is, and it is to control Russia. Russia didn’t give the codes to Iran and Syria when it sold missiles to them, so they were caught out when they tried to use them in an emergency. Iranians managed to break the codes eventually, but it left a bad taste in their mouths. Another time, Russia warned Israel ahead of time what it was going to do, so that Israel could prepare itself. And then Russia has been making these agreements with the US that they would coordinate anti-Daesh operations. Who are they kidding? Were they surprised when the US attacked the SAA plane? I wasn’t. And Russia shouldn’t have been either. They should have EXPECTED it. After the Idlib false flag attack and USA’s bombing of Syria, it was clear the USA was going to play dirty.

    Why does Russia keep acting like the bride who’s cheated on serially? Why does Russia keep taking back the US as its partner in this conflict? Why does Lavrov keep going to Washington for talks? Why does Russia keep up the pretense that Trump has a special relationship with Russia? Were they hoping that if Putin stays friendly with Trump that Trump wouldn’t impose additional sanctions on Putin?

    There’s a difference between playing it cool and being a loser who keeps getting jilted. Russia looks weak these days.

    It started with retreating from Georgia. It got worse when they gave up Ukraine. Ukraine is going to be a thorn in its side forever.

    Russia doesn’t even vote to support its ally North Korea in the Security Council in the UN. Here it can make a difference with its veto vote. But it doesn’t use it to protect its ally. North Korea could be really good for Russia. They have the same allies. And the same enemies. Russia just does enough to give it a tiny lifeline so it can still breathe … just.

    What does Russia want? To see its allies fall like dominoes one by one?

    It doesn’t even seem to know what it wants out of its involvement in the Middle East. Even Turkey has shown more resolve. Turkey knows what it wants. It doesn’t want Kurds doing terrorism in its backyard. And Turkey will do something about it.

    Assad doesn’t seem to know what the end game is either. While these two allies seem confused about what they want to achieve, the US and Israel are taking advantage of their delaying and aimless running around. They take the initiative and make a push for the Al Tanf area, Deir Ezzor and Raqaa.

    Assad can’t win the war by winning international moral support. Nations may be sympathetic to him but they’re not going to help him ultimately. He should stop wasting time trying to gain sympathy and understanding. Complaining and trying to justify what he’s doing and how he’s being attacked by so many terrorists isn’t going to help him. Might is right. And he should understand that. He should work on gathering the might part. If he can’t, get out of the kitchen and let someone more capable take over.

    The writing was on the wall a long time ago. He should have started preparing for an invasion when the US invaded Iraq. And then when it invaded Libya. If he doesn’t know how to run the military and have strong defenses, hire specialists, give them the keys to the nation and let them do the work of creating a strong army and building up an arsenal. Iran was doing that for the last few decades and look at it now. Syria should have done the same. Governing a country like Syria is not for dilettantes. It’s surrounded by a lot of hostile neighbors and hot spots.

    Not good. I think Assad should demote himself and choose someone who’s more suited for the job of leading his country. Someone like a general is more appropriate for the job right now.