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1 fantasmaguero  Thu, Mar 14, 2013 9:55:56am

Great article. I’m finishing my masters degree in the UK now, and I’ve been amazed how little emphasis is placed on the fact that the gulf states and Riyadh are pushing particular Islamic “brands” (not just the broad-brush Sunni-vs-Shia and Sunni-vs-Alawi talk). Plenty of folks here are disgusted with Hague over the decision to arm the rebels.

2 Destro  Thu, Mar 14, 2013 11:53:21am

re: #1 fantasmaguero

Great article. I’m finishing my masters degree in the UK now, and I’ve been amazed how little emphasis is placed on the fact that the gulf states and Riyadh are pushing particular Islamic “brands” (not just the broad-brush Sunni-vs-Shia and Sunni-vs-Alawi talk). Plenty of folks here are disgusted with Hague over the decision to arm the rebels.

Why does it surprise you? Anyone? The USA has been doing this since Afghanistan in the 80s, The USA did the exact same thing in Yugoslavia/Bosnia/Kosovo.

The USA could care less about the loss of civilians on the ground - what would happen to religious minorities if the regime is overturned and so on. See Iraq.

I see the same State Dept using the same playbook that existed since it was used on the Soviets in Afghanistan. Why change a winning formula?

One word America’s State Dept will never learn is blowback because they couldn’t give a shit what happens after the fact.

3 Randall Gross  Thu, Mar 14, 2013 12:14:22pm

The US is not arming Syrian rebels. We are supplying them non military aid and support at most. Where did you see that the US is arming them?

4 Destro  Thu, Mar 14, 2013 12:25:39pm

I can’t see where I wrote that? Can you point out my exact words?

In any case why support with non-lethal aid groups we don’t trust with lethal aid from the get go?

5 Randall Gross  Thu, Mar 14, 2013 12:42:35pm

re: #3 Randall Gross

When an article about the UK arming the Syrian rebels causes you to go into a diatribe about the USA, then it’s a fair assumption that you think the US is arming them, either that or anything’s an excuse to diss the US.

6 Destro  Thu, Mar 14, 2013 12:47:34pm

re: #5 Randall Gross

When an article about the UK arming the Syrian rebels causes you to go into a diatribe about the USA, then it’s a fair assumption that you think the US is arming them, either that or anything’s an excuse to diss the US.

Oh, so you made an assumption? Just like Bush made assumptions about invading Iraq……


What part of this article’s thesis are you against? Think is wrong?

7 Randall Gross  Thu, Mar 14, 2013 12:50:49pm

re: #5 Randall Gross

I’m not against the article, I’m responding to your comment. Anything’s an excuse is what I see.

8 Destro  Thu, Mar 14, 2013 1:00:58pm

re: #7 Randall Gross

I’m not against the article, I’m responding to your comment. Anything’s an excuse is what I see.

You mean the comment you misquoted? OK what part of my comment did you object to. Cut and paste it. Se we can all see……

9 fantasmaguero  Thu, Mar 14, 2013 6:59:29pm

re: #2 Destro

Why does it surprise you? Anyone? The USA has been doing this since Afghanistan in the 80s, The USA did the exact same thing in Yugoslavia/Bosnia/Kosovo.

You’re right in that it shouldn’t surprise. I should clarify, the most surprising thing to me is that so many otherwise smart, engaged thinkers I meet here and elsewhere give the, “Wow…never thought of it that way…” response whenever I discuss Iran and Saudi Arabia as states promoting two ‘heretical’ Islamic ideologies, whose own ‘cold war’ bleeds into pretty much every major issue in the region. Many know that the two governments pretty much hate each other, but I find a general lack any contextualized understanding of spillover effects, or of the proxies involved (aside from - occasionally - knowing that Iran arms Hezbollah).

I see the Syrian situation as a case of putting any lessons learned from Lebanon and Afghanistan right down the memory hole.

10 Destro  Thu, Mar 14, 2013 9:45:48pm

re: #9 fantasmaguero

Either the State Dept careerists still don’t get the Sunni/Shia split or the State Dept considers Sunni Arabs the “tame” ones, even if radicalized because the Saudi’s are our bastards in Sunni world (al-Qaeda kind of resembles those Indians that went off the reservation) and the real fear the State Dept has (and has always had) is the Shia (which live where all the oil is in Arabia) and the Iranians.

All the rest about spreading democracy in the ME etc is State Dept bullshit and has always been a cover.


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