Joshua Landis & Robert Ford discuss Syria at Wilson Center event

Joshua Landis, Robert Ford (former US Ambassador to Syria), and Hadi Al Bahra (Syrian opposition) each gave unique perspectives on Syria policy in a recent event with the Wilson Center, moderated by Aaron David Miller.

Dr. Landis outlined three possible policy options for Syria (in the absence of putting troops on the ground of a foreign interventionist force), none of which offer much optimism for restored stability or comprehensive peace: 1) Supporting a rebel win in Syria that would entail the need for rebels to conquer almost all of Syria’s major cities in street-by-street battles (since rebel-held cities are currently very few), resulting in tremendous instability, added destruction, and greater refugee crises; 2) Allowing security and counter-terrorism concerns to influence the choice to sit back and allow Assad to retake most of the country, which may limit jihadist gains but will allow the regime’s policies of torture, mass killings, and human rights abuses to continue unabated; 3) De facto partition that would involve shoring up support for the opposition—enough support to take certain key areas and enforce partition by pressuring the regime into a ceasefire & territorial concessions, but not enough to conquer the entire country—followed by a major project to introduce a moderate oppositional government in the rebel partition that could combat jihadism.

At present, the international players are not satisfied with allowing either side to win, which is why the conflict will remain at a “low boil” in which the opposition is kept on life support but will remain largely ineffective, while the Syrian people are sacrificed on the altar of great power politics.

The audio of the event can be accessed on the Wilson Center’s website, here:

What’s To Become of Syria? U.S. Policy, the Opposition and the Regime

Ford begins speaking at 11:35, Landis begins at 17:30

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Take a look at this interesting infographic underscoring the complexity of alliances and competitions within the Syria conflict (thanks to Pieter Van Ostaeyen for circulating it, from an article by Think Progress):

Why The Middle East Is Now A Giant Warzone, In One Terrifying Chart, from Think Progress

Why The Middle East Is Now A Giant Warzone, In One Terrifying Chart

What started as a crackdown against democratic protests three years ago, has become a region-wide conflict that now has Iraq descending back into chaos. The countries of the region — along with the United States and various non-state actors — all have a hand in creating this moment, as money, fighters, weapons, and a desire to control the Middle East have come together to produce an extremely volatile and terrifying situation.

What has made the Syrian conflict so difficult to respond to has been the fact that the situation has refused to be tied down as just a civil war. In addition to the top-line fighting between the Syrian government and rebels who’d like to oust Syrian president Bashar al-Assad, there’s also a proxy war ongoing between Sunni-majority states in the Gulf and Shiite-majority Iran and its allies. There’s also struggles for dominance among the rebels, who fight each other almost as frequently as the Assad government these days. Add in disagreements between the countries united against Assad over just which of the Syrian rebels to finance, and the reason a simple solution for the conflict hasn’t been developed becomes more understandable.

And standing out among all of this now is the attempts of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) — also known as the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) — to establish its own state within the region. ISIS managed to takeover the city of Fallujah in January, hold it against Iraqi army efforts to dislodge it, and in the last few days take over both the major cities of Mosul and Tikrit. …

See also an updated map on the current situation in Syria from Thomas van Linge, also posted by Pieter:

20140615-221408

…As well as another detailed map by Thomas on ISIS in Iraq:

Thomas Van Linge

Comments (24)


1. ALAN said:

…. I have no doubt that there will be a terrorist attack in the U.S. once again and I have no doubt that U.S. backed groups will be the ones who do it.

http://sherriequestioningall.blogspot.com/2014/06/bush-is-to-blame-for-iraq-war-based-on.html
….
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2658303/Intervene-Iraq-Syria-face-terror-attacks-Britain-warns-Blair-defends-decision-topple-Saddam.html
….
http://youtu.be/v7VYhQB9qJ8?t=1s
….

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June 16th, 2014, 2:09 pm

 

2. Jasmine said:

That is a tangled web !
Why oil and arm sales are not included in it ? They are the main objectives for the big players of nations.
Why ISIS was not that scary when they started their havoc play in the north East of Syria two years ago?
It is so ironic now that they want a speedy wrap to the Syrian problem,after having the oil interest in Iraq threatened.
Add to that,a strong pocket of terrorism is established in Mosul,the west should have seen it coming,and they should have helped Syrians to finish the war and not to arm rebels and train Them in Turkey and Jordan.
Short term policies with no vision,values or principles always end in Chaos.

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June 16th, 2014, 3:00 pm

 

3. ALAN said:

The Engineered Destruction and Political Fragmentation of Iraq. Towards the Creation of a US Sponsored Islamist Caliphate
The Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham: An instrument of the Western Military Alliance
http://www.globalresearch.ca/the-destruction-and-political-fragmentation-of-iraq-towards-the-creation-of-a-us-sponsored-islamist-caliphate/5386998

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June 16th, 2014, 4:16 pm

 

4. Amir in Tel Aviv said:

Eventually, all of the ME minorities will have to unite, to protect against this Sunni wave of extremism. That includes Shites, Alawites, Jews, Kurds, Christians, and everyone who is not Sunni.

I don’t agree with Mr JL that the Islamists cannot win. So far they are winning hearts and minds. And we saw that wherever there were free and fair elections (Egypt, Tunisia, PA), the Islamist ideology won. What is halting this ideology from taking over, are corrupt regimes (KSA, Jordan, PA, Gulf emirates), and juntas (Egypt, Syria). But they will not be able to prevent them from winning for ever.

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June 16th, 2014, 5:07 pm

 

5. SANDRO LOEWE said:

As the old say explains:

¨Damascenes have no color and no religion…¨

This is the only way to understand why dirty Assad can still be in power.

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June 16th, 2014, 5:34 pm

 

6. Matthew Barber said:

One problem with the infographic is that it shows ISIS in conflict with everyone, but receiving support from no one. Obviously, fighters and money from many places have found their way to it. Its success isn’t magical… unless God really is on their side.

And if he is, consider the nature of this deity, with a look at the following video (EXTREME WARNING—this is one of the sickest and most heartbreaking depictions of violence I’ve encountered in the last few years; for me, the randomness of the killings exceed even the horror of the beheadings in Syria which had specific targets… I link only to underscore what kind of group this really is; the psychology behind this immoral, hardhearted depravity is a true mystery to me):

http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=699_1400360595

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June 16th, 2014, 5:37 pm

 
 

8. mjabali said:

Amir in Tel Aviv:

I agree with you about the minorities and the common threat. There is no hope unless all the minorities unite. They could fend for themselves well.

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June 16th, 2014, 5:59 pm

 

9. Observer said:

I agree fully with Amir and Mjabali but then the logical conclusion is that there is no such thing as Syrian or Iraqi or Lebanese nationalities there are minorities and majorities and Sunnis and others and clans and families and sects with militias.

This is the reality of the Great Failure of the last 100 years of so called Arab Revolt.

Pots breaking each other as we say in the ME.

I think if the incompetent Obama is going to do another blunder he will intervene this time when the wise decision to do is to let Iran enter a second quagmire in Iraq after Syria.

But hey what do you expect from US as they suckers to the very end.

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June 16th, 2014, 8:25 pm

 

10. Amir in Tel Aviv said:

Observer,

The Arab revolt failed because of the Powers’ interference; first the British and the French, then Amrica and Russia.

Which brings me to your second paragraph. Obama and the west are very wise to stay out of it. Any way they are not popular in this region. Farther interference might radicalize the few Arabs which remain sitting on the fence, so far.

And yes, the ME is a toxic mixture of tribes, sects, families and extended families. It was always like this. The unnatural and foreign to this region, the ‘nationalism’ failed in it’s attempt to tame this way of life.

The Sunni ideology today calls for – stepping back a 100 years, to the times when the ME (along with it’s various tribes / sects / religions / extended families) was ruled by a single Sunni Khalifah (the Ottoman Sultan). But this time they want that this Khalifah will be Sunni and Arab.

We better not let them do this.

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June 16th, 2014, 9:06 pm

 

11. apple_mini said:

America has been in the game of “chips on table” in Syria conflict since the very beginning.

Here is another reason of America’s unfailing and unsavory investments in so-called moderate rebels even there has been never short of clamorous public criticisms and untoward confusions in US and outside: America wanted a fostered and well-trained,well-equipped and well-aligned moderate rebel force to perform counter-terrorism fight against the growing threat in the region which was precisely the inevitable outcome after the regime and SAA had been weakened by “coalition”.

To America’s consternation and horror, what is unfolding in front of its eyes in Iraq annihilates every calculation and plan.

US can spend more money and more manpower to support and strengthen the moderate rebels. But never will there be any chance the moderate rebels can match up the ISIS on battleground.

While the unbelievable sight of ISIS riding Humvees and even M1 tanks stunned Americans, US ends up getting ready to swallow another bitter pill and scramble to make more adjustments to its failing policy on Syria.

What we will see is multiple step-back by America on its commitment to help those “moderate” rebels.

On the other side of the story, Syrian air force started to target ISIS in the east of the country. I do not know for sure this new move was spontaneous and ingenuous. I do not even know those targets were of effective military values. I do know for sure that ISIS is still valuable for the regime and they will continue to milk it.

We cannot complain the regime being so insidious, as we still remember ISIS was once hailed as heroe by the opposition.

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June 16th, 2014, 11:55 pm

 

12. Ghufran said:

The piece of Wilson center on Syria that was posted in the thread did not add much to what we already know except cementing joshua’s position as one of the most knowledgeable US experts on Syria. Joshua believes that the most likely course in Syria in the near term is a slow movement towards partition and the continuation of Assad rule over western, central and most of southern Syria.
Ford did not impress, Al- Bahra seemed depressed and lost while the third guest was outright pathetic. Isis attack in Mosul will add pressure on Iran and the Syrian government troops to secure the south , Aleppo and what is left north of Latakia while leaving the east under the mercy of Isis and potential air strikes launched against isis, there are no troops left to send to aljazeera, indeed one of objectives of the attack on Mosul is to force Iran and its allies to spend more and lose more fighting on another front, there is no way that Isis pulled this offensive alone, the finger prints of KSA is all over the place.

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June 17th, 2014, 12:03 am

 

13. Juergen said:

Amir,

The Islamists of ISIS are of a kind Iraqis could and will never accept. Iraqis are too well-educated to fall into this trap. The problem I see is only that here in the West and by some protagonists in the ME only ISIS is always named and pointed out. ISIS alone couldn’t have done what we have witnessed over the last weeks. Evidence is coming up that General Izzat Ibrahim al-Douri together with the Naqschebandi Army has planned the fall of Mosul for the last two years. How a secular,national mafioso like Duri end up coalitionise with ISIS,remains an other episode of how bizarre things can be in the ME. The next outcome worries me the most, a war coalition between Iran and the US, that ultimately means concessions towards the Assad regime. It looks like the eye doctor has outplayed his father in strategic warfare.

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June 17th, 2014, 12:43 am

 

14. Juergen said:

This is what I call courage!

A group of activists smuggled 4 Syrians from Milan ton Stockholm, ove r 5 borders by imitating an marriage convoy.
https://news.vice.com/article/these-guys-faked-a-wedding-to-smuggle-syrian-refugees-and-filmed-it

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June 17th, 2014, 12:46 am

 

15. Juergen said:

Syria’s Assad accused of boosting al-Qaeda with secret oil deals
Western intelligence suggests Bashar al-Assad collaborating with jihadists to persuade West the uprising is terrorist-led

“The Syrian regime of President Bashar al-Assad has funded and co-operated with al-Qaeda in a complex double game even as the terrorists fight Damascus, according to new allegations by Western intelligence agencies, rebels and al-Qaeda defectors.

Jabhat al-Nusra, and the even more extreme Islamic State of Iraq and al-Shams (ISIS), the two al-Qaeda affiliates operating in Syria, have both been financed by selling oil and gas from wells under their control to and through the regime, intelligence sources have told The Daily Telegraph.

Rebels and defectors say the regime also deliberately released militant prisoners to strengthen jihadist ranks at the expense of moderate rebel forces. The aim was to persuade the West that the uprising was sponsored by Islamist militants including al-Qaeda as a way of stopping Western support for it.

The allegations by Western intelligence sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity, are in part a public response to demands by Assad that the focus of peace talks due to begin in Switzerland tomorrow be switched from replacing his government to co-operating against al-Qaeda in the “war on terrorism”. ”

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/middleeast/syria/10585391/Syrias-Assad-accused-of-boosting-al-Qaeda-with-secret-oil-deals.html

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June 17th, 2014, 1:19 am

 

16. Juergen said:

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June 17th, 2014, 1:23 am

 

17. Badr said:

Landis is advocating “compromising with the Syrian regime in order to get half a loaf”.

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June 17th, 2014, 3:51 am

 

18. Aboud Dandachi said:

The three options laid out by Professor Landis are indeed stark ones, but they are the only ones available if one limited themselves to military methods to solve the ISIS problem.

The conflict in Syria was never going to be resolved purely by military means, and Assad was an idiot for even trying. I have said it time and time again, Syria is what happens when a society has no political class worth a damn.

The best Assad could come up with was to nurture a terrorist organization that grew to such Monster of Frankenstein proportions that it now has Israelis pleading for an alliance with Hassan Nasrallah. Heck, its been two weeks since the dude’s “election” and no one has seen him, much less heard what his platform is for the next seven years. Not exactly inspiring leadership at times like this.

The only group that ever had any success in taking on ISIS were the rebels, who managed to kick ISIS out of Aleppo and Idlib. But with the blanket Obama sanctions on any arms to the rebels, there is only so much that can be done, especially as with each retreat by his ISIS allies, Bashar has stepped up the barbaric barrel bombing of towns previously held by his buddy Abu Baker El-Baghdadi. Indeed, if any other government had dealt with ISIS the way Assad had, theyd have been labelled as state sponsors of terrorism, instead of being feted by the morally bankrupt Leftists.

Unlike Vegas, what happens in Iraq does not stay in Iraq, and the combination of Bashar’s blatant collusion with ISIS and Obama’s “stick thy head in the sand as deep as it will go” brand of foreign policy has resulted in a terrorist entity that is poised on the doors of Baghdad itself.

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June 17th, 2014, 4:58 am

 

19. ALAN said:

نحو تفكيك العراق
http://www.voltairenet.org/article184303.html

Clearly, the ISIS genie is out of its bottle and its masters have yet to order it back inside. The question is, do its masters still have the authority to contain it if the situation worsens? At this point, it seems highly doubtful that the key Sunni players in the region are thinking that far ahead.
http://journal-neo.org/2014/06/17/the-isis-crisis-have-the-sunnis-unleashed-an-uncontrollable-genie/

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June 17th, 2014, 5:38 am

 

20. habib said:

“but will allow the regime’s policies of torture, mass killings, and human rights abuses to continue unabated”

Uh, and how does this not apply to the “rebels”?

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June 17th, 2014, 8:42 am

 

21. Juergen said:

translated article, which i find gives some new thoughts about ISIS

ISIS in Syria and Iraq
06/17/2014
Frankenstein’s jihadists
A commentary by Daniel Gerlach

ISIS acts like an army of zombies: dark, brutal, endlessly reproducible. Is the terrorist group a creature of benefiting from the situation Assad regime? No secret agency in this world could have invented ISIS. In any case, not one alone.

If black clad figures in Iraq throw tied people into a ditch and kill them with the Kalashnikov, one may be bad. But what else is actually happening in civil wars and “non-state armed conflicts”? In what way varies the jihadist group “Islamic State in Iraq and Greater Syria” – Da’ish or ISIS called – in their methods or in their brutality from other civil war militias and death squads in the world? Is it actually the head cutting, the cutting off hands, smashing ancient, “pagan” cultural heritage, or the blackmailing of innocent families? Or we detest this because they do all in the name of God? It is – for better or worse – to the realization that ISIS excels less by their cruelty, but by their display?
However, it pursuites obviously a tactical, psychological purpose. Given the structure of these jihadists soldiers it acts almost as these said images had been master-prepared .They are neither tasteless souvenirs from hundreds of ISIS minions, but instead propaganda material for the purpose of spreading fear, the mobilization – and the mass production of hate.
But why wear these murderers actually masks? After all, they boast of their deeds and want nothing more than to get supposedly martyred. Wear masks during the killing, so do sometimes profesional executioners, special forces or criminal gangs in the Mexican drug war. Wrap up the ISIS men out of fear that one their families back home – might do something – wherever they may also be located? Or because you can find out in the age of facial recognition software, where they have been hanging round earlier. Or on whose behalf they probably visited capital cities in the world. Who once trained, recruited, broken them, turned them upside down, has hired them.
In the struggles for influence on ISIS global parent organization Al-Qaeda is only one player among many
In order not to give the impression that I have developed a new conspiracy theory here: No State, no party and no intelligence could have created ISIS , not alone I must say. Especially not alone. And yet it seems that many residents of the war in Syria and Iraq – but especially these two states themselves – ISIS made to what it is today. ISIS is not a Frankenstein monster of the Saudis, Qataris, the Iranians or Turks. Certainly none of the CIA or the Mossad, as some Arab conspiracy theorists claim. Not even the Syrian regime, although this to the prosperity of the monster made the most lasting contribution – and benefited the most from its actions.
However, much to suggest that within the structures of ISIS one is reminded as of the Beirut Airport: Almost every regional power there has probably their undercover agents, their “agent provocateurs.” The global terrorist organization Al-Qaeda is no longer the main player, but one of many external, governmental and non-players who do not want to lose the connection. The fact that there are apparently so many clandestine influences and networks at ISIS, currently undoubtedly helps to the remarkable success of the group, but it is in not too long time again undoing. Then ISIS will probably disintegrate and metastasize like a cancer, which can affect improperly.

ISIS has not suddenly become a powerful terrorist group that came out of the Syrian desert as the horsemen of the apocalypse. And if ISIS Iraqi cities of Mosul and Tikrit storms, we must rather say: ISIS returns home. For in this part of Iraq took the leading networks of the group its beginning: the third generation of the Qaeda jihadists. In Syria, they were then nurtured and grown to undermine the rebellion from the inside of the hand of those regimes.
In Syria, it looked for ISIS – contrary to many otherwise estimates – no longer so great. On the one hand, because numerous, sometimes also jihadist, even Al-Qaeda-affiliated militias tend fought against ISIS. Almost nobody wanted ISIS believe that they are actually against the Assad regime that they are waging a war and that the attacks against the rebels were only owed to an ancient Islamic doctrine: eradicate only the small enemy within their own ranks, and then united action against the big opponents.
Parts of ISIS can be a “fourth army” of the Assad regime, although about sure there is no contract
The rebels in Syria were clear at an early stage that the Assad regime and ISIS in symbiosis exist – and that there are not only common interests, but relationships. The fact that at least some ISIS groups are infiltrated by Syrian intelligence and the regime has led these jihadist forces as “fourth Army” into the field. In addition to the regular armed forces, the National Guard and the infamous Shabiha militia, who know nothing of this game, of course.
Let us not forget that we are dealing with a regime in Syria, which could produce hardly military successes in recent decades, but since the beginning of his days doing nothing other than to lead techniques of power and manipulation to perfection.
Is it really a coincidence that ISIS at the same time again gave ground approximately in Syria because the Syrian regular army could advance and captured important areas from rebel hands? And this, although there were no direct confrontations between ISIS and the troops of the regime?
If today some commentators argue that we ought to unite in the fight against ISIS willy-nilly with the Assad regime and together wrestle the jihadists, then this is not without a bitter irony.
Because the only power that benefits from ISIS recent successes across the board, is the Assad regime – even if it is because the world is now no longer look to Syria, but in Iraq and the conflict is not more than a Syrian understands. No government, which still has a modicum of sense would, indeed breed a terrorist army to play a great game of strategy and to obscure his true plans. For this army could turn against their inventors quickly.
The price of oil it was already bad
On the other hand: Using the argument of reason or mind can only handle limited here. It is feared that the secret rulers and create other criteria in the Middle East. You think temporarily and tactically. Aligned to the indirect benefit – and the direct loss of potential rivals.
Immediately after the Syrian regime are probably Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Kuwait on the list of ISIS Infiltrator – it need not even secret, but networks of individuals in the context of the ruling houses, the secure access with money and influence. In their calculus ISIS was a wedge against the supposed “Shiite crescent” from Iran, Iraq and Lebanese Hizbullah.
Fortunately – and this applies to almost all participants – the price of oil has risen through the news of the assault on Mosul properly again. The Gulf oil exporters and their beneficiaries can so let look at the development. Nearly a fortune for them, when you consider that the Iran talks of the West again threaten to flood the previously sanctioned Iranian oil on the market. What combined with a slower global economic growth is very harmful for the price.
According to media reports, the U.S. is considering the atrocious threat to cooperate with Iran. I like not only the Glasnost President Ruhani – but even the reactionary security circles of Iran, such as the Revolutionary Guards, which previously saw themselves as disadvantaged the approximation process. The West and Iran should have actually long been approached – in the case of ISIS could, however, work differently than it does at first seem.
Syrian rebels have submitted in recent months, some not looking out of hand evidence of relationships of ISIS people to Iranian intelligence. The widespread in Syria conclusion, ISIS is a creature of Tehran is nevertheless an illegal exaggeration. But would the Revolutionary Guards not for a long time find a means on the one hand to destroy the rebellion against Assad from the inside and on the other hand, the global Al-Qaeda, the Shiite Iran may be the same back from several limitations lead to the destruction of that break and split? Officially, ISIS has renounced in each case by the leadership of Bin Laden lieutenant Ayman al-Zawahiri.
“Containment” of the jihadists in the region – a tempting thought
What sese does it make by placing undercover agents in terrorist organizations? Not even the intelligence officers may know. It may be useful at some point – and the others will do it anyway. So it is rather one of the own party. And since ISIS builds no longer on old loyal network but instead on an idea to integrate voluntary jihadists from all over the world into their ranks, which in the end is probably not particularly difficult.
Last but not least there would be the Turks: Ankara has made advances to the jihadists in Syria with ostentatious tolerance and perhaps hoped that one day it will be useful idiots, Because they can use for the overthrow of the Assad regime on the one hand, on the other hand, the politically aspiring Syrian to keep the Kurds and the PKK in check. Probably know Turkish intelligence – just after the Syrian – most over the quality or staff of ISIS.
The United States looked ISIS not only from prudence and skepticism towards military engagement idly by while growing to: The idea of ​​the global enemy Al-Qaeda to make a regional, Middle Eastern problem and be bound by non-interference in the region itself, has in Washington and Langley ensured their fans. Since you have them collected in one place in the world, which means that they are not for the time being somewhere else, so in the West. One can think about what you are doing with them then still.
The Kurds in northern Iraq have to deal with now a huge wave of refugees and it will not have it easy. On the other hand, they control for several days and in response to the threat of ISIS the oil city of Kirkuk, to which they had for many years conducted unsuccessful negotiations. They sell their own oil – in Turkey – and are now needed more than ever as an organizing force in Iraq. Somehow it seems as if one had to worry about the Kurds he should not worry.
For Maliki, the storming of Mosul and Tikrit is a historic opportunity
Iraq’s Prime Minister Nouri al-yet-Maliki himself has once again obtained by the storm of ISIS a historic opportunity: In a moment, as his political survival hung by a thread. Maliki loses power, he must fear that his opponents pay outstanding bills with him. He would be the scapegoat – and at best, he would be placed on trial, as the Iraqis did with so many fallen “despots.” So Maliki and his followers had reasons to literally do everything to try to stay in power.
Now arises – for the first time since the Battle of Basra by 2008 – the opportunity to bring his opponents in his own camp behind him. Especially his Shiite brothers had become hostile to him: The spiritual dignitaries in the holy city of Najaf even compared him to Saddam and Hitler, and thought that in no way as a compliment.
We know this tactical thinking in Maliki: the beginning of the year he had strike in protest of the province of Anbar to fumigate Sunni protesters and marauding militia. But also to the Shia with the slogan “united against terror” to group themselves. However, it was not enough in the election. Maliki bändelte with moderate Sunni politicians to forge an alliance against the Shiite competition. Until march in Mosul , while doing nothing, this lead to the current situation with ISIS. The emergency law is the best thing which could happen for ” Commander-in-Chief,” Maliki. And you may have to ask whether one can blame him for such tricks in view of the general political conditions in Iraq. Mosul and Tikrit were lost anyway and Iraqi military had to admit some months ago that they had no control over this area.
In any case, it seems as if the thing went wrong – or rather you worked a little too well. The last Sunni military in Mosul and the Nineveh province, the former heartland of the Iraqi armed forces, Baghdad did not ask for help, but gave their heels. “Do your dirt alone, Maliki,” was the message. And a significant part of the officers joined, as well as Sunni tribes in the province, the campaign of ISIS on.
ISIS will not take Baghdad – but the hate will be harder to defeat
ISIS can not take alone the capital Baghdad or as little as taking a march to the holy sites of the Shiites in Najaf and Kerbalah . Not even with supposedly 1.5 billion U.S. dollars prey and American jeeps and helicopters.
A few rebel groups in Syria have shown in recent months, how fast you can cope with this rabble. If there were between Raqqa and Mosul enough trees, the ISIS-fighters would dangle faster than they build their alleged Sharia emirate. But would thus accomplished something?
In our perception ISIS is now an army of zombies. Faceless, occult, brutal, endlessly reproducible. And indeed, these supposed undead are something like the dark back of the soul of Middle Eastern societies.
ISIS says at least what ISIS wants, namely to kill all “infidels”, and for them these are first and foremost other Muslims. In contrast, use of a firearm could help here. But religious minorities and those who do not want to give up the hope of freedom and the rule of law, have a much bigger problem than ISIS – and that is that subliminal, sometimes repressed, psychologically elusive, but structural confessional hatred. Their problem are those in the Sunni and Shia mainstream who speak of brotherhood among Muslims, but who could become within seconds to murderers when whispers of the right slogans reach them and provides a different faith to the knife for a suitable opportunity. The breeding ground for this hatred in the Middle East have many sown. And they will probably reap more of it than they can digest. Even then, if in the desert near the Euphrates not much more will remember ISIS about from ISIS as a couple of bleached bones.

original article in english:

http://www.zenithonline.de/deutsch/politik/a/artikel/frankensteins-dschihadisten-004122/

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June 17th, 2014, 1:01 pm

 

22. ALAN said:

Wahoo Killer supporter! You enter the Guinness Book of Records! Impressive success!

It is better to seem like you do not know!

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June 17th, 2014, 4:25 pm

 

23. ALAN said:

21. JUERGEN
what was your public response to when ISIS took over Raqqa, in Syria???

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June 17th, 2014, 6:05 pm

 

24. Passerby said:

It seems crystal clear to me that ISIS is 100% controlled by the Saddam Regime. Why that doesn’t seem obvious to everyone eludes me. Nusra has in detail, how they did it. Their behavior and motivations are exactly, precisely like the Saddam Regime.

Of course they cut a deal with Assad, he doesn’t want Eastern Sunni Syria anyway.

Of course it attacks the other dead enders in Syria in a bizarre aggressive way, they don’t share the same agenda at all.

Of course they have a Stalin/Hannibal Lector insane cruelty completely void of even the twisted values of Al-Qaeda.

And of course, the goal isn’t Damascus, it’s Baghdad.

Why isn’t it just glaringly obvious to everyone on this rather well informed forum? What am I missing?

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June 20th, 2014, 10:30 pm

 

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