Louis Proyect: The Unrepentant Marxist

September 29, 2014

American intervention in Syria: I told you so

Filed under: mechanical anti-imperialism,Syria — louisproyect @ 1:09 pm

Well, I hate saying that I told you so but I did tell you so: When the USA finally intervenes in Syria on a serious basis, it will be against exactly those forces that the “anti-imperialist” left claim are his proxies.

On August 8, 2013 I posted from two articles that anticipated to Marxmail what is happening now.

From the March 15, 2013 LA Times:

“The CIA has stepped up secret contingency planning to protect the United States and its allies as the turmoil expands in Syria, including collecting intelligence on Islamic extremists for the first time for possible lethal drone strikes, according to current and former U.S. officials.”

From the August 8, 2013 NY Times:

“As foreign fighters pour into Syria at an increasing clip, extremist groups are carving out pockets of territory that are becoming havens for Islamist militants, posing what United States and Western intelligence officials say may be developing into one of the biggest terrorist threats in the world today.”

All those comparisons with Reagan backing the Afghan jihadists turned to be complete and utter bullshit. Reagan not only put the red carpet down for them in the White House, he armed them with Stinger missiles. The “anti-imperialist” left embarrassed itself by even making such a comparison in the first place, but then again they are so cynical and so lacking in principle that it would hardly matter.

* * * *

From last night’s interview:

KROFT (voice-over): Syria is more challenging because the U.S. has few viable allies on the ground there. The regime of Bashar al- Assad is fighting ISIS, but the U.S. wants Assad deposed for committing horrific crimes against his own people, and other opposition groups like the Al-Nusra front and a terrorist cell called Khorasan, which was plotting attacks against Europe and the U.S., are both affiliated with Al Qaida. The coalition is hoping to train 5,000 moderate Syrian fighters in Saudi Arabia.

(on-screen): Is there a moderate Syrian opposition?

OBAMA: There is. But right now, it doesn’t control much territory. It has been squeezed between ISIL on the one hand and the Assad regime on the other.

KROFT: These are the people that you said — the farmers, the doctors, the pharmacists — who stood no chance of overthrowing the government.

OBAMA: Well, keep in mind, two years ago, that was absolutely true. This is in response to the mythology that’s evolved that somehow if we had given those folks some guns two-and-a-half years ago, that Syria would be fine.

And the point that I made then, which is absolutely true, is that for us to just start arming inexperienced fighters who we hadn’t vetted — so we didn’t know and couldn’t sort out very well who’s potentially ISIL or Al-Nusra member and who is somebody that we’re going to work with. For us to just go blind on that would have been counterproductive and would not have helped the situation, but also would have committed us to a much more significant role inside of Syria.

KROFT: You said that we need to get rid of Assad. And while we’re saying we have to get rid of Assad, we are also bombing and trying to take out some of the — his most threatening opponents and — and the…

OBAMA: I recognize the — I recognize…

KROFT: And the beneficiary of this is Assad.

OBAMA: I recognize the contradiction in a contradictory land and a contradictory circumstance. We are — we are not going to stabilize Syria under the rule of Assad, because the Sunni areas inside of Syria view Assad as having carried out terrible atrocities. The world has seen them.

Hundreds of thousands of people have been killed. Millions have been displaced. So for a long-term political settlement, for Syria to remain unified, it is not possible that Assad presides over that entire process. On the other hand, in terms of immediate threats to the United States, ISIL, Khorasan group, those folks could kill Americans. And so…

KROFT: They’re more important than Assad at this point. That’s what you’re saying.

OBAMA: What I’m saying is that they’re all connected, but there’s a more immediate concern that has to be dealt with.

 

2 Comments »

  1. Well, since this came to light and the anti imperialist bullshit hit the fan, now they’re scrambling for changing the supposed intentions of America in the Middle East. Something about dividing the working class there still stands though. It’s not too far from the Bush administration’s changing the goals of invading Iraq as their bullshit become clear with the non existence of WMDs. Now it boils down to purely “imperialist” adventurism of America. They dropped everything about insidious American intentions to break the back of the Resistance and now rely on abstract narratives of “American imperialism”. Hume’s fork doesn’t exist in the world of the “anti imperialist left”.
    I was having a conversation with an IMT member the other day when I pressed him to produce once shred of evidence that the US backed and funded one single rebel group against Assad. Obviously he couldn’t, but the least I was hoping for was him quoting me a passage from “imperialism: the last stage of imperialism”, to which he concluded from that it doesn’t matter if there is evidence that the US directly armed them against Assad, as long as we live in capitalism, it’s obvious as the sun that congress and the White House (which he detaches from the US military and National Security interests) will keep sending arms to these groups because it is profitable for the arms manufacturing industry. How can one dignify such an inane claim?

    Comment by Anas El Hawat — October 3, 2014 @ 6:54 pm

  2. Imperialism: The last stage of capitalism*

    Comment by Anas El Hawat — October 3, 2014 @ 6:54 pm


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