State Department ‘Diplomats’ Demand
War on Assad (and Russia)
By Daniel McAdams
In a move that the New York Times reports is nearly unprecedented, some 51 mid-level State Department employees have signed a letter calling for the Obama Administration to begin bombing the Assad government in Syria immediately.
Demonstrating the reality that the “soft power” of diplomacy is in fact just a front for the “hard power” of bombs, these “diplomats” demanded the administration immediately initiate: “[A] judicious use of stand-off and air weapons, which would undergird and drive a more focused and hard-nosed US-led diplomatic process.”
Yes, to these supposed trained “diplomats,” the “diplomatic process” consists of making final demands after the military has bombed your opponent to hell.
The memo was filed in what is known as the “dissent channel,” where State Department employees who disagree with current policy can register their dissent without fear of reprisals.
What are these supposed diplomats furious about? Why do they demand that the US begin actively bombing the secular Assad government? They accuse the Syrian government of ceasefire violations because when Syrian forces attack al-Qaeda’s Nusra front, the US-backed forces who fight alongside al-Qaeda are also caught up in the attack.
One might think these State Department employees would better spend their energy urging the US administration to demand that its “moderate” rebels in Syria stop intermingling with al-Qaeda.
The State Department employees are also furious that the Obama Administration has been too focused on fighting ISIS in Syria and not focused enough on fighting the Assad regime. According to the New York Times article: “[T]he State Department officials argued that military action against Mr. Assad would help the fight against the Islamic State because it would bolster moderate Sunnis, who are necessary allies against the group, also known as ISIS or ISIL.”
Of course this is more of the kind of fantasy-based analysis that led to the brilliant idea of overthrowing Gaddafi in Libya because it would bolster democratic-minded forces there and result in a model moderate, representative government in the country. We all know how fantasy-based foreign policy works out. The examples are too numerous.
To normal people living in the actual reality-based community, the idea that the US should attack the main opponent of ISIS (Assad) to bolster the fight against ISIS seems idiotic. But then most people who live in reality are not the ill-informed, ideology-driven generalist Foreign Service Officers who likely make up the majority of those who signed the letter.
Additionally, the frayed thread that the Obama Administration hangs onto to justify its attack on sovereign Syria is that ISIS poses a clear and present danger to the US and therefore the US military must be involved in Syria (absurdly using the 9/11 military authorization as a fig leaf). Take away that transparently thin rationale and behind it you have pure, naked US aggression against a country that poses no threat to the United States and is fighting the kind of radical Islamist insurgency that one might expect the US would also oppose.
As John Kerry himself said: “You just don’t in the 21st century behave in 19th century fashion by invading another country on completely trumped up pre-text.”
This move by State Department employees mirrors a similar dissent launched at the time also by Foreign Service Officers during the Clinton Administration demanding that the US become more militarily involved in the crises stemming from the post-communist break-up of Yugoslavia. We also know how that worked out.
What does it mean when a country’s diplomatic apparatus demands that it engage in aggressive war even to the risk of a nuclear conflict with Russia? Something is deeply rotten in the empire. The rot goes deep. And it threatens all of us.
How to fight this rot? Join the Ron Paul Institute this September in Washington, D.C. for a conference that will demand an end to the crazed militarism of the neocons who control our foreign policy.
Copyright © 2016 by RonPaul Institute. Permission to reprint in whole or in part is gladly granted, provided full credit and a live link are given.
Quemado Institute Commentary
Sanders vs. Trump
By Karl Pomeroy
Daniel McAdams has sounded the warning against massively insane US foreign intervention. Yet many political analysts and lay commentators criticize US policy without wanting to correct it. Such hypocrites are part of the problem.
Hillary Clinton would perpetuate current heinous American policy. Bernie Sanders offers ambiguous platitudes but no practical answers. Donald Trump stands alone as the candidate with realistic solutions.
Political analysts who condemn Donald Trump in favor of Bernie Sanders—including Eric Zuesse, Stephen Lendman, Paul Craig Roberts, and commentators on such platforms as Global Research, Strategic Culture Foundation, and New Eastern Outlook—are part of the problem. They advance the process of global destruction through their passivity, their drive to sell articles that peddle shock and awe at the expense of reason, and their refusal to acknowledge realistic principles such as those put forth by Donald Trump.
Below are quotes from the foreign policy speeches of Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders. Take a look at the difference!
Donald Trump: Excerpts from his Foreign Policy Speech
“I’d like to talk today about how to develop a new foreign policy direction for our country, one that replaces randomness with purpose, ideology with strategy, and chaos with peace.”
“My foreign policy will always put the interests of the American people and American security above all else.” [Karl Pomeroy: Vladimir Putin would advocate precisely this policy for Russia. Indeed, every nation’s government should employ this policy, including those of Germany, Britain, Greece and all members of the European Union.]
“Unfortunately, after the Cold War our foreign policy veered badly off course…. Logic was replaced with foolishness and arrogance, which led to one foreign policy disaster after another.” [Karl Pomeroy: These complaints are much like those made by critical analysts the world over, including Paul Craig Roberts, The Saker, Ron Paul, Finian Cunningham, Andrew Korybko, Dmitry Minin and more.]
“We went from mistakes in Iraq to Egypt to Libya, to President Obama’s line in the sand in Syria. Each of these actions have helped to throw the region into chaos and gave ISIS the space it needs to grow and prosper…. It all began with a dangerous idea that we could make western democracies out of countries that had no experience or interests in becoming a western democracy. We tore up what institutions they had and then were surprised at what we unleashed. Civil war, religious fanaticism, thousands of Americans just killed [and] lives, lives, lives wasted…. The vacuum was created that ISIS would fill.”
“[T]he legacy of the Obama-Clinton interventions will be weakness, confusion and disarray, a mess. We’ve made the Middle East more unstable and chaotic than ever before. We left Christians subject to intense persecution and even genocide…. Our actions in Iraq, Libya and Syria have helped unleash ISIS, and we’re in a war against radical Islam, but President Obama won’t even name the enemy, and unless you name the enemy, you will never ever solve the problem.”
“After Secretary Clinton’s failed intervention in Libya, Islamic terrorists in Benghazi took down our consulate and killed our ambassador and three brave Americans. Then, instead of taking charge that night, Hillary Clinton decided to go home and sleep…. Clinton blames it all on a video, an excuse that was … proven to be absolutely a total lie. Our ambassador was murdered and our secretary of state misled the nation.”
“We desire to live peacefully and in friendship with Russia and China. We have serious differences with these two nations, and must regard them with open eyes, but we are not bound to be adversaries. We should seek common ground based on shared interests. Russia, for instance, has also seen the horror of Islamic terrorism. I believe an easing of tensions, and improved relations with Russia from a position of strength only is possible, absolutely possible. Common sense says this cycle, this horrible cycle of hostility must end and ideally will end soon. Good for both countries. Some say the Russians won’t be reasonable. I intend to find out. If we can’t make a deal under my administration, a deal that’s great — not good, great — for America, but also good for Russia, then we will quickly walk from the table. It’s as simple as that. We’re going to find out.
“Fixing our relations with China is another important step — and really toward creating an even more prosperous period of time. China respects strength and by letting them take advantage of us economically, which they are doing like never before, we have lost all of their respect.” — Donald Trump
Bernie Sanders: Excerpts from his AIPAC Speech
From: Bernie Sanders Website
“The so-called Islamic State – ISIS – threatens the security of the entire region and beyond, including our own country and our allies. Secretary of State Kerry was right to say that ISIS is committing genocide, and there is no doubt in my mind that the United States must continue to participate in an international coalition to destroy this barbaric organization.
“While obviously much needs to be done, so far our effort has had some important progress, as airstrikes have degraded ISIS’ military capacity, and the group has lost more than 20 percent of its territory in the past year. So we are making some progress. [Karl Pomeroy: So far, Bernie’s watered-down assessment appears to support current American policy.]
“But we are entering a difficult period in the campaign against ISIS.
“The government in Baghdad has yet to achieve a sustainable political order that unites Iraq’s various ethnic and sectarian factions, which has limited its ability to sustain military victories against ISIS. Unless there is a united government, it’s going to be hard to be effective in destroying ISIS.” [Karl Pomeroy: This is quite a simplistic understatement.]
“More inclusive, stable governance in Iraq will be vital to inflict a lasting defeat on ISIS. Otherwise, ISIS could regain its influence or another, similar organization may spring up in its place.” [Karl Pomeroy: A meaningless platitude.]
“In Syria, the challenges are even more difficult. The fractured nature of the civil war there has often diluted the fight against ISIS – exemplified by the Russian airstrikes that prioritized hitting anti-Assad fighters rather than ISIS. And, just like in Iraq, ISIS cannot be defeated until the groups that take territory from ISIS can responsibly govern the areas they take back. Ultimately, this will require a political framework for all of Syria.” [Karl Pomeroy: Bernie has criticized the Russian airstrike strategy, implying the Democratic candidate might be anti-Assad himself. His statements are sufficiently ambiguous as to escape interpretation.]
“The U.S. must also play a greater role disrupting the financing of ISIS and efforts on the Internet to turn disaffected youth into a new generation of terrorists. While the U.S. has an important role to play in defeating ISIS, that struggle must be led by the Muslim countries themselves on the ground. I agree with King Abdullah of Jordan who a number of months ago that made it clear what is going on there right now is nothing less than a battle for the soul of Islam and the only people who will effectively destroy ISIS there will be Muslim troops on the ground. So what we need is a coalition of those countries.” [Karl Pomeroy: Does Sanders really believe only Muslims can destroy ISIS? This is a recipe for failure.]
Quemado Institute urges enlightened global analysts to courageously defy political correctness and support Donald Trump for US President.