Friday, 14 June 2013

Syria: What Could Happen if the Conflict Intensfies.

The Syrian Crisis deepens day by day. David Cameron is a vain, incompetent and blustering figure, the leader of a nation with too much of a global role, none of the responsibilities that come with being one of the five permanent security council members and no independent foreign policy.

Cameron states his predictable backing for the US and is trying to act the statesman by pretending the US now can see the wisdom of the lead Britain and France took in bringing to light claims about President Assad's  use of chemical weapons ( sarin nerve gas ),
"I welcome this candid assessment by the Americans. I think it, rightly, puts back centre stage the question, the very difficult question to answer but nonetheless one we have got to address: what are we going to do about the fact that in our world today there is a dictatorial and brutal leader who is using chemical weapons under our noses against his own people."
War clouds are darkening and amassing steadily on the horizon. The Syrian Crisis has potential consequences far more lethal than the invasion of Iraq, though that invasion is a major cause of the current crisis in having led, over the last decade, to Shia government favourable to Tehran.

The US has expressed considerable concern over growing Iranian influence. So the US and UK are highly likely to back the Sunni militias with weapons. Encircling and controlling Iranian ambitions is a basic tenet of US foreign policy. Iran will step up its supply of weapons, cautiously backed by Russia.

Faced with this Cameron and Hague are out of their depth, mediocrities trying to cope with the immense complexities that they do not fully grasp. They live in a detached world of abstract theoretical geopolitcs in which 'existential enemies' can be combatted only through sabre ratting and 'resolve'.

Cameron emits same rhetoric as Blair with Iraq, the same shrill oversimplifications and messianic overtones. There will be no point of return from this one if the conflict escalates further across the Middle East. Too much is at stake.

The Western economies depend far too much upon oil and gas to let Iran have dominance over Syria. Iran occupies what Zbigniew Brzezinski called one of the most important 'geopolitical pivots' in the world, an area between the Middle East and Central Asia where most of the globe's oil and gas is.

Iran is facing economic crisis as US sanctions create inflation and falling living standards. Hemmed in from the east by US presence in Afghanistan, blocking the IP pipeline in favour of the TAPI pipeline is an extension of the sanctions policy and it is leading to Iranian resentment of the West.

The temptation for Tehran to step up the conflict in Syria as an escape westwards and to retain it's influence is considered a direct threat to the US's ability to control the balance of power over the Gulf. Bahrain faced Shia protests against the minority Sunni regime in 2012.

The prospect of Shia dominance in Syria and the defeat of Sunni fundamentalist 'rebels' ( i.e. insurgents ) is anathema to the US and UK so there is no prospect for peace nor the diplomatic resolution of the crisis and they no more want to negotiate with Assad than with Iran.

There are no signs the Sunni insurgents will not continue to suffer set backs and military defeats with Hezbollah now supporting Assad from Lebanon. So it is very probable the US and UK and France will supply arms so as to counter Iran and it will respond by doing the same.

The escalation of a lethal proxy war and more weapons entering Syria can only create create a total bloodbath to happen on a scale that could not only exceed Iraq but which could polarise the regional and global powers and ramp up the conflicts over oil and gas supply routes to a new level.

Should the conflict lead to the destabilisation of Lebanon and Jordan, as well as turning Syria into a version of Afghanistan, that could have severe consequences for the 'blowback' from Sunni militias and Al Qaida reaping havoc across the border into Saudi Arabia.

The US and Britain will do everything to shore up Saudi Arabia from collapse but the knock on effects upon oil production would seriously destabilise global oil supplies and prices. The slump in the West would be intensified and the blowback from Al Qaida terrorists cause mayhem.

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