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Posts Tagged ‘neo-cons’

Syria Seen as a Backdoor to War with Iran

Thursday, May 2nd, 2013

neocon1It’s a matter of public record that this war with Iraq is largely the brainchild of a group of neoconservative intellectuals, who view it as a pilot project. In August a British official close to the Bush team told Newsweek:Everyone wants to go to Baghdad. Real men want to go to Tehran.” In February 2003, according to Ha’aretz, an Israeli newspaper, Under Secretary of State John Bolton told Israeli officials that after defeating Iraq the United States would “deal with” Iran, Syria and North Korea.

Paul Krugman, “Things to Come” (New York Times, 3/18/03)


Col. Lawrence B. Wilkerson, chief of staff to former Secretary of State Colin Powell, says on the May 1 Rachel Maddow Show that the same “characters” who brought us the Iraq War, including senators John McCain and Lindsey Graham, are now trying to push the U.S. into military involvement in Syria, and that this is a backdoor to the war with Iran that the neo-cons have been wanting for a long time.

Rachel shows how the new George W. Bush presidential library airbrushes history and ignores a multitude of inconvenient truths, then asks Col. Wilkerson, “When you’re looking at the debates about Syria, the debates about Iran . . . do you feel that there is a real concrete effect of propagating a whitewashed history of what we went through with the Iraq War? Does that affect the debates we’re having now in issues like Iran and Syria?”

I think as Yogi Berra once said, it’s like déjà vu all over again. I see us walking down the same road with the same characters singing in the choir, the same people off the same sheet of music with a few changes trying to get us into war with Iran. The new momentum with respect to Syria is not just because of the brutal civil war there, it’s also because of people like Lindsey Graham and John McCain from my party and Bob Menendez from the Democratic party would like to use Syria as a back door to get us in a war with Iran. It’s another catastrophe brewing, and if the American people don’t wake up and start saying something about it, they’ll find themselves in another trillion-dollar, ten-year war that’s going to produce results not unlike Iraq today. 

Let me say, Iraq is a mess today. It is an absolute mess. You’ve got the Saudis funding the Sunnis and a resurgence of the civil war. You have Maliki in the back pocket of Iran, so what we have, as George Bush doesn’t tell you in his library, is an ally of Iran in Iraq now. You have the Kurds about to establish their own state in the north, and Iraqis who know anything about their country predicting it will break up in the next four to five years. So, that’s what George Bush did for Iraq.


Senators McCain and Graham have been pressing loudly for over a year for the U.S. to arm the Syrian rebels. There is considerable doubt and skepticism as to who exactly these Syrian “rebels” or “freedom fighters” are. Really, are they all Syrian, and what will become of whatever weaponry the U.S. might give them? (Israel is concerned about this question, too.) Would aid to the rebels be paid for by fiscal conservatives at a time of enforced national austerity? The civil war in Syria is mind-bogglingly complex, with innumerable actors, backers, invisible and subterranean connections and interests at play, both strategically and commercially. Senators McCain and Graham have not, as far as we’ve been able to ascertain, troubled themselves to educate the public or reporters on these questions. Reporters, please keep pressing them for answers.


Recommended Reading:

ThinkProgress:What You Need to Know About the Syrian Civil War

Steve Clemons at The Washington Note:Syrian Conflict Not Just a Battle Against Assad