[News] How the US is enabling Syriastan

Anti-Imperialist News news at freedomarchives.org
Fri Sep 27 18:11:35 EDT 2013

*How the US is **enabling Syriastan*

By Pepe Escobar

If any extra evidence was needed to shatter the myth of a "revolution" 
struggling for a future "democratic" Syria, the big news of the week 
cleared any remaining doubts.

Eleven, 13 or 14 "rebel" brigades (depending on the source) have ditched 
the "moderate", US-propped Syrian National Council (SNC) and the 
not-exactly Free Syrian Army (FSA). The leaders of the bunch are the 
demented jihadis of Jabhat al-Nusra - but it includes other nasties such 
as the Tawhid brigades and the Tajammu Fastaqim Kama Ummirat in Aleppo, 
some of them until recently part of the collapsing FSA.

The jihadis practically ordered the myriad "moderates" to submit, "unify 
in a clear Islamic frame", and pledge allegiance to a future
Syria with Sharia law as "the sole source of legislation".

One Ayman al-Zawahiri must be having a ball in his comfortable, 
drone-proof hideout somewhere in the Waziristans. Not only because his 
call for a multinational jihad - a la Afghanistan in the 1980s - is 
working; but also because the US-run SNC has been exposed for the 
toothless rodent that it really is.

And facts on the ground keep corroborating it. The al-Qaeda-propped 
Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant took over a town near the Bab 
al-Salam border crossing with Turkey that was held by the FSA because 
the FSA was accused of fighting for "democracy" and close ties with the 
West. Wrong; the FSA wants those ties but under a Muslim 
Brotherhood-controlled regime. The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant 
- of which Jabhat al-Nusra is the main Syrian component - wants a 
Talibanized Syriastan.

The hardcore jihadi gangs in Syria may number as much as 10,000 
fighters; but they do account for arguably 90% of the heavy fighting, 
because they are the only ones with battleground experience (including 
Iraqis who fought the Americans and Chechens who fought the Russians).

In parallel, and not by accident, ever since Prince Bandar bin Sultan, 
aka Bandar Bush, was put in charge by Saudi King Abdullah to run the 
Syria jihad, taking no prisoners, the "moderate" Qatar-aligned Muslim 
Brotherhood SNC has been progressively sidelined.

*Off with those peaceniks' heads *
Yet as far as train wrecks go, nothing equals the Obama administration's 
excuse for a "strategy", which theoretically boils down to weaponizing 
and extensively training the weakest link - selected FSA gangs 
infiltrated with CIA assets - and "vetting" weapons falling into the 
hands of jihadis. As if the CIA had reliable local intel on the myriad 
jihadi Gulf-based funding and logistical sources.

The SNC, the FSA and the exile so-called "Supreme Military Command" led 
by the grandiloquent General Salim Idriss are now no more than a joke. 
This whole thing happened while SNC leader al-Jerba was at the UN 
General Assembly in New York - where he met with Secretary of State John 
"Assad is like Hitler" Kerry. Kerry did not talk about weapons but about 
more "aid" and future negotiations at the perennially postponed Geneva 
II conference. Al-Jerba was furious. And to top if off, some is his FSA 
gangs openly embraced al-Qaeda.

Why? Follow the money. This is how it works, in a nutshell. At least 
half of the FSA "brigades" are mercenaries - they are financed from 
abroad. They fight where their masters - who weaponize and pay them - 
tell them to fight. The "Supreme Command" controls, at best, something 
like 20% of the brigades. And these people don't even live in Syria; 
they are based on the Turkish or Jordanian side of the border.

The mercenary jihadis, on the other hand, are on the ground full-time. 
They are the real fighting force, receive their salaries on time, and 
their families are well taken care of.

So for all practical purposes it's now a war between the Syrian Arab 
Army (SAA) and a bunch of jihadis. Of course this will NOT be explained 
by supine corporate media to Western public opinion.

Now imagine these beheading, liver-devouring Sharia groupies willing to 
go to the Geneva II conference to negotiate a ceasefire with the Syrian 
government and a possible peace deal with the NATO-House of Saud axis. 
Obviously it's not going to happen - as Bandar Bush himself telegraphed 
Russian President Vladimir Putin in person in Moscow.

Worse, from Washington's point of view, there's no way to justify why no 
meaningful negotiations can take place. Even puzzled infidels with half 
a brain across the Beltway will be able to make a connection between 
hordes of Syrian "rebels" embracing al-Qaeda immediately after 
al-Shabaab's attack on the Westgate mall in Nairobi.

It goes without saying that Baghdad is freaking out with these 
developments. The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant is ramping up car 
bombing and suicide bombing in Iraq itself - because the "apostate" 
Shi'ite-led al-Maliki government is as much a target as the secular 
Bashar al-Assad. It's hard to believe that only five months ago I was 
writing about the advent of the Islamic Emirate of Syriastan 
<http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Middle_East/MID-01-120413.html>. Now it's 
clear how "invisible" al-Zawahiri and wily Bandar Bush have appropriated 
Washington's "strategy" to really get what they want.

/*Pepe Escobar* is the author of /Globalistan: How the Globalized World 
is Dissolving into Liquid War 
/(Nimble Books, 2007), /Red Zone Blues: a snapshot of Baghdad during the 
/(Nimble Books, 2007), and /Obama does Globalistan 
<http://www.amazon.com/Obama-Does-Globalistan-Pepe-Escobar/dp/1934840831> /(Nimble 
Books, 2009).

He may be reached at pepeasia at yahoo.com./
Freedom Archives 522 Valencia Street San Francisco, CA 94110 415 
863.9977 www.freedomarchives.org
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