Syrian War Set to Re-Explode
US, Turkey, Saudi Arabia In Alliance with Al Qaeda
By Shamus Cooke
May 14, 2015 "Information
Clearing House" -
The Syrian war stalemate
appears to be over. The regional powers surrounding Syria — especially Saudi
Arabia, Turkey, Qatar, and Jordan — have re-ignited their war against the Syrian
government. After over 200,000 dead and millions of refugees, the U.S. allies in
the region recently re-committed to deepening the war, with incalculable
The new war pact was made between
Obama’s regional darlings, Saudi Arabia and Turkey, who agreed to step up deeper
military cooperation and establish a joint command in the occupied Syrian region
Turkey and Saudi Arabia are now openly backing Islamic
extremists under the newly rebranded “Conquest
Army” The on-the-ground leadership of this “new”
coalition consists of Jabhat al-Nusra — the “official” al-Qaeda affiliate — and
Ahrar al-Sham, whose leader previously stated that his group was the “real
The Huffington Post reports:
“The Turkish-Saudi agreement has led to a new joint
command center in the northeastern Syrian province of Idlib. There, a
coalition of groups — including Nusra and other Islamist brigades such as
Ahrar al-Sham that Washington views as extremist — are progressively eroding
Assad’s front. The rebel coalition also includes more moderate elements of
the Free Syrian Army that have received U.S. support in the past.”
The article admits that the Free Syrian Army — that Obama
previously labeled as “moderates” and gave cash and guns to — has been swallowed
up by the extremist groups.
This dynamic has the potential to re-engulf the region in
violence; deep Saudi pocketbooks combined with reports of
looming Turkish ground forces are a catastrophe in the making.
Interestingly, the Saudi-Turkish alliance barely raised
eyebrows in the U.S. media. President Obama didn’t think to comment on the
subject, let alone condemn it.
The media was focused on an odd narrative of Obama reportedly
being “concerned” about the alliance, but “disengaged” from what two of his
close allies were doing in a region that the U.S. has micromanaged for decades.
It seems especially odd for the media to accept that Obama has
a “hands off” approach in Syria when at the same time the media
is reporting about a new U.S. program training Syrian rebels in Jordan,
Saudi Arabia, and Turkey.
It’s inconceivable that Obama would coordinate deeply with
Turkey to set up a Syrian rebel training camp on Turkish soil, while at the same
time be “disengaged” from the Turkish-Saudi war coalition in Syria.
One possible motive behind the fake narrative of
“non-cooperation” between Obama and his Turkish-Saudi allies is that the U.S. is
supposed to be fighting a “war on terrorism.”
So when Turkey and Saudi Arabia announce that they’re closely
coordinating with terrorists in Syria — like al-Nusra and Ahrar al-Sham — Obama
needs an alibi to avoid being caught at the crime scene. He’s not an accomplice,
This is likely the reason why Obama has insisted that his new
“moderate” rebels being trained in Turkey will fight ISIS, not the Syrian
government. But this claim too is ridiculous.
Is Obama really going to throw a couple hundred newly-trained
“moderate” Syrian rebels at ISIS while his Turkish-Saudi allies focus all their
fire on the Syrian Government? The question answers itself.
The media has made mention of this obvious conundrum, but
never bothers to follow up, leaving Obama’s lame narrative unchallenged. For
example, the LA
“The White House wants the [U.S. trained rebel] proxy
force to target Islamic State militants, while many of the Syrian rebels —
and the four host nations [where Syrian rebels are being trained] — want to
focus on ousting Syrian President Bashar Assad.”
The article simply shrugs its shoulders at the irreconcilable.
The article also fails to mention that Obama’s “new” training camps aren’t new
at all; he’s been arming and training Syrian rebels since at least 2012, the
only difference being that the “new” training camps are supposedly meant to
target ISIS, compared to the training camps that were openly used to target the
Here’s the LA
Times in 2013:
“The covert U.S. training [of Syrian rebels] at bases in
Jordan and Turkey began months before President Obama approved plans to
begin directly arming the opposition to Syrian President Bashar Assad,
according to U.S. officials and rebel commanders.”
This is media amnesia at its worse. Recent events can’t be
understood if the media doesn’t place events in context. In practice this
“forgetfulness” provides political cover to the Obama administration, shielding
his longstanding direct role in the Syrian war, allowing him to pretend to a
“passive,” “hands off” approach.
When it was reported
in 2012 that the Obama administration was funneling weapons to the Syrian
rebels, the few media outlets that mentioned the story didn’t bother to do any
follow up. It simply fell into the media memory hole. After the weapons
funneling report came out, Obama incredulously stated that he was only supplying
“non lethal” support to the rebels, and the media printed his words
Consequently, there was no public discussion about the
consequences of the U.S. partaking in a multi-nation proxy war against Syria, a
country that borders war ravaged Iraq.
In 2013 when Obama announced that he would be bombing the
Syrian government in response to a supposed gas attack, the U.S. media asked for
no evidence of the allegation, and strove to buttress Obama’s argument for
And when Pulitzer Prize winner Seymour Hersh wrote an article
exposing Obama’s lies over the aborted bombing mission, the article didn’t
see the light of day in the U.S. media. Critically thoughtful voices were not
welcome. They remain unwelcome.
In 2015 direct U.S. military intervention in Syria remains a
real possibility. All the conditions that led to Obama’s decision to bomb Syria
in 2013 remain in place.
In fact, a U.S. intervention is even more likely now that
Turkey and Saudi Arabia are fighting openly against the Syrian government, since
the Saudi-Turkish alliance might find itself in a key battle that demands the
special assistance that only the U.S. air force can offer.
Unsurprisingly, there has been renewed
discussion of a U.S. enforced “no fly zone” in Syria. ISIS doesn’t have an
air force, so a no fly zone would be undeniably aimed at the Syrian government
to destroy its air force. The new debate over a “no fly zone” is happening at
the same time as a barrage
of new allegations of “chemical weapons” use are being made against the
If a no fly zone is eventually declared by the Obama
Administration it will be promoted as a “humanitarian intervention, that strives
to create a “humanitarian corridor” to “protect civilians” — the same rhetoric
that was used for a massive U.S.-led NATO bombing campaign in Libya that
destroyed the country and continues to create a massive refugee crisis.
As the Syrian war creates fresh atrocities the Obama
administration will be pressured to openly support his Saudi-Turkish allies,
just as he came out into the open in 2013 when he nearly bombed the Syrian
History is repeating itself. But this time the stakes are
higher: the region has already been destabilized with the wars in Iraq, Libya,
and Syria, and the regional conflicts have sharpened between U.S. allies on one
hand, and Iran, Syria, Hezbollah and Russia on the other.
Such a volatile dynamic demands a media willing to explain the
significance of these events. The truth is that Obama has been a proxy war
president that has torn apart the Middle East as badly as his predecessor did,
and if the U.S. public remains uninformed about developing events, an even
larger regional war is inevitable.
is a social service worker, trade unionist, and writer for Workers Action (www.workerscompass.org)
He can be reached at shamuscooke@gmail