Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Senator Warren is worried about Israeli security

From Eyal: "We all remember the "most progressive US senator"'s recent signature of a letter decrying the UN for not accommodating Israel more perfectly; his call for more Saudi intervention in Syria; his support for the weekly assassination lists and so on.

Well, what about the "Second most progressive senator", then? Polling suggests Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts holds that title. Warren was just given a fawning interview on the Young Turks' interview channel:

While she is not an assault-crazed zealot - beginning her replies with a desire to focus on finding political solutions through negotiations with Russia - she certainly does not criticize, let alone denounce, US activities in the region.

She is then asked "If at the end of the day Assad survives" (note the assumptions of heads-of-state the US doesn't like typically not surviving) "and is still the leader of Syria, can you live with that?"
Assad remaining as the leader of Syria, Senator Warren says that

"it depends on what the alternatives are, because the key for me is:

1. There cannot be a place that ISIS can retreat to 2. There cannot be a force that threatens to destabilize our allies 3. We cannot have this humanitarian crisis that just continue to unfold,
and he has proven that he is a monster, that he is willing to gas his own people

Those have to be our goals, and we have to be hard-nosed about keeping our eye on what the goals are."

Of course, the dead giveaway is number 2. The allies of Warren's United States in the region are Saudi Arabia, Israel, Turkey (most days anyway), Egypt, Jordan - which we, as opposed to the US, should want to destabilize, or rather foment revolutions in and against.

Now, number 3 is a combination of the questionable allegation regarding the chemical attack (*), and the sanctimonious cognitive dissonance regarding how the US' own role in killing civilians, aggravating humanitarian disasters and of course being armed to the teeth with nuclear and biological weapons (not to mention depleted uranium, white phosphore, napalm etc.) Also, the US had done almost nothing to alleviate the humantiarian catastrophe - both in terms of aid and in terms of letting refugees in. And I don't know that Warren has spoken out on this matter. So number 3 seems to me like mostly vacuous.

As for number 1 - ISIS has not had anywhere to retreat since, well, since it's gone on the retreat. And Mosul has almost fallen, and Raqqa seems to be coming along slowly but surely - with the Syrian regime having very limited participation in this effort (ok, to be fair, theyhave been holding long borders with ISIS which should not be discounted, and there's the Palmyra campaigns and now East Halab). So that 'key' is practically orthogonal to the question of the political goals of the US
in Syria in the mid-term and it'll become totally irrelevant in, what, a year? Year and a half tops.

But number 1 is also important in what Warren is _not_ including Al-Qaeda/JFS/HTS and friends in the group of those who must find no refuge and place for retreat. I guess those guys should always have the option to retreat to Langley, Virgina or some palace in Riyadh.

So the bottom line - as I read it - for the second most progressive senator is maintaing the order of oppressive Middle-Eastern states, and turning a blind eye to the Wahabiist militias related to and funded to some of them.

(*) The regime has killed massive amounts of people using regular munitions; more than ISIS and the Al-Nusra/FTS/HTS-affiliated factions combined if I'm not mistaken, so don't get me wrong on this. And precisely for this reason focusing on the chemical attack suggests a more self-interested concern about the Ba'ath regime's attack on Syrian civilians."